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					                                      Iowa County
Regional Calendar
                                      Ag Journal
                                      *Agricultural Newsletter of Iowa County, Wisconsin, Winter 2010
See newsletter articles for
more information!!                    For the third year in row I’ve left about 6 weeks of forage buried under a couple feet
                                      snow. Winter just doesn’t seem to want to cooperate with my forage stock piling
January                               plans. My plan was to not feed hay until mid January. Someone’s not getting my
20 Ag Markets Outlook                 memo’s. It’s not just the early snow, it was the rain around Christmas that then really
Meeting, Pyle Center
                                      crusted things over. Sheep are better winter graziers than cattle, they’ll readily dig
21 -22 Value Added
Conference, Eau Claire
                                      through a foot of soft snow with our little January thaw, and softening snow, they’re
27 Heart of Farm Conference,          out digging again.
Mineral Point
                                      My confidence with winter cattle grazing is improving, or at least my faith in my
February                              cows ability to do so and get adequate feed. I’ve probably been guilty of babying
3 Pesticide Applicator                them a bit too much, feeding a bale of hay is so easy. Until the crusting occurred,
Training, Dodgeville                  the girls where readily burying their heads under the snow for forage. Noses were a
4 Sheep Wisline, Dodgeville           little pink and heads were snow covered from poll to nose, they appeared to be doing
11 Beef Quality Assurance             well, calves included.
Meeting, UWEX Office
16 Regional Soybean                   Winter grazing cattle with sheep isn’t a good plan. Cows will allow the sheep to dig
Meeting, Dodger Bowl                  and open an area then come in shove the sheep out of the way and graze what they
17 Silvopasture Webinar               sheep have exposed. Good for the cows, but also a recipe for thin ewes come spring.
18 Cattle Feeders Workshop,           Feeding hay in winter to cows and sheep together can work reasonably well,
Lancaster                             provided there’s enough space. If I put feed out for more than a day, the animals will
18-20 Wisconsin Grazing
                                      bed up on the excess. Where the sheep bed up, the cows will eat the hay, and were
Conference
23 Harvest the Wind, Dodger
                                      the cows bed up the sheep will come in and clean up. Wastage is pretty low.
Bowl
                                      2010 has just begun, it appears that fertilizer prices will have moderated considerably
25 Pesticide Applicator
Training, Dodgeville
                                      with the spring planting season. Lower inputs wil be welcomed after the past two
                                      seasons. If you've pulled down your soil nutrient levels recently, there might be
March                                 opportunity to build back some fertility. Commodity prices have held steady to
3-4 Midwest Cover Crop                slightly improving. Part of the steady to improving position is supply driven, larger
Workshop, Ames, IA                    improvements will be demand driven, which is affected by the economy. Right now
4 Sheep Wisline                       the economy is still looking pretty flat. On the positive side, it's no longer
5 Southwest Wisconsin                 declining. El Nino strengthen in December and may have peaked. Traditionally this
Winter Grazing Meeting,               suggests below-average snowfall and above-average temperatures across the northern
Fennimore                             tier of states in the coming months. An early, warm spring would be appreciated,
5 Dairy & Beef Husbandry
                                      after the early start to winter. O.K. I'm a glass is half full person.
Conference
6-10 Dairy Sheep School,
Spooner
                                      It’s officially a year since I started as your Interim Ag Educator, and I’ve only met a
                                      fraction of Iowa County producers. I plan to continue dropping in as time allows
                                      and introducing myself. Farm folks are pretty suspicious of a strange vehicle and
                                      person stepping out until I introduce myself. So far, everyone has been welcoming
                                      and hospitable, I may even stop pointing the car out the driveway for a potential fast
                                      exit.

                                      Gene Schriefer
                                      Interim Ag Agent
This newsletter was prepared by Gene Schriefer, UW Extension Iowa County Interim Agriculture Agent. For more information, please
contact our office: Iowa County UW Extension, 222 North Iowa Street, Suite 1, Dodgeville, WI 53533; phone: (608) 935-0391. Via
email: gene.schriefer@ces.uwex.edu.
AGRONOMY SECTION
Announcing 2010 Pesticide Applicator training and testing dates for Iowa County.

* February 3rd           10:30 am – 4:00 p.m.
* February 25th          10:30 am – 4: 00 p.m.

All sessions will be held in the Extension Office Conference Room, Lower Level, at the Iowa County Courthouse, 222
North Iowa Street, Dodgeville, and will start promptly at the designated times. The test is open book and you may use
notes that you have prepared while studying at home or listening during the training session. All tests must be completed
within a 20hour time limit. We will take a break the training sessions for lunch on your own. Because we have limited
space available at the training/test room, you must call our office at 935-0391 and reserve a seat for the date you
would like to take the test. We cannot guarantee you a seat if you have not contacted us prior to that date. The training
manual and registration materials cost is $30 per farmer and are available at our office. If you have reserved your seat,
you may pay ay the door.

