Register soon – Sunday afternoon lunch and Beef Quality Assurance meeting.

Make your reservation for Sunday December 9th for an afternoon of fellowship and education.  Dr. Stout, of Legends Lane Reproductive Services near Alexandria, is graciously offering use of the clubhouse at his embryo transfer and IVF facility.  The Licking County Cattleman’s are providing a meal thanks to our sponsors the Granville Milling Co. and Heartland Bank.  Following the meal, words from our sponsors, and a brief Licking County Cattlemen’s update, we will provide a Beef Quality Assurance (BQA) meeting which will provide certification to participants.

Tyson Foods, who harvest and process 25% of the US beef market share, and also Wendy’s, now the second largest fast food hamburger chain in the U.S., have both announced beginning in 2019 cattle they purchase must originate from producers and feed yards who are Beef Quality Assurance certified. This certification is not mandatory to sell cattle but this training will qualify you to have access to those markets.

RSVP by Dec 4th to the LCCA Facebook page, Extension Office at 740-670-5315, or Granville Mill at 740-587-0221

Date:  Sunday, December 9th, 2018

Time:  Lunch begins at 12:30 p.m. with the program beginning at 1:30 p.m.

Location:  Legends Lane Reproductive Services, 1345 Legend Lane Road, Alexandria, OH 43001

Cost: Free thanks to our sponsors.

Use the link below for more statewide opportunities.

BQA Training 2018-1vspj8d

Nomination time for the Licking County Agriculture Hall of Fame!

NOW ACCEPTING APPLICATIONS FOR THE 2019 AGRICULTURE HALL OF FAME INDUCTEES!

Is there someone you know that has demonstrated life long exemplary service to their community and the industry of agriculture?  If so, we would like to hear their story.  Please complete the nomination form and return to the Licking County Extension office by December 31, 2018.  We are glad to help you through the process.  Click on the following link for the application: hall of fame application-1kw4654  or stop by the office.

Applications Available for 2019 Master Gardener Volunteer Training

Calling all gardeners! Would you like to join the Ohio State University Master Gardener Volunteer Program? Becoming a Master Gardener Volunteer is an ongoing process. Your contributions to the community start during the initial course. Afterwards, you will have the skills and knowledge necessary to strengthen your relationship with the environment and the community. Applications are now available for the 2019 Continue reading

Sheep care video clips

Ohio State has posted a series of short videos on various aspects of sheep care.  They were designed for 4-H but have important information for adults as well.  These sheep care videos feature some of the key components of owning and managing sheep including topics on selection, nutrition, management practices, handling, showing, and fitting. They were produced by Ohio 4-H Youth development in collaboration with the Ohio Sheep and Wool Program and the Ohio Sheep Improvement Association. We are grateful to our featured presenters for their willingness to share their expertise!  Click on this link for the videos:  https://ohio4h.org/sheepcare

Greenhouse Management Workshop

Greenhouse Management Workshop:

Root Zone Optimization

January 17 & 18, 2019

OARDC/OSU, 1680 Madison Ave., Wooster, Ohio

Learn how to optimize the root zone environment for improved plant production.

Session include fundamentals, soilless culture for food crops, container
culture for ornamentals, and biostimulants.

Click here for program and registration details.

Click here for online registration.

When hay feeds like cordwood

By Hay and Forage Grower

Nov. 13, 2018
This article comes from Georgia where previous Ohio State Nutritionist Dr. Francis Fluharty is still putting out good information that is relevant to Ohio.

Weather extremes seem to characterize what is now a “normal” growing season, and 2018 was a year when nearly every region in the U.S. experienced excessive rainfall, scorching drought, or both.

Such extremes in weather also lead to large variations in forage quality. This fact was recently highlighted by forage and animal scientists at the University of Georgia in an extension fact sheet released last week.

The Southeast was one of those regions that received an abundance of rain from May through July. This resulted in a plethora of low-quality forage being made and most likely soon to be fed during the upcoming winter. Looking at forage quality tests from a couple of forage testing labs in their state, the Georgia specialists cited hay quality values as low as 3 percent crude protein (CP) and 34 percent total digestible nutrients (TDN).

Most of the bermudagrass grass samples received by the labs were sufficient to meet the basic needs of a dry cow in mid-gestation, but would come up short in fulfilling the nutritional requirements of a cow in late gestation or one that is lactating. The below-average hay also falls short for growing calves and breeding-age heifers.

To mitigate the issues associated with feeding poor-quality hay this winter to beef cattle, the Georgia specialists suggest that cattlemen heed the following list of recommendations.

  1. Know your resources.

Obtaining an accurate forage test on stored hay is perhaps the most important step. It’s impossible to formulate a diet without knowing the nutrient profile of the hay being fed. Along with knowing forage quality, it is also important to determine what supplement options are available and at what price. The final goal is to develop a feeding regime that is both nutritionally and economically sound.

  1. Monitor body condition.

Maintain cows at a body condition score (BCS) of 5 or greater. This is critical to realize acceptable conception rates and calving intervals. Brood cows with a BCS of 5 or greater are better able to withstand winter weather extremes or short-term nutritional deficits. To recover a cow’s BCS from 4 to 5 requires a ration with 9 percent higher TDN above the maintenance requirement for about 70 days.

  1. Don’t use additives that boost the intake of poor-quality hay.

If forage quality is exceptionally low, higher feed intakes of hay that is mostly indigestible will raise the risk of an impacted digestive tract, possibly leading to death. Cattle can actually starve to death on a full stomach of indigestible, poor-quality hay.

  1. Consider grain or by-product-based supplements.

Fiber-based energy supplements are often a better choice than liquid feeds or protein blocks when also feeding low-quality hay. Supplements such as soybean hulls, corn gluten feed, distillers grains, citrus pulp, and whole cottonseed are preferable to those supplements with high levels of starch (corn or oats) or simple sugars (molasses). The fiber-based supplements will help to maintain a more favorable rumen environment and in many cases they are more cost effective.

  1. Use winter annuals judiciously.

When hay quality is low, there is the temptation to overgraze winter annuals. If winter grazing pastures are available but not at a quantity sufficient to sustain the herd, consider limit grazing the winter annuals for only a few hours per day. Though this may not be enough to completely meet nutrient requirements, the addition of winter grazing to the diet will help to prevent digestive impaction issues and will improve the ruminal fermentation of both forage sources.

  1. Don’t background calves on poor-quality hay.

Though backgrounded calves often generate a premium price over weaned calves, this advantage is lost if the excessive supplement costs needed when feeding low-quality hay more than offset the higher market price. In this situation, it’s often more profitable to sell calves shortly after weaning unless higher quality hay is available for feeding.

Continue reading

Farmers’ Costs to Go Up

The cost of producing a grain crop is expected to rise next year, but farm income is unlikely to increase, an agricultural economist with The Ohio State University has projected.  On average, profits for Ohio farmers next year will be “low to negative,” said Barry Ward, an assistant professor in the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences.

For the past five years, farm income nationwide has been declining, with the exception of 2017 when it increased slightly.  Next year, fertilizer, seed, machinery, labor and energy costs likely will be “modestly higher,” Ward said.
“Nothing is really exploding, but we are going to see some increases,” said Ward, one of several faculty who spoke Nov. 2 at the Agricultural and Policy Outlook Conference hosted by the Department of Agricultural, Environmental, and Development Economics (AEDE), which is part of the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences (CFAES).

Borrowing money will come at a higher cost because interest rates have gone up and will continue to increase in 2019, Ward said.  “We know farmers are borrowing more money now. Continue reading

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