HEAT STRESS IN SHEEP AND GOATS

SUSAN SCHOENIAN

Extreme heat is stressful to livestock, as well as people. High temperatures are even more problematic in states like Maryland, because high temperatures are also often accompanied by high humidity. The heat index (temperature + humidity) is a more accurate measure of heat stress (hyperthermia) than temperature alone.

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TICKS AND CONTROL METHODS

F. JONGEJAN and G. UILENBERG

Ticks are the most important ectoparasites of livestock in tropical and sub-tropical areas, and are responsible for severe economic losses both through the direct effects of blood sucking and indirectly as vectors of pathogens and toxins. Feeding by large numbers of ticks causes reduction in live weight gain and anemia among domestic animals, while tick bites also reduce the quality of hides. However, the major losses caused by ticks are due to the ability to transmit protozoan, rickettsial and viral diseases of livestock, which are of great economic importance world-wide.

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MANAGING PASTURES FOR SHEEP

SUSAN SCHOENIAN

The pasture resource is often the most neglected part of the sheep enterprise, yet it usually provides the majority of nutrients to the stock. Well-managed pastures that are properly grazed have the potential to minimize feed costs and increase profits. Pasture is the most natural diet for sheep and other ruminant animals. Though pasture is not without its own risks, fewer digestive problems are usually encountered among grazing sheep and lambs.

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URINARY CALCULI IN SHEEP AND GOATS

SUSAN SCHOENIAN

Urinary calculi or “water belly” is a common metabolic disease of male sheep and goats. The disease occurs when calculi (stones), usually comprised of phosphate salts, lodge in the urinary tract and prevent urination. Normally, phosphorus is recycled through saliva and excreted via feces in ruminants. High grain, low roughage diets decrease the formation of saliva and therefore increase the amount of phosphorus excreted in the urine.

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GOOD FARM RECORDS CAN SAVE TIME, INCREASE PROFITABILITY

PEGGY COFFEEN

When there are calves to feed, kids to pick up and dinner to get on the table, it can be difficult to carve out more time in a day to keep good financial records and even more time analyzing them. But, as Kevin Bernhardt, UW-Extension farm management specialist, explained at last week’s Wisconsin Ag Women’s Summit, good records can help farmers to be more efficient. When you know which aspects of your operation are making money and which ones are not, you can direct your efforts where they are needed most, and possibly find yourself with more time and more money at the end of the day.

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