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Grazette Newsletter - September 2012

Web image: New York Grazing Lands Conservation Initiative - Grazette Newsletter

September 2012 Edition

On the farm, it always seems to rush by so quickly and then suddenly it’s time to think about fall harvest, transitioning to stored feeds, and getting ready for other fall and winter tasks. For some school children, however, the summer is just a little too long and they eagerly anticipate the fall and winter school activities by now. Perspectives definitely change through the years!

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

Web link graphic: Ovinshire FarmDairy Sheep Grazing Workshop

When: Friday, September 7th – 10:00 am to 3:00 pm
Where: Ovinshire Farm, 511 Frog City Road, Fort Plain (Montgomery County)

Web link graphic: Maple Hill CreameryOvinshire Farm is a 600 sheep dairy operated by Scott Burrington. Scott grazes his sheep on fields of native grasses and clover. Ovinshire Farm is partnering with Maple Hill Creamery to produce sheep milk yogurt.

Dr. Jim Hayes, owner of Sap Bush Hollow Farm in Warnerville, Dr. Cindi Shelley, Professor of Animal Science from State University of New York (SUNY) Cobleskill and Dr. Tatiana Stanton, Extension Associate from Cornell University will be leading the workshop. The workshop will cover breed selection for pasture-based systems, breeding on pasture, lambing on pasture, guardian animals on pasture, performance evaluation, managing your pastures, costs of pasture-based systems and parasite management on pasture.

The cost of the workshop is $10 per person and includes lunch. To register,  please e-mail Susan Lewis at the Albany County Soil and Water Conservation District or call (518) 765-7923.

Sponsored by the Hudson Mohawk Resource Conservation and Development Council (RC&D), Cornell Cooperative Extension and the Soil and Water Conservation Districts with funding from the New York Grazing Lands Conservation Initiative.

Management Intensive Grazing Shortcourse: One Day Intensive with Jim Gerrish

When: Wednesday, September 19th – 10:00 am to 4:00 pm
Where: Herondale Farm, 90 Wiltsie Bridge Road, Ancramdale (Columbia County)

Jim Gerrish is an independent grazing lands consultant providing service to farmers and ranchers on both private and public lands across the United States and Canada. He currently lives in the Pahsimeroi Valley in central Idaho and works with numerous ranchers in the Intermountain West using both irrigated pastures and native rangeland. His past experience includes over 22 years of beef-forage systems research and outreach while on the faculty of the University of Missouri, as well as 22 years of commercial cattle and sheep production on his family farm in northern Missouri. He currently writes regular columns in The Stockman Grass-Farmer magazine, and has written two books on grazing and ranch management. The workshop will include classroom time and field observations in Herondale’s pastures.

Please e-mail Herondale Farm to sign up. The fee for attending is $65 and lunch is provided. There is a limited amount of space so please be in touch soon.

Scholarships are available from Hudson Valley Young Farmers Coalition , please e-mail Sarah Lyons Chase to request funding. The deadline is September 1, 2012.

Web link graphic: Herondale Valley Farm Web link graphic: National Young Farmers Coalition Web link graphic: Greenhorns Web link graphic: Hawthorne Valley Farm

A Hudson Valley Farm Beginnings Skills Workshop. Sponsored by: Herondale Farm, Hudson Valley Young Farmers Coalition, Greenhorns, Hawthorne Valley Farm Learning Center.

Web link graphic: Western New York Crop Management Association

Web link graphic: Cornell Cooperative Extension (CCE) of Erie County
Web image: A 1940s photo of participants at pasture field day. Click image for full acreen view
Full screen view

Northwest New York Pasture Walk

When: Wednesday, September 19th – 1:00 pm to 3:00 pm
Where: John Kramer Farm, 11093 Holland Glenwood Road, Holland (Erie County)

Come join Cornell Cooperative Extension (CCE) of Erie County and Western New York Crop Management Association (WNY CMA) for a pasture walk at the dairy farm of John Kramer, who grazes over 500 dairy cows on 700 acres, and has been doing so for over 15 years. Come listen about his experiences and see his grazing system. There will be discussion regarding the ups and downs of the 2012 growing season, brainstorming on winter feeding strategies, and more!

The event is free and refreshments will be provided, but please register by e-mailing contacting Sharon Bachman or calling 716-652-5400 extension 150, by September 17th.

Sponsored by the New York Grazing Lands Conservation Initiative (GLCI).

