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    We Need Your Help: Investigating Animal Well-being in South Dakota

    What is the current level of care being offered to animals in South Dakota? What perceptions about animal well-being exist in South Dakota? What educational resources are you looking for to learn more about animal well-being and on-farm care? Are you curious to know the answers? So are we.

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    Laminitis

    Laminitis is a disease in horses which can lead to a crippling lameness. To best understand it, we must first have knowledge of what is normal, and then how it changes to abnormal. The lamina suspends the coffin bone within the hoof capsule. The lamina is the connecting structure between the hoof [which contacts the ground] and the coffin bone [where the weight of the horse comes down]. By definition laminitis is inflammation of the lamina.

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    Growing in Agriculture: The Blizzard and Lessons Learned

    Article by Lucas Lentsch, Secretary of Agriculture, SDDA. Life and death are intertwined with animal agriculture. It’s a harsh reality, but as the old saying goes, “those who do not lose any livestock are the ones who do not have any livestock.” Our farmers and ranchers are prepared for that reality, but nothing could prepare us – or our livestock – for the devastating early season blizzard of Oct. 4 – 7, now called “Winter Storm Atlas.”

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    Understanding What Happened

    The high death loss from the early October blizzard in South Dakota has producers and the public wondering “How could this happen?” We tend to think about winter storms, extreme cold and other stressful conditions that cattle, horses and sheep on western range often successfully cope with and ask “Why was this storm so much worse?”

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    Animal Well-Being Amidst Weather Disasters

    South Dakota weather poses challenges to animal owners in every season of the year. Following the substantial weekend snowfall on the western half of the state, animal owners are rising to the challenge to provide proper care and relief to the weather-stressed animals. Those of us not directly affected by the snow empathize with those affected by the snow and the hard truth of the losses sustained.

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    We Need Your Help: Investigating Animal Well-being in South Dakota

    What is the current level of care being offered to animals in South Dakota? What perceptions about animal well-being exist in South Dakota? What educational resources are you looking for to learn more about animal well-being and on-farm care? Are you curious to know the answers? So are we.

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    Marketing and Testing Your Hay

    After an abnormally cool spring and a frost across South Dakota in mid-May, the weather started to warm up, and the hay crop has taken off growing. Some hay will stay with the operation however there is a fair amount through the area that gets sold. If you are one of the producers who are deliberating selling your alfalfa or grass hay, there are a few things to consider before marketing it to optimize the price you receive.

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    Foaling Part 3: The Stages Of Parturition

    Last week we discussed preparations of the mare and foaling area in anticipation of Impending foaling. This week we will cover the 3 stages of parturition and what you can expect as your mare moves through these stages. Many mares will foal in the night or early morning. Generally, this is a more calm and private time of the day without the disturbances of daily activities. In the wild, mares foal at night to avoid predators.

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    Foaling Part 1: The Foaling Kit & Foaling Area

    Preparing for parturition, or foaling in the case of the mare, is an important part of horse production. If the signs of parturition are noticed early, many complications may be prevented which saves horse owners time, money, and potentially, their horses’ wellbeing.  This is the first of a series of articles that will cover important information regarding preparation for, and care during foaling.

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    Limping Livestock: Two Perspectives

    Lameness can be attributed to many factors yet the physical response to favor a limb is likely related to the animal’s pain threshold. The presence of pain is a critical well-being concern, and can have many secondary impacts on the animal’s overall health, production, and functional lifetime. Some examples of secondary impacts known in livestock include: a decline in feed intake or grazing ability, loss of body condition, reduced reproduction rates, or chronic lameness.

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    We Need Your Help: Investigating Animal Well-being in South Dakota

    What is the current level of care being offered to animals in South Dakota? What perceptions about animal well-being exist in South Dakota? What educational resources are you looking for to learn more about animal well-being and on-farm care? Are you curious to know the answers? So are we.

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    SDSU Student Spotlight: Helen Lauth

    Helen Lauth is a Park Management Major from Eyota, Minnesota. Helen is in her fourth year of competition on the South Dakota State University Equestrian Team. She has a minor in Business Management and Equine Management and is involved in a variety of other organizations. She competes in reining and is proud of showing as a youth competitor in the National Reining Horse Association (NRHA) and earning not only two saddles, but 800 youth points and three Top-Ten world titles on a horse that her family raised and bred.

