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Forages

ForagesIn western New York high yields of high quality forage are vital to the dairy and livestock industries. Feed-costs are often half of a farm's business expenses each year. This page contains resources and information to help farmers better manage silage, hay, and pastures. 

Corn silage and "haylage" (alfalfa or alfalfa/grass silage) are the main forages grown on dairy farms. These silages are stored in upright silos, bunker silos, piles, silage bags, and as "balelage" (plastic-wrapped round bales) where they are persevered and then fed to the cows. In recent years winter triticale silage has also become an important feed on dairy farms due to increasing land prices, short feed supplies, and winter triticale's high yields and desirable feed quality. Oats are also grown for silage as a nurse crop during the establishment of a haylage field or, in more recent years, as a fall silage planted in August after another small grain or vegetable crop. Hay is widely grown in the region for horses, beef, alpacas, sheep, goats, and dairy animals. Most of the hay is sold to local farmers and animal owners. 

However a number of farmers contract out of the state for specialty hay markets (racing horse, mushroom production, biomass, etc.). Much of the hay grown is a mixture of alfalfa with timothy or orchardgrass, but other grass species like tall fescue, reed canarygrass, bromegrasses, and ryegrasses are also planted on many farms. Pastures are very common in western New York and form the foundation of many productive dairy and livestock farms. Ladino clover, red clover, white clover, and/or birdsfoot trefoil are mixed orchardgrass, tall fescue, meadow fescue, reed canarygrass, timothy, bromegrass, and/or ryegrass on most farms. Many graziers have adopted rotational grazing practices that have increased pasture productivity by grazing small paddocks for a short period of time and then allowing that area to recover for 25-40 days before grazing again.


FORAGES CATEGORIES




Complete Forages Content

Winter Feeding Beef Cows

Nancy Glazier, Small Farms
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: February 14, 2019
Winter Feeding Beef Cows

Winter is a challenging time to feed the beef herd. Mud, cold and snow or rain can stress your cows and increase their nutritional needs. How do you know if you are meeting the needs of your herd?


Financial Balancing Act Means Managing Risk is Essential

Joan Sinclair Petzen, Farm Business Management
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: September 19, 2018

The present long-term downturn in commodity prices brings with it increased financial pressure on farm operations.  Alternatives for managing risk are continually evolving.  For many in agriculture, and particularly dairy, self-insurance has been the go-to method of risk management.  Two new tools, the USDA Market Facilitation Program (MFP) and Dairy Revenue Protection Insurance (DRP) are coming on line and a third, Rainfall Index - Pasture, Rangeland, and Forage (RI-PRF) merits serious consideration.


Pricing Corn Silage -- Fall 2018

John Hanchar, Farm Business Management
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: September 10, 2018
Pricing Corn Silage -- Fall 2018

Summary 

  • Analysis suggests corn silage price depends on corn silage quantities, alfalfa hay price, the price received by farmers for milk, and corn grain price.
  • Analysis for NY suggests that estimated corn silage price is most sensitive to corn silage quantities, alfalfa hay price and corn grain price.
  • Price estimates combined with understanding of relevant supply and demand factors from an individual farm business owner's perspective can aid decision making regarding corn silage price.  Given recently available alfalfa hay and corn grain prices (May through July, 2018, and August 14, 2018, respectively), price analysis for NY suggests an estimated corn silage price of about $41 per ton.  The Fall 2017 estimate was about $54 per ton.


Crop Alert

Mike Stanyard, Team Leader, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: July 27, 2018
Crop Alert

Timely observations, information, and control strategies for managing pests, fertility, and current conditions on northwestern NY farms.


Stockpiling Pastures

Nancy Glazier, Small Farms
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: July 10, 2018
Stockpiling Pastures

Begin to stockpile your pastures in August to extend the grazing season. 


1st Cutting Forage Quality Update - May 18, 2018

Jodi Putman, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: May 18, 2018

This is the first week of monitoring 1st cutting for quality this year. Our procedure consists of using alfalfa height to predict Neutral Detergent Fiber (NDF) for alfalfa, alfalfa/grass mixed and grass stands. Alfalfa height has proven to be a reliable indicator of NDF values in the field.

The Meaning and Use of Feed Analysis

Last Modified: February 27, 2018
The Meaning and Use of Feed Analysis

Beef Specialist Mike Baker explains the nutrient requirements for beef cattle and interpreting the forage analysis. 

Know a Better Pasture

Nancy Glazier, Small Farms
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: February 20, 2018
Know a Better Pasture

Pasture is a great way to feed your livestock during the growing season. 

Meet the Specialist, Nancy Glazier

Last Modified: February 20, 2018
Meet the Specialist, Nancy Glazier

Meet Small Farms Specialist Nancy Glazier as she works with Peter Lehning and John Lehning, new beef producers. 

1st Cutting Forage Quality Update

Jodi Putman, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: May 17, 2017

We are into the third week of monitoring 1st cutting for quality this year. Our procedure consists of using alfalfa height to predict Neutral Detergent Fiber (NDF) for alfalfa, alfalfa/grass mixed and grass stands. Alfalfa height has proven to be a reliable indicator of NDF values in the field.

Managing Spring Grass Growth and Selective Grazing

Last Modified: May 4, 2017
Managing Spring Grass Growth and Selective Grazing

For most beef cattle farmers who are managing their pastures in a rotational grazing system two of the biggest spring challenges are the flush of rapid growth that will occur and selective grazing. OSU Wayne Co. extension educator Rory Lewandowski reviews some basic plant growth biology and grazing principles that may suggest some management strategies. Click here for the full article. 

