2022 Ohio Statewide Sheep Tour

Mark Badertscher, OSU Extension Educator ANR, Hardin County

A statewide sheep production tour of Knox, Licking, and Crawford counties has been planned for Ohio Sheep Producers the weekend of Saturday, October 15 and Sunday, October 16, 2022. This year’s tour is jointly sponsored by the Ohio Sheep Improvement Association (OSIA) and Hardin County OSU Extension. Join us for a drive your own, sheep production tour focusing on dry lot/confinement sheep operations. There will be four tour stops on this year’s statewide tour, with each farm stop only being offered at the time listed.

The first farm stop will be at Cable Family Lamb Feedlot (10491 Canal Road, Hebron, Ohio 43025). This Licking County stop will be at 10:00 am Saturday, October 15. The Dave Cable family is the host of this stop which includes a large contract lamb finishing feedlot in Ohio feeding several thousand lambs from all over the United States. This farm has more recently added a dry lot/confinement ewe flock to produce additional lambs for the Cable Farms feedlot. Primary facilities include hoop buildings. Lunch will be on your own at 11:30 am.

The second stop on the tour will be Continue reading

2022 Lamb and Wine Field Night

Dr. Brady Campbell, Assistant Professor, OSU State Small Ruminant Extension Specialist
Christine Gelley, OSU Extension Educator ANR, Noble County
Dr. Maria Smith, Viticulture Outreach Specialist

Shepherds, viticulturists, and foodies alike are welcome to join us for an evening in the vineyard to discuss how sheep and grapes can be compatible in vineyards and how lamb & wine can be compatible in the dining room. An introduction to grape production and challenges along with demonstrations of vineyard grazing, lamb preparation, wine tasting, and dinner will be included with registration for this event. The meal will consist of 4-5 cuts of lamb prepared during the live cooking demonstration, 5 Ohio grown wines, sides, and a dessert. The cost to attend this event is just $30 per person, payable to The Ohio State University, by October 15, 2022. Be sure to register quickly as registration is limited.

The event will be held at The Ohio State University South Centers: 1864 Shyville Road, Piketon, OH 45661 from 2:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Participants are encouraged to register online at https://go.osu.edu/lambandwine2022You may also view the event flyer here and register using the QR code included. 

Questions about the structure of the course may be directed to OSU State Small Ruminant Extension Specialist – Dr. Brady Campbell at campbell.1279@osu.edu or (330) 263-5563 or Dr. Maria Smith, Viticulture Outreach Specialist at smith.12720@osu.edu or (330) 263-3825. Questions about the payment process may be directed to Noble County ANR Educator – Christine Gelley at gelley.2@osu.edu or (740) 305-3173.

We look forward to seeing each of you at this years event!

2022 Organic Farming Conference

Organic Farming Conference Committee

The Seventh Organic Farming Conference will be held at The Event Center in Mt. Hope, Ohio on November 10 & 11, 2022.

It has been over 50 years that then U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Earl Butz said these unsympathetic words, “Before we go back to organic agriculture in this country somebody must decide which 50 million Americans we are going to let starve or go hungry.” Butz served as Secretary of Agriculture under Presidents Richard Nixon and Gerald Ford from 1971-1976. Butz obviously wasn’t an admirer of small-scale or organic farming. His mantra was “get big or get out” and plant commodity crops (corn, soybeans, cotton) from “fencerow to fencerow.” To promote his agricultural economist mindset, Butz dismantled many New Deal-era agricultural programs that attempted to control production. Butz resigned in 1976 when he was overheard telling a vulgar racial joke. In 1981 he pleaded guilty to tax evasion charges and was sentenced to five years in prison. All but 30 days of the term were suspended. Butz’s thinking on organics may have been on par with his other failings. We need to remember a lot has transpired in the 50 years since he made his unflattering remarks on organics, which was at the time when organic farming was much more on the fringe and far from mainstream. Continue reading

2022 Small Farm Ruminant Production Field Day

Dr. Brady Campbell, Assistant Professor, OSU State Small Ruminant Extension Specialist
Garth Ruff, Beef Cattle Field Specialist, OSU Extension

Have a small herd of beef cattle, goats, or a flock of sheep? Are you a new or beginning ruminant livestock producer? If yes to either of these questions, this program is for you!