Web link graphic: Grazing Lands Conservation InitiativeOneida County Pasture WalkWeb link graphic: Cornell University Cooperative Extension of Oneida County

When: Friday, September 21st – 11:00 am to 2:00 pm
Where: Groeslon Farm, Ray and Wanda Paddock, 10941 Fairchild Road, Remsen

The highlights of the pasture walk will include looking over a new seeding put in the spring of 2012 for the dairy, the completed watering system, laneway and fence. Guest speakers include Karen Hoffman of NRCS, who will be on hand as well to discuss nutrition and answer any other questions dairyman may have. Jeff Miller, Agronomist with Cornell Cooperative Extension of Oneida County will also be on hand to look over the new seeding and pasture, also he will be doing the whole plant moisture testing of corn. If you would like to know the moisture of your corn please bring three to five whole plants from each field that you would like tested, cut plants at the height they would be harvested at, and try to cut the plants that morning. Please call Jeff Miller at 315-736-3394 for further details. Web link graphic: Dairy Profit Monitor

Betsey Howland of Cornell University will be on hand to go over the results of the Dairy Profit Monitor (DPM) that some grazing farms have been using this summer and how it may help you.

Groeslon Farm, the Paddock family have been rotationally grazing the dairy since 1993, they have enjoyed the many benefits of grazing. Recently they have taken on a project to expand the amount of land available for rotational grazing. This project will allow them to graze more acres and longer in the fall than previously. If you would like to see a watering system, or laneway work, this pasture walk will offer you some ideas. Lunch will be included as part of the pasture walk.

Web link gaphic: Oneida County Soil and Water Conservation DistrictIf you would like to attend, please e-mail Bill Paddock of Oneida County Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD) or call 315-736-3334 by Tuesday September 18, 2012. This pasture walk is being sponsored by the Oneida County Soil and Water Conservation District and the New York State Grazing Lands Conservation Initiative (GLCI).

Web link graphic: Knoll Farm

Web link graphic: United States Department of Agriculture, Risk Management Agency
Web link graphic: University of Vermont Extension

Reclaiming and Rejuvenating Your Pasture and Hay Land

When: Tuesday, September 25th – 4:00 pm to 7:00 pm
Where: Knoll Farm, Fayston, Vermont

Many grass-based farmers struggle with balancing pasture and hay land improvements with budget and time limitations. Join University of Vermont (UVM) Extension agronomy and grazing personnel, along with beginning and experienced farmers and landowners as we visit Knoll Farm to discuss the pros and cons of different approaches to land reclamation and building quality soils on a budget.

Knoll Farm has been focused on strategically improving their hay land and offers excellent opportunity to see pasture and hay land improvement at different stages.

Sponsored by: The Pasture Program at the UVM Center for Sustainable Agriculture, UVM Extension, and USDA Risk Management Agency.

E-mail Jenn Colby or call 802-656-0858
E-mail Dan Hudson or call 802-535-7922

Jefferson/Lewis County Dairy Grazing Discussion GroupWeb link graphic: Cornell University Cooperative Extension of Jefferson County

When: Thursday, September 27th – 10:00 am to 12:00 noon and 1:00 pm to 3:00 pm
Where Wilmer Peachy and Family, 11316 NYS Route 193, Ellisburg (An afternoon pasture walk location to be announced)

Wilmer has planted triticale and rye for late fall grazing and re-growth for early spring. He thinks by September 27 the triticale and rye should be ready to graze. The Peachy’s have very little permanent pasture. They rotate corn, hay crop and pasture among all the fields. The herd is mostly Red and White Holsteins.

Lunch is on your own. Water and snacks provided.

E-mail Ron Kuck; Dairy / Livestock Educator Cornell Cooperative Extension of Jefferson County or call 315-788-8450.

Web link graphic: Southwest Project GrassAdvance Notice

2012 Southwest Pennsylvania Project Grass Conference

Web link image: Indiana County Conservation DistrictWhen: Thursday and Friday, October 11th and 12th
Where: Kovalchick Complex and Indiana Fairgrounds, Indiana, Pennsylvania

The first day of the conference will be held at the Kovalchick Complex, and will feature breakout sessions on grass finishing and meat palatability, parasite control, transitioning to organic production, and more. Keynote speech by Dr. Temple Grandin, well-known animal behaviorist and author. The second day will be tours to local farms and hands-on demonstrations at the Indiana Fairgrounds. For more information, e-mail Jim Resh, Indiana County Conservation District, or call 724-471-4751 extension 5. You can also register online.

