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Grazette Newsletter - June 2012

June 2012 Edition

It’s that time of year again – green grass, happy livestock, and busy farmers! If you have a chance to take a break, there are lots of pasture walks and other meetings happening in June and July to help you stay up to date on the latest pasture management ideas. Enjoy the summer!

Please continue to send in notices of pasture walks and workshops by three days prior to the end of each month. The Grazette is distributed monthly.

Upcoming Pasture Workshops and Related Events

Beef Producer Marketing Roundtable Meeting

When: Wednesday, June 6th – 10:00 am to 2:00 pm
Where: Cornell Cooperative Extension Education Center, 123 Lake Street, Cooperstown (Otsego County)

The meeting will feature Mike Baker, State Beef Cattle Extension Specialist, as the keynote speaker. There will also be a panel on emerging market opportunities for the regional beef industry and a discussion about the factors currently impacting marketing efforts. Producers will then be asked to participate in a facilitated conversation about how Cooperative Extension and supporting local government agencies may move forward in assisting producers in marketing and economic development efforts. There is a $20 fee per person and lunch is included. Space is limited so payment and pre-registration is required prior to the meeting by calling Amy Chamberlain at 607-547-2536 extension 226, or by email.

Adding Income Streams to a Small Dairy

When: Friday, June 8th – time to be announced
Where: DelRose Farm, 9635 County Highway 18, Bloomville (Delaware County)

Ernest and Barbara Hanselman will present Adding Income Streams to a Small Dairy. The Hanselmans milk 75 Registered Holsteins and Brown Swiss in the fertile valley of the Delaware River. They have been in the dairy business for over 30 years and have gradually added enterprises that diversify the farm into various income streams. They will discuss making the best use of on-farm resources and trends to create a diversity of income streams that add to farm income and farm viability. To register, contact Mariane Kiraly at 607 865 6531, or by email.

Chautauqua County Pasture Walk

When: Saturday, June 9th – 10:00 am to 3:00 pm
Where: Green Heron Growers, Sherman

The host farm is a 100% grass based operation using Management Intensive Grazing (MIG) practices with their beef cattle and mobile chicken tractors for their organic chicken broilers. We plan to walk the pastures, view the salad bar forages and review some pasture initiatives implemented for improving forage growth. We will view a series of different spray applications done to the pastures using raw milk, mycorrhizae fungi, a combination of both and a control site for our evaluation. Guest speakers will include Troy Bishopp and Jerry Brunetti who will speak on forage quality and herd health. For more information contact Lisa Kempisty at Cornell Cooperative Extension (CCE) Chautauqua County at 716-664-9502 extension 203 or by email. Sponsored by the New York Grazing Lands Conservation Initiative (GCLI).

Staying Small Through a Century of Dairy Farming

Web link graphic: Snofarm DairyWhen: Wednesday, June 20th – 1:00 pm to 3:00 pm
WhereSnofarm Dairy, 644 Buffalo Road, Brooktondale (Tompkins County)

Aaron and Calib Snow will present Staying Small Through a Century of Dairy Farming. The farm has been in the Snow family for three generations. A year and a half ago Calvin (father) and Aaron (son) started producing cheese from a small percentage of milk to sell locally. Snofarm is milking 35 cows, primarily Holsteins, a few Dutch Belts and a few Brown Swiss. The afternoon will consist of field, barn, and cheese making facility tours and discussion. To register, contact Monika Roth at 607-272-2292 or by email.

Grass-Based Beef: The Business Case- A National Good Food Network (NGFN) Webinar

When: Thursday, June 21st – 3:30 pm to 4:45 pm

The domestic production of pastured beef is far lower than the domestic demand. This National Good Food Network webinar will make the business case for pasture raised beef, present a case study of a highly successful operation, and point you to resources for learning how to transition to farming and ranching techniques that are higher value, environmentally positive and increase animal welfare. With panelists Allen Williams, Livestock Management Consultants, LLC, and Greg Nowicki, Wisconsin Grass-Fed Beef Cooperative. Register at Gotomeeting.

Grazing Mixed Species: Complete Cycles and Proactive Protection

When: Wednesday, June 27th – 2:00 pm to 5:00 pm
Where: Stony Creek Farm, 1738 Freer Hollow Road, Walton (Delaware County)

Interested in understanding methods for multi-species grazing? Hear from Dan and Kate Marsiglio as they explain their pasturing systems and demonstrate techniques they use to manage and protect their animals organically. Learn about their predator control program and gather information that can help you become proactive in parasite prevention. Join us as we tour Stony Creek Farm, learn about fencing options for pasturing animals, and participate in moving portable electric fence. Free for members of Northeast Organic Farming Association-New York (NOFA-NY), $15 for all others. For more information visit the NOFA-NY Web site.

Supported in part by USDA Risk Management Agency, Education and Community Outreach Program, the Beginning Farmer and Rancher Development Program of the National Institute of Food and Agriculture, USDA Grant #2009-49400-05878 and the New York Grazing Lands Conservation Initiative.


Advance Notice

The Great Vermont Weeds Tour with Kathy Voth

When: July 17th through 19th – times and locations to be determined
Where

Hundreds of Northeastern livestock farmers met Kathy through her visits to Vermont, New York, and New Hampshire last year, becoming excited and hopeful about teaching their own livestock to become weed managers through her simple, quick process. Live presentations and weed eating demonstrations, at multiple Vermont locations. Email Jenn Colby or call 802-656-0858 or visit the University of Vermont Pasture Network Web site for more information as it becomes available.

