Farmerjan's journal - Weather

Mini Horses

Herd Master
Joined
Sep 4, 2015
Messages
3,250
Reaction score
8,525
Points
438
Location
S coastal VA
I noticed that the deer have been eating my tulips that are planted up front by the veg garden
Does this mean your veg garden is on their radar? :hide


The Farm Bureau newsletter this month had some articles about dairy farms, their decline,, their improvements, etc. Fairly shallow for much of the info but, one farm in VA has one to automated 3X day milking. Bet that cost a bundle!

I hear you say "pack samples" -- wondering, how much in each sample? Are they from each cow or, every 5 or ???? Curious.

While the farmers don't get what they should, or need, when they sell, the stores keep raising their retail price. Even eggs....almost double in price from a month ago.

At work yesterday, the customers wanted milk & eggs. No eggs there and I just kept thinking.....should have brought a few doz and sold them on the sidewalk! :lol: Heck, I only ask 2.50 per & theirs were 3.75. No milk in the customer coolers. Plenty in backroom coolers and works were too lazy to bring it out!!! Which reminds me, I need to use the 6 gal in my frig:thSome of my goats think they are little cows! Really, 2 gal per day each.....I can see why some families go with the smaller breeds.
 

Baymule

Herd Master
Joined
Aug 22, 2010
Messages
18,342
Reaction score
44,822
Points
793
Location
Northeast Texas
A friend of ours canceled her mom’s home health therapy because of Covid 19. She reasoned that the therapist was in and out of people’s homes all day and the risk was too great.

Maybe they can show you the exercises you need to do, or videos to watch and exercise along with.

Definitely take your flowers with you. I have amaryllis bulb descendants, I got the originals from an old neighbor lady when I was in junior high. I got narcissis bulbs when I was 19 and I still have a patch of those that I have dug up and taken with me all these years. In the spring, it’s like welcoming old friends.
 

farmerjan

Herd Master
Joined
Aug 16, 2016
Messages
3,443
Reaction score
10,976
Points
458
Location
virginia
Woke up to some loud thunder and lightning flashes at about 4:30 - 5:00 a.m. More rain/showers. Last night we had a downpour that sounded like hail on the roof the drops were so big and hit so hard. Had another downpour this morning about 7-8 a.m. It is cloudy now and more showers expected off and on all day. The temps are supposed to drop off to the 30's tomorrow night.... sure hope we don't get any frost or freezing. One reason not to get too ahead of the normal planting time.

I have heard that eggs in the stores have gone way up. Luckily my hens are laying and my sons are laying like crazy. He has quite a few more hens than I have. Since I lost a couple of my purebreds last fall, I am going to have trouble because I had planned to buy a new male for my Langshans and some females for my New Hamps..... I am going to order eggs from a guy who has New Hamps and have to raise up some females...and have a few extras for backup breeders so I am not so low on numbers. Our normal big poultry swap/sale is held twice a year, in early May and again in September. With the state being closed down until June 10th at this time, the spring sale/swap is not going to happen. Hopefully we will have the one in Sept, and I will be able to pick up some new/outside bloodlines and the birds will be either safely housed on my son's property up where I raised the meat birds, or on a place that I am moved to.

Yes. I plan to take the flowers I've planted here, with me.