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    We Need Your Help: Investigating Animal Well-being in South Dakota

    What is the current level of care being offered to animals in South Dakota? What perceptions about animal well-being exist in South Dakota? What educational resources are you looking for to learn more about animal well-being and on-farm care? Are you curious to know the answers? So are we.

    Read More »

    Controlling Curlycup Gumweed (Grindelia squarrosa)

    An erect plant growing to between one and three feet, curlycup gumweed (gumweed) is easy to notice in the pastures from July to September, its flowering period. The plant branches at the top with each branch producing an individual bright yellow flower of about one inch diameter (Figure 1). Gumweed is found on rangelands, pastures, disturbed sites and in ditches all through South Dakota.

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    Pasture Evaluation

    Pasture utilization for grazing remains beneficial to both horses, and their owners; horses are better able to express their natural grazing habits, and owners have the ability to save on forage costs. While providing grazing saves costs associated with feeding hay, it does not necessarily mean all forage worries should be forgotten. Managing a pasture becomes a great responsibility. Proper management of pasture and grazing directly impacts horse health and the environment.

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    Hay Inventory

    With the weather finally taking a turn towards warmer days, many farm operators are turning their thoughts to cutting hay. It is also a good idea for horse owners to focus their attention on this matter as well. Horses need a substantial amount of forage to meet their nutrition needs and to aid in sustaining health. Now is the perfect time to take an accurate inventory of hay on hand and to invest in forages for the upcoming cold season.

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    Leafy Spurge is Rapidly Developing

    It appears leafy spurge is showing up in areas of north-central South Dakota that have not traditionally had problems with it in the past. Since these new patches are developing SDSU Weed Extension program is encouraging landowners and producers statewide to keep an eye on pastures, hay lands, ditches and shelterbelts for this aggressive noxious weed.

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    Cool Temperatures Slow Leafy Spurge Flea Beetles for Redistribution

    Normally the Leafy spurge flea beetles would start emerging on leafy spurge in the next two to three weeks. Mid June is the normal time of the year when we start collecting the flea beetles for distribution in South Dakota. The cooler than normal spring temperatures most likely will delay normal emergence of this bio-control agent because their life cycle is based on growing degree days much like plants.

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    Fire in South Dakota: An Introduction

    Its early march in South Dakota and winter hasn’t loosened its grip as this article is being written. We are used to working around the weather, but as we flip the calendar to March, we are forced to start planning for spring activities, regardless of spring’s travel plans. Along with calving and planting for many; at least for some spring planning also includes the use of fire.

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    Keeping Livestock Water Open

    It may seem obvious to provide clean and abundant water to your livestock, especially on hot days. However, frequent attention to water sources is just as important in the winter as it is in the summer. For horses, lack of water intake can cause a myriad of issues, the most common threat being impaction colic. When the weather is cold or extremely windy, livestock may not want to leave a shelter to go for a drink.

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    We Need Your Help: Investigating Animal Well-being in South Dakota

    What is the current level of care being offered to animals in South Dakota? What perceptions about animal well-being exist in South Dakota? What educational resources are you looking for to learn more about animal well-being and on-farm care? Are you curious to know the answers? So are we.

    Read More »

    Equine Seminar: Growing Through Knowledge

    An equine seminar was hosted on the campus of South Dakota State University August 16. The seminar, hosted by Extension Equine Specialist, Dr. Becky Bott, was comprised of eight seminars given by experts from around the U.S. The topics of rotational grazing and nutritional benefits of pastures were discussed by Laura Kenny and Dr. Carey Williams of Rutgers, New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station.

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    Livestock Husbandry & Handling Workshop: Dr. Temple Grandin in Watertown, SD

    South Dakota is a strong agricultural state with large numbers of livestock being raised by farmers and ranchers. On August 5, 2014, Dr. Temple Grandin will be back in South Dakota for the second Raising the Best: Livestock Husbandry and Handling for Today’s Market workshop this summer held in Watertown, SD. This workshop is hosted by South Dakota Farmers Union in partnership with SDSU Extension. The workshop is made possible by a grant through the USDA.

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    Livestock Husbandry & Handling Workshop: Dr. Temple Grandin in Rapid City, SD

    South Dakota is a strong agricultural state with large numbers of livestock being raised by farmers and ranchers. On July 1, 2014, Dr. Temple Grandin will be the feature speaker in Rapid City, SD as part of the Raising the Best: Livestock Husbandry and Handling for Today’s Market. This workshop is hosted by South Dakota Farmers Union in partnership with SDSU Extension. The workshop is made possible by a grant through the USDA.

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