Join OSU Extension educators and state specialists for an all-day workshop covering topics every ruminant livestock producer needs to know from grazing and nutrition, livestock marketing, facilities and housing. This event is slated to be held on Saturday, October 8th from 9:00 am – 3:00 pm at the OSU ATI Beef Center located at 2736 S. Apple Creek Road, Apple Creek, Ohio 44606. After lunch, those who have an interest in sheep or goats will depart to the Small Ruminant Research Unit located on Fredericksburg Road (5651 Fredericksburg Road, Wooster, Ohio 44691), while those focused on beef cattle will remain at the ATI Beef Center.

Afternoon training sessions will be species-specific that include hands-on training in animal care and handling, basic animal health, livestock evaluation, and much more.

Cost: $30 per person lunch Included.
Limited to first 40  Registrations.
Register at https://go.osu.edu/smallfarmruminantfieldday

Agenda Continue reading

2022 Fall Statewide Ohio Sheep Shearing School Announced

Dr. Brady Campbell, Assistant Professor, OSU State Small Ruminant Extension Specialist

The Ohio State University departments of Animal Sciences and Extension are pleased to announce the dates of the 2022 Fall Statewide Ohio Sheep Shearing School to be held on September 9-10, 2022 from 9:00 am – 4:00 pm at the Dave Cable Farm in Hebron, Ohio.

During this two day schooling event, attendees will be given the opportunity to learn how to properly shear a sheep using the Australian shearing method. Those in attendance will be taught by veteran shearers as they walk through each step and demonstrate how to properly position the sheep and shearing hand piece in the correct location. Attendees will also learn to appreciate fleece quality by ensuring that their work station is clear of debris and how to keep the animals fleece all in one piece. This shearing session is open to any and all sheep producers, regardless of your shearing experience. Even if you are an experienced shearer, you are bound to learn something new or to improve upon from the school! Who knows, maybe it could help you shear off a couple of seconds on each sheep that you shear.

Continue reading

Using Annual Forages in your Pasture, Pasture Walk

Carri Jagger, OSU Extension Educator ANR, Morrow County

Using Annual Forages in your Pasture, Pasture Walk flyer

The OSU Extension-Morrow County and Morrow Soil & Water invite you to attend their upcoming pasture walk! Kevin Swope Resource Conservationist with the Carroll County NRCS will walk through using annuals forages to help renovate your pasture. He will also cover how to use annual forages in your grazing systems. Lunch will be provided for all those that attend.

Those planning to attend will be required to RSVP by Friday, July 15th. You can RSVP by calling the Morrow County Extension Office at (419) 947-1070

For additional questions contact Carri Jagger by email at jagger.6@osu.edu or by phone at (419) 947-1070

Event Details:
Date: Saturday, July 23, 2022
Time: 10:00 am – 1:00 pm
Location: Scott Loeffler’s Farm: 4 County Road 212, Marengo, OH 43334
Topics: Using annual forages to help renovate your pasture and to extend your grazing season

Events Sponsors:

  • Ohio State University Extension, Morrow County
  • Morrow County Soil and Water Conservational District
  • Ohio Forage and Grasslands Council

Eastern Ohio Grazing Council Pasture Walks

Beth Kruprzak, District Conservationist, United States Department of Agriculture

The Eastern Ohio Grazing Council will host a Grazing Workshop on Thursday, May 26, 2022 at 6:00 pm at Cottage Hill Farms located at 35525 Cadiz-Piedmont Road, Cadiz, Ohio 43907.

Found in 1816 by Robert Moore, Cottage Hill Farm is currently operated by 3 generations of the Moore family. Rick Moore, along with his father, Stanley, and son, Steven, raise sheep for meat production and sell high-quality wool from their Merino sheep bloodlines.

Alternative Parasite Management Practices – Dr. Braden Campbell, OSU
Predator Management – Stuart Heavilin, Harrison SWCD
Adding Small Ruminants to Your Operation – Clint Finney, NRCS

Registration is required. Please contact Carroll SWCD at 330-627-9852 to register.

