GFM Network News


Forage specialist Glenn Shewmaker demonstrates how to collect and place handfuls of hay samples in the tube. Pack the samples in tight and then insert the moisture sensor into the tube at different depths to get a field reading of hay moisture.

Simple tool improves hay moisture test

With a compacted sample and an electronic tester, a more accurate moisture reading can be made in the field

Packaging quality alfalfa hay can be a challenge. The hay industry is constantly pursuing new technologies to help the hay producer grow and package consistently high-quality forage. Machinery design has advanced in order to handle the hay as delicately as possible to minimize leaf loss. But, even with these advances, the proper moisture level is […] Read more

A clean, dry, well-bedded secure sales ring contributes to overall presentation.

Getting ready for sale day

Cattle are important, but don’t overlook facilities and sale barn

As the snow begins to melt, giving way to mud and green grass, livestock seed stock producers make preparations for their upcoming annual production sales. They have made the long lists of items necessary to prepare for a successful production sale and they are checking them twice: writing newsletters and personal letters to previous customers […] Read more


Don't let the lack of an engine block heater leave you out in the cold.

A look at engine heater options

Winter Maintenance: Different types of heaters, different types of installation

I have used five types of engine heaters over the years: magnetic oil pan heaters, stick-on heaters, lower radiator hose heaters, heater hose engine heaters, and engine block heaters. For those of us that operate trucks and equipment every day during cold weather I recommend keeping a good magnetic oil pan heater in a place […] Read more



This is a view of the assembled water tub inside the now-insulated blue supplement tub. The power cord feeds in through the bottom of the blue supplement tub.

Adding insulation to heated water tanks

A winterizing tip to help keep your cattle watered

It is that time of the year when we find ourselves fighting the cold weather to provide water for our stock. Many ranchers and farmers use heated water tanks to increase water consumption for stock/horses while reducing or eliminating the battle with ice and wasted water. Unfortunately heaters are expensive to operate and are not […] Read more

Engine Repair - Work Tools

A good winter-ready checklist for farm vehicles

Time spent preparing vehicles for winter will reduce risk of damage and save time come spring

It’s that time again. The days are shorter, black clouds loom overhead, snow is in the air, the mornings are brisk, and harvest is done — but is your farm equipment ready for winter? A good pre-winter checkup will help prevent downtime regardless of whether it is a piece of equipment or truck that you […] Read more


These sensors are part of the Harvest Tec system for measuring feed quality of hay as it is baled in the field.

Measuring cattle feed quality in the field

A new system allows for bale-by-bale feed value testing

In challenging economic times it is more important than ever to know the value of the alfalfa forage you are feeding your dairy or beef cattle. Whether you are blending alfalfa in a ration to maximize lactation, fertility and calf growth, or utilizing lesser-quality hay for dry cattle or replacements, you want to know that […] Read more