Patrick THE Bull
I got some great video of Patrick THE Bull's arrival in the pasture with his new ladies.
I picked up Patrick with a small herd of American Milking Devons that we bought a couple of weeks ago. I wasn't planning to keep Patrick, but when my friend, Kendy, saw him, she insisted he was the ONE!
Patrick spent a couple of weeks out at the rental farm with the steers and some other bulls (I seem to be collecting them). Kevin and I got him loaded and I brought him home to make the introductions.
In the video, Patrick THE Bull is meeting his new ladies for the first time. Patrick is a bit "over-conditioned." The seller told me at last weigh in he was over 2,100 pounds. He's also short and rather square. But, he really embodies the classic look of the American Milking Devon. Historic drawings and paintings depict an animal that looks just like Patrick The Bull.
The scene is reminiscent of a bunch of teenage girls meeting their celebrity crush for the first time....
You may wonder why we don't keep the bull in with the cows year round?
There are several good reasons! The first is that we don't want any very young or small heifers (heifers are young female cows that have never had a calf) that may still be in the group to get bred before they are ready. For this reason, any small/young heifers are here on the home farm and far from the boys.
Another reason is to keep breeding on a regular schedule. All the cows should get bred within a 6 week period or so. That would be ideal. Generally the bull gets to stay in longer, just to be sure!
Lastly, it's a little easier to handle the cows without the bull in there. He's a large animal and certainly takes up some space in a handling corral. While Patrick is a truly gently giant, one should never trust a bull, and at any rate, as big as he is, and as clumsy as the video shows him to be, I don't want to land under or behind him, like ever!