Managing Your Flock for Success
Have sheep or thinking about getting a flock? Producers of all experience levels will find something for them in this lively, wide-ranging course. There is no one right way to raise sheep – just a palette of options for you to choose from, to suit your farming objectives and lifestyle. Taught by experienced sheep producers and Cornell Cooperative Extension educators, this course covers many of these different options, and strongly encourages active student participation.
At the end of this course you will have:
Enhanced knowledge of nutrition, health management, housing and fencing, handling, record keeping, and selection of animals.
Identified opportunities for improving profitability through improved pasture productivity, controlling parasite issues, and reducing predator losses.
The bulk of the course happens on your own time, with discussions, readings, and assignments in Teachable, our virtual classroom. To add to the experience, webinars will be woven into the online interface of the course to allow you to meet on a weekly basis to learn from presenters and ask questions in real time. If you miss one, they are always recorded and posted for later viewing.
- Betsy Hodge has worn many hats in Extension over the years (since 1984!) from Dairy and Livestock “Agent” to County Director. Her current role is Regional Livestock Educator for Northern New York and as a local Extension Educator for St. Lawrence County. Her program focuses mainly on sheep and goats but includes all livestock such as beef, poultry, and swine. Areas covered include nutrition, management, marketing, rotational grazing, handling, parasite management and more. Betsy also acts as the shepherd for the Extension Learning Farm Flock in Canton and has a small flock of her own hair sheep at home.
- Lynn Bliven is the Agriculture & Natural Resource Issue Leader for Cornell Cooperative Extension in Allegany County, NY. She began her career in 4-H and currently works in Agricultural Economic Development, specializing in beginning farmer outreach, local food systems and livestock production. Lynn and husband Shawn operate a 52 acre farm in Rushford, NY raising grass-fed beef, lamb and poultry.
- All levels – This course is designed for commercial producers seeking to build their knowledge in production, marketing, processing, and sales of lamb and sheep products, to have a more profitable enterprise. We will cover management styles and marketing, focusing on meat production. While NOT focused specifically on meat goat production, much of the course content will be applicable to goat producers.
- While producers from any location are welcome to take the course, those in temperate Northern climates will get more out of the course weeks that focus on forages and nutrition, housing, and grazing.