Tuesday, March 27, 2012

North-Central Missouri 4-H Goat & Sheep Camp

The North-Central Missouri 4-H Goat & Sheep Camp will be held April 21 at the Lincoln University Carver Farm in Jefferson City, Mo.

SATURDAY , April 21, 2012
Registration                                     7:30am
Orientation                                       8:00 am
Workshops begin                            8:15 am

MORNING sessions will be 45 minutes each
Adult Workshops
 8:30-9:15 am Marketing: know your target market needs/wants
 9:15 – 10:00 am Foot Care and Health:  What is Foot Rot, prevention, care, and management.           
10:00- 10:10am BREAK                                                  
10:10 – 10:45 am   Parasites:  Discuss deworming, how to prevent resistance, and non-chemical parasite management.
10:45 -11:30 am  Working facilities/ sustainable goat management/ raising sheep, goats, and cattle together

Youth workshops
8:30-9:15 am 4h Business start-up: entrepreneurship / project ideas and record keeping
 9:15 – 10:00 am Ethics for youth in and outside the show ring
10:00-10:15 am  BREAK
10:15 – 10:45 am   Feeding your goat/lamb:  proper nutrition for the show animal.  Which plants can harm your lamb or kid.
10:45 -11:30 am   Understanding small ruminant behavior, tips for effective handling and safety

LUNCH (Provided)

AFTERNOON: Hands on Workshops   1pm- 4pm
Adult Sessions:  each a 1 hour session
1-2:30pm How to do Fecal Egg Counts and FAMACHA Certification
Youth Sessions:  ( 25 min. rotation blocks)
1pm: Selecting a show animal, what to look for?
1:30 pm: Check the health of your animal:  Body Condition Scoring, FAMACHA, hoof trimming
2 pm:  Proper vaccination and deworming techniques

2:30 -4:30 pm   General Session:  End the day by giving attendees an opportunity to practice showing – LU AGGIE CLUB
Fitting for Show (goats and lambs): cover clipping, lead training, foot trimming and end with showing

Upon completion of the workshop the youth will have earned their SMQA certification.

Cost : $15 per registration. Make check payable to: Lincoln University Cooperative Extension. Register by April 15, 2012 to: Vonna Kesel, PO Box 29 Jefferson City, MO  65101
This program is open to all.  If you need special accommodations for language or disabilities, please notify Vonna Kesel or emailing at keselv@lincolnu.edu at least two weeks prior to the meeting.

Chicken ownership could double in year, TSC survey says

BRENTWOOD, Tenn. – A recent consumer study by Tractor Supply Company validates the many headlines across the country about the growing interest in chicken ownership. The study, conducted as a result of a partnership with American Livestock Breeds Conservancy (ALBC), confirmed that while only three percent of U.S. households currently own chickens, the level of interest in chicken ownership indicated among non-owners could potentially double ownership levels in the next 12 months.

"The survey simply confirms the national trends we are already seeing in the marketplace. We receive more and more feedback from stores about the influx of customers interested in starting their own flocks," said John Wendler, SVP of Marketing for Tractor Supply Co. "The business from these new chicken owners has led us to identify and fill an increasing need for greater education. Tractor Supply wants chicken owners to be successful. We focus a lot of our resources on providing information and education to help them get started correctly and maintain their health and productivity."
Tractor Supply partnered with ALBC to help raise awareness not only to the benefits of raising chickens but also to bring attention to the different poultry breeds for every interest. The Heritage breeds, for example, are excellent foragers and egg layers, and they make a great choice for hobbyists and small farmers.
"There are a variety of Heritage chicken breeds that have declined in popularity and are in need of conservation," said Alison Martin, Research and Technical Program Director at ALBC. "We hope that the growing interest in chicken ownership will bring new attention to these breeds and help return them to small farms and backyards everywhere."
For those taking the plunge into chicken ownership for the first time or for the seasoned flock owner, Tractor Supply is the resource for seasoned advice and every possible poultry need for providing the best care for chickens in urban, suburban and rural settings alike. Beginning in March and running through April 22, Chick Days returns to Tractor Supply and customers can purchase a wide variety of baby chicks and the supplies and equipment needed to properly care for them.
With multiple breeds offered in-store, different breeds rotating in throughout the Chick Days event, and more than 40 additional breeds available via special order, making the initial leap into the backyard chicken movement can appear a little confusing on the surface. The seasoned professionals at Tractor Supply help customers select chicks and provide the best care for them. Information regarding food/water, bedding, heat, and floor space is all available from the helpful team members at Tractor Supply as well as online.
In a clean, well constructed coop that keeps them productive and safe from predators, a flock of 15 hens will produce about a dozen eggs per day during their peak. But the benefits don't stop there. Not only will your chickens provide fresh eggs, but they will also provide fresh fertilizer, fresh material for composting, and insect control. Also, pastured eggs are more nutritious and many claim taste better than ones you buy in a supermarket.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Idaho's Treasure Valley Classic adds meat goats

