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Hay shortage affecting farmers


Fri, May 31st, 2013
Posted in All Agriculture

Local farmers are dealing with a situation - which farmers often do. This time, the situation is a shortage of hay and it’s not only local farmers who are feeling the effects.

There are many critical factors in farming, and hay is one piece of a much larger picture. Known for being resilient farmers must use a little ingenuity to compensate for the shortage of hay that is currently affecting the farming community.

Haz Broy Farms of rural Lanesboro, Minn. is a dairy farm owned by Brian and Judy Hazel, which is one of many farms in the area making adjustments in their usual routines until hay is once again plentiful.

When asked what has caused the hay shortage, Brian Hazel explained that several factors have contributed to the problem. “There were severe stress factors,” states Brian, saying that “there was a shortage to begin with” and then having a dry 2012 made the situation worse.

With January 2013 being so cold “soil temperatures got lower than they normally would and the plants had a difficult time trying to start in the cold,” Brian said. In late Spring 2013 it became evident there had been a lot of “Winter kill,” which would definitely add to the shortage of hay.

“An additional reason that hay is not abundant,” says Brian, “is financial incentive to plant row crops.” He explained that in 2012 not as much hay acres were seeded down because it is more profitable to plant corn.

With so much Winter kill a decision needed to be made as to what to do. At Haz Broy Farms the decision was made to plant no-till corn in the damaged alfalfa stands. The ground is then rolled to increase seed to soil contact.

Brian states that this year they doubled the amount of alfalfa seeding. He says, “there needs to be hay, there needs to be cattle to keep the soil right.”

Adjustments are also made when feeding the dairy cows during a shortage of hay. Steve McCallson, who has worked at Haz Broy Farms for 22 years and has been farming his entire life, explained how they extend the silage by feeding the cows a “higher corn silage diet.”

The cows are fed a Total Mixed Ration (TMR) which consists of protein mix, soybean meal, corn silage, dry hay, bakery products, and liquid molasses. They will now be adding wheat straw, which Brian got in from Canada, as well as corn gluten pellets to the TMR in order to extend the .....
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Winona/Root River Pheasants Forever chapter offers financial assistance to landowners

Fri, May 31st, 2013
Posted in All Agriculture

Winona, Minn. - The Winona/Root River Pheasants Forever chapter is offering landowners and farmers in Winona, Fillmore, and Houston Counties with additional financial assistance to make enrollment in the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) a more fin ..... 
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Employment skills for today - planning for success

By Jerrold Tesmer

Fri, May 24th, 2013
Posted in All Agriculture

By Jerrold Tesmer, Extension Educator for Fillmore/Houston Counties The University of Minnesota Extension will be conducting a workshop in Rochester that addresses information & strategies for agricultural workforce management. It is supported by A ..... 
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Summer came and so did Farm Safety Day Camp!

By Jerrold Tesmer

Fri, May 17th, 2013
Posted in All Agriculture

Another beautiful day for the joint Fillmore/Houston fourth grade Farm Safety Day Camp held at the Mabel Steam Engine Grounds. The farmer volunteers were planting corn like crazy last Tuesday, so we had a number of very capable substitutes at Farm S ..... 
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Community partners can make the difference: Stormwater Mini-Grant Program

Fri, May 17th, 2013
Posted in All Agriculture

Fillmore County SWCD has received $45,000 in Clean Water Funds to be offered as mini-grants for projects that reduce or treat stormwater runoff to local streams. Is your community or nonprofit organization interested in planting a rain garden? ..... 
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Area farmer says baby calves need protection

Fri, May 17th, 2013
Posted in All Agriculture

By Karen Reisner Mother Nature was rough on everything this last couple of months with her cold, rainy, and windy weather tantrums topped off by a heavy, wet May snow. Many beef cow-calf operations have suffered unusually heavy calf losses driven ..... 
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Farm Safety Day Camp VII

By Jerrold Tesmer

Fri, May 10th, 2013
Posted in All Agriculture

By Jerrold Tesmer, Extension Educator for Fillmore/Houston Counties The seventh joint Fillmore/Houston County fourth grade Farm Safety Day Camp is being held on Tuesday, May 14th at the Mabel Steam Engine Grounds. The event has 455 students registe ..... 
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Names and Bling for the Owlets

Fri, May 10th, 2013
Posted in Rushford Agriculture

By Karla Bloem Houston, Minn. -- The three owlets hatched in March as part of the International Owl Center’s Great Horned Owl breeding project now have names as well as bands. As a condition of the state and federal permits required for the pro ..... 
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Beef Brings $Billions

Fri, May 3rd, 2013
Posted in All Agriculture

From Minnesota Department of Agriculture We’ve all heard the catchy slogan “Beef, it’s what’s for dinner! Well, May is Beef Month in Minnesota and if you’d ask “Where’s the Beef?” we’d say it’s right here in our state. In fact, ..... 
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