Western Edition

Will New York dairies survive?

CW-MR-2-NY-Dairies-surviv1e2by Elizabeth A. Tomlin

If you listen to what dairy farmers are saying, you may conclude that New York State’s status as a “Dairy State” is unlikely to continue.

Small farms and large alike are being negatively impacted by the low milk prices and the numbers are staggering.

“We lost $3,000 in one month,” reports Terri Phillips of Dellavale Farm, Montgomery County. “I can’t imagine what it is on a bigger farm!” Dellavale milks about 50 cows.

Sandie Prokop co-owner of Schoharie County’s Crossbrook Dairy Farm, is milking nearly 400. “The main point is that at the end of the week, after 80-plus hours of work, my son — the daily manager — has zero dollars for all his work! Every penny that can be scraped up is spent for expenses.” [Read more…]

Automatic dairy farming: Part 2

CEW-MR-1-Automatic-Da1iry4by Tamara Scully

Dairy farmers recently gathered at Mor-Dale Farms, in Myersville, PA, to learn about automation: calf feeders, feed pushers, robotic milking systems and more. Part One discussed the use of automatic calf feeders as presented at the workshop “Automation and the Dairy Industry,” organized by Dr. Charles Garner, DVM.

Automatic feeding robots

Once calves mature, automation can still play a role in their daily feeding. Even in barns where humans — not robots — milk the cows, equipment, such as an automatic feed pusher, can simplify farm chores while helping to insure the cows consume the maximum dry matter intake, and are eating more of their daily rations. [Read more…]

Cayuga County holds Youth Tractor Safety Course

CE-MR-1-Cayuga-Cou1nty1Each year, Cornell Cooperative Extension (CCE) of Cayuga County delivers a Safe Tractor and Machinery Operation Certification course, specifically to educate youth. Youth from Cayuga and the surrounding counties are invited to participate in this very important safety program. This year, 10 teenagers from Cayuga and Onondaga Counties successfully completed the six week (24 hour) safety certification course. [Read more…]

Fighting the silver bullet mentality

CM-50-1-Fighting-the-s1ilverby Sally Colby

Dr. Gareth Bath, University of Pretoria, South Africa, says when it comes to treating sheep and goats for internal parasites, producers have spent far too long concentrating on the parasites instead of the host.

“We tended to rely on dosing remedies that worked,” said Bath, explaining the worldwide resistance problem. “Since the 1960s, there have been a series of excellent drugs. Unfortunately, this led us to be lazy and get into bad habits and not think of anything except a dosing program. [Read more…]

Working toward a career in dairy

by Sally Colby

Katie Ann Bower didn’t grow up on a farm, but her love of animals started when she was young.

“I’ve always had animals at my house,” said Katie. “I was being bullied in high school, so my parents got me a horse. I started going to 4-H, and my leader gave me lessons and took me to horse shows. I paid for my lessons by working on her dairy farm.”

That experience is what led Katie to fall in love with the dairy industry. [Read more…]