The Treasure Valley Classic announces the addition of a Meat Goat Show to its junior livestock show format. This youth event, which is being carried out in cooperation with the Snake River Meat Goat Association, is scheduled for Saturday, May 19th, at the Owyhee County Fairgrounds in Homedale, Idaho.

4-H and FFA youth who own market wethers and/or percentage, purebred or fullblood Boer doelings and does are encouraged to enter.

Market goats will be weighed from 9 to 10 a.m. on show day, to determine class breaks. The show begins at 11 a.m. with the market portion followed by breeding stock and showmanship. Youth who have exhibited in two or fewer meat goat shows are eligible for the novice showmanship class.

A question and answer session will wrap up this show, designed to be a learning event for exhibitors and parents alike.

Exhibitors are required to bring their own bedding and clean stalls before departure. Food will be available on-site.

Early-bird entry fee is $15 per head if postmarked by April 30th. After that, entries are $25 per head and will be taken up to 9 a.m. show morning. Entries are available on the Snake River Meat Goat Association website: 
www.srmga.com, click on "Upcoming Shows and Events."

For further information about the Treasure Valley Classic Junior Meat Goat Show, contact Kelly Haun at bkrhaun@msn.com or Kim Holt at kkholt1@msn.com.

Exhibitors accused of doping can participate in Colo. State Fair

Two siblings, whose prize-winning goats were disqualified at the 2011 Colorado State Fair after testing positive for a banned growth stimulant, can participate in the competition this year, state fair general manager Chris Wiseman ruled Thursday.

Ben Weinroth, a minor, can compete "pursuant to his status as a member in good standing with the Colorado 4-H," Wiseman said in a statement. Ben's 19-year-old sister, Maggie, also was reinstated - though she's now too old to participate in the fair's junior competition, Wiseman added.

What led to the doping of goats 501 and 507, however, remains a whodunit.
Ben's goat won first place in the lightweight division, and Maggie's animal was named grand champion at the fair's junior livestock auction in August. But in October, the state announced that the siblings' goats had tested positive for ractopamine, a drug that promotes muscle growth.

Disqualification meant Maggie wouldn't get the $5,500 her goat netted at the state fair auction, and Ben wouldn't get the $1,300 sale price for his goat. Both were barred from future livestock events at the fair.

The Weinroth family appealed, insisting the goats' feed may have been tampered with the first night of the fair. Sue Weinroth, the siblings' mother, said the goats got sick after eating the feed and that the fair veterinarian was called twice to care for the animals. She said her children's names were cleared after mediation with fair officials - but that they were stunned as news of the doping scandal spread around the world.

The fair's decision will help her daughter, an animal science major at Colorado State University. She had feared it would hurt her career plans to specialize in food safety.

Wiseman refused to elaborate on the reversal - or other aspects of the case. He has said the ban could be lifted if officials determined someone else was responsible for the food additive - though the goat sale proceeds would still be forfeited.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

3 ABGA shows in 1 weekend in N. Miss.

The Amy L. Dickerson Memorial Blue and Gold Classic Spring Boer Goat Show will be held Saturday, April 14 and Sunday, April 15, at the Lee County Agricenter, 5395 Highway 145, Verona, Mississippi.

The weekend will feature three American Boer Goat Association-sanctioned Boer goat shows, followed by a free dinner Saturday night after the second show.

The judge for Show 1 is Lance Ward and the judge for Show 2 will be announced.  The judge for Show 3 on Sunday morning will be Julie Brown and will follow "goat church".

The early entry fee is $20 per class due by April 9 or $50 for all three shows.

This event is sponsored by the Nettleton FFA Alumni and goes to fund college scholarships for high school FFA students.  It is held in memory of Amy Lynn Dickerson each spring and fall.  Amy was a former FFA student and Boer goat showman.  

