AP NEWS

Dairy discussions to be held in Dodge County

January 7, 2019
Dairy cows greeted 300 fourth-grade students from the area during the 2018 Farm City Day held in May at Condon Dairy Farm in rural Horicon.

Dairy production practices will be the subject matter of the upcoming Dodge County Extension program “Dairy Talk Tuesdays.”

Three free talks will take place across the county over the next few months, the first being held Tuesday from 1-3 p.m. at Cooper Shop Saloon in Kekoskee.

UW-Extension Dairy and Livestock Educator Amanda Young, along with local and state industry specialists, will lead the conversations.

“This Tuesday, people will hear Dr. Josh Steinbart talk about ways to keep calves healthy, especially at this time of year,” Young said. “Winter weather doesn’t always play nice with animals.”

Steinbart, a veterinarian at Mayville Animal Clinic, will touch on problems that can affect a herd, such as high mortality of replacement animals, impaired growth of calves, decreased milk production of chronically afflicted calves and the increased risks of infectious disease transmission.

Young said the presentations are informal and there will be plenty of time to ask questions. Following Steinbart’s talk, Young will speak about ways to recognize, understand and manage farm stress.

“Much of the stress on farmers is beyond their control, like the weather, trade wars and a poor economy,” Young said.

She said being aware of stress triggers and managing potential safety hazards can help make a workplace safer.

The second dairy talk will be Feb. 12 from 1-3 p.m. at Lowell Community Memorial VFW in Lowell. The Dodge County chapter of the Wisconsin Farm Bureau will supply milk and cookies as a snack.

That afternoon’s presentation will be led by Mark Stephenson, the director of the Center for Dairy Profitability. He will provide a comprehensive overview of the Dairy Revenue Protection program and updates to the Farm Service Agency’s Dairy Margin Protection Program.

The Koneck Family Farm in Burnett is the location for the final dairy talk on March 12. It will be held inside from 1-3 p.m. and attendees are requested to bring their own chair.

The ins and outs of dairy cow behavioral well-being will be a topic of discussion led by Jennifer Van Os, an assistant professor in animal welfare. She will speak about the implications of exposure to environmental extremes, benefits of barns versus pasture, and how to manage both indoor and outdoor heat stress.

Young will then finish the series of talks by examining the proper ways to transport animals.

“This is the second year we are hosting the dairy talks because feedback was very positive,” Young said. “They provide an excellent opportunity to learn from one another and we’re hoping for a good turnout.”

The dairy talks are free, but registration is encouraged. To register, call 920-386-3790.