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…]

Maryland farmers hosted Seasons on the Farm dinner in Benedict

SONY DSCBENEDICT, MD  — Maryland farmers held their Seasons on the Farm dinner the evening of Saturday, April 12 at Serenity Farm in Benedict. Hosting a crowd of 67 area residents and farmers with a five-course dinner, proceeds from the purchase of plates and tables and a silent auction raised $3,995 for the Southern Maryland Food Bank.

Seasons on the Farm is a program supported by Maryland and Delaware farmers. It is designed to increase transparency and familiarity with farming and food production. The goal of the dinner was to spark meaningful and sustained dialogue between farmers and their neighbors. [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…]

Preparing a market lamb for show season

CEWN-MR-2-Preparing 1by Sally Colby

Competing in market lamb and showmanship classes is hard work, but that work pays off. Proper fitting of a market lamb for the show ring involves a sound feed and exercise program as well as grooming preparation before the show.

Start the season with a calendar — mark down the dates of every show you plan to attend, from local to regional or even national. Select lambs that have the frame and growth potential that will keep them gaining steadily until show or market time. When you purchase the lamb, request a record of the lamb’s health, including the dates of immunizations and dewormings. Ask which product was used for deworming so that you can switch to a different product if necessary. Most club lambs require a CD&T booster as well as regular deworming. Watch withdrawal dates on all medications, and use clean needles and proper technique when administering vaccines. [Read more…]