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Cost of raising a calf-cow or calf-butcher ?

Discussion in 'Other Pets & Livestock' started by hunterjumper999, Jun 5, 2011.

  1. hunterjumper999

    hunterjumper999 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Dec 26, 2008
    Box Springs
    I'm considering getting a heifer and a bull calf and raising them up... bull for meat, heifer for milk. I'm looking into costs and no site ive found seems to break it down very well. we have limited pasture and will be acquiring them next spring(so i hope to have the pasture professionally plowed and planted before they come). their field would be about an acre and a half. I plan on getting a smaller framed breed like jersey for the milk cow and I'm in the air about a bull calf. . .
     
  2. pbjmaker

    pbjmaker Overrun With Chickens

    May 9, 2008
    Central Iowa
    I hope someone answers this post because it is something we have been looking into also.
     
  3. chook pen jen

    chook pen jen Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 24, 2009
    Collie W.Australia
    I'm no expert but I have 2 dexters and 2 horses on just over 4 acres, and cows eat more than horses, I hand feed all year round,at the moment hay is really expensive, and grain and pellet type feed is even worse. I think you need to look at how much your pasture can provide and the price of extra hay and hard feed especialy when your cows in milk, they eat a whole lot more when they make milk. With the bull calf get a meat breed , dairy bull calves are cheeper, but they take a lot more time and feed to grow out, so are less thrifty . hope this helps a little, also go on backyard herds, they may have a better idea about your local area
     
  4. learycow

    learycow Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 1, 2011
    Southern Maine
    For starters, any calf that you raise off the mother will grow fast and be pretty much free up until weaning. You figure that the only money you put into the calf while it's on mothers milk is the cost to feed the cow!
    As for growing it once it's weaned, that can get pricey. If you have enough pasture for it, most beef breeds require little to no grain up to about 15 months. That is only if they have adequate amounts of hay or grass in their diet. I usually raise them on the cow until 4 months old, then put them out to pasture on grass with hay until they are 15 months old. The remaining 3 months (I usually slaughter at 18 months) I feed grain just to fatten them up before slaughtering, along with hay/grass if available.

    Jerseys are awesome cows to have. The eat little for the amount of milk they give. They are hardy, compact little cows who do excellent as grazers.

    Good luck! If you have any other questions feel free to PM me. I have a small dairy farm but also raise a calf now and then for meat.
     

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