Typical Cow Life Cycle

The basic events in a cow's life are diagrammed below. The green text beside each event or stage represent the action (or actions) that should be used to indicate to Herdly that the animal has reached that stage of its life. Below the diagram is more detailed information about some of the things that are changed under the hood during each action. (To learn about which fields are considered key fields for Herdly to operate correctly, include helping walk an animal through their life cycle, please see the Field Descriptions topic.)

The main actions shown in the diagram above are listed below. If any fields, besides the obvious ones shown in the action itself, are changed when the action is saved, this will be indicated.

New Animal action

  • No side affects. It is expected that you set up the status and breeding pool sections to reflect the purchased animal. For example, if you purchased a bred heifer, you should set Gender to Female, Classification to Cow, Purpose to Breeding, Breeding Stage to Pregnant, and fill in at least the breeding pool Entry Date field.

New Calf action

  • Change’s the calf’s status to Current if it was a live calf or Dead if it wasn’t.
  • Changes dam’s breeding stage to Open
  • Changes dam’s first breeding date to a blank value
  • Changes dam’s last breeding date to a blank value
  • Changes dam’s first possible calving date to a blank value
  • Changes dam’s last possible calving date to a blank value
  • Changes dam’s preg check date to a blank value
  • Changes dam’s projected calving date to a blank value
  • Closes any open exposure records

New Weaning action

  • Nothing related to the cow’s life cycle

New Yearling action

  • Nothing related to the cow’s life cycle

Add To Breeding Pool action

  • Sets the animal’s classification to Cow
  • Sets the animal’s purpose to Breeding
  • Sets the animal’s breeding stage to Open

Remove From Breeding Pool action

  • Sets the animal’s breeding stage to Removed
  • Closes any open exposures

Remove From Herd action

Note that the Remove From Herd action automatically removes an animal from the breeding pool if it is still there, so both actions don't need to be used unless you want to provide additional information in the Remove From Breeding Pool action.

  • Sets the animal’s status to Sold
  • If the animal has a breeding stage, sets it to Removed
  • If the animal has a breeding stage, sets the breeding pool exit date and weight to the remove from herd exit date and weight.
  • Closes any open exposures

Record Death action

Note that the Record Death action automatically removes an animal from the breeding pool and from the herd if that hasn't already been done.

  • Sets the animal’s status to Dead
  • If the animal has a breeding stage, sets it to Removed
  • If the animal has a breeding stage, sets the breeding pool exit date and weight to the remove from herd exit date and weight
  • If the remove from herd reason is not set, sets it to Died
  • Closes any open exposures

Move Animals action

  • If the Update exposure information checkbox is checked during a move, exposure records will be closed for cows and bulls that will be apart after the move and created (or continued) for cows and bulls that will be together after the move. Note that animals are only considered “cows” in this process if their status is Current, their gender is Female, they are known to be in the breeding pool based on the breeding pool entry date, and their breeding stage is Open or Exposed. Similarly, animals are considered bulls in this process only if their status is Current, their gender is Male, they are known to be in the breeding pool based on the breeding pool entry date, and their breeding stage is Active. Exposure records are not created for any other kind of animal during a move. Also note that exposure information is only updated if the move is a current move. In other words, if you record a move that happened yesterday or previous to that, this mechanism will not work.
  • If an exposure record is created in this process, the same things that happen with the New Exposure Event action also occur.

New Exposure Event action

  • Changes dam’s breeding stage to Exposed, if this exposure began after her last calf
  • Recalculates the dam’s first breeding date based on the first exposure or mating since her last calf
  • Recalculates the dam’s last breeding date based on the last exposure or mating since her last calf
  • Recalculates the dam’s first possible calving date based on the first exposure or mating since her last calf
  • Recalculates the dam’s last possible calving date based on the last exposure or mating since her last calf
  • Recalculates the dam’s projected calving date based on the first exposure or mating since her last calf (unless a preg check event has happened since the last calving in which case the preg check will take precedence)

New Mating Event action

  • Makes identical changes as the New Exposure Event action

New Preg Check Event action

  • Changes cow’s breeding stage to Pregnant or Open, depending on the preg check result
  • Sets the cow’s projected calving date based on the preg check (if a date was called) or leaves it as is (based on the first possible calving date). If the cow was open, the projected calving date will be set to be blank.
  • Closes any open exposure events if the cow was pregnant.