Forage Congress - Presentations

Nancy Glazier, Small Farms
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: March 14, 2017
Forage Congress - Presentations

New to the NWNY Team's lineup this winter was Forage Congress at the Genesee River Restaurant and Reception Center in Mount Morris, NY.

This event covered timely topics recommended by the region's producers. The morning's session began with an overview of the cropping plan from the ground up, economics of high fiber digestibility, and new alfalfa varieties with quality grasses. The afternoon covered double cropping with winter triticale and options for properly storing silages. 

Benefits and Costs of Entry Level Precision Agriculture Technologies

John Hanchar, Farm Business Management
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: February 16, 2017
Benefits and Costs of Entry Level Precision Agriculture Technologies

Auto Section Control (ASC) is a precision agriculture technology designed to reduce double planting and other crop input usage in headlands. See the presentation by Erick Haas and John Hanchar at the 2017 Operations Managers Conference for benefits and costs, including results from partial budgeting and capital investment analysis.

New York State Corn Silage Hybrid Trials - 2016

Last Modified: January 4, 2017
New York State Corn Silage Hybrid Trials - 2016

Joe Lawrence with PRO-DAIRY has revitalized the corn silage variety trials. Here is the report

Food for Thought: To Cover or Not To Cover Trucks

Joan Sinclair Petzen, Farm Business Management
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: September 12, 2016
Food for Thought: To Cover or Not To Cover Trucks

The name of the forage harvest game for 2016 in drought stricken area is conservation of every ton of forage you can harvest. During harvest, time is critical and no one wants to afford the time to tarp and un-tarp loads before they dump at the feed storage area. Hydraulic and electric roller tarp systems are used in the construction industry on a frequent basis.

Pricing Corn Silage - Fall 2016

John Hanchar, Farm Business Management
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: September 9, 2016
Pricing Corn Silage - Fall 2016

Summary
    • Analysis suggests corn silage price depends on corn silage quantities, alfalfa hay price, the price received by farmers for milk, and corn grain price.
    • Analysis for NY suggests that estimated corn silage price is most sensitive to corn silage quantities, alfalfa hay price and corn grain price.
    • Price estimates combined with understanding of relevant supply and demand factors from an individual farm business owner's perspective can aid decision making regarding corn silage price. Given most recently available alfalfa hay and corn grain prices (June 2016, and October, November 2016, respectively), price analysis for NY suggests an estimated corn silage price of about $60 per ton. The Fall 2015 estimate was about $50 per ton. 

Winter Triticale for Extra Spring Forage

Mike Stanyard, Team Leader, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: September 9, 2016
Winter Triticale for Extra Spring Forage

This hot dry summer has been a rough one for adequate forage production in NWNY. Many farms will be short on feed as hay tonnage is way down and corn fields in many areas are half as tall as normal. I am getting lots of questions about planting additional forages like forages oats, winter grains, and even chopping soybean fields that just might not make it to harvest.  

Fall Forages

Nancy Glazier, Small Farms
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: September 8, 2016
Fall Forages

Fall is coming, whether or not you have all your hay crops needed for the winter.

Optimizing Your Harvest by Reducing Feed Shrink

Libby Eiholzer, Bilingual Dairy
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: September 8, 2016
Optimizing Your Harvest by Reducing Feed Shrink

Many dairy producers across our ten-county region may be short on forages this fall as a result of the drought. In a regular year, silage loss can run 5-10% during harvest, and another 10-50% at the bunk. Consider the following ways to tighten up your management of harvest, storage, and feed-out in order to minimize feed shrink this year.

Multispecies pastures show productivity, drought tolerant promise

Last Modified: July 28, 2016
Multispecies pastures show productivity, drought tolerant promise

R. Howard Skinner a physiological plant ecologist and member of the USDA-ARS-Pasture Systems and Watershed Management Research Unit. He's been looking into how to increase the amount of forage (grasses and plants that animals eat) pastures can grow.
Click here for the rest of the story.

Fall Feeding Decision Tools

Nancy Glazier, Small Farms
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: July 22, 2016
Fall Feeding Decision Tools

Many farms in the Lake Plains and Finger Lakes Regions in New York have diminished forage supply for the feeding season we are about to enter. Drought conditions have challenged our production systems in 2016. Here are some tools to help with decision making.

Summer Annual Forage Options

Last Modified: July 13, 2016

This factsheet was developed for Northern New York, but still is relevant in our area. 

Custom Machinery Rates

Nancy Glazier, Small Farms
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: June 1, 2016

Trying to figure out how much to pay or charge for custom machinery operations? Check out the 2016 custom rate summaries from Pennsylvania.

Grazing Management: Toxic Plants

Last Modified: May 12, 2016
Grazing Management: Toxic Plants

Annual forage crops grown in place of fallow can provide high-quality forage during key production periods and may help reduce soil erosion, suppress weeds, and increase soil nutrient profiles. Kansas State has put together this list. 

Get Off to a Good Grazing Season Start!

Nancy Glazier, Small Farms
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: April 12, 2016
Get Off to a Good Grazing Season Start!

The grazing season will soon be here. Start planning now for the grazing season, if you haven't already.

The Dairy Culture Coach March 2016

Libby Eiholzer, Bilingual Dairy
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: March 28, 2016

The latest issue of The Dairy Culture Coach is now available. Included in this month's issue, you will find the following articles: 
  • Employees Want to Learn!
  • Hoof Health Solutions Course
  • Calculating Dry Matter
  • Calcular la Materia Seca
  • Why So Many Last Names?