If you would like more information or would like to be a sponsor and have a sign hanging in the arena, please contact Jesse Cornelius at 662-891-1911 or e-mail jcornelius@nettleton.k12.ms.us. Come join in the fun and fellowship and see what the 2012 national show judges think of your goats at this stage in their growth!  

Friday, March 9, 2012

North Central Ark. sheep & goat pasture clinic April 14

A clinic on grazing goats and sheep will be held at the American Legion
Hut in Yellville, Ark., on Saturday, April 14. The program will begin at 9 a.m.  Speakers and their topics will include:

• Kenny Simon with the University of Arkansas Cooperative Extension Service will speak on a 300-day grazing plan.
• David Fernandez with the University of Arkansas-Pine Bluff will speak on
busting brush with bucks.
• Esther and Garry Clemens, Tin Can Hill Ranch, will talk about their small ruminant test farm.
• Clair Whiteside with the USDA-Natural Resources Conservation Services will demonstrate effective electric fencing for goats and sheep.

The North Arkansas Meat Goat Association will provide a free lunch featuring goat meat dishes. After lunch everyone will travel to Ken and Candy Ziemer’s Critter Ridge farm for a pasture walk to observe clearing land with goats, goats selected for hardiness, inventorying pastures, identifying plants and determining pasture condition. The North Arkansas Meat Goat Association will hold its quarterly meeting at the farm after the pasture walk. For more information, go to http://www.arkansasmeatgoat.com or call 870-420-3120.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Show clinic Saturday in Springfield, Ohio

HONOR Show Chow is conducting a FREE clinic for show pigs, lambs, goats and poultry at 9 a.m. on Saturday, March 10, at the Clark County Fairgrounds in Springfield, Ohio.

Topics include:
• Selection
• Management
• Nutrition
• Fitting and Showing

Pork Quality Assurance (PQA) certification.

FREE lunch.

Regardless of what you feed (or don't feed), you're invited. We want to help improve your skill set.

For more information, contact Dr. Kevin Burgoon at kburg@landolakes.com.

Kans. State University shows off new sheep & goat facility

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Posted: Wednesday, March 7, 2012 11:38 am
MANHATTAN, Kan. - Although it has been decades in the making, sheep and goat producers got the first look at the new Sheep and Meat Goat Center unveiled on the Kansas State University campus at the open house and ribbon cutting held March 3.
 Representatives from state and national sheep and goat industry groups were on hand for the event as well as representatives from the Kansas Legislature. Ken Odde, KSU Department Head of Animal Science and Industry, thanked the many people who made this one-time dream a workable reality.
 Brian Faris, state sheep and goat specialist, addressed the crowd assembled in the new facility, located along Denison just north of Kimball Avenue, and explained that the development and design of the $1.68 million facility was an intensive planning process that included much input from producer groups as well as visiting other university research facilities, determining what would yield the most workable and effective building that would facilitate both practical educational experiences as well as accommodate research programs.
 "We've talked to a lot of universities and looked at what they have," Faris explained.  "We saw what was working and what they would do differently."
 Burdell Johnson, a North Dakota sheep producer who spoke on behalf of the American Sheep Industry Association, noted that recent budget reductions have impacted the industry negatively. "I applaud K-State for this facility," Johnson said.  "While a lot of universities are doing away with sheep programs all together, you are placing a greater emphasis on them."  He added that sheep producers nationally and internationally would benefit from the research that happens in Manhattan.  "Research isn't contained by state lines."
 It was noted by several speakers that while the sheep and goat industries may be small in Kansas, compared to the beef business, the national and international importance is significant, being one of the most widely consumed meats in the world.
 Kim Ketcham, Ketcham Equipment from Edwardsville, Ill., was on hand for the ribbon cutting ceremony.  Ketcham provided $40,000 worth of kidding and lambing jugs and feeders for the facility, all painted the traditional K-State purple. The LMIC board also financially supported the unit with funds for equipment.
 The facility includes a complete working setup.  There is a raceway and chute system leading up to a working area that includes a squeeze chute and an elevated platform to aid with sonogram procedures as well as artificial insemination. 
"We can place all the animals that we'd need to work in a day inside, and never have to leave the climate-controlled building," Faris said during the formal tour of the facility.
 Odde and Faris indicated that their expectations were that production-related research, including feeding studies and reproductive efficiencies would be the focus - things that would undoubtedly benefit producers who are making a living with the animals.
 "We intend to strengthen the area of undergraduate research and strengthen our student recruitment as well," Odde said.
 It is also expected that the unit would host collegiate, junior college and high school livestock judging teams that need the opportunity to evaluate sheep and goat classes prior to national contests. Faris pointed out that the buildings were designed under roof with plenty of lighting to accommodate workout schedules.
 Faris explained that the principal production scheme at the unit would focus on an accelerated lambing and kidding system, achieving three lamb crops in two years.  "We know that producers are getting it done, and if we can't do it here in this system with the availability of labor, no one should be able to do it."
 While the building is impressive and appears to be complete today, it was explained that some parts of the building are only partially complete. Kitchen facilities adjacent to the classroom/meeting area, a procedure room and a laboratory area for the facility are in the building layout and will be finished as additional funding is secured.
 The facility's classroom space will also be available to host meetings.  It was pointed out that the availability and ease of parking would make the unit an attractive meeting option for groups who did not want to gather on the central campus.
 Funding for the facility came from three primary sources: the sale of the old sheep unit pasture to the KSU Foundation, a commitment of funds from the college and the sale of easements to Weststar Corp..
 Faris projected that the sheep and goat unit would be able to hold 150 ewes and 75 does.

