New Accurate Test for Determination of Pregnancy Status by QjDFZhPh


									                                                                                           JANUARY 2006
In this issue ……….
                                                                             Central Maryland Grazing Conference
Winter Wednesday Series ......................................... 2
Winter Extension Dairy Talk Series .......................... 2
MDIA Meeting and Conference ................................ 3               With winter coming on we have a chance to take time to think about changes
Grain Marketing Workshop ...................................... 4            that we might like to make in our operations. If you have livestock making a
Helping Others Resolve Differences ......................... 4
Energy Estimator for Tillage ..................................... 4
                                                                             change in grazing management may increase profitability and ease issues
Mid-Atlantic Nutrition Conference ........................... 5              with nutrient management. A logical first step is an inventory of the farm's
WMREC Regional Fruit Meeting ............................. 5                 resources. One useful tool is an aerial map of the farm on which to mark
When to Prune .......................................................... 5
News from the University ......................................... 6         fences, water supplies, and existing forage resources. Also Writing down
Web Soil Survey ....................................................... 7    farm and family goals in this process makes it easier to stay on course with
General Forestry Correspondence Course ................. 7                   management decisions.
Forestripping-Better Milking?................................... 7
Teat Condition Scoring ............................................. 8
A Simple Way to Assess Milking ............................. 8               Implementing rotational grazing requires subdividing the land into paddocks,
Electrolytes for Dairy Calves .................................... 8
Salmonella in Heifer Raising Operations ................ 10                  providing access to water, adjusting stocking rates, and monitoring grazing
Site Evaluation and Building Layout ...................... 11                duration. These decisions may seem overwhelming at first. The change to
Colostrum Supplements and Replacers ................... 12                   controlled grazing will have impacts on the animals, the plant community,
2006 MD Crop Insurance News .............................. 13
Central MD Vegetable Growers Meeting ................ 14                     and the farmers. Livestock operators who have not monitored their livestock
Mid-Atlantic Fruit & Vegetable Conference ........... 15                     daily or weekly will feel the greater time demands. On the other hand, the
Bay Area Fruit School............................................. 15
Child Labor Regulations ......................................... 15
                                                                             need for harvested forages declines, resulting in less time spent making hay
Dates to Remember ................................................. 16       or silage. Purchased feed costs also shrink.

 Happy New Year!!!                                                           Economic benefits come from improved animal health and increased
                                                                             production. Research confirms lower feed costs and fewer vet bills on most
                                                                             operations making this transition.

                           Actual figures vary widely, depending on the profitability and forage condition under the old system. As
                           the new system is fine-tuned, feed quality improves, quantity increases, and management skills also grow.
                           As a result, more animals can be raised on the same acreage, translating into more income for the farm.

                           It takes commitment to succeed in making the change to MIG, a system requiring more complex
                           management skills. Old ways of thinking will need to shift, as analytical and problem-solving skills
                           develop. The new grazer's commitment will be tested by mistakes, unexpected weather patterns, and
                           neighbors' attitudes.

                           A lot of good information about setting up paddocks to fit the landscape, calculating stocking rates, and
                           estimating forage yield and availability will be discussed at the 2006 Central Maryland Grazing
                           Conference. The Conference will be held at the Ag Center again this year and will surely be of value to
                           both those considering the change and to those already grazing. See attached agenda for information.

Winter Wednesday Series

Beginning in January and continuing until February 15th the Carroll County Extension Office will
be offering a series of two-hour workshops for the Agriculture Community. Workshops/Meetings will
be held at the Extension Office in Rooms K, A & B each Wednesday from 10:00 a.m. until noon.
A tentative topic and speaker list is given below. These sessions will be similar to those held last
winter, which allowed for a lot of open dialogue between you and the speaker. Come join us on
Wednesday mornings this winter! Please call in by the day before the session(s) you plan to attend, so
we can provide materials for you.
January 11th             “Pest Update for Crops and Vegetables, Soybean Aphid, New Orchardgrass
                         Pests, and Poncho Seed Treatment”
                                  Dr. Galen Dively, Extension Specialist, Entomology
January 18th             “Caring for the Pond, Update on Pfiesteria, and CBF’s new view of Maryland
                                  Dr. Dan Terlizzi, Sea Grant Extension, Water Quality Specialist
January 25th             “Income Opportunities with Sheep and Goats, and Parasite Management”
                                  Ms. Susan Schoenian, MCE Area Agent, Sheep and Goats
February 1st             “Water Recharge, Children and Owner Lots, the 25 Year Policy, and Program
                                  Mr. Ralph Robertson, Jr., CC Ag Land Preservation Program
February 8th             “Evaluating Natural Resource Income Opportunities, Marketing Timber, and
                         Landowner Liability and Recreational Access”
                                  Mr. Jonathan Kays, Regional Specialist, Natural Resources
February 15th            “Wheat, Soybean, and Orchardgrass Disease Update”
                                  Dr. Arv Grybauskas, Extension Specialist, Plant Pathologist