                                                                 Participants will then come back together for lunch and
ANIMAL SCIENCE                                                   conference keynote speaker Dr. Temple Grandin,
                                                                 recognized around the world as a leading authority on
                                                                 animal behavior and handling practices. Dr. Grandin,
Wisconsin Dairy and Beef Industry Animal
                                                                 professor of animal science at Colorado State University,
Husbandry Conference
                                                                 will discuss her lifelong research and observations about
                                                                 working with cattle and what she thinks lies ahead for
University of Wisconsin-Extension will host a one-day
                                                                 the dairy and beef cattle industry.
statewide conference on Friday, March 5 to address one
of the most important emerging issues in agriculture –
                                                                 Wrapping up the conference will be Dr. Janice Swanson,
animal handling and well-being.
                                                                 Director of Animal Welfare at Michigan State
                                                                 University. Dr. Swanson will review past and present
Dairy and beef producers, veterinarians, farm service
                                                                 policy initiatives around the country that have or could
providers, educators and interested elected officials are
                                                                 affect the way farm animals are cared for and managed.
invited to attend this conference that focuses on
expanding awareness and understanding about the
                                                                 The conference will be held on Friday, March 5 at
growing concern nationwide of how farm animals are
                                                                 Liberty Hall in Kimberly (located just off Hwy 441 on
cared for and what the implications could be for large
                                                                 County Highway CE on the east side of Appleton).
animal agriculture in Wisconsin.
                                                                 Registration begins at 9 a.m. and the conference
                                                                 concludes at 3:30 p.m. followed by an opportunity for
Dr. Pam Ruegg, DVM, UW-Extension milk quality
                                                                 informal discussion with the presenters.
specialist at UW-Madison will open the conference with
results from recent National Animal Heath Monitoring
                                                                 For more details, visit the conference website at
and Surveillance System (NAHMS) farm survey data
                                                                 http://fyi.uwex.edu/animalhusbandryconference/. The
and what it suggests about the way we currently manage
                                                                 site includes registration information ($35 per person),
and handle dairy and beef cattle.
                                                                 agenda, biographies and photos of the speakers,
                                                                 Contact: Greg Blonde, 715-258-6230,
Then, participants will choose between dairy or beef
                                                                 greg.blonde@ces.uwex.edu
break-out sessions to learn practical tips and techniques
for improved animal handling on the farm. Each session
                                                                 NOTE FROM GENE: I’ve never come away
will feature nationally recognized presenters, including
                                                                 disappointed in listening to Dr. Grandin’s presentations.
Dr. Paul Rapnicki, DVM, instructor of dairy production
                                                                 Strong research base, and eye opening insights into
medicine and drug use in food animals at the University
                                                                 animal behavior.
of Minnesota Vet School; and, Dr. Tom Noffsinger,
DVM, an award winning Nebraska veterinarian and
highly sought after beef cattle consultant who will share
strategies to improve beef cattle handling practices.
Dairy                                                          production is less of a guarantee of
                                                               profitability.

Characteristics Typical Of Profitable Dairy               3.   They focus on optimizing the three factors of
Farms in Wisconsin                                             profit, more than worrying about whether or not
By Tom Kriegl                                                  they fit a specific stereotype or system. The
Farm Financial Analyst                                         three factors of profit are income generation,
University of Wisconsin Center For Dairy                       operating expense control and investment/debt
Profitability                                                  control.

There are many factors that can contribute to             4.   They recognize that spending money carefully
profitability, but there are few or none that ensure           helps profitability more than just not spending.
profitability. This makes it difficult to provide a
recipe of the three, five or other number of              5.   They are as careful about their capital
characteristics, factors, practices or steps to profit.        investments and other purchases when milk
The factor that comes closest to ensuring                      prices are high as they are when their milk
profitability is management--a factor that can often           prices are low.
be recognized when seen but not always easy to
describe or imitate.                                      6.   They recognize that low input is not the same
                                                               as low cost per unit of output. The farmers with
While I can’t provide “the recipe” based on                    the lowest cost per CWT EQ of milk sold in
research, I can describe a number of                           Wisconsin dairy data, use large quantities of
characteristics that I have frequently observed                inputs such as fertilizer and/or grain as long as
among a number of Wisconsin dairy farmers that                 the income they generate from those inputs is
have consistently achieved above average profit                greater than their cost.
levels over a period of years. I believe many of
these characteristics apply to all dairy systems.         7.   They desire to achieve economic viability.
Probably no one exhibits all of these
characteristics. A dairy farm is sufficiently complex     8.   They have average or better than average
that I can’t say with any certainty how many of                management ability.
these characteristics are needed to achieve a
specific profit level on a specific farm.                 9.   They are willing to change and try new things.

I believe the best use of this article is as a            10. They have a well-defined mission, goals and
stimulus for discussion and examination. For                  plans that are well thought out, understood and
example, dairy farmers who are unsatisfied with               implemented, even in some cases when not
their performance can compare themselves with                 written down.
these characteristics. Such farmers might gain
valuable knowledge from the process of                    11. They have several years of farm management
determining why they exhibit or don’t exhibit                 experience. Since it obviously takes years to
specific characteristics. This increased knowledge            obtain years of experience, clever young
can then help them achieve their goals.                       farmers will try to get mentoring help from an
                                                              experienced farmer.
Descriptive Characteristics Typical of Profitable
Dairy Farmers in Wisconsin (These are not                 12. They think about their farming operation as a
Listed in Order of Importance)                                system.

1.   They recognize that many of their personal           13. They not only figure out the right things to do
     goals cannot be achieved without some level              but also the right way to do the right things.
     of financial success. Maximum profit doesn’t
     guarantee satisfaction. Minimum profit is
     less of a guarantee of satisfaction.