Entry Point Precision Ag Technology: Benefits & Costs for Decision Making

John Hanchar, Farm Business Management
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: March 15, 2016
Entry Point Precision Ag Technology: Benefits & Costs for Decision Making

Two benefits attributed to auto steer mentioned frequently by producers and their advisors are reduced stress and reduced fatigue. Combine these benefits with expected favorable economic and financial impacts, and auto steer has the potential to be a beneficial change in practice for farmers, one that farmers will likely want to evaluate for their business.

March is Frost Seeding Time!

Nancy Glazier, Small Farms
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: February 16, 2016
March is Frost Seeding Time!

March is usually a great time to add some legumes into your pastures or hayfields. It is a way to improve pastures without losing a production year. 

Can value be added to Holstein bull calves?

Last Modified: December 9, 2015
Can value be added to Holstein bull calves?

With favorable market conditions, it can be profitable raising dairy beef. 

Cornell Bull Test Sign-up is Underway

Nancy Glazier, Small Farms
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: October 5, 2015
Cornell Bull Test Sign-up is Underway

Cornell All Forage Fed Bull Test is looking for a few good bulls. This will be the fourth year of the stored feed test; a new addition is an optional 84-day pasture component. 

Manure Injection vs. Surface Application

John Hanchar, Farm Business Management
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: September 23, 2015
Manure Injection vs. Surface Application

Owners of dairy farm businesses face numerous challenges as they manage manure to meet financial, environmental, and other farm business objectives; trade-offs and conflicting objectives describe the situation. What is the expected change in profit associated with the change to manure injection from surface applicatin followed by incorporation?

The Dairy Culture Coach September 2015

Libby Eiholzer, Bilingual Dairy
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: September 21, 2015

As you'll notice, El Sostento has a new name! The Dairy Culture Coach will continue to bring you the same great information and advice to help you better understand and manage your Hispanic workforce. This month's issue includes:

So You Want to Learn Spanish...
Bunker Silo Safety Reminders
Consejos de Prudencia con los Silos Horizontales
The What, Why and How of Recycling
El Qué, Por Qué y Cómo de Reciclar
School Systems in Central America
Language Vocabulary

Crop Cam

Mike Stanyard, Team Leader, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: September 9, 2015
Crop Cam

Tune in as the NWNY Teams' Extension agronomists put on their GoPro cameras and head to the field.




Crop Cam 9-01-15  White Mold in Soybeans, Mike Stanyard in Ontario County.
Crop Cam 6-17-15  Scouting Soybean Aphids Mike Stanyard in Ontario County.
Crop Cam 6-05-15  Scouting Black Cutworm in Field Corn Mike Stanyard in Orleans County.
Crop Cam 5-29-15 Identifying Flowering Stage of Wheat Mike Stanyard in Monroe County.
Crop Cam 5-15-15 Alfalfa Weevil Larvae Scouting Mike Stanyard in Ontario County.
Crop Cam 5-14-15 Winter Triticale Forage Harvest Mike Stanyard in Wayne County.
Crop Cam 4-27-15:Comparing two winter malting barley fields. Bill Verbeten in Niagara County.
Crop Cam 4-6-15:  Estimating wheat tiller counts per square yard. Mike Stanyard in Ontario County.
Crop Cam 3-20-15:Evaluating winter malting barley. Bill Verbeten in Niagara County.

Corn Silage Quality - Facts, Fiction, Fantasies and Opinions

Jerry Bertoldo, Dairy
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: August 28, 2015

The Crop Dude's take on corn silage quality.

Triticale - A Winter Forage Opportunity

Jerry Bertoldo, Dairy
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: August 28, 2015

The real advantage of the winter forage is for farms that have had weather related de-creases in their total forage supply. Winter forage (triticale) will give you the earliest high quality, potentially high yielding crop, next spring; forage for the high cows. This crop is a real advantage in areas where much of the corn is growing in standing water.

Cover Crop Options in 2015

Mike Stanyard, Team Leader, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: August 7, 2015
Cover Crop Options in 2015

Winter grain harvest should be just about wrapped up. That leaves a lot of open ground out there to plant some cover crops. We also ended up with quite a few prevented planting corn and soybean acres this spring. Some of that ground will go into winter small grains like wheat, rye and barley this fall. If you do not grow winter grains in your rotation, it is a good opportunity to get that ground covered up. There is also an opportunity to grow some more forage acres. This wet growing season has not been stellar for corn production. Crops like sorghum, forage oats and triticale can help fill in some of those forage losses. The past couple of years have shown us that the first half of August has been the optimal planting window for success of most cover crops.

On a Farm Not So Near You: Tillamook, OR

Libby Eiholzer, Bilingual Dairy
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: March 19, 2015

Article from Ag Focus Newsletter: March, 2015

Varying Corn & Soybean Populations, Varieties, & Down Force

Bill Verbeten, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: March 18, 2015
Varying Corn & Soybean Populations, Varieties, & Down Force

Considering varying your corn or soybean populations? Curious about multiple hybrid planters and planting two corn or soybean varieties in the same field? Maybe you're trying to decide between a planter with hydraulic or air bag down force pressure? If so check out this AgFocus Newsletter article from April of 2015.

Apply Now for New Farmer Profit Teams

Nancy Glazier, Small Farms
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: March 16, 2015
Apply Now for New Farmer Profit Teams

Do you need some decision support to improve profitability of the farm business after 3-9 years of running it? Farmers at this stage are often faced with critical decisions that determine the long-term viability of their operation.