Winter Extension Dairy Talk Series – Carroll County Schedule
Once again Carroll County Extension is trying a new approach in offering you educational
opportunities. Following our great success with the Winter Wednesday Series we are using a similar
format for a Dairy Talk Series. Sessions will be held on Thursdays on the dates indicated below
except for February 14 which is a Tuesday (*see note below) beginning at 10am and ending at noon
unless interest dictates otherwise. All sessions will be held at the Carroll County Extension Office,
700 Agriculture Center, Westminster, Maryland in rooms K, A, and B. Please call in to reserve your
seat at least one full day in advance of the session at 410-386-2760. This will allow us to plan for
materials as necessary. If you have any questions please let us know.
Jan 5th          Mark Varner                       Is Your Semen Sexy?
Jan 12th         Dale Johnson                      What’s Next? Transitioning the Farm Business.
Jan 19th         Ted Elkin and Connie Caffes       Milk Inspection – The reality!
Jan 26th         Rich Erdman                       High Culling Rates: Lost Income and Wasted Potential
Feb 2nd          David Shinham                     USDA Voluntary Johne’s Control Program
Feb 9th          Rick Kohn                         Milk Urea Nitrogen/Incentives
Feb 14th *       Bob Peters                        Overview of the National Animal Identification System
(Tuesday)        Marilyn Bassford                  Premise Identification
                 Jere High                         RFID for Dairy Management
Feb 23rd         Stan Fultz                        Grass-based Dairy Production

*Please note that all talks will take place on Thursdays except for week seven. There is a conflict with the
annual MDIA meeting which will be held on Thursday, Feb. 16 th in Carroll County. Therefore, talks have been
switched to Tuesday for this week.

"Profitable at Any Size" MDIA

The Maryland Dairy Industry Association Annual Meeting and Conference will be held at the Carroll
County Agriculture Center on February 16, 2006. The following is the planned agenda:

8:30 a.m.   Registration, Continental Breakfast, Exhibits Open, Silent Auction Opens
9:30 a.m.   Criteria for Evaluating Decisions on Your Farm, Charles Gardner, DVM, MBA
            Cargill Animal Nutrition Consulting Services
10:15 a.m. Making the Economic Transition from Conventional to Alternate Production Systems
            Jeff Hyde, Farm Management Specialist, Pennsylvania State University
11:00 a.m. Break, Exhibits Open, Milk provided through Dairy Maid Dairy
11:15     a.m. Producer       Panel     Discussion      (30    Minute      Concurrent   Sessions)
    Session       I:      Organic     Milk       Production      and      Grazing     Management
    o Charlie and Cindy Goetz            o Ron Holter
   Session         II:         Value        Added        and       Breeding        Stock
   o Phyllis Kilby - Ice Cream       o Jason Myers – Developing/Marketing Breeding Stock
   Session       III:      Alternative     Business     Structure    and      Enterprises
   o Mark Potter - Expanding herd size with non-family partners
   o Mike and Lisa Gaver - Adding Christmas trees and pumpkin enterprises
11:45 a.m. Repeat Panel Discussion, Session I, II, and III
12:15 a.m. Lunch-Exhibits Open, Silent Auction bids close
           Speaker – Alexa Stoner, Industry Relations Manager, MDA
1:00 p.m. Business Meeting
1:15 p.m. Crop Insurance and Risk Management, Mark Powell, Maryland Department of
1:30 p.m. Working with Hispanic Labor, Vinton Smith, Dairy Extension Educator,
            Adams County, Pennsylvania State University Cooperative Extension
2:00 p.m.   Are Robotic Milkers in Your Future? Jeff Hyde, Pennsylvania State University
2:30 p.m.   Adjourn and Ice Cream Break

Registration is $15 if received before February 6th and $20 thereafter. Registration includes a
continental breakfast, a country-style lunch, program breaks, and complete proceedings.
Members are encouraged to bring family or farmstead workers to the industry program. Non-
members are welcome.

For more information, or to register, please contact Debra Spurrier at 301-473-7522, or .


A “Grain Marketing” Workshop is being held on February 7, 2006 at the Mt. Airy Fireman’s Activity
Center, Twin Arches Road (Carnival Grounds), Mt. Airy, Maryland. Below is the agenda:

09:30 am – Registration
10:00 am - Pricing Tools and Strategies
11:00 am – Break
11:15 am - Crop Insurance for Risk Management
12:00 pm – Lunch
1:00 pm - Winning the Game
3:00 pm – Adjourn

Registration is $10. Please call your local Extension office to reserve your seat by February 3, 2006.
For Carroll County residents send your check made payable to “Carroll County EAC” to the Carroll
County Extension Office at 700 Agriculture Center, Westminster, MD 21157. If you have any
questions please call Carol Van der Weele at 301- 590-2825.


“Helping Others Resolve Differences, Empowering Stakeholders” by Gregorio Billikopf Encina,
University of California, Davis is an effort to present practical, sound, research-based ideas hopefully
leading to the improved management of deep-seated interpersonal conflict. While many of the
concepts where originally developed through research in agriculture and agri-business firms, the
method (Party-Directed Mediation) has since drawn the interest of a wide range of people from
women's groups, churches, attorneys, and mediation centers throughout the world. The methods used
require more time than traditional mediation, but are particularly well suited to volunteer mediators,
intercultural conflicts where issues of saving face are important and other conflicts where emotional
factors are high. To view: . This is a public
service of the University of California. This book is now available in both English and Spanish.


Energy Estimator for Tillage is the first of several tools from Natural Resources Conservation Service
(NRCS) developed to increase energy awareness in agriculture. The tool estimates diesel fuel use and
costs in the production of key crops in your area and compares potential energy savings between
conventional tillage and alternative tillage systems. The crops covered are limited to the most
predominant crops in 74 Crop Management Zones (CMZ's). NRCS agronomists have identified these
crops and estimated the fuel use associated with common tillage systems. Without including every
crop and tillage system, the Energy Estimator gives you an idea of the magnitude of diesel fuel
savings under different levels of tillage. Here’s the web site address: .


