Latest articles


Mentors (and work) help with successful tillage project

Where there’s a will there’s a way

Our farm has always done the impossible. Most of the time, the motivation of being told we cannot do something is all that’s needed. Added to that is a whole lot of faith that it needs to be done. This spring my daughter and I presented my son with a need. We needed a sizeable patch of soil turned black. Apparently, […] Read more


Breed frame size may influence twins

Multiple births are common among sheep and goats, but what about beef cattle?

Twins in beef cattle have always intrigued me. Then a Speckle Park producer from New Zealand combined two of my favourite things into triplet heifers — splashy colour and multiple births. Statistically, the odds of bovine triplets are 105,000 to one, with the odds of having same-sex triplets around 700,000 to one. Our experience with small ruminants raised the […] Read more



Compensating for a livestock vitamin shortage

One option for ensuring animals have adequate supplies

Last spring with the worldwide vitamins A, D and E shortage, our management practices had to change. The choice was either find a way to feed more or find injectable somewhere. This winter due to widespread feed shortages many producers are already wondering how to boost nutrition in the feeds they do have this winter. […] Read more




Using meters to measure feed quality

Fairly simple tools are available to evaluate colostrum and milk

This calving season arrived in the midst of a worldwide vitamin A, D and E shortage. The quality of colostrum depends greatly on maternal nutrition. The health and viability of the young depends on the quality of the colostrum. So how can farmers test the quality of their calf colostrum/milk at home? There is a […] Read more


Jersey Cow on a sunny afternoon

Discovering the value of registration

You never know who may come knocking if they can trace genetics

Life has a way of making people revisit decisions. About five years ago the decision was made to keep up with registry memberships so our herd name didn’t get lost but we also considered that maybe it wasn’t worth the cost registering our youngsters. There were a lot of reasons to question — one being […] Read more



Sweeter forage grasses may benefit milk production

Different classes of livestock can make better use of forage mix

Spring is the time of rebirth. This year our livestock is not scheduled for babies till late spring so we have more time than usual to study, read, and plan our 2018 pasture season. While reading over garden catalogues my mind keeps turning to old ideas of turnip grazing, mangels (large beet) or potato choppers. […] Read more


Composting is a simple natural process

Experts provide advice on proper procedures and precautions

As the new year starts to unfold we usually take a few minutes to look over our successes and failures of the previous year. Our family attempts to learn from mistakes in order to move forward productively. Our attempts at composting had their challenges but with the help of professionals, the problems are resolving. There […] Read more



Foxes and wolves are always on the hunt

A tree-climbing gray fox is a new name on the predator list

Predator loss is a reality all classes of livestock are susceptible to. Many with cattle do not have as big of a worry as those with sheep, goats, and poultry, but this pasture season was bad all over. Conversations with livestock producers across Canada showed us there is also a new threat around. Red foxes […] Read more


a calf and mother cow

Start with good stock — stay healthy

Some diseases are hard to fix — the best approach is to avoid them

Raising livestock for a living means that they have to be productive. They must reproduce, be healthy, and not be labour-intensive. Nobody makes a profit raising sick animals. The University of Guelph and Semex have been moving forward studying this from a genetic standpoint. This is exciting because with the increase in prevalence of Johne’s, producing healthy […] Read more