2.   They understand that while high production
     does not guarantee profitability---low
NATION’S FIRST DAIRY SHEEP SCHOOL TO                    information about the Dairy Sheep School, contact
LAUNCH IN MARCH AT SPOONER AG                           Claire Mikolayunas, DBIC Dairy Sheep Specialist,
RESEARCH STATION                                        at 608-332-2889 or email
                                                        clairemikolay@gmail.com.
With Wisconsin leading the nation with the number
of dairy sheep farms and overall sheep milk             Wisconsin Cheese Originals Offers Scholarship
production, it’s no surprise that the nation’s first    to Earn State Cheesemaker License
dairy sheep school will be offered here.                First-of-its-kind, annual $2,500 award aims to
                                                        grow Wisconsin’s artisan cheesemaker
The Wisconsin Dairy Sheep School will be held           community
March 6-10 at the Spooner Agricultural Research
Station, hosted by the Dairy Business Innovation        Want to be a Wisconsin artisan cheesemaker? A
Center, the UW-Madison’s Spooner Agricultural           new organization is offering the first-of-its-kind,
Research Station and UW Cooperative Extension.          $2,500 annual scholarship to help one aspiring
                                                        cheesemaker earn his or her license and make
Demand for sheep milk still outpaces supply,            farmstead, artisan or specialty cheeses.
despite the fact that Wisconsin produced more than
1 million pounds it in 2009. The new school was set     Wisconsin Cheese Originals, a member-based
up to train new producers in an effort to increase      organization dedicated to sharing information about
the supply of quality sheep milk.                       Wisconsin original cheeses and the people who
                                                        craft them, today announces a new Wisconsin
The course will feature lectures on topics such as      Licensed Cheesemaker Scholarship Program. The
weaning and artificial rearing of lambs, mastitis and   annual scholarship aims to grow the state’s artisan
milk quality, parlor design and milking machine         and specialty cheesemaking community, one new
function, ewe nutrition and milk handling               cheesemaker at a time.
regulations. Speakers will include:
                                                        Launched in 2009, Wisconsin Cheese Originals
- Pamela Ruegg, UW-Madison Dept. of Dairy               hosts educational seminars, tasting receptions,
Science                                                 cheesemaking tours and sponsors the annual
- Doug Reinemann, UW-Madison Dept. of                   Wisconsin Original Cheese Festival, scheduled this
Biological Systems Engineering                          year on Nov. 5-7 at the Monona Terrace in
- Bob Leder, United Veterinary Services                 Madison, Wis.
- Dave Thomas, UW-Madison Dept. of Animal
Sciences                                                Organization founder and executive director
- Yves Berger, Spooner Agricultural Research            Jeanne Carpenter said the goal of the scholarship
Station                                                 fund compliments the goal of the organization,
- Tom Kieffer, Dream Valley Farm                        which celebrates Wisconsin’s original cheeses and
- Larry Meisegeier , Wisconsin Sheep Dairy              helps connect consumers to farmstead, artisan and
Cooperative                                             specialty cheesemakers.
- Brenda Jensen, Hidden Springs Creamery
                                                        “In the last 10 years, Wisconsin has become home
The course will also provide hands-on experience        to more than 60 artisan and specialty
in the milking parlor and caring for young lambs.       cheesemakers, many of whom are choosing to start
                                                        or move their operations to Wisconsin because of
The Spooner Agricultural Research Station is the        the dairy state’s reputation for quality, innovation
only dairy sheep research facility in North America.    and infrastructure,” Carpenter said. “At the same
Due to limited space in the milking parlor and barn     time, I know there are men and women with the
are limited, course enrollment will be capped at 14     talent and drive to become an artisan
students. Preference will be given to Wisconsin         cheesemaker, who lack the financial backing and
residents and those interested in commercial dairy      support to take the required university classes and
sheep production.                                       obtain a cheesemaker license. This scholarship
                                                        aims to address that gap and hopes to help one
For a course brochure and application, visit the        new Wisconsin artisan cheesemaker earn his or
DBIC website at                                         her license every year.”
http://www.dbicusa.org/sheeps_milk.php. For more
Applicants must be a resident of the State of                 Protects the beef industry from additional
Wisconsin, a high school graduate as of June 15,               and burdensome government regulation.
2010, and must demonstrate ambition to pursue
and obtain a Wisconsin Cheesemaker License, a                 Improves sale value of marketed beef cattle.
lengthy process that can take as long as 18
                                                              Enhances herd profitability through better
months, requires the attendance at five university
courses, as well as 240 hours of apprenticeship                management.
with an existing licensed Wisconsin cheesemaker.        Becoming certified in Wisconsin involves an
                                                        educational program, passing a test, and having a
Scholarship applications may be downloaded from         signed valid Vet-Client Patient Relationship Form.
www.wisconsincheeseoriginals.com/about.php and          Certification and re-certification for producers will
are due March 15, 2010. To learn more, contact          be offered on February 11, from 7-9 p.m. at the
Carpenter at 608-358-7837.                              Iowa County Extension Office in Dodgeville

Beef                                                    Cost for the materials - $15, with checks made
                                                        payable to the Wisconsin Beef Council.