           Internationally recognized equine researchers will be giving presentations on equine
             related topics such as control of obesity, new nutrient requirements for horses,
               nutritional care after colic, horse pasture management training materials, improved
               manure management strategies, and managing gastric ulcers at the Mid-Atlantic
Nutrition Conference. The equine session, which is part of a larger two-day conference, will be held
on March 30, 2006 at the Holiday Inn Select in Timonium, MD.

Veterinarians, trainers, horse breeders, and horse owners should not miss this opportunity to learn
about these exciting new discoveries. All attendees will receive conference proceedings, lunch, and
the opportunity to ask questions of all of our experts. The conference is a regional event hosted by the
Maryland Feed Industry Council, University of Maryland, Pennsylvania State University, University
of Delaware, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Rutgers University, West Virginia
University, and the American Feed Industry Association
For more information please visit our website or contact Kristen
Spahn at 301-405-1392.


If you are a fruit grower, then be sure to attend the WMREC Regional Fruit Meeting on
February 23, 2006 at the Western Maryland Research and Education Center in Keedysville,
Maryland. This meeting will provide Private Pesticide Applicator Recertification Credit.
For details and registration contact Cindy Mason at the Western Maryland Research and
education Center at: 301 432-2767, Ext. 315 or by email at: .

           And they shall beat their swords into plough-shares, and their spears into pruning-hooks.
           Generally, by this time of the year most gardeners are getting sick of perusing their catalogs
          and start to get a wild look in their eye’s and crazy thoughts in their head’s. Last week I
          received a call from a resident in Sykesville who wanted information on how to transplant
their roses and another call from a novice gardener in Hampstead who wanted to start turf grass seed
indoors ( “to get an early start for the spring”)… some things are just meant to be done when they are
supposed to be done.

However, there are some lawn and garden tasks well suited for the winter, such as pruning. Now if
you ask any arborists when to prune they will typically respond by saying “whenever you have a
sharp saw in hand”, yet certain times of the year are better than others.

Most deciduous woody plants and many evergreens are best pruned in the dormant season (during the
winter). There are several reasons to prune during the dormant season:
        1) Sap flow, in general, is minimal in the dormant season, so there is less bleeding.
        2) Insects that would be drawn to the sap or wounds are typically not active.
        3) It is easier to assess the structure of the tree or shrub, and identify dead and defective
           branches in the winter.
        4) Bacterial and fungal blights are generally less active in the winter.

However trees and shrubs that flower in early spring should probably be pruned shortly after

Now before you run out side to start trimming, put on the brakes, and figure out what you want to do
and how much you can realistically handle in a safe manner, especially before hacking your trees and
shrubs to death or injuring yourself. Safe pruning starts with being conscientious of what is realistic
and what is just crazy. If a tree is too large, in an awkward location, or you have little experience in
trimming a larger tree, then hire a professional.

As I mentioned earlier, it is best to plan your pruning prior to making the cuts. Know what you are
pruning and how it should be pruned. Too many times people prune “just to prune” and have little or
no concept of what they should be doing. In general you should follow these 3 important principles
of why to prune:
        1) To eliminate or correct an unsafe situation (again, this may be best left to a professional).
        2) Improve the health of the tree, such as removing dead/diseased wood or crossing branches.
        3) Aesthetics – either to give the tree or shrub better form or more flowers/fruit.

One of the wisest things I have heard - is to minimize the number of cuts made to your woody plant
when pruning. Over pruning tends to cause damage and unwanted growth.

For more information on pruning please contact Steve Allgeier at the Carroll County Cooperative
Extension Office Monday, Wednesday or Friday at 410 386-2760 or and request a
pruning flyer.
                                                         Steve Allgeier, Extension Educator, Home Horticulture


Upcoming Forage Events
A new page has been developed on the University of Maryland College of Agriculture and Natural
Resources Web site. This page lists upcoming forage events such as pasture walks, field tours, and
conferences to be held throughout Maryland as well as in neighboring states. The page will include
dates, times and directions to the events along with program agendas for some events. The page can
be accessed at or by going to
and clicking on ‘Upcoming Events.’

College of Agriculture & Natural Resources-Animal & Avian Sciences
The College of Agriculture and Natural Resources Animal and Avian Sciences Department has a new
web site at: .

The 2005 Soybean Variety Tests
The 2005 Soybean Variety Tests have been posted at: .

The 2005 Corn Hybrid Performance Tests
The 2005 Corn Hybrid Performance tests Agronomy Facts #54 Corn Hybrid Performance is now
posted to the College's Cropping Systems webpage: .

2005 Organic Insecticide Efficacy Test Reports
Galen Dively, Maryland Entomology IPM, has posted his 2005 Organic Insecticide Efficacy Test
Reports at the following URL

Maryland Horse World Expo -2006
The 2006 Maryland Horse World Expo is being held at the Maryland State Fairgrounds, Timonium,
Maryland again this year. This year’s dates are January 19-22, 2006. Please see the attached flyer for
the schedule of the University of Maryland Seminar program.


Go to and click on Start WSS – Then type in address –
Remove the help box by clicking the upside down question mark – Use the AOI icon and curser to
box and define area – apply the soil map overlay by clicking soil map -- Print.

