Amino acids are essential building blocks of proteins and are obtained from plant and animal products. Some amino acids can be synthesized by the chicken, while others (essential amino acids) must be supplied in the diet. In organic poultry production, the sources of these essential amino acids must be organic. This publication compares the amino acid content, digestibility, and availability of organic soybean meal with conventional soybean meal.
There are a number of different poultry production systems available today, and consumers commonly confuse organic poultry production with other systems. Pasture-raised poultry and natural poultry are not organically produced, as they do not meet all or any of the standards set by the National Organic Program, which regulates and certifies production systems as "organic." Consumers should be aware of the differences between each of the poultry production systems as they purchase poultry products.
Heat stress can reduce summer milk production in dairy cows by 15 to 22 percent, according to University of Florida research. The cow's natural defenses cause her appetite to be suppressed in times of high heat stress. Less feed intake naturally leads to less milk production. Reproductive efficiency also suffers in times of heat stress, costing dollars for delayed lactation and rebreeding fees. A number of strategies have been used successfully to reduce the heat experienced by cows, and thus increase feed intake and milk production during the summer.
Fences are necessary to safely confine horses yet provide them with the opportunity to exercise and graze. Because of the natural flight response of horses, they tend to injure themselves in fences more than most other livestock. In addition, many horses are extremely valuable and that justifies the extra cost of building a fence that is safe, strong and attractive. When selecting a fence, consider all three of these important functions: utility (keeping the horses in), safety and aesthetics. How much importance is placed on each function depends on the owner's budget, the value of the animals and your priorities. A number of alternatives are available for consideration.
This circular is for property owners who have unwanted honey bee swarms on their lands or colonies nesting inside walls. It explains these natural processes and gives options for dealing with them.
This publication provides information on (1) the nutrient content of manures available for land application, (2) how to determine manure application rates and whether supplemental fertilizer will be needed for maximum crop production and (3) how to use management techniques to maximize the fertilization potential of farm manures.
Plants develop seeds through a process called pollination. Pollination is the transfer of pollen from the stamen (male flower part) to the pistil (female flower part).
Fish ponds may experience a loss of oxygen at any time of the year, depending on the weather and amount of nutrient enrichment the pond has received; however, most oxygen depletions occur in warm weather and usually follow a period of cloudy, overcast conditions. Low oxygen concentration in pond water means stress and possibly death for the pond fish. When fish die from low oxygen, there can be serious financial consequences for commercial fish operations; for example, largemouth bass, bream and grass carp can be worth more than $3,000.00 per acre. Therefore, pond owners should consider a plan to provide aeration for their ponds before oxygen depletions occur.
Water is a critical nutrient that receives little attention until a problem arises. Not only should producers make an effort to provide water in adequate quantity, they should also know what is in the water to be used in evaporative cooling systems and consumed by the birds.
Producers need to be aware of the impacts that manure can have on water and air quality. However, management of manure and other byproducts of livestock and poultry production has important impacts on farm profitability, neighbor relations and protecting soil and water quality. This publication covers: Farm and Homestead Maps; Manure Storage and Treatment; Nutrient Budgeting with Nitrogen and Phosphorus; Land Application of Manure and Fertilizers; Grazing Land; Pesticide and Chemical Management for Water Quality; Mortality Management; Record Keeping; Coexisting with Neighbors; Emergency Action Plans; and other resources.