Tiashoke Farms

CE-MR-3-Tiashoke Farms918by Katie Navarra

As early as the mid 1960s, Albany County, New York farmers were feeling the pressure of development. Up until 1966, George Ziehm and son, Frank, farmed a parcel of land purchased from George’s aunt Clara. The father/son operation grew vegetables and later milked 40 registered Ayrshire cattle.

“Our father, Frank, and our grandfather, George, purchased the property in Buskirk because of a water shortage,” said Stuart Ziehm, a managing partner in Tiashoke Farms, “they also felt the land in Washington County would be more productive.”

Over the past several decades, the family has transitioned the herd from Ayrshire to today’s mix of Holstein, Jersey and Holstein/Jersey crosses. “There are 800 Holsteins, 70 Jersey and approximately 150 crosses,” said Eric Ziehm, a managing partner. The milking cows reside on the main farm in Buskirk and 960 head of young stock are raised on property located on Route 40 in Easton, NY. [Read more…]

Cycle of life, the good and bad alike, on display at Cow Birthing Center

CEW-MR-3-Birthing center1by Pat Malin

SYRACUSE, NY — Steve Palladino was as proud as any papa after the birth of four young ones, even if they happen to be dairy calves.

The four calves, including just one bull, were born on the morning of Aug. 26 at the Cow Birthing Center, a “live” exhibit at the New York State Fair. Palladino brought six of his cows from Walnut Ridge Dairy Farm in Lansing, NY, and all six had given birth at that point, midway through the 12-day fair. [Read more…]

Hard work brings international showring success to Berks County, PA’s Younker brothers

CM-DY-1-HardworkHARRISBURG, PA — On the show circuit, every farm family wants its animals to be the first to walk out of the ring, blue ribbon pocketed or purple banner in hand. Even with the competitive spirit that generates, it fosters a sense of family who cares about each other’s successes, cow families and relationships. That camaraderie is evident at the All-American Dairy Show in Harrisburg, PA. [Read more…]

Farming through experience and education

CN-MR-3-Harris3103by Sally Colby

Jake Harris knew he wanted to farm, but he also knew that going to college would be an important part of his career planning.

Harris is a recent graduate of the University of New Hampshire (UNH), where he studied agriculture. “They have a nice program as far as dairy, horticulture and general agriculture,” he said. “The Thompson School of Applied Science has a hands-on program, so I could take a wide variety of classes in my major, which is integrated agriculture management. I could combine courses to have the kind of experience I wanted.”

Integrated Agricultural Management is a new field of study at UNH, and Harris is in the second graduating class of that major. The major addresses the diverse nature of New England farms, and is ideal for those who want to get into agriculture but don’t have a specific goal in mind. [Read more…]

The Fjord horses of Norway

CN-MS-2-FjordHorseby Bill and Mary Weaver

Fjord horses, originally from the mountains of western Norway, were the horses of choice for the Vikings. They are a sturdy and versatile breed.

Gina DeSantis of Let’s Dance Dressage showed two Fjord horses at Ag Progress Days as part of “The Equestrian Experience”: Gunter, her gelding, and Lily, her mare. “We bred them, and I raised them both from birth,” DeSantis explained. “Lily is Gunter’s aunt. She came from Gunter’s grandmother, who was imported from Norway.

“Lily’s father was a more refined type of Fjord. There’s a big difference between Lily and Gunter in bone structure. Gunter was a feisty colt, so he got gelded.” [Read more…]