Extension and research programs are making a difference for Mississippi livestock producers and youth. From Farm to Feedlot to the Dairy Herd Improvement Association programs, Extension provides the latest research-based information to Mississippians. Producers can use this research to better manage their livestock operations and make profitable changes in breeding, health, nutrition, and management programs. Extension livestock programs also offer Mississippi youth a wide variety of experiences and leadership opportunities.
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)
As farmers head out to their fields, locating underground utility lines may not be at the top of their safety checklists.
But this knowledge should be a top priority, said Leslie Woolington, a risk management specialist with the Mississippi State University Extension Service and the Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station.
Mississippi State University experts see a positive outlook for the state’s beef cattle industry, with prices at profitable levels and herd numbers up.
The North Mississippi Beef Expo in Batesville will provide cattle producers with an opportunity to learn from multiple industry professionals on Oct. 26.
Fire ants are everywhere. If you’ve thrown your hands up in exasperation trying to deal with them, don’t give up just yet. (File photo by MSU Extension Service)
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.
From a young age, Willie Clay understood that farm work was hard work. He got up early to milk the cows at his dad’s Monroe County farm. He lugged square hay bales, approximately 50 pounds per bale, through the fields to feed the cattle. He helped in the soybean, corn, and cotton fields.
Pat Ard has tended his grandfather’s legacy since 1971, when he took the helm of the family farm from his father.
What started as a 211-acre Lincoln County cotton farm in 1894 is now a 1,200-acre dairy farm with more than 240 Holstein cows.
The people who know Virgil Walker look up to him. The Covington County native is a leader for his church and several local organizations. He loves his wife, his children, and his grandchildren, and he values his way of life.
“It’s just in my blood to walk out and see a cow on my farm,” he says on a humid, late-summer afternoon. “It’s five generations, counting my son’s kids. The one who’s 9 or 10, I gave her a calf, and she wants to come every day to look at it. I believe she’ll be the one to come and live on the farm. It would be rewarding for me. Where I’m living, I’ve been here for 50 years.”