Pop-Up and Starter Fertilizers in Corn and Soybeans

Bill Verbeten, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: March 4, 2015
Pop-Up and Starter Fertilizers in Corn and Soybeans

Curious about applying pop-up or starter fertilizer to corn and soybeans? Check out this AgFocus article from May of 2013.

Proposed FAA Drone Rules Released

Bill Verbeten, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: February 24, 2015
Proposed FAA Drone Rules Released

On Sunday February 15th, 2015 the FAA released it's proposed rules for commercial unmanned aerial systems (UAS), commonly called drones, for public comment for 60 days. A summary can be found in the PDF below.

FAQs about Farm Drones

Bill Verbeten, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: December 22, 2014
FAQs about Farm Drones

Have a question about using an unmanned aerial system (UAS) on your farm? Not sure what is and isn't legal for drone use on your land? Check out this PDF for more information.

Gov. Cuomo Announces New Farmer Grant

Last Modified: November 5, 2014

The New York State New Farmers Grant Fund was created to provide assistance to new and early stage farmers and encourage farming as a career path to sustain and grow agribusiness across New York State.

Cover Crops for Livestock Grazing

Last Modified: October 6, 2014
Cover Crops for Livestock Grazing

Penn State Extension Educator, Dave Hartman, writes soil conservation, nutrient sequestration, weed suppression, improved soil health, increased success with no-till, among others, are reasons why cover crop usage is increasing. 

Delayed Planting Dates and Corn Maturity 2014

Bill Verbeten, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: August 21, 2014
Delayed Planting Dates and Corn Maturity 2014

Worried about the corn crop reaching maturity? Check out Bill Cox's article (see PDF) discussing why we can still be optimistic about a lot of the corn grain and silage acres. 

Planting Winter Triticale, Malting Barley, Wheat, & Rye

Bill Verbeten, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: August 21, 2014
Planting Winter Triticale, Malting Barley, Wheat, & Rye

As corn silage, soybeans, and corn grain come off during September and October many winter small grains will be planted in northwestern NY. This article reviews the similarities and differences for current planting recommendations of winter triticale, malting barley, wheat, and rye. 

GrassSnap, New App for Monitoring Grasslands

Last Modified: August 14, 2014
GrassSnap, New App for Monitoring Grasslands

GrassSnap makes checking grass as easy as checking salt or water!

USDA Helps New and Beginning Farmers

Last Modified: August 14, 2014

USDA continues its commitment to the future of agriculture by unveiling www.usda.gov/newfarmers, a one-stop shop for new and beginning farmers entering agriculture. It?s a practical, workable tool that will help farmers and ranchers of tomorrow tap into the range of USDA resources today. Featuring direct links to USDA programs and services, as well as case studies about how USDA support is being put to work to for America?s agriculture future, usda.gov/newfarmers is a welcome new resource.

New Technology for Corn Nitrogen Needs

Bill Verbeten, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: June 20, 2014
New Technology for Corn Nitrogen Needs

Farmers and agronomists are constantly looking for better tools to improve crop production, and corn nitrogen is no exception. In an effort to account for the spatial variability within every field and the temporal variability of nitrogen due to weather farmers are beginning to use two new tools, GreenSeeker and Adapt-N, on a small scale in northwestern NY. While these tools have great potential to improve corn nitrogen management it is important to understand what they require to work well and the situations where their use may not be warranted until more experience is gained with them. Download the PDF for the full article that appeared in the June 2014 Ag Focus Newsletter.

Soil Tests for Corn Nitrogen Needs

Bill Verbeten, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: June 20, 2014
Soil Tests for Corn Nitrogen Needs

With extreme weather in 2012 and 2013 many farmers and consultants are scratching their heads trying figure out what in the world to do for applying nitrogen for the 2014 corn crop. While soil testing in the fall is standard procedure for other nutrients, normal soil sampling and testing does not document the nitrogen available to corn. In dry years some nitrogen can carryover in the soil from fall to spring, but wet years have high levels of nitrogen loss. Nitrogen from manure and plowing down haylage are not available as quickly as nitrogen fertilizer. Normally a corn crop does not need any nitrogen beyond a small amount of starter in the first year plowing down a haylage field. Dairies can often meet their nitrogen needs with manure. However many corn fields after haylage or with lots of manure needed side-dress nitrogen in 2013 due to excessively high rainfall. Because of all these reasons the soil tests for nitrogen usually have different procedures than normal soil testing. Depending on the growing season some soil tests may be more useful than others, and other tools may be needed in addition to or in place of soil testing. Download this PDF for the full article that appeared in the May 2014 Ag Focus Newsletter.

USDA Grass Fed Program For Small and Very Small (SVS) Producers

Last Modified: May 22, 2014
USDA Grass Fed Program For Small and Very Small (SVS) Producers

The USDA is now offering lower-cost verification for 2-year certification.

Variable Rate Fertility Management

Bill Verbeten, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: April 24, 2014
Variable Rate Fertility Management

An expanded version of the February 2014 Ag Focus Article, Variable Rate Fertility Management.

Maximizing Forage Quality

Bill Verbeten, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: April 15, 2014
Maximizing Forage Quality

Trying to make high quality forage? This presentation discusses many factors that can be managed to increase the forage quality of hay, silage, and pasture.

