Gold Ridge Resource Conservation District

We inspire and partner with our community to protect the natural resources and agricultural future of our District.

After Largest Dam Removal in U.S. History, This River Is Thriving

Conservationists can now point to the largest dam removal project in the U.S. as a success story. The ecosystem of Washington’s Elwha River has been thriving since the removal of its hydroelectric dam system. Recent surveys show dramatic recovery, especially in the near shore at the river’s mouth, where the flow of sediment has created favorable habitat for the salmon population. A new generation of salmon species, some of which are endangered, are now present in the river. Some hope that the restoration of the Elwha River will become a shining example for the removal of dams across the U.S.

Read “River Revives After Largest Dam Removal in U.S. History.”…

Check out salmon photos on National Geographic Your Shot.…

Learn more about the largest dam removal in U.S. history.…

Source:  National Geographic

Sugar beets may replace corn for cattle feed

Source:  Farmweek – December 5, 2014

Is this an old or new idea?

Check out this article from the Pacific Rural Press, Volume 60, Number 22, December 1, 1900.

Sugar Beet Pulp as a Dairy Feed.

By Prof. Leboy Anderson, Berkeley, Dairy Instructor at the State University, at the recent convention of the California Dairy Association.

In this State, where so many sugar beets are grown and manufactured into sugar, the question of how to profitably dispose of the refuse pulp is an important one. If it can be used to supply the dairy with a succulent food during a period when the pastures are dry and no other green food available, it may prove itself of considerable value. The crying need of many of California’s dairy districts is for some form of succulent food to keep up the flow of milk during the latter portion of the period of drought, and while the young grass is yet too small for pasturage.

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Dairy Cooling: The Benefits and Strategies

Heat stress adversely affects dairy cows in a variety of ways. A cow suffering from heat stress, for example, produces less milk, conceives less often, and is at a greater risk of contracting a range of debilitating and even deadly diseases. The severity of the effects directly related to heat stress vary significantly by climate, with estimated production losses at dairies without cooling ranging from 403 pounds per cow per year in Wisconsin to almost 4,000 pounds per cow per year in Florida. Heat stress can also have a major effect on reproduction cycles. For example in Florida, cows not subjected to cooling measures have an estimated 59.2 additional days open.[1]  In periods of extreme heat, the resultant heat stress has even led directly to animal deaths. During a 2006 heat wave in  California, 25,000 cattle perished.[2]  In 2010, economic losses resulting from heat stress were estimated to be $1.2 billion across the entire US dairy sector, an average of $39,000 per dairy.[3]  Clearly, as global temperatures increase and dairies expand to meet a growing demand, the costs of heat stress and the need to mitigate it will increase as well. Fortunately, the effects of heat stress can be reduced by implementing properly designed and operated ventilation systems and employing effective cow cooling strategies.

Source:  Ian Atkins, Christopher Choi, Brian Holmes, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Dept of Biological Systems Engineering