Calving is almost over this year at Te Mania Angus at Mortlake and Mansfield, with only about 110 calves to go.
When each calf is born, they are tagged, weighed, sexed and given a score for calving ease. This can make for a long day, when in peak calving time, we have had up to 67 calves born in one day.
It is best practice to weigh them as soon as possible after birth because there is a correlation between birth weight and calving ease. Higher birth Weights can produce calving problems in heifers.
Each calf’s weight is recorded and related back to their sire through Breedplan. This data is used to help us breed desirable birth weights. In addition to its correlation with calving ease, recording birth weight gives us a starting point – a date and weight to accurately record growth throughout the life of the animal. Without weighing the calf, you would have to assume breed average birth weight, which would give you no variation.
The weight of these calves will be measured again at weaning, at 400 days old, at 600 days old and mature weight is measured on all females. This information is required to provide highly accurate data for performance recording of the growth traits.