Converting Hay Prices to Haylage Values

Bill Verbeten, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: March 28, 2014
Converting Hay Prices to Haylage Values

When farmers are trying to give a dollar value to haylage they often use local hay prices on a dry matter basis and adjust for the dry matter (or moisture content) of the haylage. Download this PDF for more information and and example of how to calculate haylage values off of dry hay prices.

Pasture Recordkeeping Tools

Nancy Glazier, Small Farms
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: March 18, 2014
Pasture Recordkeeping Tools

Graziers may find these tools useful for recordkeeping.

Evaluating Alfalfa for Winter Injury

Bill Verbeten, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: February 21, 2014
Evaluating Alfalfa for Winter Injury

Have your soils been bare most of the winter and temperatures well below zero? If so you should be evaluating your alfalfa fields for winter injury early in March. Download this PDF for more information.

Evaluating Small Grains for Winter Injury

Bill Verbeten, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: February 21, 2014
Evaluating Small Grains for Winter Injury

Concerned about your winter wheat, barley, rye, spelt, or triticale crops being damaged by harsh winter conditions? Check out this PDF for more information about evaluating winter small grains for winter injury.

Cover Crop InterSeeder

Bill Verbeten, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: February 17, 2014
Cover Crop InterSeeder

Want to plant a cover crop into standing corn or soybeans, apply a herbicide, and sidedress nitrogen all in one pass? Check out the cover crop InterSeeder developed at Penn State in this PDF. For additional information go to InterSeeder website.

Illinois Soil Nitrogen Test (ISNT)

Bill Verbeten, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: February 14, 2014
Illinois Soil Nitrogen Test (ISNT)

Curious about what the ISNT soil test is and how to use it? Download this Cornell Agronomy Fact Sheet describing the Illinois Soil Nitrogen Test. More Agronomy Fact Sheets are available at the Cornell Nutrient Management Spear Program website.

Soil Sampling for Field Crops

Bill Verbeten, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: February 13, 2014
Soil Sampling for Field Crops

Not sure how to sample your soil? Download this Cornell Agronomy Fact Sheet. More Agronomy Fact Sheets are available at the Cornell Nutrient Management Spear Program website.

Alfalfa Management Guide

Bill Verbeten, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: February 7, 2014
Alfalfa Management Guide

Have a question about growing alfalfa? You will probably find the answer in "The Alfalfa Management Guide". This is a must have reference for anyone working with "the queen of forages".

Mapping Management Zones with Soil Conductivity

Bill Verbeten, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: February 4, 2014
Mapping Management Zones with Soil Conductivity

Interested in creating soil management zones with soil conductivity on your farm? Download this PDF.

Getting the Most Out of Your Manure Presentation

Bill Verbeten, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: January 23, 2014
Getting the Most Out of Your Manure Presentation

There are many practical, cost-effective manure management practices can be adopted on farms of all sizes.

Apps for Ag

Nancy Glazier, Small Farms
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: December 20, 2013

List of some apps for smartphone users.

Veris Soil Electrical Conductivity, pH, & OM Videos

Bill Verbeten, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: December 17, 2013
Veris Soil Electrical Conductivity, pH, & OM Videos

Annual Farm Business Summary and Analysis Season Is Right Around The Corner

John Hanchar, Farm Business Management
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: December 2, 2013

  • Sound financial planning and control are keys to successfully managing agricultural risks.
  • The next few months present good opportunities to evaluate your business' financial management practices.
  • The NWNY Dairy, Livestock, and Field Crops Program has the capacity to work with a variety producers as they seek to improve their business' financial management practices.

2013 Corn Silage Variety Trial

Bill Verbeten, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: November 4, 2013
2013 Corn Silage Variety Trial

Check out the latest Cornell Corn Silage Variety Trial results.

2014 NRCS EQIP Sign-up

Bill Verbeten, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: November 4, 2013
2014 NRCS EQIP Sign-up

For more information about 2014 EQIP applications download these PDFs.

Pricing Corn Silage - Fall 2013

John Hanchar, Farm Business Management
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: September 23, 2013
Pricing Corn Silage - Fall 2013

Empirical price analysis suggests that corn silage price is a function of corn silage quantities, alfalfa hay price, the price received by farmers for milk sold, and corn grain price. Given most recently available alfalfa hay and corn grain prices (August, and September/October 2013, respectively) and other factors (corn silage quantity and milk price) fixed at average levels for the period 1991 through 2010 price analysis suggests an estimated corn silage price of about $42 per ton.

Shredlage Harvesting Recommendations

Bill Verbeten, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: September 10, 2013
Shredlage Harvesting Recommendations

For detailed recommendations on adjustments to Shredlage Harvesters download this PDF.

Using GDD to Predict Corn Silage Harvest

Bill Verbeten, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: August 29, 2013
Using GDD to Predict Corn Silage Harvest

The idea that corn silage is harvested at about 45 days after tassel is not very accurate most years in New York. See this PDF from Cornell Professor Bill Cox discussing how using growing degree days (GDD) and rainfall is a better approach to predicting corn silage harvest.

Corn Silage Pricing

Bill Verbeten, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: August 22, 2013

A number of tools are available to help farmers price their corn silage.
 
Check out the Cornell University factsheet
a calculator from the University of Wisconsin/ Extension Corn Silage Pricing Decision Aid (http://www.uwex.edu/ces/crops/uwforage/dec_soft.htm), 
a calculator from Penn State University
and a calculator from the Purdue University

Considerations for Working with Immature Corn Silage

Bill Verbeten, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: August 20, 2013

In some parts of New York, the 2013 corn crop may not reach normal maturity. There may be small ears, poor grain fill or even no ears on the corn plant at the time of harvest. We have seen this same situation in previous years. The following points may be helpful as you work with immature corn that will be harvested for corn silage. Download the PDF for the full Dairy Nutrition Fact Sheet authored by Larry Chase.

