The plasma concentrations of calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, hydroxyproline, vitamin D, and vitamin D metabolites were determined in cows and their colostrum-deprived calves. At birth, calf plasma calcium, phosphorus, and hydroxyproline concentrations were not correlated (P greater than 0.05) with the maternal plasma concentrations of these substances. There was a high degree of correlation between maternal and neonatal calf plasma concentrations of 25-hydroxyergocalciferol (r = 0.733), 25-dydroxycholecalciferol (r = 0.888), 24,25-dihydroxyergocalciferol (r = 0.770), 24,25-dihydroxycholecalciferol (r = 0.629), and 25,26-dihydroxycholecalciferol (r = 0.840). Neonatal calf plasma concentrations of 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D were low (41.2 +/- 3.4 pg/ml) and had no correlation with maternal concentrations (r = 0.219, P greater than 0.05). Neonatal plasma calcium and inorganic phosphorus concentrations were correlated (P less than 0.05) with maternal plasma concentrations of 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D (r = 0.559 and 0.525, respectively). Vitamin D status of the dam, therefore, appears to be important in determining neonatal calf plasma concentrations of 25-hydroxyvitamin D, 24,25-dihydroxyvitamin D, and 25,26-dihydroxyvitamin D, and, in addition, the plasma calcium and inorganic phosphorus status of the neonatal calf is apparently dependent on maternal concentrations of 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D.