Beef Quality Assurance (BQA) Certification
                                                        UW-Extension Cattle Feeders workshops
Beef Quality Assurance programs provide                 scheduled in February
systematic information to U.S. beef producers and
beef consumers of how common sense husbandry            University of Wisconsin-Extension will be
techniques can be coupled with accepted scientific      conducting the annual Cattle Feeders workshop.
knowledge to raise cattle under optimum                 The program provides information regarding
management and environmental conditions. BQA            finishing and backgrounding cattle, which applies to
guidelines are designed to make certain all beef        both beef and Holstein feeders.
consumers can take pride in what they purchase –
and can trust and have confidence in the entire         Speakers and topics include:
beef industry.                                          Dr. Amy Radunz, UW-Extension beef cattle
                                                        specialist, will present information on feeding
BQA program participants recognize that                 strategies for finishing cattle which can influence
maintaining consumer confidence requires a              economics and efficiency. She will also present
commitment to quality beef production at every          information regarding mycotoxins and other
level - not just at the feedlot or packing plant, but   considerations concerning this year’s feedstuffs in
within every segment of the cattle industry.            Wisconsin.
BQA does more than just help beef producers
capture more value from their market cattle: BQA        Adam Hady, UW-Extension agriculture agent in
                                                        Richland County will be addressing successful
also reflects a positive public image and instills
consumer confidence in the beef industry. When          methods for efficient and safe composting of
producers implement the best management                 mortalities, and Bill Halfman, UW-Extension agent
practices of a BQA program, they assure their           in Monroe County will present information on
market steers, heifers, cows, and bulls are the best    considerations for backgrounding calves in
                                                        Wisconsin when the grass is not green.
they can be. Today, the stakes are even higher
because of increased public attention on animal
welfare. BQA is valuable to all beef and dairy          The workshop also includes a presentation about
producers because it:                                   proper handling of vaccines and pharmaceuticals
                                                        which can impact their effectiveness, as prepared
       Demonstrates commitment to food safety          by Dr. Sandy Stuttgen, veterinarian and Taylor
        and quality.                                    County UW-Extension agriculture agent and
                                                        presented by the local county extension host.
       Safeguards the public image of the dairy
        industry.                                       The workshops should last approximately three
                                                        hours including time of the meal. There will be a
       Upholds consumer confidence in valuable         modest registration fee to cover meal and material
        beef products.
costs. Locations, times and contacts for registration    Whether feeding on a daily or weekly schedule,
and additional information are:                          using round bale feeders reduced waste. When
                                                         offering a week’s worth of feed at a time, they cut
Thursday, Feb. 18, 10 a.m. UW Experiment                 waste by 80 per cent relative to no feeder, in the
Station, Lancaster, contact the Grant County             range of five or six per cent of the total feed
Extension office 608-723-2125                            supplied. Daily feeding using ring type feeders also
                                                         had low wastage, in the five per cent range. If
Feeding Round Bales To Cattle                            feeding daily, there must be enough feeders to
                                                         allow each cow to eat at the same time. Feeding
Winter feed represents the largest single cost on a      twice a week or once a week requires less time and
cow-calf operation. Therefore when looking to            labor, but you need enough round bale feeders to
reduce the cost-of-production, it is very important to   hold the required total amount of feed.
take a long and hard look at winter feed costs. The
old saying, “a penny saved is a penny earned”,           A study at Michigan State University compared
remains very true when feeding beef cattle.              feed wastage among different types of round bale
                                                         feeders. Ring and ring/cone type feeders were the
Science tells us that a 1,300 lb dry pregnant cow in     most efficient, resulting in an average of only 4.5
good condition needs to eat about 27 lbs. of hay         percent waste, while trailer type feeders had 11.4
per day to maintain herself and grow a calf. But         percent waste. Cradle type feeders were the least
when beef producers project the feed inventory           efficient, with 14.6 percent of the hay wasted.
they need for the winter, they may actually estimate     These results indicate that feeder choice is
their cows feeding needs at 35-40 lbs. of hay per        important.
day. Where does the missing feed go? Producers
are really tracking hay disappearance, rather than       In summary, no feeding system is perfect – the goal
hay consumed by cows. Disappearance includes             is to minimize feed wastage within a workable and
parts of bales spoiled during storage, dropped on        cost-effective system. During the winter feeding
the way to the feeder, and wasted or refused during      period wastage can range from 5 percent to 40
the feeding process. Is there a way to improve this?     percent, depending upon the type of feeding
                                                         system.
A beef producer can influence the feeding
efficiency on their operation by helping to reduce       Assuming that the price of hay is $90/ton, a five per
the amount of feed the cows are wasting.                 cent waste would equal an extra seven
                                                         cents/cow/day while a 40 percent waste would
Cows are notorious wasters of feed, and there are        equal an extra 54 cents/cow/day. Assuming a cattle
some things a producer can do to minimize the            herd of 100 cows and a feeding period of 150 days,
amount of feed the cattle are wasting.                   feed waste for the winter would range from a low of
Research at the University of Missouri compared          $1,050 at five per cent waste to a high of $8,100 at
the efficiency of several hay feeding systems. The       40 per cent waste. This is a difference of $7050, or
worst case scenario occurred with large round            78 tons of feed. This example shows that by
bales, fed-free choice without any feeder structure.     controlling waste, a livestock producer can reduce
In this situation the cows wasted 43 percent of the      their cost-of-production.
hay offered. Unrolling large round bales in the field    Trevor Lennox, Regional Forage Specialist, Sask.
didn’t improve things much, if a week’s supply was
placed at a time; losses remained in the 40 percent      Feeding Culls May Be Effective Marketing
range.                                                   Strategy
Things improved significantly with feeding on a          Producers searching for inventive ways to add
daily basis, where the amount of hay offered was         dollars to their beef cow-calf operations may want
appropriately matched to the dietary requirements        to consider retaining and feeding cull cattle as a
of the group. Unrolling just enough feed to last each    value-added marketing strategy.
day reduced losses down to 12 percent. In this
situation, cattle were actively competing for each       Based on the last six years of Iowa Beef Cow
mouthful and tended to cluster around the hay as it      Business Records analysis data, 21 percent of
was being rolled out, so a relatively small amount       gross revenue for cow-calf operations comes from
was refused or spoiled.                                  the sale of culled breeding animals. Therefore,
selling cull animals represents a significant portion    Dr. Rick Rasby, Professor of Animal Science
of the income generated in a beef cow enterprise. If     Animal Science, University of Nebraska -
a producer can improve the weight and value of cull      Lincoln, Lincoln, NE
animals while keeping the cost low, significant
improvement in income can occur.                         SHEEP
Many factors influence cull values, but two that
producers can use to their advantage are price           The long-running annual Sheep Management
seasonality and weight and condition of harvested        WisLine teleconference series will be held in 2010
cattle. Typically, culls have their lowest market        from 7:30 to 9:00 p.m. on Thursday evenings of
period from October to December, mainly because          February 4, and March 4.
of market saturation. February and March markets
can range from $3 to $4 per cwt. higher. Therefore,      In February, Dr. Dan Undersander, UW-Madison,
adding weight and condition to cull cattle through       will discuss “Selection of Legume and Grass
the fall and early winter has the potential to garner    Varieties for Productive Sheep Pastures”, and in
a better bottom line.                                    March, Dr. Dan Morrical, Iowa State University, will
                                                         discuss “Simple and Economical Diets for Finishing
This strategy has many challenges as well as             Lambs in Drylot and on Pasture”.
opportunities. Adding weight to mature cows is not
efficient, especially if a producer is doing it using    Contact the Iowa County Extension Office at
stored feedstuffs. Cows can require 10 to 14 lbs. of     (608)935-0391 if you plan to attend. This will
dry matter intake for every pound of gain.               guarantee that the WisLine site is open and that
                                                         adequate copies of handout materials are available.
Producers either need to provide a very low cost         Further questions should be directed to Gene
feed source, such as corn stalks with quite a bit of     Schriefer or to Dave Thomas, Sheep Extension
downed corn or stockpiled pastures, or, drylotted        Specialist, UW-Extension and UW-Madison at
cows should be fed a high energy ration so they          dlthomas@wisc.edu or 608-263-4306.
achieve the best conversions possible.
                                                         Sheep Management WisLine programs are
In a study conducted at South Dakota State               provided as a service of UW-Extension,
University, cull cows were fed a high energy ration      Cooperative Extension, and UW-Madison,
of 76 percent corn, 15 percent corn silage and 9         Department of Animal Sciences and are hosted by
percent protein supplement. The animals gained           Dave Thomas, Sheep Extension Specialist. This
2.8 to 3.1 lbs. per day. As the SDSU study               WisLine program provides two-way voice
demonstrates, it is possible to achieve decent gains     communication between the speakers and listeners
with cull cows. Additionally, research shows cows        from participating County Extension Offices in
implanted with a moderate-level implant can see a        Wisconsin and is free to the public.
10 to 15 percent gain advantage.