           Want to learn more about your forest? Work from the comfort of your home, using your
            own woodlot, a friend's or a public forest while learning the basics of forestry, forest
            ecology, and forest health in this non-credit course. Find out how to protect your trees
            from insects, diseases and fire, conduct a forest inventory and stand analysis, familiarize
yourself with the business of forestry, and develop a management plan for your forest. The General
Forestry Correspondence Course is offered both spring (February 1-May 20) and fall (September 1-
December 15). As part of the registration fee, you receive a text notebook, separate appendices
packed with resources, plus additional supplemental readings. A certificate of completion is awarded
when all assignments are completed. For more information contact Nancy Stewart at the Wye
Research and Education Center, University of Maryland Cooperative Extension, P.O. Box 169,
Queenstown, MD 21658; phone 410-827-8056, ext. 112; email You can also
find the course brochure posted on our website at February will be
here before you know it so register today for the spring 2006 semester!


While pre-milking stimulation from forestripping has been traditionally
recommended, some recent literature has disputed its biological need and some
parlor managers have questioned its utility in parlor efficiency. A Cornell University research project
studied the importance of manual forestripping on milking performance and the extent to which it
needs to be performed. Four commercial dairies milking 400 to 2,000 cows in New York enrolled
cows in the study. Cows were assigned to four treatment groups: 1) no forestripping; 2) three strips
of milk from one quarter; 3) three strips of milk from each of the four quarters; or 4) 12 strips of milk
from one quarter. Cows in all treatments groups were otherwise treated the same: pre-dip prior to
forestripping, wipe pre-dip after 60-70 seconds and attach milking unit 90 seconds after pre-
dip application. Results showed that two-minute milk production was significantly greater in
the three-forestrip groups than in the no-forestrip group. Total unit-on time was significantly greater
in the no-forestrip group than in the other three groups. Forestripping in any manner resulted in
better milking performance. A systemic oxytocin response is suggested, as opposed to a
teatspecific response. Spending time forestripping may increase milking performance, including
parlor throughput.

             Source: American Association of Bovine Practitioners 38th Annual Convention Proceedings, pg. 176 (2005)


Teat condition scoring is an effective udder health monitoring tool. In a presentation at the 2005
NMC Regional Meeting, Eric Hillerton, Inst. for Animal Health, recommended the following
targets for levels of “abnormality” in a herd:
• Color: no more than 10% of cows with light-colored teats should have one or more teats that are
visibly reddened (congested) or tinged with blue (cyanotic).
 • Swelling at or near the top of the teat: no more than 10% of cows should have one or more teats
with marked swelling or palpable rings.
• Swelling and hardness at or near the teat end: no more than 20% of cows should have one or more
teats-ends classified as firm, hard or swollen, or severely wedged.
 • Openness of teat orifice: no more than 10% of cows have one or more teat orifices classed as open.
 • Vascular damage: no more than 5% of cows should have petechiations (small hemorrhages) on one
or more light-colored teats.
 • Teat skin condition: no more than 2% of cows should have open lesions (including chaps or cracks)
on one or more teats.
 • Teat-end hyperkeratosis: no more than 20% of cows have one or more teats that are scored rough
or very rough and no more than 2% very rough.

                                                    Source: 2005 NMC Regional Meeting Proceedings, pg. 37-43


                      A cow's behavior is an indicator of her comfort or discomfort with the
                      milking environment, milking routine and milking machine. Relatively small
                     changes in behavior can alert milker and herd managers to changes in milking
                    routine that require attention -- for example, deterioration in performance of
the milking machines. Recent research has shown that a simple, reliable way to assess behavior in the
dairy is to count the number of cows that "kick" or "step". A "step" means lifting a hoof clear of the
floor. This is easy to observe and record because this involves a significant and deliberate shift in
weight for the cow. A "kick" means that a hoof is aimed at a person or at the milking cluster.

The stage of milking when most of the kicks and steps occur gives a hint to some of the possible
causes of discomfort. Discomfort when cows are in the stall waiting to be milked may suggest
environmental factors such as flies or poor design of the stalls. If the discomfort occurs when
operators are preparing the udder, attaching or re-attaching units, or at post-milking disinfection, it
may indicate a problem of interactions between the operator and a cow, or the milking machine and
cow. Discomfort during the first two minutes of milking and the last two minutes of milking often
suggests milking machine effects. These easy-to-make observations can be monitored on a regular
basis to check the milking experience for cows. In general, if more than 10% of the cows "kick" or
"step", it warrants further investigation.

                                                         Source “Countdown Downunder”


Oral rehydration solutions are used to replenish fluids and electrolytes that are lost during the course
of diarrhea. Also known as electrolytes, these solutions are a convenient way to treat calves with
diarrhea. There are many brands of electrolytes on the market that offer treatment for diarrhea

through rehydration and electrolyte replacement. These products, however, can be variable and the
right one needs to be chosen for each individual dairy.

Oral rehydration therapies are designed to improve acid-base balance by providing electrolytes and
water. Although they are generally easy to use, neonatal calf diarrhea is still a major cause of death
and economic loss in the dairy industry. According to the USDA, calf mortality averages 8.7%
annually, of which 62.1% is due to scours. In past years, mortality due to scours averaged 60.5% in
1996 and 52.5% in 1991 indicating an expanding problem in the dairy industry.

Although convenient and easy to use, the capacity of oral rehydration use for treatment is limited
when there is a lack of protocol on the farm. Farms should have a standard operating procedure for
treatment of scouring calves that includes when to use oral rehydration solutions, how much to give
and many other questions that can arise without proper protocol.

Calves can lose 5 to 10% of their bodyweight in water within 1 day of scouring. Fluid loss in excess
of 8% requires IV treatment, and over 14% loss can result in death. This is why it is extremely
important to monitor calves daily and treat them quickly when signs of illness are observed. The
amount of water lost by scouring calves can approximated using symptoms such as skin tenting, gum
condition, attitude, and ability to stand or suckle.

