Category: Livestock

Considerations for Building a Homestead

By Jacki M. Perkins The face of production farming has changed drastically in the last 100 years. We have moved away from growing our own food and have relied on others to provide for us. There has, however, been a growing interest, driven by global circumstances, in re-learning the art of the homestead. The majority

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Strategies for Handling a Hay Shortage

By Jacki Perkins As I am writing this, winter deepens and spring is still a far off dream, and the effects of last summer’s drought will begin to be felt. For anyone buying hay last season, it was a study in budgeting: both for pocketbooks and rations. Short of selling livestock to anyone with enough

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Pasture-Based Livestock Profitability

By Holli Cederholm In Bowdoinham, Maine, farmers Abby Sadauckas and Jake Galle of Apple Creek Farm raise a diverse mix of grass-based, certified organic livestock for eggs and meat, as well as value-added bone broths and pate, sold year-round at local farmers’ markets and a handful of retail outlets. Aspects of holistic management have informed

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Cleaning, Grading and Hatching Eggs

By Diane Schivera, MAT Revised June 2017 Introduction Many natural barriers help prevent bacteria from entering eggs. The “bloom” or “cuticle,” a gelatinous covering that dries after the egg emerges from the hen, helps seal the pores in the shell, reducing moisture loss and bacterial penetration. The many egg membranes also help prevent the passage

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MOFGAs Contributions to the Maine Livestock Industry

Diane Schivera has been involved for more than 20 years with the livestock industry in Maine. Photo by Gary Dunn By Diane Schivera, M.A.T. MOFGA Organic Livestock Specialist When I began working for MOFGA in 1998, we certified one goat and 27 cow dairies; and five beef, six lamb, two wool, five egg, three broiler and two turkey

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Meeting Notes from 2016

By Diane Schivera, M.A.T. This is my annual wrap-up of meetings I attended in 2016, beginning with the 20th annual Northeast Pasture Consortium (NEPC) meeting held in Maine at the Harraseeket Inn in Freeport. It was very exciting to have the meeting in Maine for the first time in its history. The meeting sessions included

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Tree Leaf Fodder for Livestock

A 20-year-old short black poplar that Paul Hand has pollarded in England. Photo by Shana Hanson Two comparable ash trees in September 2016 – one initially pruned in summer 2015 and thriving, the other suffering from drought until it was pruned after the photo was taken. Photo by Shana Hanson Cut fodder is first browsed

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Economic Opportunities for Agroforestry

Heather, Tyler and Atom Omand resting a few feet away from happy cows at a Cornell agroforestry training at Angus Glenn Farm in Watkins Glen, New York. Black angus cattle eagerly grazing after being released into a fresh paddock in a black locust/black walnut silvopasture system at Angus Glen Farm, Watkins Glen, New York. Photo

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Livestock Meeting Notes 2015

Toki Oshima drawing By Diane Schivera, M.A.T. This is my annual wrap-up of meetings I attended in 2015, beginning with the Northeast Pasture Consortium meeting in Morgantown, W. Virginia.   Using a conservation planning computer tool created in response to concerns expressed last year at the Northeast Pasture Consortium, Peter Kleinman demonstrated effects of grazing

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