@Mini Horses ; I take a sample of milk from every cow that goes through the milking parlor. It is about a 2 oz bottle with the cow number on the bottle so the results of that particular cow is tested and recorded for the farmer to know what her status is. I record the amount of milk she makes (done as a weight rather than as a gallon), and each sample is tested for butterfat, protein, and somatic cell count (scc) which is indicative of the "cleanliness" of the milk. In other words, the higher the scc, the more likely the cow has an "infection" that will cause mastitis. The lower scc, the longer the milk also "keeps"....meaning longer shelf life. Since there is always some scc in any milk, just like we all have some base of bacteria in our systems, lower scc means the cow has smaller amounts of any type of infectious properties.... like staph or strep. Those two cause the greatest numbers of mastitis flareups. Anytime you see mastitis in any lactating animal, she has a high cell count (scc) and if tested for what type is causing it, them an antibiotic can be targeted specifically for that organism.
There are cows that often have chronic staph or strep mastitis, and they need to be culled, because even with treatment, they will not get over it. Most will see a drop in scc, only for it to reoccur and these chronic problem cows just will not "get over it". A flareup of one can often be treated, but if a cow continues to have a high cell count, then the farmer has to decide what he can do with that cow. The milk companies that pick up the milk, have certain standards that they pay for the milk. Cell counts under 125,000 is paid a premium, 125-250.000 will get standard pay, 250-400,00 will get a lower price for their milk. Over 400,000, they will get a warning and if it happens twice in a month, their milk will be dumped and they will get "shut off" until they get it under control. That requires taking any high cell count or suspect cow out of the tank, milked into a bucket, and that milk discarded.
People that milk their animals at home, and don't test, really never know what the cell counts are. I also don't test my own cows regularly. If you see some flakes of mastitis, then you are probably dealing with a high staph count. The animal will look normal, maybe have a slight flareup once a month or so. These kinds of animals are chronic, and they will always have higher than normal counts. This milk will more likely go bad (sour) quicker in the fridge if kept for any length of time.
Any animal that has a high cell count will be okay for processing.... in other words... heat will kill the bacteria. But it is naturally better for there to not be a high cell count to deal with at all. Still, it will cause some off flavor milk sometimes, too.
We have to have some amounts of bacteria in our systems, that keeps our immune system functioning. We all have good and bad bacteria in our systems. It is the balance of the good outweighing the bad that keeps us healthy, and allows our systems to mount a "defense" if we get exposed to a "bad" one. But if there is a chronic infection, then the mammary system stays "infected", and it will never get over it. It becomes the "normal" for that system, but it has it's negative effects in milk that isn't as healthy or won't keep as well.

Don't know how well that explains it. But that is the reason I have to be in the milking parlor for the whole milking.... because I am taking a sample from every cow that goes through the barn during milking.
 

farmerjan

Herd Master
Joined
Aug 16, 2016
Messages
3,443
Reaction score
10,976
Points
458
Location
virginia
Wed. eve, temps went from 51 to 72. We had clouds, some showers, some sun peeking through, then clouds again this eve. My rain gauge was on an angle from the wind, so don't know how accurate this is but we had about .2 inch. Fixed the rain gauge upright. Fed the chickens but they will have to be moved in a day or 2. I still haven't gotten the mower started, actually haven't tried. One of the next days when it is sunny. My ankle is still feeling the effects of Monday's testing. Going to go in and take a shower and wash my hair. Then eat something. I ate some lunch late so not really hungry yet. I have a ham that needs to go in the oven, maybe on Friday when it cools off a bit and the heat will feel good as it cooks. Then I will have some ham for meals, and the bone to cook for soup, and I need to find some dried split peas so then I can make a pot of soup.

The milk companies are dumping milk and they are paying the farmers what they call class 4 prices, which is about 10.00 per 100 lbs as opposed to the 18.00 per 100 they are getting for class 1 milk. I heard they dumped 9 trailer loads in SC the beginning of this week. It really sucks. There has been some talk that the milk companies want farmers to cut production 20%. That's like sticking a cork in it so the hens don't lay eggs...... The cows have to be milked, and they are going to make a certain production level. Sure you can cut the feed some, but then you are losing production that can't be easily made up and increased when they want the production to be ramped up. It is so frustrating. They had 2 months where the prices had gotten back up to where they could actually get their bills paid and some even catch up a little bit..... then this....
 

farmerjan

Herd Master
Joined
Aug 16, 2016
Messages
3,443
Reaction score
10,976
Points
458
Location
virginia
Turns out that loud pouring down storm we got last evening that sounded like hail, was HAIL..... a town west and a little north, just over the county line north of here got hail that was over 3 inches deep.... pictures from a person that went out and took a video of it as they walked through it and around their car. Said it hit our county here as it passed mostly north of here. So I didn't dream it....never seen it that deep though. It was said to be "plowable" don't know if they called out VDOT for it or how big an area that it was spread out over.
 

Mini Horses

Herd Master
Joined
Sep 4, 2015
Messages
3,250
Reaction score
8,525
Points
438
Location
S coastal VA
Thanks for the sampling explanation. I just wondered how many samples and how much for each one, as you mention packing all up to send out. The SCC counts, bacteria, etc. I watch with the goats, too. My gals seem fairly clean, I've had milk last a month & still good. Yeah, I put a date & name on the bottles. And, check the girls every few days with a few squirts to look at it, etc. But, I milk into a 1/2 gal jar and put a lid on, which has some "seal" to it when quickly chilled in the freezer. It keeps the milk very well in the cold frig after that. About once a month I milk a pint, put aside and check it 2-3 weeks later for taste. Just a self check thing. Also, I am able to keep their milk separately jarred most of the time. Works well. Helps me see who has higher cream and all that basic stuff.