             To evaluate hydration using skin tenting, pinch a fold of skin (best done on the neck)
              and count the seconds it takes to flatten. Flattening of skin in less than 2 seconds
                 indicates normal hydration. If skin takes 2 to 6 seconds to flatten, the calf is about
                 8% dehydrated. Over 6 seconds indicates severe dehydration above 10%. Gums
                 can be evaluated by looking at their color and feeling them for moisture. Normal
gums should be pink and damp but if gums are white and dry this indicates 8 to 10% dehydration.
One of the best measures of estimated dehydration and illness in calves is their attitude during milk
feeding. Calves may show no symptoms of dehydration but if they need encouragement to drink,
monitor them closely for scouring or other illnesses.

Different ways currently exist for feeding milk or milk replacer while feeding oral rehydration
solution to scouring calves. One way is to cut milk out completely and only feed oral rehydration
solution for the entire treatment period. Another way is to only feed the oral rehydration solution for 2
days then feed half and half with milk the last day. And the third way is to feed the rehydration
solution and milk as well in separate feedings.

Calves need enough energy to maintain their weight as well as their immune system, especially when
they are sick. Oral rehydration solutions cannot provide enough energy because they are limited in the
amount of glucose that can be added in order to keep the osmolarity of the solution low. Therefore,
feeding milk or milk replacer supplies more energy and protein, allowing calves to maintain weight.
If scouring becomes a regular occurrence a veterinarian should be consulted to determine the source
and whether antibiotics are appropriate. Also, a few fecal samples should be taken and sent to a
diagnostic lab to evaluate the cause of enteric infection. This may help establish a preventative
program and save time and labor in treatment of scouring calves.

For further information on this topic see the mimeo Electrolytes for Dairy Calves in the Penn State
Dairy Nutrition Web pages at

                        Source: Sylvia Kehoe, Graduate Student & Jud Heinrichs, Professor of Dairy & Animal Science


In June of 1998, a heifer raising operation in Pennsylvania with recurrent problems
associated with calf mortality sought the assistance of the Field Investigation
Group at Pennsylvania State University to address the issue.

Beginning of August of 1998, the veterinarians attending the heifer raising operation and 18 dairy
herds that received heifers from the heifer raising operation were asked to submit samples (fecal and
tissue samples) for bacteriological analysis from all clinical cases suggestive of Salmonellosis.
Between September 1998 and October 2000, samples from of 324 calves, heifers and lactating cattle
from the heifer raising operation and 11 dairy herds were cultured for Salmonella using the protocol
followed by Pennsylvania Animal Diagnostic Laboratory for isolation and identification of
Salmonella. Salmonella isolates were serotyped at the National Veterinary Services Laboratory,
Ames, Iowa.

A total of 62 Salmonella isolates belonging to 6 serotypes including S. Typhimurium, S.
Typhimurium var Copenhagen, S. Muenchen, S. Newport, S. Heidelberg, and S. Montevideo were
isolated. Salmonella Typhimurium var Cophenhagen (STC) accounted for 42 of the 62 (68%)
Salmonella isolates.

These isolates have been previously isolated from calves, heifers and lactating cows in Pennsylvania.
Statistical analysis showed that on the dairy farm, the likelihood of isolating STC from a sick heifer
was 2.6 fold higher than from sick calves. With regard to STC, the likelihood of isolating STC from
calves on the heifer raising operation was 5.3 fold higher than from heifers, while on the dairy farm
STC was more likely (2.3 fold higher) to be isolated from heifers than from calves.
Transition of animals from one environment to another (e.g., dairy farm to heifer raising operation
and vice-versa), change in nutrition (protein and energy content), and interaction with other animals
(access to stall, and water and feed troughs) in the cohort could result in a cascade of events that
could induce stress making the animal more susceptible to infectious diseases.

These sets of complex interactions could perhaps explain the higher Salmonella infection rates of
calves that were transferred to the heifer raising operation and in heifers that returned to their dairy
herds. An indepth genetic analysis based on DNA fingerprinting revealed that STC isolates shared
similar genetic profiles.

Contract heifer raising requires meticulous planning and implementation of rigorous biosecurity
practices. Biosecurity deals with management practices that protect the herd from entry of new
diseases and minimize the spread and/or adverse effects of diseases in the herd. A contract heifer
raising operation acquires calves from several farms that are co-mingled. This is the single most
important risk factor for introduction of new diseases on the premises.

More importantly, the organisms may leave the premise, healthy heifers serving as vehicles.
Biosecurity is one of the major issues facing professional heifer growers who have multiple clients.
Most contract raising operations include biosecurity practices to address brucellosis, persistent bovine
viral diarrhea disease and Johne’s disease. Based on the findings of our study it is felt biosecurity
practices focused on prevention and control of enteric pathogens yet remain to be addressed

In summary, Salmonella Typhimurium var. Copenhagen isolates from a heifer raising operation and
11 dairy herds that contracted their calves to the heifer raising operation were examined for their

characteristics. Results of the study showed that the heifer raising operation could serve as a clearing
house of S. Typhimurium var Copenhagen and perhaps other Salmonella serotypes.

                               Source: Bhushan Jayarao and David Wolfgang, Veterinary Science Extension, Penn St.


