Welcome to Moosters Meadows - home of Irish Dexter Cattle! We strive to breed a truly dual purpose Dexter, providing both excellent beef and milk. All of our Dexters are purebred and registered with the American Dexter Cattle Association (ADCA). We'll be blogging about what goes on here on our little ranch in Wyoming and life with Dexters. Feel free to visit our website as well.

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

2013 in Review

We started our calving this year with a calf in the house.......Acqua di - in the bathtub, in the calf warmer and in our hearts.......

And we ended the year with another calf in the house......
Miss Frostbite

In between (and including these two little beauties), here are the statistics:

11 Bulls                  
10 Heifers
13 Red                   
8  Black                  
11 Horned              
10 Polled  
We almost made it to the 50% of everything statistics.  It makes sense that we are a little heavy on the reds.  Dance is red and most of our cows carry red.  If we counted the little stillborn female (which I didn't), we'd be at exactly 50% male vs. female this year.  

All in all, no complaints, other than most of them didn't get to stay here!  

Wishing everyone a very Happy 2014!  

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Merry Christmas to All

 Lola was not impressed with the antlers........
It's so much easier to dress our dogs than the heifers!  They will even sit and stay with a little coaxing.

We wish you all a very Merry Christmas!

Saturday, December 21, 2013

A few more pictures

We've been working with a web designer to update our website a bit.  One of the tasks has been to get pictures of all of the Dexters.  Sounds easy and it's something that I should have been doing all along.  It's that time of year when the sun is mostly not shining and everything looks to be a shade of gray (except the red girls, who merely look washed out).  If I get a good picture of the cow, there's usually something else that I didn't notice (like a big pile of steaming poop or hay sticking out of an ear or another cow intruding into the picture).  Ugh.

Anyway, I did get some fun shots even with poop piles and hay and other cow parts sticking out.  Here are a few:

This is White Rock Scarlet (known as Bitty around here) and her buddy Moosters River Dance.  They are the same age - born a day apart.  Bitty is a chondro carrier and River is not.  We love them both.  Bitty has learned to be a very assertive young heifer.  Her shorter stature means she has to work harder for many things.  When she first arrived here, we had to put a shorter water tank out for her because she couldn't reach water in the "regular" one unless it was completely filled.  She loves treats and literally bulldozes her way to me through the rest of the heifers to get one.  She makes me laugh.  She's the most serious heifer ever.
Bess, the mother of our next herd sire.  Notice Xinger in the background (I didn't) and the wonderful poop piles.  It looks like Xinger is levitating.  And the gray look of everything.....Some day I'll get a suitable photo.
When the sun is out, I have to remember where it is so I'm not part of the picture.
Sometimes one is just good enough.  Here's Twizzler with her milk face going on.  She always has a milk face - always!
And shadows - funny how you don't notice them when you are taking the picture!  Here's our very very pregnant Tracy.  She's due in early January.  I predict another calf in the living room before it's over.
This is the face that most often appears in my camera....  He just can't help himself.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Out of the Deep Freeze

We hope to see something north of freezing by Thursday.  This has felt like the longest stretch of bitter cold - ever!  The Moosters are surviving despite the cold.  It has been hard on livestock, equipment and us caretakers as well.  Global warming - bah humbug!

Our creek froze over solid for the first time since we've lived here.  Choices:  chop ice in two separate pastures or heat water tanks.  The water tank method won this round.  We are finally seeing open spaces in the creek again!  Yay!

Chris got actual gates installed across the drive so we aren't having to McGyver things with a blizzard nipping at our heels.  This means we can open up the machine shed to the larger herd in dire emergencies....

While we got the hay we wanted this year (for the most part) at a lower price than last year - hallelujah - some of the bales came in well over the weight rating for our little tractor.  This is as high as it goes.  These bales get slowly hauled to the feeding area, then the bale feeder is place over the bale.  It works.  Grateful for the hay......

Apparently some of the girls think that the hay is greener on the other side.  We don't get it, but Wild Child had her head pretty well stuck between the boards....  We were able to get her out, but odds are that we'll be seeing this scene again.

Love this picture - and my husband - and this little heifer!  Frostbite is doing well and she still comes right over for her scratches.  We've had her and her momma in the corral with access to the stalls for warmth since she's still very young.  She burrows down into the straw and seems quite content.  Like her momma, she'll always prefer the "good life" in the corral to the feed yourself life in the pasture!

Today is vet day.  Four dogs, four heifers, a cow and a soon to be steer will be riding along today.

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Frosty the Snow Calf

Last week, we hit the lowest night temperatures of the season.  Unfortunately, our "baby" Yanni was due to deliver her first baby any time.  We wisely moved her into the corral, filled her stall with a few feet of straw and worred non-stop on Thursday night.  We were up very early Friday morning checking on her.  No baby to be found.  Opened the gate to her stall so she could come out to eat and drink and mingle, then checked on her throughout the day.

Right about dinner time we headed back outside to put her in the stall for the night.  Lo and behold, there were heifers in her stall and she was calving out on the hay pile!  Our best laid plans went by the wayside....

The temperature was already at zero so we went for Plan C - giving mom a few licks at baby, then rushing her into the calf warmer.  We did not want a calf frozen to the ground or missing ear tips from frostbite.
Meet Moosters Frostbite - in all her soaking wet glory!
She spent the night in the calf warmer in the living room.  She got a few warm bottles of colostrum to help keep her warm and full.  Here's the view on Saturday morning!
She bonded well with her momma and was strong and nursing quickly enough.  Saturday was another frigid night, so she got a coat to help keep her warm.  And yes, while the poor dogs get clothed regularly, this was a one time ordeal for poor Frostly (insert sounds of dogs laughing here!).
Playing in the calf feeder
Her other momma explaining that it's time to go out and meet the rest of the herd
Mom moved on out to the pasture and Frosty is trying to decide if she really wants to go or not....
Even though mom headed out to pasture, Frosty was a bit reluctant to go.  Her straw filled stall was apparently more inviting.  Chris had to encourage her just a bit. 
She wasn't too happy about meeting Twizzler and momma wasn't too excited about it either.  
She eventually met most of the herd and has learned to lead mom on a Merry Chase!