We don’t keep a bull on the farm full time. One day we will, but for now, we’ve been ‘borrowing’ one, named Dougall McBrave. Dougall comes from a Dexter breeder over near Collie. He’s polled (naturally hornless) and is a great big boofheaded sooky softie. He loves a good scratch behind the ears. Even though he has a sweet and non threatening nature, you can never, ever, become complacent with a bull – or any animal for that matter, so we still treat him with great respect and always have an eye out when he is here.
Like all the others, Dougall loves carrots. It’s funny when he is here, to see Butterfly the alpha female having to yield to someone else, and to see young G-Zeus being an upstart and challenging Dougall, but learning very quickly who is boss. Dougall is Hotblack’s father, and also the father to this years crop of calves – Jacaranda, Jenny-any-dots, Jim-bob and John-boy.
When Dougall sees the yellow or green buckets that may contain carrots, he swaggers along, letting out low, scary sounding moaning moos. This rather scared me at first, but makes me smile now thinking about it. It is incredible standing next to such a big solid mass of a bovine, and he’s is only a tiny wee dexter in comparison to some of the massive European breeds!
As Dougall has been twice already to service our girls, we already have a lot of his bloodline in the herd. Plus he and Dora are half brother and sister, and he is both the father and grandfather to Hotblack’s calf, John-boy. We will be looking for some new lines next year. Hopefully some nice red polled genetics!