One can get a whole new perspective while trying to locate a new dairy complex on a
proposed site. During a recent site visit as we were pacing out the proposed building footprint,
locating building corners and shooting elevations a variety of things came into focus. Following are
some observations from this visit:

We did not know what the setback or zoning requirements were.
There was a tall crop of weeds growing on the site that made navigation inconvenient and obscured
a good visual examination of the site.
As flags went into the ground to indicate building corners the site began to shrink. Boundaries
began to look a lot closer to the buildings on the site then they did on the paper.
Elevation changes on the site appeared larger when you walked up and down them than they did on
the topo map and thoughts about excavation costs rose as fast as the back corner of the site dropped
When it was noted that the woodlots located on two sides of the project represented the edge of the
site and were owned by others visions of several houses or a fancy country home plunked down in the
midst of them brought up uncomfortable thoughts. Would this site provide enough buffer around the
proposed dairy?
A wake up call occurred when the neighbor from the other side of the woods stopped by to ask
various questions about the project; how many cows, how big would the barn be, where were they
going to graze, what about the manure? The site began to look small again. What about trying to buy
the neighbors house and property?
Walking the site is important and necessary but on a large site a four wheeler could save a lot of
A lot of good discussion occurs within the planning group while trying to stake out a building

We did not have a final location selected for the building footprint when we left the site but the day
was not a failure or a waste of time. We had a much better feel for the site and just how big the
building footprint might look when it was placed on the ground. Our “to do list” had become longer
but also more focused and there was time to find answers to the new questions we had raised.
Through the years I have learned many things about site evaluation and building layout. This visit
reminded me that:

Once a desired site layout is established it’s a good idea to “stake it out.” Nothing can substitute for
being on the ground and walking around driving stakes and imagining how the feed wagon or milk
truck will maneuver in and around the buildings.
The space required for buildings, set backs, water drainage, snow storage and roads to maneuver
around the site are always bigger on the ground than they are on the paper.

Get to know and maintain communications with your neighbors.
                               Source: Robert E. Graves, Agricultural and Biological Engineering Extension, Penn St.


Failure of passive transfer (FPT) in dairy calves is defined as a blood IgG level of less than 10 mg/ml
at 24 to 48 hours after birth. Calves that experience FPT are more likely to become sick or die in the
first two months of life than calves with adequate immunity. Many factors can contribute to FPT, but
colostrum and the management of colostrum feeding are often involved. Feeding colostrum late or not
at all and being forced to feed poor quality colostrum are primary causes of FPT in calves.

Unfortunately, not all colostrum is the same. There is a lot of variability between cows, and all
colostrum should be tested to ensure its quality. When colostrum is of lower quality, producers have
three options: stored colostrum, supplement products, and colostrum replacer.

Storing excess high quality colostrum provides insurance in case the dam is unable to produce an
adequate quantity of good quality colostrum due to mastitis, death, or various other causes. Stored
colostrum from test-negative cows also is an essential component of eradication strategies for
diseases such as Johne’s and leukosis.

In some herds the supply of disease-free, high quality colostrum is very limited, and supplement and
replacer products can provide viable options for ensuring adequate immunity in calves. In other cases,
the consistency and convenience of colostrum products is preferred over testing, sorting, and storing
maternal colostrum.

Colostrum products that contain IgG are regulated by the USDA Center for Veterinary Biologics.
Supplement products are unable to raise the blood concentration of IgG above the species standard,
which is 10 mg/ml. Any product that is able to raise serum IgG concentration above 10 mg/ml may be
called a colostrum replacer.

Typically, colostrum supplements contain less than 100 g of IgG per dose and are composed of
bovine colostrum, other milk products, or bovine serum. Colostrum supplements can be used to
increase the amount of IgG fed to calves when only low or medium quality colostrum is available.
However, supplements cannot replace high quality colostrum. Even when a supplement is added to
low quality colostrum, the IgG is often absorbed poorly, and antibody absorption is reduced
compared to high quality maternal colostrum.

A limited number of products designed to replace colostrum are now on the market. These are bovine
serum-based products and contain at least 100 g of IgG per liter plus fat, protein, vitamins, and
minerals needed by the newborn calf. Colostrum replacer contains more immunoglobulin than
supplement products and provides more antibodies than poor or moderate quality colostrum. In
research trials, calves fed colostrum replacer have performed as well as calves fed maternal colostrum
with no differences in IgG levels, efficiency of IgG absorption, incidence of scours, or growth rates.

When comparing products, it is important to consider both the amount of IgG provided and the
efficiency of IgG absorption, which is greatly influenced by ingredients and processing. The three
primary sources of IgG in colostrum products are dried colostrum, blood serum or eggs. Egg-based
colostrum supplements have mostly been replaced by dried colostrum and blood serum supplements.

Most supplements contain 30 to 45% IgG or protein which, when fed according to the manufacturer’s
directions, provides 45 to 50 mg/ml of IgG per dose. Ideally, when fed along with poor quality
colostrum enough IgG would be absorbed to provide calves with 10 mg/ml of IgG in the blood and

successful passive transfer. However, absorption rates differ depending on the ingredient used as the
source of IgG.

Supplement and replacer products based on bovine serum contain high levels of IgG and have
absorption efficiencies similar to maternal colostrum (25 to 35 percent). Products based on colostrum
or whey have variable IgG contents and absorption efficiencies ranging from 5 to 30 percent. Egg-
based supplements to date are not well-absorbed, but can provide local protection in the intestine
against scours causing bacteria.

The amount of IgG fed in a single feeding is another important factor affecting IgG absorption
efficiency. As a result, when trying to attain greater passive immunity, feeding a better quality
product or colostrum with higher concentration of IgG is more beneficial than feeding more of the
original product by increasing the amount of powder or volume fed. In other words, don't increase the
concentration of IgG by adding more powder, but feed a higher quality product. Read and follow
manufacturer’s instructions for feeding; some products are mixed with water and fed in an extra
feeding, others are added to colostrum, and the number of feedings recommended may vary.