As the culls gain weight and condition, their
dressing percentage when sold as beef rises.
                                                         Grazing
Generally, value increases as dress percentage
                                                         2010 Wisconsin Grazing Conference: Pastures,
increases. And, past markets show an 8 to 12
                                                         People, Planet, Profits
percent price increase moving a harvested cow
from canner to cutter or utility.
                                                         From February 18th to 20th, 2010, hundreds of
Producers who want to add value to culls should          people from around the Midwest will gather in
first make sure they’re working with healthy, sound      Wisconsin Rapids to learn how managed grazing
animals. Cows that are already fat won’t gain in the     results in both healthier profits and a healthier
lot, so it’s best to use animals with a body condition   planet. The 18th annual Wisconsin Grazing
score of 3 to 5. It’s also best if culls can be          Conference, organized by GrassWorks, Inc., is a
managed separate from the rest of the herd so            key event for grass-based farmers or “graziers”
pregnant cows aren’t gaining the same amounts as         who will find information on a variety of animal
the culls.                                               species, plant species, and management situations.
                                                         Topics range from “mob grazing” to pastured
poultry to the health benefits of grass-fed meat,       To request a conference flyer with complete
eggs and dairy products.                                information, contact Heather Flashinski at 715-289-
                                                        4896 OR grassheather@hotmail.com
This year’s conference will be held at the Hotel        <mailto:ORgrassheather@hotmail.com> OR
Mead in Wisconsin Rapids and will feature over 25       continue to check out the website
sessions and 30 exhibitors. Attendees will have the     www.grassworks.org <http://www.grassworks.org/>
opportunity to hear thought-provoking and inspiring
speakers. In keeping with grass-based leadership
in local and sustainable farming, the meals offered     Silvopasture Webinar – February 17th, 11:00 a.m.,
at the conference consist almost entirely of season,    UWEX Office
local, grass-fed selections from the best in graziers
from around the region.                                 Silvopasture: Livestock options for woodland
                                                        vegetation management and increased income.
Three well-respected keynote speakers will be           Presented by Brett Chedzoy, Cornell University
featured at the 2010 conference. Jim VanDerPol,         Cooperative Extension of Schuyler County. In the
from Pastures A Plenty, has long been involved in       modern era of invasive plants, high land ownership
the grazing movement and writes a regular column        costs, and other challenges to healthy and
for Graze Magazine. He will speak on Thursday,          sustainable woodlands, it is worth taking a look at
February 18th, 2010 at 7:00 pm.                         controlled livestock grazing as an acceptable and
                                                        valuable management tool in some northeastern
Andrew Hager,leader and philosopher in the              woodlots. The purposeful and managed grazing of
grazing movement and Certified Educator in              livestock in wooded areas, known as silvopasturing,
Holistic Management, will share with conference         differs from woodlot grazing of the past in that the
attendees how the grazing community can move            frequency and intensity of the grazing is controlled
toward a profitable, sustainable future through his     to achieve the desired objectives.
talk titled Progress, Pro-grass:
Strategies Toward a Future Farming Landscape.
He will speak on Friday, February 19th, 2010 at         Farm Management
6:00 pm.
                                                        Heart of the Farm Conference
Woody Tasch, founder of the Slow Money Alliance,        Jan. 27 in Mineral Point
is a pioneer in merging investing and philanthropy.
He is the author of Inquiries into the Nature of Slow   Farm women from Iowa, Grant and Lafayette
Money: Investing as if Food, Farms, and Fertility       Counties and the surrounding area are invited to
Mattered. He will speak on Saturday, February 20th      participate in the Heart of the Farm – Women in
at 4:00 pm.                                             Agriculture conference to be held Wednesday, Jan.
                                                        27, 2010. This program provides farm women with
Conference registration includes workshops,             the opportunity to network with other farm women
general sessions, admission to the exhibit hall and     and get answers on farm liability insurance,
evening entertainment, as well as dinners, lunches      employee management, marketing basics, cost
and snacks. Online registration is available starting   cutting strategies for the home and farm and
in November. For information registration costs,        managing stress during difficult times.
volunteering, exhibiting and other opportunities or
to register online, visit the GrassWorks website        The conference begins at 9:30 a.m. and ends at 3
(www.grassworks.org                                     p.m. and will be held at the Quality Inn, 1345
<http://www.grassworks.org/>). Due to the poor          Business Park Rd, Mineral Point, located off Hwy
farm economy this year, GrassWorks will offer           151, Exit 40.
scholarships to as many farmers as possible so
that people can afford to attend. The importance of     Topics and presenters include:
community, networking, learning about options in        -- Straight Talk About Insurance. David Wright,
farming and lowering costs is critical to many family   Agriculture Instructor, LaFarge High School.
farms. Don’t hesitate to call to request some help in   -- Employee Management. Yogi Brown, dairy
making attendance affordable.                           farmer, Sunburst Dairy, Belleville.
                                                        -- Marketing Basics. Kevin Bernhardt, Professor of
                                                        Agribusiness, University of Wisconsin-Platteville
School of Agriculture and UW-Extension farm and          county price to determine the county average
risk management specialist.                              revenue for that crop year in order to finalize the
-- Cost Cutting Strategies for Home and Farm.            size of that “flex payment.” In such a case, that
Gene Schriefer, agriculture agent, Ruth Schriefer,       payment won’t be made until at least March
family living agent, Iowa County UW-Extension            following harvest, when the final county yields are
-- Managing Stress. Kathy Schmitt, Community             determined by the USDA National Ag Statistics
Services Specialist, Wisconsin Farm Center,              Service.
Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade &
Consumer Protection.                                     Interest in flexible cash leases is likely to increase
                                                         in 2010. The reason is that once tenants and
Heart of the Farm- Women in Agriculture                  landowners understand that beginning in 2009
conference series is a UW-Extension program that         revenue triggers at both the state and farm levels
is committed to addressing the needs of farm             are a major portion of the new Average Crop
women by providing education on farm business            Revenue Election (ACRE) payment, they will see
topics, connecting them with agricultural resources      that leases could be structured in a similar fashion.
and creating support networks.                           These revenue concepts will be incorporated by
                                                         both tenants and landlords to write multi-year
Due to grants and sponsorships from Wisconsin            leases that benefit both parties through the 2012
Milk Marketing Board and the Iowa County UW-             crop year, the last year of the ACRE program.
Extension office, the registration costs for this
year’s Heart of the Farm has been reduced from           In addition, farms that enroll in ACRE in 2009 will
last year. Pre-registration is $10 per person, with      likely need to prove their actual farm yields by FSA
registrations due by Jan. 20, 2010, or $15 per           farm number beginning with the 2004 crop year.
person at the door. There are also a limited number      That’s because ACRE requires the use of both
of scholarships available to cover registration fees.    state and farm yields using a 5-year Olympic
Please contact Joy Kirkpatrick at 608-263-3485 to        average for planted acreage. For some farms, the
request a scholarship.                                   easiest year to prove yields will be 2009 when
                                                         scale tickets, settlement sheets, grain bin
To register for the conference, send payment to:         measurements, and yield monitor data can be
ATTN: Heart of the Farm, Iowa County UW-                 segregated by FSA farm number during and
Extension, 222 N. Iowa St., Suite 1, Dodgeville, WI      immediately following harvest.
53533. Make checks payable to CDP. Visit the             More information is available in Ag Decision Maker
Heart of the Farm website                                File C2-21, Flexible Farm Lease Agreements and
www.uwex.edu/ces/heartofthefarm to download a            the associated Decision Tool on analyzing a flexible
brochure.                                                lease agreement.

