Every farmer both loves and dreads calving time. On one hand, breeders eagerly anticipate additions to their herds. Yet calving time often means sleepless nights and risking your investment with difficult births, and then facing the possibility that your first calf heifer may simply walk away from her calf. British White cattle, however, have excellent breeding, calving, and maternal traits that can improve your herd, save you money, and sleep. Even ordinary breeds will experience less calving difficulties when their cows are crossed with a British White bull. If you are looking for a breed to reduce your stress at calving time, the British White may very well be just what you are looking for.
The British White survived in the wild for over 1000 years, so natural selection weeded out many of the characteristics that make calving difficult. The result is a breed that calves quite easily, producing 70 to 75-pound calves with small polled heads, which is normal. Complications like a prolapsed uterus or a mal-positioned calf are extremely rare in the breed, even with first calf heifers and older cows. The British White has excellent maternal instincts; first calf heifers and in fact all British White cows claim their calves and start them milking as soon as possible. All in all, the breeder or rancher can look forward to almost no calving difficulties, meaning you can sleep easy. If you graze your cattle in remote areas, you can also sleep easy since British Whites employ a nursery system of looking after their calves. A sentry cow will keep watch while the rest of the herd grazes, keeping your calves safe from predators.
The British White is also known for its fertility. All breeders know how important it is for a cow to calve each year of her productive life; a non-breeding cow is a drain on your farm’s resources. The British White breeds every year and has great longevity and even cows up to 20 years of age have been known to produce calves. The breed also has a natural high percentage of twins, making it extremely possible for you to double your return on investment and the mama cow will have more than enough milk to support both calves. Cross breeding your cows with a British White bull can also increase fertility and pass on many of the strong characteristics of the breed.
Breeders are in the business of producing calves and fertility is without a doubt the most essential characteristic to have when you are choosing a breed. The British White has this fertility, and combines it with a number of other important traits to give you an excellent all around choice for your herd.
Edited from Morris Halliburton