African Nose Ring Makes Weaning Easy
Centuries ago Zulu African natives made halters out of thorny vines to wean calves. The vines poked the cow if the calf tried to drink, and the cow moved away. Eventually the calf quit trying.
South African Dick Richardson developed the EasyWean NoseRing to mimic the old Zulu method. The spiked plastic ring is fitted into the nose of the calf and tightened against the septum with a stainless steel fastener.
"The biggest stress associated with weaning is not cutting off the milk supply, but in separating the calf from its mother," explains Judy Richardson, a South African beef rancher who sells the Nose Rings. "By using EasyWean NoseRings, ranchers are able to wean calves without separating the cows and calves."
After 4 to 6 weeks the cows stop lactating, and the cows and calves can remain in the same pasture. For ranchers who still prefer to separate cows and calves, she suggests putting the NoseRings in the calves at least two weeks before the calves are moved.
"This greatly reduces the stress of weaning, and, when the time comes to separate the animals, the weaners will leave their mothers without a backward glance," Richardson says.
The EasyWean NoseRings are easy to remove and are made of high quality acetyl so they can be reused. Richardson ships them to the U.S. and offers discounts for larger orders. She also has smaller EasyWean NoseRings for sheep and goats.