Between the autumns of 2006 and 2008, we have seen some real volatility in the cattle and grain markets. This condition has forced producers to reevaluate how they go about doing business. We have seen prices for corn double, and fertilizer and fuel triple.
Microbes include fungi, bacteria and viruses. Farmers and ranchers often think of microbes as pests that are destructive to their crops or animals, but many microbes are beneficial.
With the much appreciated rains we received in August, available forage for grazing in the fall of 2008 is more abundant than we expected. And it couldn't have come at a better time.
Former postdoc, Deyu Xie, Ph.D., recalls finding his second home at the Noble Research Institute.
One of the most important attributes of a good natural resource manager is that they never stop learning. Being involved in research and demonstration projects and attending educational events such as seminars, workshops and field days help keep us up-to-date on wildlife and fisheries management knowledge.
There is an old Chinese curse that says, "May you live in interesting times." The current era in the livestock industry is about as interesting as most of us can stand. I believe we are in the midst of a paradigm shift. The cattle industry of tomorrow will almost certainly look different than it has in recent years.
Several questions must be addressed before a landowner can make the decision of what enterprise will be most profitable and best suited for their land. Both feasibility and owner preference must be determined before a plan can start to take shape.
Since it looks like wheat may be $8 per bushel at harvest in 2009, many producers are considering planting it strictly for grain. This can be profitable in some situations with good management, cost control and high yields. Unfortunately, costs have increased at a very fast pace and have diminished profit margins.
When purchasing an agricultural production input or implementing some other management practice, how often do you ask about the probability of obtaining the expected response?
"Just because something can be done does not necessarily mean it should be done" might apply if you are considering planting legumes this fall. September is the time to plant alfalfa and the time to plant clovers comes soon after. Are you really prepared or should you actually be preparing for next year?