Corn Fungicide Efficacy in NY

Bill Verbeten, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: July 26, 2013

Need to know which fungicides work on corn? Check out this PDF from Gary Bergstrom, Cornell Professor of Plant Pathology.

Economics of Tile Plow Investment and Use

John Hanchar, Farm Business Management
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: July 8, 2013

Economic analyses suggest conditions under which tractor drawn tile plow investment and use make sense.

Pricing Corn Silage: Another Look

John Hanchar, Farm Business Management
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: July 8, 2013

Price estimates combined with understanding of relevant supply and demand factors from an individual farm business owner's perspective can aid decision making regarding corn silage price. Given current (January, February 2013) alfalfa hay and corn grain prices, price analysis suggests an estimated corn silage price of about $48 per ton.

FISA - A complete set of financial statements for agriculture

Joan Sinclair Petzen, Farm Business Management
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: July 1, 2013

This is an Excel 5.0 spreadsheet for calculating financial statements for agriculture. It includes a beginning of year (end of last year) balance sheet, end of year (end of this year) balance sheet, income statement, statement of owner equity, statement of cash flows and ratio analysis. The program is designed to allow single entry of data, it automatically does the transposition of data from one statement to the next and does nearly all the calculations. These statements are designed to be consistent with the recommendations of the Farm Financial Standards Council (FFSC). Thus, the statements include deferred taxes, base values for raised breeding livestock, the "sweet sixteen" financial ratios and the other characteristics embedded in the FFSC guidelines. The statements are intended for use with any type of farm business. Space is allowed for nonfarm assets and income because they are often important to lenders and others using the statements. However, the farm business part of the statement is separate from the non-farm section so that nonfarm assets can be ignored if desired. Each of the four basic financial statements is presented on one page with detailed information on supporting schedules. Thus, the summary financial performance and position of a business can be found on five sheets of paper (including two balance sheets).

Winter Grazing - A Better Way to Feed

Bill Verbeten, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: June 14, 2013

Want to reduce the hay and silage fed overwinter? Consider stockpiling your pastures in July/August.

Hay Storage Considerations, Don't Waste it!

Nancy Glazier, Small Farms
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: June 4, 2013
Hay Storage Considerations, Don't Waste it!

Now may be a good time to think about hay storage.

Cereal Leaf Beetle Winter Triticale

Bill Verbeten, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: May 8, 2013

Bill Verbeten recorded two adult cereal leaf beetles in a winter triticale field in Wyoming county.

NY Forage Legume And Grass Variety Yield Trials Summary 2012 - 2010

Mike Stanyard, Team Leader, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: May 6, 2013
NY Forage Legume And Grass Variety Yield Trials Summary 2012 - 2010

Forage variety total season yields from New York in the 2012 growing season are in this report.

NY Corn Silage Hybrid Tests 2012-2010

Mike Stanyard, Team Leader, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: May 3, 2013
NY Corn Silage Hybrid Tests 2012-2010

Below are the results of our NY Corn Silage Hybrid performance trials and the cumulative summaries over the last three years. 



Managing the Soil to Manage the Pasture

Bill Verbeten, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: April 29, 2013

Feel like all of the fertilizer recommendations overlook pastures? Are your grasses and legumes not yielding like they should? Maybe you’ve heard a fertility myth (or two) that needs busting. If so this PDF of a presentation is what exactly your pasture ordered. Start digging deeper into your pasture fertility program by clicking here.

Pasture Plant Selection

Bill Verbeten, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: April 29, 2013

With so many options to choose from it can be overwhelming trying to decided what to plant in your pastures. This PDF of a presentation gives a quick run-down on the many plants used in pastures in New York along with some strategies to plan an overall pasture system.

Hay Conditioners

Bill Verbeten, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: April 16, 2013
Hay Conditioners

The beautiful weather around the 4th of July gave farmers the opportunity to finish first cutting and for many dairies that chopped first a great window of time to bale second. This was the best stretch of hay making weather we have had in years. On the other hand, this past June was recorded as the 4th wettest on record in WNY with nearly 8 inches of rain fall, making dry hay nearly impossible. This rainy month gave hay farmers the fear of another wet summer, as we've experienced the last 2 years. The rainy summers of 2008 and 2009 are fresh in the minds of hay growers, leaving them asking themselves what is there that can make making dry hay easier.

Winter Rye Nitrogen Rate Trial, Yates County

Bill Verbeten, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: April 10, 2013

Some visual differences were noticeable on winter rye that had increasing rates of nitrogen fertilizer (Agrotain treated area) applied about 2 weeks earlier in western New York.

Winter Triticale Nitrogen Rate Study, Livingston County

Bill Verbeten, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: April 10, 2013

Nitrogen rate study on winter triticale about a week after nitrogen application (Agrotain treated urea). Few visual differences between fertilizer treatments were observable at this point in time at this location and many others in the study.

Winter Triticale Nitrogen Rate Study, Ontario County

Bill Verbeten, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: April 10, 2013

Observations from a nitrogen rate study (Agrotain treated area) with winter triticale in western New York a couple weeks after nitrogen application.

Winter Triticale Nitrogen Rate Study, Wyoming County

Bill Verbeten, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: April 10, 2013

Scouting a nitrogen rate trial in the middle of a rainstorm on winter triticale in western New York.

