Brix: What is It?

Brix is one of those topics that come up fairly frequently in sustainable agriculture.  Simply put, brix is a measure of the sugar content of a plant or other substance. To be more specific, Brix expresses the weight of dissolved sugar as a percentage of the weight of the entire solution.  Pure water has a…… Continue reading Brix: What is It?

Breeds of Livestock

The varied livestock breeds of the world have fascinating histories and characteristics.  Many country living enthusiasts have spent enjoyable hours researching their favorite breeds. One good source of information is the Breeds of Livestock site put together by Oklahoma State University.  This is a handy online encyclopedia-type reference packed with facts about both popular and…… Continue reading Breeds of Livestock

Veterinary Guide for Animal Owners

If you keep animals long enough, you will eventually become acquainted with some basic veterinary first aid. Here’s a book that can make the learning process a little smoother. Veterinary Guide for Animal Owners by C. E. Spaulding, DVM, and Jackie Clay contains information on all common farm animals: Cattle. Goats. Sheep. Horses. Pigs. Poultry.…… Continue reading Veterinary Guide for Animal Owners

Storey’s Guide to Raising Dairy Goats

Are you considering getting a dairy goat?  Before you get started, you might want to read this handy guide from Storey Publishing. Storey’s Guide to Raising Dairy Goats by Jerry Belanger and Sara Thomson Bredesen covers all the basics: Breeds. Purchasing goats. Housing. Fencing. Feeding. Grooming. Health. Breeding. Milking. Keeping records. Along the way, you…… Continue reading Storey’s Guide to Raising Dairy Goats

Body Condition Scoring: Goats

The body condition scoring system for goats varies widely. Both five-point and nine-point scales are in use, but the five-point scale appears to prevail and will be given here. The techniques are pretty straightforward; just remember that hair can be misleading. A hands-on evaluation is always best. Emaciated. Goat obviously weak. All bones prominent; sternum…… Continue reading Body Condition Scoring: Goats

Body Condition Scoring: Dairy Cattle

The body condition scoring system for dairy cattle is slightly different than that commonly used for beef cattle. Scores are based on a five-point system, with 1 being emaciated and 5 being fat. To allow for more precise assessment, however, dairy cattle are typically assigned scores in 0.25 increments. Dairy cattle are scored as follows:…… Continue reading Body Condition Scoring: Dairy Cattle

White Park

Tradition tells us that wild white cattle have wandered over the British Isles since the days of the ancient tribes.