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Cooperative Extension: Livestock


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Learn to ID Goat, Sheep Parasite at UMaine Extension FAMACHA Workshop

University of Maine Cooperative Extension will offer a FAMACHA workshop to teach farmers how to identify parasite infection in sheep and goats Saturday, May 17 at the Northeast Livestock Expo in Windsor, Maine.

FAMACHA is a diagnostic tool — a chart — that matches an animal’s eyelid color to anemia levels, thus enabling farmers to target treatment for sheep and goats infected with the barber pole worm. Thomas Settlemire, professor emeritus at Bowdoin College in Brunswick, and Richard Brzozowski, UMaine Extension small ruminant specialist, will present the workshop.

Participants will receive hands-on training, an information packet, record sheets and a FAMACHA card. Cost is $20 per farm. To enroll, visit http://umaine.edu/cumberland/programs/famacha-workshops/. For more information, or to request disability accommodations, contact 207.781.6099, 1.800.287.1471 (in Maine) or lynne.b.hazelton@maine.edu.

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Explore Farming with UMaine Extension

University of Maine Cooperative Extension and Piscataquis Valley Adult Education Cooperative (PVAEC) explore what it takes to be a farmer in Maine on Wednesday, March 26, 5:30-7:30 p.m., at UMaine Extension, 165 East Main St., Dover-Foxcroft.

“Is Farming for ME?” will instruct attendees how to assess all assets that can contribute to a successful farm and where they can go for more information on starting a farm business plan. The program is part of the YOU CAN series of workshops developed to teach self-sufficiency skills to Maine families.

Donna Coffin, Extension Educator for Piscataquis and Penobscot counties and statewide resource for the Maine beef and equine industry, will lead the workshop. Cost is $5; pre-registration is required. To register, call 207.564.6525 or visit http://bit.ly/pyoucan. For more information, or to request a disability accommodation, call 207.564.3301 or 800.287.1491 (in Maine).

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UMaine Extension offers hayfield, pasture management workshops

University of Maine Cooperative Extension is offering free workshops on hayfield and pasture management this spring around the state.

Rick Kersbergen, UMaine Extension educator in Waldo County, will lead the “Got Hayfields?” workshops, which focus on how to best manage hayfields and pastures to produce high-quality feed for livestock. Topics include weed control, managing soil fertility, hay and pasture renovation techniques, grazing management and basics of forage quality.

Workshops are scheduled for the following dates, times and locations:

  • March 25, 6:30-8:30 p.m., UMaine Extension, 992 Waterville Road, Waldo
  • April 3, 6-8 p.m., Farmington Grange, 124 Bridge St., West Farmington
  • April 10, 7-9 p.m., UMaine Extension, 307 Maine Ave., Bangor
  • April 24, 6:30-8:30 p.m., Vassalboro Grange, Route 32, East Vassalboro
  • April 30, 2-4 p.m., UMaine Extension, 57 Houlton Road, Presque Isle
  • May 14, 5:30-7:30 p.m., UMaine Extension, 24 Main St., Lisbon Falls
  • June 3, 5:30-7:30 p.m., Noon Family Sheep Farm, 78 Sunset Road, Springvale

Pre-registration is requested. To register, or to request a disability accommodation, call 1.800.287.1426, or visit http://umaine.edu/waldo/programs/events/got-hayfields.

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Maine Grass Farmers Network 10th Annual Grazing Conference

The Maine Grass Farmers Network (MGFN) annual Grazing Conference will be held from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. March 15 at Kennebec Valley Community College in Fairfield.

The cost is $75 per person, $25 for each additional person from the same farm or household, with discounts for students and MGFN members. This conference is designed for livestock producers who want to learn how to best use pasture and forage crops to feed their livestock profitably.

This year’s conference features Forrest Pritchard, a professional farmer, writer and public speaker. His farm, Smith Meadows, is one of the first “grass finished” farms in the country, and has sold products at farmers markets in Washington, D.C., for 15 years. His book “Gaining Ground, A Story of Farmers’ Markets, Local Food and Saving the Family Farm” was named a Top Read by Publishers Weekly, The Washington Post and NPR’s “The Splendid Table.” Pritchard’s keynote presentation is “The Economics of Grass-Based Livestock.”

Additional presenters will include University of Vermont livestock specialist Joe Emenheiser and Crystal Springs Farm manager Seth Kroek. The conference will also feature the MGFN annual business meeting, a grass-fed beef cook-off and a trade show.

For more information and to register, visit the MGFN website at http://umaine.edu/livestock/mgfn/. For any questions or to request a disability accommodation, contact Rick Kersbergen, 207.342.5971; richard.kersbergen@maine.edu.

The MGFN Conference is co-sponsored by University of Maine Cooperative Extension; The Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association; The Natural Resources Conservation Service; The Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry; and the Maine Beef Producers Association.

