Winter is here and snow and icy roads will increase the risk for accidents. Getting ready to leave the house and going to work on the snow and ice might be a problem for inexperienced people. The cold and snowy season are challenges for anyone, and especially to the immigrant workers that have to endure them.
Cold weather is not just hard on the people taking care of animals, it can be tough on the animals themselves. Consider respiratory disease (pneumonia) in dairy calves. It’s not just our imagination that cold temperatures often bring with them an increase in sick calves; there are physiologic reasons why cold weather increases the risk of respiratory disease.
Dairies and cattlemen transport calves, cows and bulls routinely. Ensuring that trailers are properly prepared for transport no matter how short the distance helps stockmen be efficient and promote animal well-being while ensuring human safety. One important way to be prepared during transportation emergencies is to consider the Bovine Emergency Response Plan (BERP) curriculum.
How many times have you heard this? In regards to our communities and agricultural development we all need to remember that we are all under public scrutiny. Our actions whether a small or large producer can have monumental impact as we move forward with agriculture being the forefront of an economic base within communities and the state.
The dairy industry faces a labor shortage and with the uncertainty associated with the U.S. immigration issues, there seems to be only one direction, forward. The time has come to search for solutions and establish new collaborations. To help facilitate bringing farmers with solutions for the lack of skilled and available workers a team from SDSU Extension proposed to build a legal agreement between Puerto Rico and South Dakota.
Winter can present challenges for dairy producers and heifer growers as they try to keep calves alive and growing adequately in frigid temperatures. Cold stress starts when temperatures drop below 60 degrees Fahrenheit in dairy calves who are less than 21 days-of-age and when below 42 degrees in calves greater than 42 days of age.
We often check the weather before heading out the door and decide if we need a coat or not. But is the clothing we are wearing protecting us or could it add increased risk as we perform our job? A good share of producers on dairy farms, are now providing their employees with some type of uniform or clothing stipend. As a dairy producer there are some things to consider as you select your personal attire or that of your employees.
The dairy industry is constantly evolving resulting in a desire to learn from early adopters within the industry. To help facilitate this learning evolution, the I-29 Moo University has hosted a series of fall dairy tours in the I-29 Dairy Corridor which has allowed participants to learn firsthand from tour host sites. This year the tour area was located in central Minnesota and went to Riverview Farms, LLP located at Morris, MN and Redhead Creamery, LLC at Brooten, MN on October 26th, 2016.
In recent months, a common cause of illness in dairy calves has been garnering more attention among calf raisers, their veterinarians, and even health departments. Salmonella infections can be some of the most severe causes of illness in calves less than one month of age. At the South Dakota Animal Disease Research and Diagnostic Lab in fiscal year 2016, Salmonella was the number one cause of bacterial septicemia (whole body infection) and was among the most common causes of diarrhea in calves.
Weather this time of year can change in a hurry. “So how many of you as dairy producers have heeded the warning and taken the time to prepare for the upcoming winter? ”Let’s start with some basic areas such as in and around the barn. First, take the time to pick up any items from the yard that may become buried under a snow bank or entangled in the snow blower.