                                                         Steven D. Johnson, Ph.D., Farm & Ag Business
Flexible Cash Leases                                     Management Field Specialist, Iowa State University
While Flexible or Bonus Cash Leases make up a            Extension,
small percentage of Cash Rent Lease
Arrangements to-date, the interest in these types of
leases is increasing rapidly. That’s because the         Reminders of management factors to review
additional payment above an established base rent        Source: Iowa Beef Center
is getting triggered from revenue (yield times price).
That additional flexible rent payment can be             It’s been a roller coaster ride for the overall
determined by the specific farm revenue or by the        economy, and the livestock industry throughout
county average revenue. If the revenue reflects the      2009. Despite the challenges, there are some
yield and/or price from that farm, then the Farm         opportunities to be had for those who can
Service Agency (FSA) office will likely determine        adapt to the changing environment.
that this is a share lease and the tenant should         Looking ahead to the New Year, specialists at the
share a portion of the government farm program           Iowa Beef Center have developed a list
payments with the landlord. To avoid additional          of resolutions for farmers and ranchers to consider.
FSA and specific farm record keeping, many               While you may already be doing some
tenants and landlords may choose the posted
of these management things, they offer good                using. However, the feed ration you develop must
reminders of areas that should continually be              still meet your animals’ nutritional needs, or the
re-evaluated.                                              decrease in quality of your final product won’t be
1. Identify improvements that will have the most           worth the savings.
impact on your organization. It’s important to             9. Better manage your manure to get the most
keep your resolutions focused and identify where           value from it. Manure is a highly valuable resource
your farm or ranch business needs the most                 if it’s captured properly and used where it’s needed
improvement and which steps will have the greatest         the most.
impact on profits.                                         10. Improve your livestock’s comfort for more
2. Build more flexibility into your operation.             productive animals. Livestock that are handled
What are you doing differently to survive in this time     properly in a low-stress environment will yield a
of tight margins and high inputs? With the cost of         better end product.
feed and fuel ever in flux, and a host of other
uncertainties plaguing livestock producers, it’s           ---
important that you have the ability to change how          INVESTING FOR FARM FAMILIES COURSE HELPS
you operate, so rapid changes in the industry don’t        FARMERS PLAN FOR A SECURE FUTURE
leave you behind.                                          SPONSORED BY EXTENSION
3. Better understand how to market your
livestock timely and wisely. A rapid climb in              A secure future, a farm for future generations. It’s
livestock production costs, including a dramatic           everything a farm family wants.
increase in feed prices, has changed the name of
the game for those marketing livestock. It might no        “You can learn to secure your farm’s future and
longer be profitable to market your livestock in the       protect your family’s legacy by enrolling now in an
same manner as years before.                               online course just for farm families,” said Barbara
4. Improve your recordkeeping skills and                   O’Neill, Extension specialist in Financial Resource
organize documentation. With the implementation            Management at Rutgers Cooperative Extension.
of country-of-origin labeling and consumers                “Investing for Farm Families provides the
showing more interest in source and age                    information you need to make strategic decisions
verification, documentation has become                     while weaving together farm and personal
increasingly important for all livestock producers.        investments.”
5. Become a better steward of the land. Make
sure you understand your impact on the land on             The 8-lesson course helps farm families plan for a
and near your operation, and educate yourself on           financially stable future that meets their long-term
possible measurements you can enact, from                  needs. Developed by a team of Extension
utilizing rotational grazing to proper nutrient-           educators from several states, farm families can
management tools.                                          work at their own pace while taking the course.
6. Better understand your livestock’s health
needs and likely ailments. Although it’s not               “You can learn to increase your future financial
possible to keep your herd completely free of health       security, identify investment strategies, know asset
problems, working with your veterinarian on a              allocation basics, evaluate investment production
health plan that suits your particular needs will          alternatives to agriculture business risks, and invest
ensure your animals have the best possible                 for retirement and farm succession planning,” said
protection from potential problems. Your                   O’Neill.
veterinarian will also point out areas of your facility
that may promote illness.                                  O'Neill noted that farm families have unique
7. Further reduce your feed costs by managing              investing needs, which the course addresses.
feed losses. With escalating feed costs impacting          Surveys and focus groups with farmers provided
your operation’s profitability, it’s important to reduce   the course developers with insights about farmers'
the amount of feed lost through storing and feeding.       investment concerns and learning preferences.
Introducing new storage methods and feeding
equipment can reduce the amount of feed lost,              Tim Eggers, Extension field agricultural economist
giving you a break on your rising feed costs.              with Iowa State University said he and others
8. Develop cheaper feed rations that will still            affiliated with Annie's Project have encouraged
serve nutrition needs. Look into feed alternatives         farmers to enroll in the course. Annie's Project is an
that might be cheaper than what you’re currently           educational program offered in 20 states
and dedicated to strengthening women's roles in
the modern farm enterprise.                             Farm Energy
"The primary benefit of the course is the thoughtful    Harvesting the Wind
analysis of how on- and off-farm investments can        A Wind Energy Workshop for Farm Owners in
be balanced based on the participant's unique           Southwest Wisconsin
situation,” Eggers said. “Farm and ranch families       February 23, 9-3:30
tend to be more comfortable with the investments        Dodger Bowl – Dodgeville, WI
they can see and use. Investing for Farm Families
can help farmers to diversify their investments."       Introduction to Wind Energy
                                                               Pat Walsh, PhD - Biological Systems
O’Neill and Eggers along with several Extension                           Engineering, UW- Madison
staff from around the nation developed the course                  o Wisconsin’s Energy Portfolio
through the Online Investment Education (OIE)                      o Wind Energy & Economic
project, which was created to reach farm families                     Development
nationwide with investment information relevant to
their needs. It was funded with a two-year grant to     Wind Potential for SW Wisconsin
the eXtension Foundation from the Financial                   Amy Taivalkoski, Focus on Energy
Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) Investor                   o Site Assessments
Education Foundation.                                            o Turbine Options
                                                                 o Energy Output Potential
For more information or to enroll in the course, go              o Costs and Incentives
to                                                               o Maintenance Issues
www.extension.org/pages/InvestingforFarmFamilie                  o Turbine Myths
s.
                                                        Sitting and Permitting Issues
The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority                     Gene Schriefer, Interim Ag Educator, Iowa
(FINRA) Investor Education Foundation supports                                  County
innovative research and educational projects that       Lunch
give investors the tools and information they need
to better understand the markets and the basic          Working with Your Utility and Hooking up to the
principles of saving and investing. For details about   Grid
grant programs and other new initiatives of the               Jeff Adams – Alliant Energy
Foundation, visit www.finrafoundation.org.
                                                        Harvesting the Wind – Our Experiences So Far,
                                                              Rick Adamski, Dairy Producer – Seymour,
                                                                                            Wisconsin