High quality maternal colostrum is still the “gold standard” for feeding newborn calves. However,
colostrum supplement and replacer products can be valuable tools to increase calf immunity when
colostrum supplies are limited or disease eradication is desired. Colostrum supplements can be used
to increase the amount of IgG fed to calves when no source of quality colostrum is available, but
supplements cannot replace high quality colostrum.

They do not contain sufficient quantities of antibodies to raise the blood IgG level in calves beyond
what average quality colostrum will do. On the other hand, colostrum replacer contains greater levels
of IgG and other nutrients and provides an effective, convenient method of providing passive
immunity to calves when maternal colostrum is not available.

For further information on this topic see the new mimeo Colostrum Supplements and Replacers on
the Dairy and Animal Science Web site at

   Source: Sylvia Kehoe, Graduate Student; Coleen Jones, Research Associate; and Jud Heinrichs, Professor of Dairy and
                                                     Animal Science, Department of Dairy and Animal Science, Penn St.


2006 Risk Management Planning
Now is the time to start firming-up your risk management plans for 2006. This includes planning for
increased profitability as well as managing downside risk exposures when things go wrong. Profit
planning for many producers starts with studying 2005 crop year performance records of yields and
related inputs (identifying the best performing seeds, fertilizer, chemicals, crop insurance choices, and

We have heard reports of the added income that some producers realized from preharvest marketing
(i.e. $2.30s and 2.40s vs. $2 corn in 2005). To keep on top of the tools and strategies, consider
getting involved in a marketing club where you’ll have the opportunity to interact with other
producers and experts to sort out the pros and cons of the various marketing strategies. Be sure to
check out how CRC crop insurance protection can reduce your marketing risk exposures too. If you
need help finding a marketing club, ask your county extension agent for help.

2006 Crop Insurance Changes
GRP & GRIP for Corn and Soybeans: These two new crop insurance plans are available in 16
Maryland counties. They are Group Risk Plan (GRP) and Group Risk Income Protection (GRIP).
GRP is yield based while GRIP is revenue based. These programs are based on county NASS data
adjusted by RMA/USDA. Producers can purchase a fixed dollar amount of coverage and a percentage
of the county yield loss trigger from 70 to 90% (CAT is also available for GRP only). Generally, a
yield loss triggers for GRP when the county yield for the year is less than the historical county
average (expected) yield times percentage trigger. GRIP works similarly except that the county yield
information is converted to dollars using spring and fall CBOT prices. These programs usually
provide more dollars of protection at less premium cost...but losses only trigger when the county
average declines more than the historical average times the percentage loss trigger. However, reports
from the Midwest are that these programs are gaining in popularity among producers there because
producers feel that declines in county average yields adequately reflect their individual farm losses

AGR-Lite: Important improvements have been made for 2006. These include: increasing the
maximum policy size from $250,000 to $1,000,000 (producers with annual commodity income of
$2,000,000 or less can qualify), producers with only one commodity revenue source can qualify for
all 65 percent and 75 percent coverage level choices (only 3 revenue sources are required for 80%
coverage), a broader and more clearly defined causes of loss definition, and an extended enrollment
period until March 15 for new applicants.

This whole farm revenue coverage provides dollars of protection based on a percentage of the
producer’s revenue history and projections for the current year, plus current year market fluctuations.
It includes commodity revenues from almost all farm products. The revenue to count for poor quality
and low quantity losses, due to insurable cause, is determined directly from the market place. This
program can be used separately or in conjunction with MPCI-APH, CRC and IIP…and AGR-Lite
premiums are discounted up to 50 percent for such combinations.

Producers have numerous ways to insure their farm commodities for 2006 (many corn and soybean
producers have up to 9). Contact a crop insurance agent for details.

For more information from the USDA Risk Management Agency on crop insurance, contact Gene
Gantz at (717) 497-6398. At the Maryland Department of Agriculture, contact Mark Powell at (410)
841-5775. At the University of Maryland, contact Dr. Wesley Musser at (301) 405-0017.
                                                                  Source: MD Crop Insurance News January 2006


This well sponsored, large grower meeting always offers a great deal of
vegetable industry information. The Central Maryland Vegetable Growers
Meeting will be held on January 27, 2006, from 8:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at the
Friendly Farm Inn, located on Foreston Road in Upperco, MD. Pesticide
recertification credits are awarded for attending this meeting. For full meeting
details, and to register call the Baltimore County Extension Office at 410-666-
1024 today.


            The 2006 Mid-Atlantic Fruit & Vegetable Convention will be held January 31-February 2
             in Hershey, Pennsylvania. The convention is jointly sponsored by the State Horticultural
             Association of Pennsylvania, the Pennsylvania Vegetable Growers Association, the
             Maryland State Horticultural Society and the New Jersey State Horticultural Society.

The Great American Hall at the Hershey Lodge and Convention Center will host the Trade Show with
over 130 exhibitors. Specialized horticultural equipment, farm market merchandise, and packaging,
will all be on display along with information on the latest seed varieties, fruit varieties, pesticides and
other supplies and services for the commercial grower.

Registration either through the mail or at the door is required to attend both the trade show and
educational sessions. Complete registration information is available in the December 2005 edition of
the Horticulture Technology Newsletter at: .