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School for Poultry Producers Focuses on Best Practices, Bird Health

University of Maine Cooperative Extension and Maine Poultry Growers Association (MPGA) will offer a daylong school for poultry producers Saturday, April 5, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., at Kennebec Valley Community College in Fairfield.

Topics will include best management practices, bird health, and disease prevention for egg layers and meat birds. Additional topics include poultry nutrition, poultry product quality, and organic practices.

The school is designed for farmers with a poultry enterprise and is appropriate for backyard keepers, bird fanciers, and 4-H teens. The $25 fee ($10 for MPGA members) includes a reference notebook, a poultry break-even calculator and refreshments. Participants should bring their lunch.

The Maine Farm Bureau and Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association are co-sponsors. For more information and to register, visit http://umaine.edu/cumberland/programs/poultry-keepers/ or call UMaine Extension, 207.781.6099. To request a disability accommodation, call 207.781.6099 or 1.800.287.1471 (in Maine only).

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UMaine Extension Offers Workshops for Sheep and Goat Producers

University of Maine Cooperative Extension is offering FAMACHA workshops this spring for sheep and goat producers interested in learning more about an internal parasite of small ruminants. The practical workshops will show producers how to determine the degree of infection from the barber pole worm (Haemonchus contorutus) by observing the blood color of the capillaries around the eyes of sheep or goats.

The workshops will be presented by two members of UMaine Extension’s sheep research team: Thomas Settlemire and Richard Brzozowski. Participants will receive an information packet and record sheets. The workshop fee is $20 per farm.

The two-hour workshops are offered three times:

  • Sunday, May 19, 10 a.m.-noon, at Northeast Livestock Expo on the Windsor Fairgrounds, Windsor, Maine
  • Saturday, June 1, 11 a.m.-1 p.m., Maine Fiber Frolic on the Windsor Fairgrounds, Windsor, Maine
  • Saturday, June 15, 2013, 11 a.m.-1 p.m., MOFGA Farm & Homestead Day, Unity, Maine

Settlemire and Brzozowski are experienced in sheep production and applied research in breeding natural resistance to the barber pole worm. When sheep and goat producers learn the FAMACHA technique and apply it to their livestock, they are apt to have a more productive herd. They also save on deworming because of this targeted approach and select those animals for breeding that are resistant.

For more information or to request disability accommodations, call 207.781.6099 or 1.800.287.1471 (in Maine only).

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Image Description: two goats; photo by Edwin Remsberg

FAMACHA & Microscope-Use Workshops for Sheep and Goat Producers

FAMACHA workshops are designed to equip sheep and goat producers with the skills and knowledge to determine the degree of infection of Haemonchus contorutus (barber pole worm) in sheep and goats using blood color of the capillaries around the eye. The barber pole worm is a blood sucking internal parasite that is a common cause of death and poor-doing in small ruminants. The workshops will be presented by Dr. Thomas Settlemire and Dr. Richard Brzozowski. Participants will receive an information packet, record sheets and a FAMACHA card. The fee to participate in a FAMACHA workshop is $20.00 per farm. The microscope-use workshop is free. One or more individuals from each farm are welcome to participate.

  • May 19, 9:00 a.m., FAMACHA, Windsor Fairgrounds, Windsor, Maine
  • May 19, 11:00 a.m., Microscope-use, Windsor Fairgrounds, Windsor, Maine
  • June 2, 2:00 p.m., FAMACHA, Windsor Fairgrounds, Windsor, Maine

Download and send in enrollment form with check or call 1-800-287-1471 (in Maine) or 207-781-6099 to register for this workshop with a credit card or for more information.

FAMACHA Enrollment Form: Word | PDF

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Image Description: two goats; photo by Edwin Remsberg

‘No-Till’ Corn Production Workshop April 13 in Waterville

University of Maine Extension in association with the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) is offering a No-till Corn workshop for dairy and forage producers on April 13 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Waterville Elks Club.

Participants will hear about techniques and practices to improve profitability on their farms. The workshop will feature soil health expert Ray Archuleta from NRCS and Mark Anderson from Landview Farms in New York. Landview Farms produces 1,250 acres of corn using a combination of tilling and non-tilling methods.

A $20 workshop fee includes lunch. The workshop is part of a research project funded by Northeast Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education Program (NESARE).

For more information, or to register, contact Rick Kersbergen at the UMaine Extension Waldo County office at 1-800-287-1426 or e-mail richard.kersbergen@maine.edu.

UMaine Extension programs are open and accessible to all in accordance with program goals. To provide adequate time to respond to your request please provide as much notice as possible.

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Image Description: scouting for corn pests; photo by Edwin Remsberg


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University of Maine Cooperative Extension


Contact Information

Cooperative Extension: Livestock
5741 Libby Hall
Orono, Maine 04469-5741
Phone: 207.581.3188, 800.287.0274 (in Maine) or 800.287.8957 (TDD)E-mail: extension@maine.edu
The University of Maine
Orono, Maine 04469
207.581.1110
A Member of the University of Maine System