SW Missouri Sheep & Goat Conference March 25

Attached and below is the program for the 2012 SW Missouri Sheep and Goat Conference on Saturday, March 24.

Pre-registration is $10 which includes lunch and materials. There is no charge for the FEC workshop on Friday night, March 23, if you register for the conference, otherwise there is a $5 charge to cover materials.  

2012 Southwest Missouri Sheep and Goat Conference
Saturday, March 24, 2012, Anderson, MO.  (Pre-register for $10 by calling 417-455-9500 or email newtonco@missouri.edu).

Community Room of New-Mac Electric, 9 Mustang Lane, Anderson, MO
(Exit on Hwy 76 from Hwy 71; then southwest 0.7 mi to Hwy 71B, left for 0.1 mi to Mustang Lane on left)

8:30-9:00 am  Registration—Rachael Kennedy and Christy Cole, Newton CO Goat Producers: Pre-register for $10 by March 19; register at the door for $15. 

9:00-9:10 am   Welcome, John Hobbs, University of Missouri, McDonald CO Extension Center, Pineville, MO

9:10-9:20 am  Status of Construction at Newton County Fairgrounds…..TBA          

9:20-9:50 am   Internal Parasite Control for Sheep and Goats, Dr. Charlotte Clifford-Rathert, Lincoln University Cooperative Extension Service, Jefferson City, MO

9:50-10:20 am Foot Rot Control and Management, Dr. Helen Swartz, Lincoln University  Cooperative Extension Service, Jefferson City, MO

10:20-10:50 Co-grazing of Livestock, Dr. Jodie Pennington, Lincoln University Cooperative Extension Service, Newton County Extension Center, Neosho, MO

10:50-11:50   Producing and Storing Quality,  Ed Browning, Natural Resource Engineer, University of  
Missouri, Jasper CO Extension Center, Carthage, MO   

12:00–1:00 pm LUNCH at McDonald County Fairgrounds (provided in registration fee) questions, and view exhibits 

1:00-1:40 pm  Producer Panel: “How to make a profit with sheep and goats:  production and marketing?”, Questions and Answers, Information Exchange, ….Local producers will tell of their experiences with co-grazing, meat goats, dairy goats, market wethers, and marketing.  

1:40-2:55 pm:  Round-robin for the 3 sessions below, move to next session every 25 minutes        
(A) Vaccinations and Deworming for Sheep and Goats (FAMACHA), Dr. Charlotte Clifford-Rathert
(B) Selection of Breeding Stock, Dr. Helen Swartz
(C) Foot Trimming and Hoof Care, Dr. Jodie Pennington
2:55-3:00 pm   Turn in Evaluation, Adjourn
Friday night, 6:30-9:00 pm, March 23:   Fecal egg count workshop in Smith Hall at Crowder College, Neosho, MO, reservations required with pre-registration for conference

Jodie A. Pennington, Ph.D.
Region Small Ruminant Educator
Lincoln University Cooperative Extension
Newton County Extension Center
Smith Hall (Crowder College), 601 Laclede Avenue
Neosho, MO 64850-9165
1-417-455-9500; fax 417-455-9505

