Farm vet: Why a decent calving gate could be the best €300 you will ever spend
It's been a long hard spring that we all will be happy to see the back of after the usual workload and volatile weather was compounded by global warming or whatever Mother Nature's woes are.
We look forward to turning out the last cow and calf on to a bit of grass on, hopefully, a warm evening sunset.
Just before we confine spring 2016 to history I have an axe to grind.
I would like to discuss the presence or absence of calving gates on farms in Ireland, in the hope that if you don't already have one you might consider putting one in now in preparation for next year's or this autumn's calving.
To cut to the chase, if I used the words I would like to use to describe my feelings on calving a lot of cows with no calving gate the Farming Independent would not print this article.
I had to calve a cow loose in a shed last Friday night and was reminded of what happened me two years ago.
I was called to calve a beef heifer on a farm with poor facilities, and more importantly no calving gate.
Admittedly, one could halter the heifer in a crush, let her out and tie her to a gate but this is obviously not ideal either. I examined the heifer down and she promptly sprung up and chased me and the farmer out of the shed.