5th Annual Arlington Sheep Day & Annual Recognition Banquet and Meeting of the Wisconsin Sheep Breeders Cooperative
The 5th Annual Arlington Sheep Day will be held on Saturday morning, March 16, 2013 at the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s Arlington Agricultural Research Station. The program is packed with useful information on sheep grazing, genetics, health, and nutrition.
Dr. Kreg Leymaster, Research Geneticist at the USDA Meat Animal Research Center in Clay Center, Nebraska, will be the featured speaker and make two presentations. He will first discuss the great economic benefits to be realized from the wise use of complementary breeds of sheep in an organized crossbreeding program. His second presentation will feature the ground-breaking results of the recent USDA research on the genetics of susceptibility to ovine progressive pneumonia (OPP). OPP is an endemic disease in sheep flocks throughout the U.S., and the Clay Center group has identified genes that reduce the probability of a sheep becoming infected. DNA tests are now commercially available to flock owners to test their sheep for the presence or absence of these desirable genes. There also is new data to suggest that some of our previous ideas on the major routes of transmission of OPP are not correct.
Pastures and pasture management for sheep will be discussed by Dr. Rhonda Gildersleeve, Extension Grazing Specialist, UW-Madison, and Dr. Dave Thomas, Professor of Sheep Management and Genetics, UW-Madison will discuss the use of alternative feeds for sheep. With the current high cost of forage due to last summer’s drought and the continued high cost of corn due to large quantities being diverted to ethanol production, producers are looking for ways to reduce their annual feed costs. Greater use and better management of pastures and use of some non-conventional feedstuffs need to be considered.
Dr. Kay Nelson, UW-Madison Veterinarian, and Todd Taylor, Arlington Sheep Unit Manager, will conduct a session at the sheep farm for youth and interested beginning producers on “How to Identify Ill Sheep?”. Participants will be involved in hands-on activities including taking temperatures, monitoring respiration rates, and foot trimming; in addition to learning how to identify and treat some common diseases in sheep.
The morning educational program will be followed by the Annual Recognition Banquet and Meeting of the Wisconsin Sheep Breeders Cooperative (WSBC). All Sheep Day participants are welcome to attend these afternoon activities.
Cost of the morning educational program is $5.00 per individual and $10 for a family and includes morning refreshments and educational materials. Pre-registration is appreciated. The cost for the WSBC banquet is $15.00 for adults and $5.00 for children, and pre-registration is required.
The schedule and registration form for both events can be found on the UW-Madison Extension Sheep and Goat web site at http://fyi.uwex.edu/wisheepandgoat/ and on the Wisconsin Sheep Breeders Association web site at www.wisbc.com.
For more information, contact Dave Thomas (608-263-4306, firstname.lastname@example.org) or Todd Taylor (608-846-5858, email@example.com) at UW-Madison or Jill Alf at the Wisconsin Sheep Breeders Cooperative (608-868-2505, firstname.lastname@example.org).