Attention all fruit growers! Plan to attend the Bay Area Fruit School on February 22,
2006 at the WYE Research and Education Center in Queenstown, Maryland. This all day meeting
will provide Private Pesticide Applicator Recertification Credit. This school provides information
related to commercial tree and small fruit production. Information on pesticide updates and cultural
practices are presented by university and industry experts. For full meeting details and registration
call Debbie Dant, WYE REC at 410 827-8056, Ext. 115 or Michael Newell at 410-827-7388.


Federal Register- Vol.35, No. 4 Wednesday, January 7, 1970
Part 1500- Child Labor Regulations, Orders and Statement of Interpretations
Hazardous Occupations in Agriculture - Tractor Safety Training
        Any youth ages 14-15 desiring to be employed on a farm other than the family
farm must attend, complete the requirements, and pass a written and practical exam if
he/she wishes to operate a tractor.
        1. The law states youth must be a 4-H member.
        2. Must be 14 years of age or older.
        3. Must complete 10 hours training which includes units 1-7 in the textbook:
           Safe Operation of Agricultural Equipment.
        4. Is familiar with normal working hazards in agriculture.
        5. Must demonstrate ability to operate a tractor safely with a two- wheeled implement on a
        6. His employer is to keep on file a signed and dated certificate of completion of the course.
Employer is responsible for hiring youth who have completed the training and the employer is to have
the certificate on file.
                                                   Source: Sharon Pahlman, 4-H Educator, MCE-Caroline County

Dates To Remember
January 18, 2006              Winter Wednesday Series-Caring for the Pond, Update on Pfiesteria, and
                              CBF’s new view of Maryland Agriculture, Dr. Dan Terlizzi
January 19, 2006              Southern Maryland Hay and Pasture Conference, Izaak Walton League
                              Outdoor Education Center, Waldorf, MD
January 19, 2006              Winter Extension Dairy Talk Series, Ted Elkin and Connie Caffes-Milk
                              Inspection – The reality!
January 19-22, 2006           Horse World Expo 2006 University Seminar Series, Maryland State Fair
                              Grounds, Timonium, MD
January 23-35, 2006           Silage for Dairy Farms: Growing, Harvesting, Storing, and Feeding
                              Conference, Radisson Penn Harris Hotel and Convention Center, Camp
                              Hill, MD
January 24, 2006              Central Maryland Grazing Conference, Carroll County Agriculture
                              Center, Westminster, MD
January 25, 2006              Winter Wednesday Series-Income Opportunities with Sheep and Goats,
                              and Parasite Management, Susan Schoenian
January 26, 2006              Winter Extension Dairy Talk Series, Rich Erdman-High Culling Rates: Lost
                              Income and Wasted Potential
January 27, 2006              Central Maryland Vegetable Meeting, Friendly Farm Inn, Upperco, MD
January 31-February 2, 2006   Mid-Atlantic Fruit & Vegetable Conference, Hershey, PA
February 1, 2006              Winter Wednesday Series-Water Recharge, Children and Owner Lots, the
                              25 Year Policy, and Program Budget, Ralph Robertson, Jr.
February 2, 2006              Winter Extension Dairy Talk Series, David Shinham-USDA Voluntary
                              Johne’s Control Program
February 7, 2006              Grain Marketing Workshop, Mt. Airy Fireman’s Activity Center, Mt.
                              Airy, MD
February 8, 2006              Winter Wednesday Series-Evaluating Natural Resource Income
                              Opportunities, Marketing Timber, & Landowner Liability & Recreational
                              Access, Jonathan Kays
February 9, 2006              Winter Extension Dairy Talk Series, Rick Kohn-Milk Urea
February 13, 2006             Maryland Ag Forum, Prince George’s County Equestrian Center
February 14, 2006             Winter Extension Dairy Talk Series, Bob Peters-Overview of the
                              National Animal Identification System, Marilyn Bassford-Premise
                              Identification, Jere High-RFID for Dairy Management
February 15, 2006             Winter Wednesday Series-Wheat, Soybean, and Orchardgrass Disease
                              Update, Dr. Arv Grybauskas
February 16, 2006             MDIA Annual Conference, Carroll County Agriculture Center,
                              Westminster, MD
February 22, 2006             Bay Area Fruit School, Wye REC, Queenstown, MD
February 22-23, 2006          Pennsylvania Grazing Conference and Hay & Silage Conference,
                              Holiday Inn, Grantville, PA
February 23, 2006             Winter Extension Dairy Talk Series, Stan Fultz-Grass-based Dairy
February 23, 2006             Western MD Regional Fruit Meeting, Western MD REC, Keedysville
March 30, 2006                Mid-Atlantic Nutrition Conference-Equine Session, Holiday Inn Select,
                              Timonium, MD
November 18, 2006             University of Maryland Horse Conference, location to be determined

                                       Yours for better farming from your
                                 Carroll County Agriculture Extension Educators

Michael R. Bell                         Bryan R. Butler, Sr.                     Steve Allgeier
Extension Educator                      Extension Educator                       Horticulture Consultant
Agricultural Science                    Agricultural Science                     Master Gardener Coordinator                                
It is the policy of the Maryland Cooperative Extension, that no person shall be subjected to discrimination on the grounds of
          race, color, gender, religion, national origin, sexual orientation, age, marital or parental status, or disability.

If you have a disability that requires special assistance for your participation in a program, please contact the Carroll County
                  Extension Office at 410-386-2760, Fax: 410-876-0132, two weeks prior to the program.

                  The information given herein is supplied with the understanding that no discrimination is
                        intended and no endorsement by Maryland Cooperative Extension is implied.


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