Roaming Farm

CN-MR-3-Roaming80by Laura Rodley

Usually it is only the parents of children getting on and off school buses who keep a close eye on them. But at Roaming Farm in South Deerfield, MA, resident Highlanders also stand close by, watching school bus proceedings from the edge of their field. Their innate curiousness is as much a part of them as their long shaggy coats, long horns and short stature. Highlanders also keep a close eye on their own calves. [Read more…]

Farmland Preservation Celebration

CN-MR-1-FarmPresby Lorraine Strenkowski

Saturday, Sept. 20 provided perfect weather for the Connecticut Department of Agriculture’s Farmland Preservation Celebration. Since 1978, The Farmland Preservation Program has permanently protected the prime soils of Connecticut, thus ensuring the future of agriculture in the state. At the 300-farm and 40,000-acre milestone, the celebration was planned. [Read more…]

It’s all in the numbers: highest attendance ever at Big E

CN-MR-2-AttendanceBigE2by Laura Rodley

In its 98th year, attendance at the Big E this year broke all previous attendance records, with a final tally of 1,498, 605 people. On Saturday, Sept. 27 alone, 170,612 people attended the fair in Springfield MA — the highest attendance ever recorded on a single day, according to Catherine Pappas, communications manager. Other attendance records at the fair were broken as well, with opening day reaching 71, 019 attendees, 89,068 on the second Wednesday and 95,866 on the last Friday. [Read more…]

Taking manure spills seriously

CWMN-MR-3-Manure Spills3473by Sally Colby

A manure spill, no matter where it occurs, is more than an ‘oops’. There are serious consequences if manure spills are not handled promptly and properly.

Manure spills related to manure hauling and spreading can occur due to operator error, equipment failure or an accident. No matter what the circumstances, it’s imperative that the operator knows what to do, and is prepared to take immediate and appropriate action. [Read more…]

Year-round nutrition begins with bunker filling

C4-MR-2-Bunker filling2959by Sally Colby

For farmers who are serious about producing a nutrition-packed crop that will sustain the herd for optimum production, the year starts with crop planning and seed selection. After planting, it’s mostly a waiting game until harvest.

When kernels reach about 80 percent milk, begin sampling the plant for moisture content. Whole plant moisture level between 65 and 70 percent is ideal. When moisture content exceeds 70 percent, silage juices seep from the bunker, which means loss of soluble nutrients and feed value. Conversely, silage that is harvested too dry presents packing challenges, and excess oxygen that can result in undesirable heating and mold development. [Read more…]