Winter Triticale Nitrogen Rate Trial, Genesee County

Bill Verbeten, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: April 10, 2013

Visual differences between rates of nitrogen fertilizer (Agrotain treated area) were seen about 2 weeks after application to winter triticale in western New York.

Early Season Nitrogen Fertilizer Application for Pastures

John Hanchar, Farm Business Management
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: April 1, 2013

Does it make sense to produce additional forage to be grazed in pastures early in the grazing season by means of an early season application of nitrogen fertilizer given milk production goals, and given that feed needs are to be met using the optimal mix of pasture sourced feed and purchased TMR?

Shredlage

Bill Verbeten, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: March 20, 2013

What is shredlage and does it have a place on New York dairy farms? Get a quick intro to the topic by downloading this PDF.

Harvesting Winter Triticale Silage

Bill Verbeten, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: March 1, 2013
Harvesting Winter Triticale Silage

While the harvest of winter triticale silage is still a month away for most farms it's important to review what it takes to make high quality silage from this crop.

Maximizing Forage Yields

Bill Verbeten, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: March 1, 2013

Ever feel like your silage, hay, or pasture programs are missing a piece or two of the puzzle to get top yields year-in and year-out? This PDF of a presentation reviews an overall forage program strategy while also providing a lot of details for specific ways to increase your yields for many different forages grown in New York.

Nitrogen Applications for Winter Small Grains Silage

Bill Verbeten, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: February 1, 2013
Nitrogen Applications for Winter Small Grains Silage

Many western New York farmers planted winter triticale, winter rye, or winter wheat last fall in order to take a spring harvest to make up for the low haylage yields in 2012.

Taking Forage Inventories

Bill Verbeten, Field Crops
Northwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops

Last Modified: January 2, 2013
Taking Forage Inventories

Planning ahead is vital to avoid or at least reduce the impact of the coming feed shortages in the next few months.



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calendar of events

Upcoming Events

Wyoming County Farmland Protection Informational Seminars

March 12 - March 30, 2019
Two Dates/Times: Thursday, Mar 21st, 7-9 p.m. & Saturday, March 30th, 10 a.m. - 12 p.m.
Warsaw, NY

Wyoming County Agriculture and Farmland Protection Board (WCAFPB) will accept pre-applications from farmland owners for the next round of New York State purchase of development rights (PDR) grants through May 3, 2019 at 3:00 pm. All owners of farms interested in applying must attend an informational seminar. Landowners can attend on either Thursday, March 21, 7:00 pm to 9:00 pm or Saturday, March 30, 10:00 am to 12:00 pm.At the seminars, Genesee Valley Conservancy (GVC) Farmland Protection Specialist David Bojanowski will discuss PDR, Conservation Easements, New York State PDR Grant Program, an example PDR Project and landowner considerations when considering farmland protection. Cornell Cooperative Extension's (CCE) Joan Sinclair Petzen will share information about the Wyoming County Context for Farmland Protection and Wyoming County's Farmland Protection Pre-Application Process.  
view details

Internal Parasites in Sheep & Goats IPM/FAMACHA Workshop, Pre-Register by 3/28

March 30, 2019
9:45 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Naples, NY

Internal parasites are one of the biggest health problems affecting goats and sheep in the Northeast. Dewormer resistance is becoming commonplace. As a result, producers need to know how best to manage parasites. In this workshop, producers will learn the basics of parasite control as well as how to develop integrated parasite management programs for their farms. We will also provide hands-on training on how to use the FAMACHA Anemia Card (good only for the barber pole worm) as part of a 5-point check to determine which animals in your herd or flock most likely need deworming. This workshop will also include hands-on training on doing fecal egg counts. You are welcome to bring a refrigerated fecal sample of 8 to 10 fecal pellets from one sheep or goat at your farm to the workshop.
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2019 Worker Protection Standard Training & DEC Special Permit Training (Wayne County)

April 9, 2019
8:30 AM - 12:30 PM English Session / 1:00 PM - 5:00 PM Spanish Session
Newark, NY

Just like last year, Special Permits (SP) will only be issued for 11 specific pesticide labels and SP trainees will have to pass a test. This will relieve the certified pesticide applicator from "on-site within voice contact" supervision of non-certified pesticide applicators when they are handling federally-restricted-use pesticides for which they hold a Special Permit. The labels that will be covered include Lorsban Advanced, Endigo ZC, Warrior II with Zeon Technology, Agri-Mek SC, Beseige, Gramoxone SL 2.0, Leverage 360, Danitol 2.4EC, Mustang Maxx, Asana XL, and Lannate LV.

New York DEC notes that the Special Permit process is intended for farm workers with English language skills that are not adequate to pass the DEC private applicators exam. All others are encouraged to apply for their private applicator's license via taking the certification exam.

Certified Supervisors are required to attend the first 30 minutes of training. 

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Announcements

Producers Previously Enrolled in the LGM Program Now Eligible for MPP

Dairy Producers Previously Enrolled in the Livestock Gross Margin Program Now Eligible for 2018 Margin Protection Program
The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) today announced that dairy producers who elected to participate in the Livestock Gross Margin for Dairy Cattle Program (LGM-Dairy) now have the opportunity to participate in the Margin Protection Program for Dairy (MPP-Dairy) for 2018 coverage. Sign-up will take place March 25 through May 10, 2019.
Eligible producers can enroll during the sign-up period at their local USDA service center. To locate your office, visit farmers.gov.


