News

“Everybody is different, and every farm has its own characteristics when it comes to energy use,” reports Brad Heins, WCROC dairy scientist to Dairy Herd Management. The WCROC has 200 cows that graze whenever the grass is growing on the western Minnesota prairie. As such, only 7% of total energy use is needed for barn ventilation in the non-grazing months. The station’s major energy use comes in heating the milking parlor (31%), heating water for cleaning (22%) and cooling milk (11%).

Water is considered by a majority of swine nutritionists to be the most important of all nutrients required by pigs.  At birth, water makes up about 82% of the pig’s body weight and steadily declines to about 50% for a pig at market weight. While water is a vital component of any livestock diet, the question remains; does the quality of drinking water influence health and performance of pigs? We are set to address this question by looking at the impact of water quality on animal performance, gut health, and livability of nursery pigs.

Over the years, the swine industry has seen a steady increase in litter size at birth. Often, an undesirable consequence of such large litter sizes in an increase in variability of piglet birth weight and increased incidence of low birth weight pigs. This led us to the question: can we manipulate the sow's diet during gestation to improve nutrition of the small piglets in uterus? 

A John Deere 6400 tractor rumbled through a U of MN WCROC research field earlier this month pulling a chisel plow and making some history. Nearly everything about this tractor is a common sight here in west-central Minnesota. But this particular farm country workhorse is one of a kind: It has a white tank mounted on the front labeled "anhydrous ammonia," and extra pipes and control boxes attached to its engine.

Weather

July 17, 2019

Temp High (F) Temp Low (F) Precipitation (in.) Growing Degree Days
86 68 .07 27
Soil Temp - 2" Max Soil Temp - 2" Min Soil Temp - 4" Max Soil Temp - 4" Min
101 72

Events

July 25, 2019
July 25, 2019
August 13, 2019

Special Events

July 25, 2019
July 25, 2019
August 13, 2019