Web link image: Growing Health 2012Growing Health 2012

When: Tuesday and Wednesday, October 16th and 17th
Where: Riverwalk Hotel and Conference Center, Binghamton (Broome County)

What do farms, food, and health have in common? More than you might think! Back for the fourth time is Growing Health 2012 - Cultivating Common Ground: Farms, Food & Health. There is an important new twist this year: Growing Health 2012 will be a two-day event. On Tuesday, October 16th the event will debut a statewide meeting entitled: the “New York State Healthy Farms, Healthy People Meeting” to consider how agriculture in New York and the Northeast can improve the health of New York residents.

Participants will register by New York State region and focus on four critical issues which impact the effectiveness of accessing New York State food products to maximize nutrition and health.

Topics include:

  • New York State Agriculture Capacity and Infrastructure
  • Individual and Consumer Access to NYS Food Products
  • Business and Institutional Access to NYS Food Products
  • NYS Food Coalitions, Networks, and Collaborations

The day of learning and discussion will be crowned by the well-known evening tasting event featuring locally grown and produced food and beverages. On Wednesday, October 17th, our morning kicks off with walking tours of the Binghamton Urban Farm or Binghamton Greenway. Six tracks of two sessions each will be offered throughout the day.

A sampling of our topics:

  • Local Foods on The Menu - presenters Heather Birdsall, and Will Owen
  • Milk and Dairy Products in a Healthy Diet: Myth & Reality - presenter Dr. Adam Lock
  • Why does the FDA Tell Me One Thing About Overuse of Antibiotics as a Farmer and Another as a Physician? - presenters Dr. Ken Jaffe and Dr. Helene MarquisWeb link graphic: Rural Health Newtork of South Central New York
  • Measuring Farmers Markets: Where Community Development Meets Public Health - presenter Richard McCarthy
  • Value Added Agricultural Economic Development - presenter Patrick Hooker.

Attend the debut statewide meeting, the evening local foods tasting, the conference, or all three events for dynamic learning, tasting and discussion.

Call 888-603-5973 or stay tuned to the Rural Health Network Web page for more details. Conference registration available online at the Growing Health 2012 Web site. Space is limited. Register before September 30th and take advantage of package discounts.

Small Farmers: Register Now for Fall, Winter and Spring Online Courses

Web link graphic: Northeast Beginning Farmers Project Web link graphic: Cornell Small Farms Program

When: Tuesday and Wednesday, October 16th and 17th
Where: Riverwalk Hotel and Conference Center, Binghamton (Broome County)

Whether you are a seasoned, new, or aspiring farmer, there’s something for you in the 2012-2013 line-up of online courses presented by the Cornell Small Farms Program and Cornell Cooperative Extension. View all 12 courses online. There are courses covering commercial production topics like raising veggies, berries, and poultry, and many more covering management of a successful farm, including business planning, holistic financial planning, marketing, and getting started in farming. Take advantage of this opportunity to interact with other farmers, develop your farming plans, and learn new skills from the comfort of your own home.

Most courses are six weeks long and a bargain at $200 each. Full course descriptions, instructor biographies, course logistics and more can be found at the Northeast Beginning Farmers Project Web site. For more small farm services, visit the Cornell Small Farms Program Web site.

Pasture Management TipsWeb link image: A photo of goats grazing in pasture

If you have noticed that the sun rises later each morning, you've probably also noticed that it sets earlier in the evening as well. One can only conclude that the days are getting shorter, which is sometimes taken for granted because it happens every year at this time. One thing to remember is that decreasing day length also changes how your pasture plants are growing - less hours of sunlight means less time for the plants to photosynthesize and as a result they make less sugar. If the fall weather becomes cloudier as well, that will also reduce sugar production in the plant.

There are two types of animals that this will most likely affect - milking dairy cows and ewes that are getting ready for breeding. In the case of milking cows, you may notice a slight drop in milk production or a change in grazing behavior such as less time spent grazing. It may make sense to try to include a source of sugar, such as molasses, in your grain mix or another way such as "limited" free-choice. This may help to maintain production between now and when pastures stop growing completely due to cold weather and frost.

For ewes that are moving into the breeding season, they need to be "flushed" with a higher energy diet prior to breeding to stimulate multiple ovulation. As with dairy cows, there may be a benefit to feeding a small amount of grain, or at least some higher energy forages, to try to make up the difference. In previous years a few sheep farmers indicated that they have had many more ewes with singles when it has been a cloudy and wet season.

If you are unsure whether or not to increase the energy, take a pasture sample and send it in for analysis - it will tell you what the energy level of your pastures is.


Web link graphic: Graze New YorkWant 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.

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