On way between stores today, I see a beautiful field of Angus with young calves. One was a baldie gal and the little calf was, too. OMG that was just so adorable....I could have hugged it to death if it was next to me. It was a lovely herd, good body weights. But the 2 white face in all the green, as they walked down off of the raised area, was eye catching. Then, I was passed them and wanted to turn around. LOL

I have a bottle babe that is due soon. Been separating and I think she's waiting for me to be home LOL....yeah, Peanut is spoiled! Tomorrow may be her day...I'm here. We may get some of that storm you had run close by. So far it's supposed to be just a little West of me and it moves South into NC. Won't hurt my feelings!! Not wanting rain tomorrow.
 

farmerjan

Herd Master
Joined
Aug 16, 2016
Messages
3,443
Reaction score
10,976
Points
458
Location
virginia
@Mini Horses . You are doing the same basic thing that our sampling does in a less "scientific way". That is good. I have had milk from my own cows here keep for weeks also and still be good to taste. It also has to do with the quick chilling too. But, yes, by testing each and every cow, the farmer gets a pretty accurate accounting of each individual cows' butterfat and scc, the same as bottling and keeping each of your goats separate. So when I test the 500+ cow herd, I have to put all the 500+ samples in the styrofoam boxes, 60 to a box, in numerical order for the lab. They get packaged in no more than 4 boxes to a group and sent UPS.
We got a little more showers/rain yesterday evening and then it cleared out and was a full moon and then partly/mostly sunny today but very windy. Tonight is supposed to get down to the mid 30's.....

@Mike CHS , if the fruit is well set and then we get a frost/freeze, does that mean it won't hurt it like if it gets it right after blossoms? How long is well set after blossoms? I am sure hoping that we don't get cold enough weather to hurt the peach trees production now.
 

Mike CHS

Herd Master
Joined
Mar 18, 2013
Messages
8,301
Reaction score
26,783
Points
743
Location
Southern Middle TN
@Mini Horses

@Mike CHS , if the fruit is well set and then we get a frost/freeze, does that mean it won't hurt it like if it gets it right after blossoms? How long is well set after blossoms? I am sure hoping that we don't get cold enough weather to hurt the peach trees production now.
A hard frost would still take out blossoms if that's all there was but we actually have marble size fruit on all of the trees now. A hard freeze would still do a lot of damage but the forecast is high 30's so hopefully we may get a light frost.
 

Mini Horses

Herd Master
Joined
Sep 4, 2015
Messages
3,250
Reaction score
8,525
Points
438
Location
S coastal VA
when I test the 500+ cow herd, I have to put all the 500+ samples in the styrofoam boxes, 60 to a box, in numerical order for the lab. They get packaged in no more than 4 boxes to a group and sent UPS.
Tedious part of the job! But -- hey, someone needs to do it! Wasn't sure if you did "group" milk checks, then individual if SCCs up, etc I assume the milk equipment measures the output from each cow. Should be some subsidy for the farmers with milk sales are so down in $ now. I'm thinking the butter & ice cream quadrant would step it up! These animals are not able to slow that much once at peak. It's a situation I always relay to those who "think they want" home milk goats, especially if high producers. So, I'm dumping some but not on the ground....I let it clabber and give to chickens. It's like getting fermented grains for them and I don't feel it's wasted. They have to eat.

Fruit trees -- another year with no plums! 3 yrs now, got warm to soon, blooms, cold &/or storms wipe them out. However, 2 of my semi-dwarf apple trees are alive! Thought a goat had killed all 3 but 2 are still alive & leafing. One even has a few blooms but, not counting on anything. I need to re-brace them...young trees. Just glad they lived!
I've always had less than good results with fruit production. It's ok, I just buy some now & then. LOL Had some nice apples this Fall from demos & made applesauce and apple butter. Very nice, too. Lot of wild blackberries here. I pick those....and elderberries.
 
Last edited:
Top