Susan McDaniel Havre Daily News email@example.com
Cassie Springer is the recipient of a cow in the Top Notch 4-H Breeding Project. In its second year, the purpose of the program is to provide 4-H members between the ages of 11 and 17 with the opportunity to begin raising cattle of their own. The chosen applicant receives the use of the donor’s cow for about one year. Springer will take possession on Friday and will care for the cow until after the Great Northern Fair. During the breeding season, the cow may be returned to the donor herd to ensure quality, after which the animal will be returned to Springer to be displayed at the fair. Applications for the project were due on Sept. 11 and there were two members who applied. A committee of seven chooses the applicant based on set criteria. The applicants must have already completed one large animal project and demonstrated that they have a high level of understanding. They must submit a brief management plan, explain why they wish to be involved with the program and describe their goals in life and how this project fits in with them. “We are trying to grow the program and we encourage any or all of the 4-H members to participate,” Joe Broesder, MSU-Hill County Extension agent said. A long term goal of the program is to see more donors involved in the program, so that perhaps two animals not necessarily registered could be awarded. If the project has been judged successful by the Top Notch Committee by fair time, Springer will be awarded a bill of sale for A female calf. The cow will then be returned to the donor herd when the calf is weaned. This years donors are Kim and Nola Peterson of Peterson Grain and Cattle. The winner was announced and a presentation was made by Kim Peterson on 4-H Recognition Day, Nov. 5. Just as the Breeding Project is designed to show a 4-H youth the different aspects of growing a herd, the Market Beef Project shows them the feeding part of the cattle industry. The Market Beef Project provides practical experience for 4-H members in how to care for an animal and prepare it for market. Saturday Dec. 1 marks the beginning of the Market Beef Project for 2007. The initial weigh-in will be held at the Northern Ag Research Center. All aspects of marketing a beef from purchase to slaughter are learned during the project, from buying the animal to selling it and writing a final bill of sale. “The project provides a way of learning many different aspects of the beef industry,” said Joe Broesder, MSU-Hill County Extension Agent. The animals will have their beginning weight, tags and tattoo on Sat. Not all counties still do the tattoo, but most registered animals will normally carry one, so Hill County still practices it. Electronic ear tags will be a new feature this year. The tags give the 4-H members the opportunity to see new technology as it becomes available. New corrals are being built at the Ag Station with monitors for the tags built into the runs so that the information on the tags will be read automatically. This year a hand-held scanner will be used. The data that is encoded in the tags is the same that has always been kept on paper records it will just be in an electronic format this year. The tags will remain with the animal until slaughter. The Extension office expects somewhere between 45 to 50 4-H members to register their animals this year. Some of the youth may register more than one animal.