The weather for the past week has been hard enough for people to deal with, thanks to the snow. For livestock producers, it has added another thing for them to keep in mind.
With many cattle producers having recently finished up calving season, or for some, still, in the final stages of it, the snowfall seen in southeast Saskatchewan can lead to a number of issues. In many cases, the calves may not be old enough to handle the elements, especially when just a couple of weeks ago, temperatures were a lot warmer than we have seen over the past few days.
“It’s pretty hard to do much for them other than providing some adequate bedding, something they can nestle into, and some wind protection – that’s probably the two things mostly we can do,” said Ian Thackeray, a cattle producer in the Weyburn area.
For Thackeray, he had finished calving earlier in the spring, so his calves are old enough to be able to handle the change in the elements, for the most part. Other producers may not have been so lucky. And there are now some health issues for the cattle that will need to be watched for.
“We’re going to have to watch now for, you know, there’s going to be some onset of pneumonias and scours and that’s just par for the course when we get this adverse weather,” Thackeray added.
The temperatures are expected to slowly rise in the coming days, with a hopeful return to seasonal values by next week. Until then, producers will continue to do what they can to ensure the safety of their herds.
“There’s only so much we can do – when Mother Nature comes, you have to kind of weather the storm and get through it.”