Juggling life through a bi-polar lens. Sometimes up, sometimes down. Mostly trying to tread water in the middle. Creating a likeness to a normal life. Whatever "normal" is...

Wednesday, 6 February 2008

ABC Wednesday.... C is for CALF!

Met these last year, in Yorkshire......

The calf on the right is female and has the typical doe eyes of children's picture-books. I was stunned to see the difference in appearance between her and the young male. Completely different face!


Keep close, mum, who's this? What's that thing she keeps pointing at me?

'S'ok, son, it's only a camera thingy. Go on: give her a close-up.


He was quite skittish, and after this ran behind her and hid, peering out from under her legs.

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In this country, male calves are shot shortly after birth. There is no market (we're told) for the meat of male cattle and veal is considered cruel (looking at the crates typically used, this is true). So it doesn't make economic sense for the farmer to keep them.

There is a farm in the Channel Islands, however, that is trying to change this. It rears its male calves, then sells them for meat. In a blind taste-test amongst farmers and wholesalers, all listed this beef as the best, despite rejecting the idea of it outright beforehand. Maybe young male calves will have time to enjoy a bit of life in future....

THIS one is safe. This is a living museum farm, demonstrating traditional farming methods. It was set up to show that farming can be free range, organic, and wildlife & environment friendly.

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For links to other bloggers taking part in ABC Wednesday, & instructions on how to join in, visit Mrs Nesbitt's Place!

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35 comments:

Sharon said...

I never heard of killing the male calves. They are always castrated and raised for meat here.

That calf is a cutie! Interesting info. Nice "C" post.

dot said...

Very interesting post and the calves are so cute! I've never heard of that either.

Max-e said...

Interesting post. I did not realise that the male calves were destroyed in the UK. There is a big dairy farming area on our doorstep, but they have no problem selling all their unwanted calves to speculators.
I find it a rather heartless system, but then farming is ultimately about the money

Lilli & Nevada said...

How cute, and how sad that they kill the males.

Ninnie said...

Oh such a cute thing. I love any kind of baby.

AVCR8TEUR said...

The calves are so cute. The 2nd photo is the best with the protective mum looking out for her little one.

Ida said...

CUTE!!! :)))

Ida said...

Calfs and cows have enchanting eyes.

RuneE said...

The fate of the male calf was news to me. Around here it is the male sheep who gets it in the neck, but not until they are about half a year old and then they are used as traditional Christmas dinners (and other dishes).

lv2scpbk said...

Looks like a wonderful cow family.

Petunia said...

So beautiful and so cute! I never ever eat hamurger again....

DarylE said...

Cows, calf .. clever .. I tried to tell JoAnn about the Cow Parade we had here in NY a few years ago but her comment link isnt working .. so I will tell YOU .. ;-o

Love those photos

Berit said...

Nice! They have so bsautiful eyes!!

'JoAnn's-Digital-Eyes' said...

Hi
That a great C for that sweet CALF!!!and I like the photo's all very much, I love cows and calfs!

Come and see my ABC's photography
JoAnn Holland
Participant in ABC wednesday

Pernille's ting og tang said...

What a cute pictures!!! A great C:)

Andrea said...

Cute calves. Interesting post.

Dragonstar said...

Lovely shots. I love cows and their families. Male calves are raise for beef here in Donegal.

Kerri said...

I had NO IDEA that the male calves were killed there. Very sad....but very informative post. I"m SOOOOO glad he gets to live....He's a cutie!!!

Hyde DP said...

great pictures of cows - I did a whole post about cows last year at http://ackworthborn.blogspot.com/2007/08/cows.html

Katney said...

I love the CURIOUS look in the CLOSE-UP.

DeeMom said...

what a cute wee one...great pictures

Dirty Knees said...

Interesting post. Thanks for explaining the "economics" of raising calves. Sad, though.

VP said...

I love the way cows (and calves) are always so curious!

Neva said...

Interesting facts! Love it.

Randi said...

Oh now...how sad. I just love this cute calves.

Gemma said...

Cute calf!
Want to give him a hug!

Digital Flower Pictures said...

Nice series of photos. I enjoyed some of the other pictures on your blog also.

Kostas said...

Amazing photographs, splendid blog, marvellous post. Nice ABC...

Janet said...

How interesting! My grandfather was a cattle rancher but I know very little about it. Love the photos....and those big brown eyes!

ChrisJ said...

Just found your blog. Came because it's about Yorkshire -- and so am I! I took a look at your drawings too and they are so good! Did you know that you have a real talent for drawing eyes? They are so expressive. I know all about the 'blues' and bipolar and January. Always remember that 'this too will pass' -- because it will. It comes and goes, revel in the good days. I am now 70 and have struggled with this for more than 30 years. But the good days always come again. I also discovered that people who suffer these things are usually highly gifted and intelligent. This bit of information came from Johns Hopkins University who did a study on it. I also suffered some abuse, but mine was mental and psychological. Never mind the hymns, the nuns, the church -- stay close to the Lord because He knows all about it and loves you all the more.

Shrink Wrapped Scream said...

I've learnt something new, poor little male calves, huh?

Calamity Jane said...

He definitely looks a bit shifty compared to his sister. I never knew that happened to male calves - I always thought the heffers give us the milk and the bulls give us the meat, how wrong was I.

Helena said...

THANK YOU ALL FOR YOUR VISITS AND COMMENTS..........

I'm sorry I haven't answered them all individually but I didn't log on much for a week.... I did get to visit most of you though....

Helena

Helena said...

ChrisJ- many thanks for your message of support ))hugs((

CHEWY said...

Oh My! I've been missing out. I love cows. I'd like to kiss their big soft (fig soft?) noses.