Step. Back. From. the. Cow.

Much hilarity today when giving a tour of our dairy–I was explaining our free stall system and how we manage milking. Whilst gesturing at the cows’ bedding, one stuck her tongue out right into my armpit.

This left me with my arm up in the air, a big trail of drool running down my side, and about 9 completely convulsed undergraduates.

I love my job.  :D

[photo from mharvey75]

Also, a link that explains why cows commonly stick their tongue up their noses. It’s not just because they can.

Posted by Gwen Pearson

Writer. Nerd. Insect Evangelist. Have you heard the good news? BUGS!


  1. ewwwwww! I did not need to know that (about the tongues and noses).

    The other day at the Reference Desk I watched in horror as a grown man rooted around up his nose for a good 10 minutes. ::shudders::

  2. We had a group of pre-school children visit the croft a while back to see the pigs, the poultry, and get a general idea of how things work on a smallholding. To their delight, the visit coincided with one of our sows farrowing.

    As it was our calmest sow and the group was very well behaved, I let the children watch from outside the pen as the piglets were farrowed. The adults with them were a little squeamish, but the children loved it—especially when I had to insert an arm and turn a transverse piglet so it could be delivered.

    The adults wanted to leave at that point, but not the children. They were rapt as I explained what I had to do and why, then did it.

    Months later, whenever I run into any of those children, they still talk about the farrowing, want to know if I’ve had to do it again, and want to know if they can come and watch again. The adults shudder.

  3. It’ll be your fault if they all grow up with pig fetishes, though.

    It is fun to stick your hand into a pen of calves and watch them fight to clamp on to it with their mouths. I’m sure they can’t figure out why the humans don’t work properly.

  4. Well, that site had the most technical explanation for, “because it’s snotty” that I have ever read. And to think that when I was very young I would eat a slice of cow tongue at the delicatessen!

    (Man, I’ve not had good pastrami good in years tho’.)


  5. Hey, cheaper than deodorant!

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