Smart Farming Team Technical Assistance Grant Application

The Labor Ready Farmer Project is offering grants to provide up to 12 hours of Technical Assistance (TA) consulting services to farms who want to make improvements to their farm's processes in hiring, training, managing or evaluating employees. Applicants will choose from one of the following four areas for TA assistance and identify a specific project. If selected they will be matched with a "Smart Farming Team" of consultants who will provide one on one technical assistance.
  • HIRING EMPLOYEES 101 - GETTING OFF TO A GOOD START
  • ONBOARDING & TRAINING EMPLOYEES QUICKLY AND EFFECTIVELY
  • FINE-TUNING & IMPROVING THE WORKING ENVIRONMENT
  • H2-A READINESS
Please complete this application and send to Nicole Waters, Beginning Farm Project Coordinator for the Cornell Small Farms Program. The form can be submitted by email, mail or in-person at the address listed below. Please feel free to call or email with any questions.

Nicole Waters - Beginning Farmer Project Coordinator
Plant Science Building, Room 15b
Tower Road, Cornell University
Ithaca, NY 14853
Phone: 607-255-9911
Email: nw42@cornell.edu

Applications accepted on a rolling basis.



USDA Announces January Income over Feed Cost Margin Triggers First 2019 Dairy Sa

WASHINGTON, March 6, 2019 ? The U.S. Department of Agriculture's Farm Service Agency (FSA) announced this week that the January 2019 income over feed cost margin was $7.99 per hundredweight, triggering the first payment for eligible dairy producers who purchase the appropriate level of coverage under the new but yet-to-be established Dairy Margin Coverage (DMC) program.

DMC, which replaces the Margin Protection Program for Dairy, is a voluntary risk management program for dairy producers that was authorized by the 2018 Farm Bill. DMC offers protection to dairy producers when the difference between the all milk price and the average feed cost (the margin) falls below a certain dollar amount selected by the producer.

Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue announced last week that sign up for 
DMC will open by mid-June of this year. At the time of sign up, producers who elect a DMC coverage level between $8.00 and $9.50 would be eligible for a payment for January 2019.

For example, a dairy operation with an established production history of 3 million pounds (30,000 cwt.) that elects the $9.50 coverage level for 50 percent of its production could potentially be eligible to receive $1,887.50 for January.

Sample calculation:
$9.50 - $7.99 margin = $1.51 difference
$1.51 times 50 percent of production times 2,500 cwt. (30,000 cwt./12) = $1,887.50

The calculated annual premium for coverage at $9.50 on 50 percent of a 3-million-pound production history for this example would be $2,250.

Sample calculation:
3,000,000 times 50 percent = 1,500,000/100 = 15,000 cwt. times 0.150 premium fee = $2,250

Operations making a one-time election to participate in DMC through 2023 are eligible to receive a 25 percent discount on their premium for the existing margin coverage rates.

"Congress created the Dairy Margin Coverage program to provide an important financial safety net for dairy producers, helping them weather shifting milk and feed prices," FSA Administrator Richard Fordyce said. "This program builds on the previous Margin Protection Program for Dairy, carrying forward many of the program upgrades made last year based on feedback from producers. We're working diligently to implement the DMC program and other FSA programs authorized by the 2018 Farm Bill."

Additional details about DMC and other FSA farm bill program changes can be found at farmers.gov/farmbill.


Wyo. Co. Pesticide Applicator Training Session and Re-certification course

Cornell Cooperative Extension of Wyoming County is offering a pesticide applicator training session and re-certification course on Thursday, April 4, 2019 from 8:15 AM to 12:15 PM at the Wyoming County Agriculture and Business Center. This session is geared for individuals planning to take the Core and Category Pesticide Certification Exam specific to the focus of their work. If applying for Core Re-certification credits, you must bring your Pesticide Certification ID card with you. This session will carry 3.50 Core Re-Certification Credits. This course is open to those seeking Private or Commercial Category Pesticide Applicator Certification.
1. Individual responsibilities with Cornell Cooperative Extension 
A. Please pre-register with Cornell Cooperative Extension of Wyoming County for the training session only, by calling Don Gasiewicz at 585-786-2251 x113 or emailing him at drg35@cornell.edu.There is a $20 fee for extension enrollees and a $30 fee for non-enrollees. Any questions regarding the certification class can be directed to Don as well. 
B. You need to purchase the required training manual(s) from the CCE office. Manuals for all categories must be ordered through CCE. Once you know which manual(s) you need, contact Don to purchase and/or order. Questions regarding which manual(s) you may need to order, must be directed the NYSDEC at 716-851-7220 
2. Individual responsibilities with New York State DEC 
A. DEC Pesticides Test. The pesticide exam is conducted by the DEC and is held at the Wyoming County Agriculture and Business Center on Thursday, April 4, 2019 at 1:00 PM for your convenience. 
B. NYSDEC requires advance registration to be eligible to take the certification exam. If you are planning to take the exam, you must first call the NYSDEC Pesticide Division at 716-851-7220 to discuss eligibility. 
C. If you are eligible, DEC will send you an exam packet, which you must fill out and return to them with your examination fee of $100. You must be pre-registered with DEC to take the exam. No walk-ins will be allowed. All questions regarding your certification should be directed to the DEC. Click here for flyer.


New Guidance for Mortality Disposal Issued

NYS Department of Ag and Markets has posted guidelines on disposal of livestock carcasses, in response to reports that some rendering companies have halted pickups from farms.

https://nwnyteam.cce.cornell.edu/submission.php?id=761&crumb=dairy|1

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