Upcoming events: 
Pasture Walk – Columbiana County – 6/23/2022 at 6:00 pm
Pasture Walk – Tuscarawas County – 7/28/2022 at 6:00 pm Continue reading

Pastures for Profit Returns in 2022, Offered Virtually Beginning March 31st

Building off a successful online launch in 2021, the Pastures for Profit program will be offered as a virtual course again this year during March and April 2022. Anyone interested in pasture management and forage production is welcome to join the course. One live webinar will be offered each week for three consecutive weeks along with “work at your own pace” videos and exercises that accompany each webinar. The Pastures for Profit program is a long-standing collaboration between Ohio State University Extension, Central State University, USDA-Natural Resources Conservation Service, Ohio Federation of Soil and Water Conservation Districts, Ohio Department of Agriculture, and the Ohio Forage and Grasslands Council.

Each webinar will be offered live on Zoom at 7 P.M. and feature three presentations in a 90-minute span. Attendees will be able to interact with the speakers and ask questions in real time. Once registered, attendees will be granted access to Continue reading

NDSU and UMN Extension to Host American Lamb and Our Consumer Webinar

Presenters will discuss American lamb in retail, food service, and on consumers’ plates.

North Dakota State University (NDSU) Extension and University of Minnesota (UMN) Extension will host an “American Lamb and our Consumer” webinar on Monday, Feb. 28 at 6:30 p.m. CST. Sheep producers, 4-H and FFA members, and lamb consumers are invited to attend.

“February is Lamb Lovers Month,” says Travis Hoffman, NDSU and UMN Extension sheep specialist. “It’s an exciting time for the U.S. lamb industry. Sheep prices have reached record highs while per capita consumption and demand for American lamb has grown over the past few years.”

Megan Wortman, executive director of the American Lamb Board (ALB), will share her expertise, insight and optimism for American lamb in retail, food service and on consumers’ plates. Wortman and Hoffman will share ways for lamb consumers to Continue reading

Opportunity to Weigh in on Wildlife/Coyote Management in Ohio

(Image Source: Ohio Department of Natural Resources)

Researchers at The Ohio State University are inviting interested rural residents and producers to participate in an online survey on wildlife management. Specifically, this study seeks to gather opinions on coyote management in the state of Ohio, with a focus on describing how rural residents and producers feel about a variety of human-coyote conflict scenarios.

For those interested in supporting this research endeavor, please follow this link or the one provided above to access the survey. Your contribution to this research project is appreciated and will greatly benefit all small ruminant producers of Ohio!

OSU Extension Mid-Ohio Small Farm Conference – Sowing Seeds for Success

Carri Jagger, OSU Extension Educator ANR, Morrow County

OSU Extension Mid-Ohio Small Farm Conference – Sowing Seeds for Success scheduled for March 12, 2022 at the Mansfield OSU Campus.

No need to feel alone in the field. Our new and small farm conferences provide connections that will last long after the event.

  • Do you own a few acres that you want to be productive but you’re not sure what to do?
  • Do you have a passion for farming and turning your piece of this wonderful earth into a food producing oasis?
  • Do you own land or forest that you’re not quite sure how to manage?
  • Do you raise or produce products that you would like to market and sell off your farm but you’re not sure how to make it successful?

Continue reading

Recap: 2021 Buckeye Shepherd’s Symposium

Dr. Brady Campbell, Assistant Professor, State Small Ruminant Extension Specialist

With much excitement of being able to gather in person, the 2021 Buckeye Shepherd’s Symposium held on December 3-4, 2021 in Wooster, Ohio at the OARDC Shisler Conference Center was a success. Thanks to the support of The Ohio State University departments of Extension and Animal Sciences as well as the Ohio Sheep Improvement Association, shepherds in person and online were provided with a diverse program covering topics of reproduction and record keeping efficiencies. Per usual, this years event featured a Friday afternoon season, full Saturday program, and opportunity for the industries youth to gather and connect through the Young Shepherd’s Assembly program.

Starting with the Friday session, the program featured a panel of diverse sheep operations that well represented our unique industry. Speakers for this portion of the program featured Mike Stitzlein, Isabel Richards, and Leroy Kuhns. Unfortunately, due to unforeseen circumstances, local commercial Dorset producer Leroy Kuhns was unable to attend the event. In lieu of Leroy’s absence, a PowerPoint presentation highlighting his operation was featured and can be viewed here. Mike Stitzlein Continue reading