4-H Livestock Program
The Mississippi 4-H Livestock Program is a unique opportunity to use animals and educational projects to enhance youth development. The main objectives of the program deal with the young people, not the animals. Participants learn about agriculture and livestock production, and they develop an appreciation for the livestock industry; the main objectives, however, are to teach life skills and help 4-H'ers become productive citizens of our society.
The experience of children owning and working with animals; being responsible for their care, health, and growth; and exhibiting them in a competitive environment is a tremendous character-building process. Young people participate in the major animal science projects of beef, dairy, sheep, swine, horse, dairy goats, meat goats, and meat science. In addition to the animal projects, 4-H'ers participate in a variety of judging, quiz bowl, communication, expressive arts, and other livestock-oriented contests to demonstrate their knowledge and skills acquired by working with livestock.
On a rainy day in early autumn, hundreds of people packed into the Mississippi State University Joe Bearden Dairy Center to learn where their milk, butter, yogurt, and ice cream come from. (File Photo by Kat Lawrence)
It was inevitable that Lauren Bryant would at least try 4-H.
Her father’s family has been active in the Mississippi State University Extension Service 4-H Youth Development Program for two generations. And she has attended 4-H events since she was a toddler.
Now, the 11-year-old is showing her own livestock and participating in various 4-H activities through the Extension Service in Tippah County.
“Lauren is a third-generation 4-H’er,” explained her mother, Leigh Bryant. “Her granddad and her daddy were both 4-H’ers.”
RAYMOND, Miss. -- The 4-H Livestock Club in Hinds County has deep roots. And now that history is on display for all to see at the Multi-Purpose Livestock Building on the Hinds Community College campus.
Agents of the Mississippi State University Extension Service in Hinds County found hundreds of documents, photos and other memorabilia related to the club when they were moving their office from Jackson to Raymond a few years ago.
“We found two filing cabinets full of things dating back to the club’s beginning in the 1930s,” said Extension agent Theresa Hand. “We didn’t even know one of those cabinets was there.”
Baby chickens are so cute and cuddly that few people can resist holding them. Unfortunately, as public interest in raising backyard birds has grown so has the number of Salmonella outbreaks in the U.S. (Photo by Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)
Some people can’t resist the latest spring fashions. Others plant flowers in profusion.
Then there are those, like me, who are highly susceptible to the cheerful chirping of newly hatched chicks. (Photo by Kat Lawrence)
Mississippi 4-H youth horse instructor Tom McBeath takes great pride in having taught two generations of students, and he is now recognized as one of the best in the country at what he does.
The 2017 Dixie National Sale of Junior Champions saw 43 champion market animals auctioned at the annual sale. During the weeklong 2017 Dixie National Livestock Show in Jackson, judges selected 14 hogs, 10 goats, 10 lambs, and 9 steers for the sale.
When third-generation cattleman Joe Davis was a teen, he had no idea his competition in the show ring would one day be his Extension agent in Union County.
Cayleb and Landry Dyess are two of only a handful of siblings ever to have two grand champion animals auctioned in the same Dixie National Sale of Champions, but they prepare for each event the same way as every 4-H’er who competes.
They start getting ready for the next show the day after they come home from the last one.