                                                        Grants and Loans for Wind Systems
                                                              Carol Wetuski, USDA – Rural Development
                                                              Amy Taivalkoski, Focus on Energy
                                                              Rick Adamski, Small Wind System Federal
                                                                             Tax Credits

                                                        Registration - $20 Return form in back of newsletter
Survey: Broad support for biofuels in                    biofuels production will create more jobs and help
Wisconsin, but clear partisan differences                strengthen the U.S. economy.
by Bob Mitchell, UW- Madison                             "These areas of agreement bode well for a political
                                                         solution on renewable energies down the road,
Although almost two-thirds of Wisconsinites support      especially since we're seeing bipartisan agreement
the use and production of biofuels, less than half       among citizens on both the environmental and
think the government should subsidize their              economic advantages," says Shaw.
development, according to a new study by
University of Wisconsin-Madison researchers.             Republicans and Democrats diverge when it comes
                                                         to connecting biofuels to other political issues. More
The researchers also found that while about 60           than two-thirds of Democrats think biofuels can
percent of respondents believe the free market           help the U.S. maintain global leadership in science
should provide the incentive to invest in technology     and technology, compared to about half of
to make fuels from plants or other organic               Republicans. About half of Republicans worry
materials, almost as many doubt the oil industry will    about a potential increase in food prices due to
go that route unless the government requires it,         biofuels. Less than 40 percent of Democrats have
according to researchers Dietram Scheufele and           the same concern.
Bret Shaw, both professors of life sciences
communication at UW-Madison.                             The survey also tested knowledge about biofuels.
                                                         Given nine true-or-false questions, on average,
Disagreements over whether biofuel development           respondents were able to answer five correctly.
should be spurred by policies or the market reflect      More than three-fourths knew that biofuels can be
clear ideological rifts among Wisconsinites, the         produced from materials other than food crops and
researchers say. About 60 percent of Democrats           that more than 80 percent of the gasoline sold in
support the use of government subsidies for              Wisconsin already contains ethanol. Only a third
biofuels research, but less than 40 percent of           correctly answered questions about whether
Republicans agree. Similarly, about three-fourths of     Wisconsin biofuels producers used about half of the
Republicans think "the free market should regulate       state's corn yield last year (they did), or if fossil
biofuels," a view that is shared by just 44 percent of   fuels account for more than 95 percent of the
Democrats.                                               energy consumed in the U.S. each year (they
                                                         don't).
But a majority of both Democrats and Republicans
(60 percent and 51 percent, respectively) believe        "There is certainly a lot of room for public education
that without governmental pressure, the oil industry     about these renewable energies," says Scheufele,
will never invest in biofuel development.                "especially as we're exploring new ways of
                                                         producing them more cost-effectively and cleanly."
"These ideological rifts are consistent with what we
have seen for other emerging technologies, where
pundits and commentators on both sides of the
aisle have tried to reframe the issue for their
electoral base," says Scheufele. "What is
interesting is the agreement among Republicans
and Democrats on what it will take to get industry
buy-in."

