Game on for Buckeyes, sheep producers


Tony Nye - OSU Extension



You better enjoy cooler weather — it looks like days of sunny 70’s may be over.

I just hope the weather stays dry and mild enough that harvest can continue moving forward.

I guess the silver lining is that we are not to get snow like some places in the upper Midwest. I have a friend in Illinois that heard some parts of Illinois could get some flurries over the weekend. If you did not protect any delicate plants on Wednesday night, I am pretty sure they got zapped. Based on what I heard we had low temperatures of 28 to 29 degrees.

No matter what temperature, one place that will be heated up come this weekend will be The Ohio State University stadium for Saturday’s big football game against the Nittany Lions. I hope you cheer loudly this weekend for the Buckeyes. Hopefully the Buckeyes play like crazy and come out with a win.

It’s “game on” for any sheep producer enthusiasts. The annual Buckeye Shephard’s symposium is just around the corner December 1 and 2, 2017 at the OARDC Fisher Auditorium & Shisler Conference Center in Wooster, Ohio.

This is always a great event but I think this year they have some excellent sessions for the longtime producer as well as the novice or beginning sheep producer.

The program begins on Friday, Dec. 1 at 2 p.m. and will include looking at the Profitability of Several Sheep Production Scenarios with a Simulation Model by Dr. Erin Recktenwald, Michigan State University, Department of Animal Sciences, the Realities of Finishing Lambs on Grass vs. Grain by Dr. Francis Fluharty, Ohio State University, Department of Animal Sciences and finish the day with Dr. Fluharty discussing Feeding Ewe Lambs for Maximum Growth and Reproduction.

Saturday is slated to be packed with lots of great sessions as well. To highlight, there will be key breakout sessions both in the morning and afternoon for the novice producer to the pro.

The morning breakout sessions will include a tract on sheep reproduction that will focus on reproductive management of rams and ewes to improve productivity of the sheep flock presented by Tadd Thompson, Reproductive Specialty Group, Indiana.

The second morning tract will cover the theme of lamb marketing 101 and will exploring non-traditional or ethnic marketing opportunities, presented by Dr. Erin Recktenwald, Michigan State University, Department of Animal Sciences.

And the third morning breakout session is geared to the novice or beginning shepherd and will focus on the management side of the flock and look at practices in managing the sheep flock on an annual calendar basis. This will be presented by Roger High with the Ohio Sheep Improvement Association and Brady Campbell with The Ohio State University sheep team.

Afternoon sessions have three more breakout sessions to choose from. The first will have Tadd Thompson discussing the how’s and why’s of the utilization of artificial insemination, ram semen collection and embryo transfer technologies for the sheep flock.

The second session will have Nick Forrest, Ohio Lamb Entrepreneur, and Chef Jeff Hyde, Chef of Colonel Deś Spice Company, demonstrating lamb cutting and lamb cooking demonstrations that will assist the direct lamb marketer.

Another session for the novice or beginner shepherd will focus on sheep production and management lessons. Roger High and Brady Campbell, will continue their discussion of managing the flock on an annual calendar basis.

To get registered for this great program, sheep enthusiasts can contact Roger A. High by phone at 614-246-8299 or email him at rhigh@ofbf.org. More information about the two-day event and registration information can be found at www.ohiosheep.org.

Tony Nye is the state coordinator for the Ohio State University Extension Small Farm Program and has been an OSU Extension Educator for agriculture and natural resources for 29 years, currently serving Clinton County and the Miami Valley EERA.

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Tony Nye

OSU Extension