Manure to energy

CEW-MR-2-ManuretoEnergy1bwby Steve Wagner

In 1966, when I was an Army Reservist, I had a two-week summer camp in Fort Shelby, MS. Not far from there was Gulfport, a resort town on the Gulf of Mexico, where I swore I would live one day. A bit north of Gulfport is a town called Prentiss, where five years ago John Logan, a chicken farmer, concluded that the fecal matter from his 275,000 chickens was putting too much phosphorus into his groundwater, which ran into the Gulf. He solved the problem by purchasing a manure digester.

A Snyder County, Pennsylvania farmer, Mac Curtis, shared Logan’s problem at about the same time — only his problem was turkeys. Curtis’s Windview acreage rests atop a hill and the river flows directly past his property. Needless to say, Curtis didn’t want turkey scat polluting those waters, which flowed into the Chesapeake Bay. Instead of a digester, Curtis solved his problem with a manure burner. [Read more…]

Poisonous plants: those that are and those that can become

CM-CN-MR-2-PoisonousPlantsby George Looby, DVM

Now the snow is gone, and most of us are waiting impatiently for spring to arrive. The first harbingers of the season have blossomed, but for every group of early bloomers there are a few plants that pose potential threats to livestock and pets. After a winter on dry forage and silage, the natural inclination of animals turned out to pasture is to seek out greenery. Unfortunately, all that is green is not healthy, nutritious or beneficial. [Read more…]

Controlled predators are crowd-pleasers

CM-MR-2-Controlled predators716by Sally Colby

The predator approaches his prey quickly, then slows down and calculates his next move. He crouches and waits until the prey settle down. The predator is patient, but is quick to act as soon there’s an opportunity for a capture. As the prey start to move, the predator moves too; in perfect harmony with the prey, and always ready to change plans in the blink of an eye. [Read more…]

Manure injection for ammonia conservation

CEWM-MR-2-Manure injection411by Sally Colby

It’s a given that manure application has the potential to cause conflict with neighbors, but it can also cause conflicts between the farm’s nutrient management plan and its conservation plan.

Doug Beegle, who conducted manure research at Penn State University, says nutrient management plans often recommend manure incorporation, but the conservation plan for the farm will often recommend no-till. [Read more…]

Holstein wins three international titles at the NY Spring Dairy Carousel

CEW-MR-3-Dairy Carousel 2by Pat Malin

SYRACUSE, NY — A few years back, when Tom Cull first spotted “Cameron,” a young Holstein, he sensed he had found a diamond in the rough.

A lifelong dairy farmer and breeder from Lomira, WI, Cull’s instincts proved right. The investment in Robrook Goldwyn Cameron has since paid dividends for Budjon Farms and additional owners, Peter Vail, St. Jacobs (Tim Abbott) and Clark Woodmansee. [Read more…]