Managing the beasts within

CE-MR-3-Managing-the-61109by Sally Colby

Dairy producers who use pasture-based systems want to see healthy animals with good growth from the start. One aspect of managing cattle on pasture is managing their internal parasites.

Penn State extension veterinarian Dr. Robert Van Saun says that although internal parasites haven’t been a problem for most dairy herds in the past, they’re becoming more of an issue. Unfortunately, there’s no one-size-fits-all when it comes to parasite management. [Read more…]

Herd genetics: Selecting for grass

by Tamara Scully

The dairy industry has been selectively breeding for specific traits for many years. Yet even today, it finds itself in need of new genetics, such as those for polled animals, or for producing milk on pasture. Some traits which selective dairy breeding has focused on have included: birthing ease; ketosis; mastitis and lameness.

“We can’t lose that to get new genetics,” Jen Burton, Veterinarian for Organic Valley CROPP Cooperative, speaking at the recent NOFA-NY Organic Dairy and Field Crop Conference, said. [Read more…]

Care and love of ones life’s work

CE-MR-2-Care-and-Love12by Troy Bishopp

CAZENOVIA, NY — In the hills overlooking Oneida Lake, with its fertile and sometimes fragile Honeoye soil, stand fields of cover crops, contour strips, wildlife ponds, riparian buffers and plantations of trees sequestering carbon, moisture and precious topsoil. This is a testament to a farm family’s life-long conservation ethic.

It has been said, “A society grows great when old men plant trees whose shade they know they shall never sit in.” Pete Gianforte put his own twist on this adage by planting trees when he was a young farmer so his family and community could sit under them today. [Read more…]

Lamb basics for profitability

CM-MR-2-Lamb-basicsby Tamara Scully

Beginning farmers can range from those just embarking on their passion after years of work outside of agriculture to younger adults choosing to farm for a living; those who happen to own enough land to qualify for reduced taxes or other incentives. No matter where on the spectrum a producer fits, keeping land in active agriculture is a benefit to everyone. [Read more…]

A few things the Tick Guy wants you to know

CM-51-2-Tick-guy1by Sally Colby

Ten years ago, a tick was a tick. They crawled onto a dog, perhaps hitched a ride on your pants leg and then latched onto your scalp. Moms became experts at finding and removing ticks after kids played outside.

“The tick climbed up to the top of your head, and you’d feel the bump,” said Dr. Tom Mather. “Your mom would remove it because she had pointy fingernails. And no one got sick.” [Read more…]