The researchers did find quite a few points of
agreement. Republicans and Democrats share the
view that biofuels will protect the environment and
help the U.S. economy. In particular, both groups
agree that biofuels are less damaging to the
environment than petroleum-based fuels and that
biofuels burn cleaner than regular gasoline. Most
Republicans and Democrats are also confident that
Wisconsin Area Soybean                              1:15 PM - Quantifying the Value of what’s “In”
                                                    and “On” the Seed
Conferences 2010                                    Dr. Shawn Conley - UWEX Soybean
Featuring
                                                    Specialist
  2010 Market Outlook
  2009 the Year of White Mold
                                                    2:00 PM - 2010 Commodity Outlook
  SCN Management
                                                    Dr. T. Randall Fortenbery - RENK Chair in
  Looking Ahead on Seed Treatments
                                                    Agribusiness, Agricultural and Applied
  Economics of Foliar Fungicides
                                                    Economics, Director, Renk Agribusiness
  Soybean host plant resistance for soybean aphid
                                                    Institute
  Managing Soybean Aphid and Spider Mite in
   Late Season (R4-R5) Soybean
                                                    2:45 PM - Conference Adjourns
  Trochanter Mealy bug on Soybean in the
                                                    Attention Certified Crop Advisors (CCA):
   Midwest
                                                    CCA credits in crop management (1.0 hour
  Soybean Aphid 2010 Forecast
                                                    and pest management (1.5 hour) have been
  Seed Treatments vs. Inoculants: What Pays
                                                                        requested.
   the bills?
  High Yield Soybeans Systems
  RR® vs. RR2Y®
  New Products
  Membership

Tuesday, February 16 – Dodgeville
Dodger Bowl
318 King Street                                     REGISTRATION FORM
                                                    Conference fee is $20.00 per person or $10.00 for
                                                    Wisconsin Soybean Association Members. This
                                                    includes coffee and rolls, lunch, and a copy of all
Area Soybean Conference Program                     information. Pre-registration is advised to assure
                                                    seating at the noon luncheon. Attendance is limited
10:00 AM - Registration                             to the first 100 registrants at each location.
Coffee, milk, rolls in exhibit area                 Name(s) ______________________________
                                                    Address______________________________
10:25 AM - Welcome                                  City, State, Zip________________________
Opening remarks by host Agent                       Phone _____________________________
                                                    Member of Wisconsin Soybean Association
10:30 AM - Managing Soybean Diseases from           ☐ yes ☐ no
Planting to Harvest                                 Amount enclosed
Dr. Paul Esker - UWEX Plant Pathologist             __number of WSA members x $10.00 = ____
                                                    __number of non-members x $20.00 = ____
11:15 AM - Soybean Insect Management                __number of WSA memberships
Updates for 2010                                    ___1-year membership x $100.00 =____
Dr. Eileen Cullen - UWEX Entomologist               ___3-year membership x $250.00 =____
                                                    Total enclosed = $_____
11:45 AM - What’s New in Seed, Crop Protection      Make check payable to: Wisconsin Soybean
and Inoculants: Various industry reps               Association.
                                                    Indicate the conference location you will attend and
12:00 PM - Wisconsin Soybean Association            return the form by February 8 to the Extension
News                                                office hosting that conference.
Bob Karls - WSA/WSMB Executive Director
                                                    Tuesday, Feb.16-Dodgeville
12:10 PM - Lunch - Exhibits open and speakers       Iowa Co. UW-Extension
available for questions                             222 N. Iowa Street
                                                    Dodgeville, WI 53533
               Wind Energy Workshop                      Beef Quality Assurance Certification
Registration Deadline: February 17, 2010             Registration Deadline: February 5, 2010

Cost: $20.00     Checks Payable to : UW-Extension    Cost: $15.00

Name: ______________________________________         Checks Payable to: Wisconsin Beef Council

Address: ____________________________________        Name: ______________________________________

City: _______________________________________        Address: ____________________________________

State: ________________        Zip: ______________   City: _______________________________________

Phone: ______________________________________        State: ________________         Zip: ______________

Email: _______________________________________       Phone: ______________________________________

         Mail Check and Registration Form to:        Email: _______________________________________

               Iowa County UW-Extension                       Mail Check and Registration Form to:
                Attn: Wind Energy Forum
                  222 North Iowa Street                             Iowa County UW-Extension
                 Dodgeville, WI 535333                              Attn: Beef Quality Assurance
                                                                        222 North Iowa Street
                                                                        Dodgeville, WI 53533
IOWA COUNTY UNIVERSITY EXTENSION                                                                    NON-PROFIT
222 N Iowa Street, Ste 1                                                                           U.S. POSTAGE
Dodgeville WI 53533                                                                                     PAID
                                                                                                 Dodgeville WI 53533
                                                                                                    Permit No. 65




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or limitations should be made prior to the date of the
program or activity for which it is needed. Please do                            ADDRESS SERVICE REQUESTED
so as early as possible prior to the program or activity
so that proper arrangements can be made. Requests are
kept confidential.




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