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Texas A&M goats' milk contains malaria vaccine

By Lana Berkowitz

Houston Chronicle
  • A reluctant Goat No. 21 makes the best of her photo session as professor Mark Westhusin, right, describes research going on at Texas A&M into "pharm animals" modified to carry vaccines. Photo: Karen Warren / © 2012  Houston Chronicle
    A reluctant Goat No. 21 makes the best of her photo session as professor Mark Westhusin, right, describes research going on at Texas A&M into "pharm animals" modified to carry vaccines.
     Photo: Karen Warren / © 2012 Houston Chronicle
 reGoat No. 21 was not pleased to be singled out from the safety of her herd for photos. She tried to twist away while the Texas A&M researcher kept a firm grip on her horns.
The wrangler did not hold her long because no mother-to-be needs extra stress. And No. 21 is special.
The so-called "pharm animal" has been genetically modified to carry a malaria vaccine in her milk, a development that has the potential to change life in impoverished countries.
When the black, brown and white nanny gives birth - maybe to twins - this month, staffers at A&M'sReproductive Sciences Laboratory will celebrate, then push ahead with their research.
"Our ultimate, ultimate idea is to continue the research to the point to where you actually have a herd of goats that are producing vaccines, pharmaceuticals and nutraceuticals … in their milk," A&M professor Mark Westhusin said, envisioning a day when children can "just go out and drink the milk and get vaccinated."
The process from testing to trials and approval could take 10 years.
Worldwide toll
Malaria, a mosquito-borne disease, killed about 655,000 people in 2011, according to the World Health Organization. The Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation at the University of Washington puts the death toll much higher: 1.2 million.
Bioengineered animals could be life-savers for Third World countries that cannot afford to build multimillion-dollar facilities to produce vaccines, according to Westhusin and associate professor Charles Long.
Goats are indigenous in all the major impoverished areas, Westhusin noted.
"They are easy to keep. They can eat a beer can and turn it into protein and milk," he said. "They are just great animals in terms of what they offer to impoverished countries."
The vaccine currently is in a form that must be isolated, purified and injected, researchers said. A&M will send No. 21's milk to GTC Biotherapeutics for continued testing and trials.
The Massachusetts-based firm originally developed the transgenic malaria vaccine, which proved effective in mice, said William Gavin, GTC vice president of farm operations and chief veterinarian.
The word "transgenic" means "transferring or having genes from another species." To create the malaria vaccine, DNA coding for the malaria parasite is introduced into the goat genome linked to milk production. The new DNA switches on in the mammary gland only when the animal produces milk, according to GTC.
Stop-and-go funding
Although the vaccine was developed 10 years ago, research was put aside when funding was lost. It resumed when Reproductive Science Lab scientists working with the A&M College of Veterinary Medicine and Texas Agrilife Research began a partnership with GTC in 2010. A&M hopes to find new funding.
The three goats in A&M's project are an Alpine cross of European dairy breeds chosen for their smaller size and generous milk production.
Through the collaboration with GTC, A&M received embryos to implant into surrogate mothers. When the female, No. 21, and male kids No. 17 and No. 19 were born within a day of each of other, it was soon verified that they were carrying the malaria antigen. When No. 21 was 9 months old, she was bred with friendly chocolate brown No. 17.
Not everyone in favor
The Humane Society of the United States and other animal welfare activists have spoken out against the use of pharm animals, but Westhusin has little tolerance for opponents of biotechnology.
"When haven't we been messing with nature?" he asked, noting that 80 percent to 90 percent of the corn, soybeans, cotton and vegetables produced in the United States have been genetically modified for years to resist disease and insects.
A&M's Long said he considers it arrogant for those in the developed world to criticize animal biotechnology.
"Millions and millions of people are trying to make sure their kids don't die before they are 5 years old. You've got to look around. It's not right," Long said. "If a person chooses not to … use a vaccine that was generated in a transgenic animal, I'm all for that. But you shouldn't make that decision for other people around the world."
Most other malaria projects are using cell culture methods to produce antigens. The PATH Malaria Vaccine Initiative is a global program established with grants from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Researchers at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, part of the National Institutes of Health, also are doing studies.
"So everybody recognizes that no one approach is going to be a silver bullet, so to speak," said GTC's Gavin. "We are the only ones using transgenics - and the goats."