Fall calves are all tagged, we just hope they are all tagged correctly. We put everyone in the lot and watch them for awhile. Then we separate the calves off and let them go for about an hour. (This sounds like a recipe.) Put them all back together again and see who goes to whom.
“That one has a little curl on top of it’s head!” I observe from sitting atop the fence. “That one has a little white spot on it’s chest.” We write the description next to the calves number on a piece of paper and herd them all into the tub.
“There’s the one with the curl on it’s head!” I grab the ear tag out of my pocket and David squeezes the calf into the corner and snaps the tag on it’s ear. A little jumping and bawling and we are on to the next.
We put them all back together again, cross our fingers and hope we got them all right. David yells to me over the bawling cows “Anyone look like they can’t find their baby?” I shout “409 is over here looking!” David walks through the crowd of calves and finds her calf and pushes him toward her. They sniff, she licks, he sucks….YAY! We got it right.