Managing the Biology of a Grazing System

When: Wednesday, July 25th – 10:00 am to 3:00 pm
Where: Marvin Moyer Farm, Lainhart Road, Owego (Tioga County)

Jerry Brunetti will give attendees a view of what is going on beneath the sod of a grazing farm and how to maximize the biologic potential for cycling nutrients which feed the plants. This event is being organized by the “Tioga Grazers”, a grazing discussion group that has been meeting for the past 10 years. There will also be information on how a grazing farm can use Risk Management “Pasture, Rangeland, and Forage Policy” to protect their feed supply from drought. RSVP requested to help plan lunch. Email Sharon VanDeuson or call 607-753-5078. Sponsored by New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets Risk Management Education and the New York Grazing Lands Conservation Initiative.

5th National Conference on Grazing Lands

Web link graphic: Grazing Lands Conservation InitiativeWhen: December 9th to 12th
Where: Orlando, Florida

The conference objective is “To Heighten Awareness of the Economic and Environmental Benefits of Grazing Lands”. The target audience includes producers, academics, consumers, government agency officials, conservationists, environmentalists, urban based resource interests, grazing land managers, landowners, and others interested in effective natural resources management. Call for papers: The conference sponsors are accepting abstracts for both oral and poster papers until May 1st in the following categories: issues concerning the agricultural-urban interface; successful “cutting edge” management technologies for grazing practices; public policy implications of grazing; and optimization of grazing land health for environmental and social benefits. More information is available at the Grazing Lands Conservation Initiative Web site.


 

Pasture News

GLCI Writing Contest

The Steering Committee of the New York State Grazing Lands Conservation Initiative (GLCI) is once again sponsoring a writing contest for students, farmers, and others. The purpose of the contest is to promote managed grazing. Up to four individuals will be eligible to win $250 each for their submissions. Authors will be judged in one of the following age categories – 15 to 20, 21 to 25, and 25 and older.

Articles should be about a farm that is utilizing managed grazing and focus on at least one of the following four benefits:

  1. animal health and well-being
  2. environmental quality
  3. economic improvement
  4. farm family quality of life

Also authors should explain how the farms have utilized technical assistance available from either a GLCI grazing specialist, or their local USDA-Natural Resources Conservation Service (USDA-NRCS), county Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD) office, Cornell Cooperative Extension (CCE) office, or some other source.

Articles should be no longer than two pages long, typed using Arial 10 point font and line spacing of 1.5. Margins should be set at one inch. Photos are encouraged. Authors must agree that articles and photos submitted become the property of the GLCI Steering Committee, and may be reprinted in various newsletters, farm periodicals, and on Web sites as a method of promoting good grazing management and the Grazing Lands Conservation Initiative. Please fill out and sign the release form below, and include with your submission. Professional writers are not allowed to submit articles for consideration.

To submit an article, email it to GLCI Coordinator Karen Hoffman or send it by postal mail to 99 North Broad Street, Norwich, New York 13815 by August 1, 2012.

Contest results will be announced by September 15th.

Click image for full screen view for printing.


Pasture Management Tips

As of late May, there has been plenty of regular moisture across most of the Northeast. However, if we end up seeing a drought period in June or July, then we need to be thinking of strategies to make the most of pasture resources even under adverse conditions.

Some infrastructure pointers to consider:

Livestock watering - Lower yields of water in your source (wells, springs, etc.) can create problems. If pumps are starved of sufficient water, air can get into lines. Pumps and the motors driving them are designed to operate with only water within the pump chamber. Even drawing in a relatively small amount of air can not only limit their performance, for submersible pumps there may not be adequate cooling for the motor to keep within desirable operating temperatures. - When water levels are lower at the source, there is also a possibility of increased sediment or other particles (organic or inorganic) being drawn into the distribution pipes. If this occurs, pay careful attention to the float valves in the water troughs. The diaphragm controlled style valves (e.g., Jobe, Hudson, Apex) have an extremely small hole inside which has to allow water to pass through in order to shut off when the water level is full. If they become plugged, then the trough overflows and makes a muddy mess in no time (besides wasting precious water from the source).

Reprinted from the June 2007 issue of the GLCI Grazette.


Notes

Want to submit an event? Interested in subscribing? Simply send an e-mail to Karen Hoffman with your event information, or with the subject line of "subscribe" to be added to the distribution list. If submitting an event listing, please submit it three days before the end of the month prior to the date scheduled, as this newsletter will only be generated at the beginning of the month. Not interested? You may also "unsubscribe" by sending an e-mail to Karen Hoffman, with "unsubscribe" in the subject line.

Brought to you by the New York State Grazing Lands Conservation Initiative. The Grazing Lands Conservation Initiative is a grass-roots coalition of producers, agricultural industry, and conservation groups with an interest in the sound conservation of private grazing lands. The goal of this newsletter is to increase awareness of grazing events around New York and in neighboring states, as well as to provide information that is useful on the farm. For more information on GLCI, check out the national GLCI Web site. Information on the NYS GLCI can be obtained from GLCI Coordinator Karen Hoffman.

For information on facilities or services, or to request sign language interpretation or other auxiliary aids at meetings, please contact the individual listed for the event at least ten days prior to the meeting date.


Past Newsletters

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