- Author: Megan G Osbourn
The event kicked off with an inspirational address from California State Senator, Jim Nielsen, who applauded students for taking an interest in agriculture and encouraged each of them to actively support agriculture and food production in their future endeavors.
Thank you to the 1st Annual Beef and Range Field Day sponsors:
- Author: Megan G Osbourn
On Wednesday, October 8th, over 125 high school students from FFA and 4-H programs in Butte, Nevada, Placer, Sutter and Yuba counties will gather in Browns Valley for the 1st Annual Beef & Range Field Day. This event, hosted by the Sierra Foothill Research and Extension Center (SFREC) will provide students with hands-on, practical experience with livestock production and natural resource management.
The future of agriculture and the way in which society views food production centers on youth knowledge and understanding. 4-H and FFA are excellent educational platforms for youth who are interested in raising livestock. SFREC staff and volunteers are excited to complement this training by connecting students with the concerns and issues commonly dealt with on working ranches.
- Author: Megan G Osbourn
Programs such as 4-H and FFA are excellent training platforms for youth who raise livestock on a small scale. In the last two weeks nearly 800 youth across three different counties exhibited livestock at either the Yuba-Sutter Fair or the Nevada County Fair. Exhibitors ranging from 9-19 years old, have been working tirelessly over the last year to prepare project animals such as cattle, sheep, goats, poultry and swine for competition and market. The process involves more than feeding and grooming animals on a daily basis, which in itself is not always an easy task.
Jake Williams (15) of the Smartsville 4-H Club, recently exhibited and sold his seventh steer at the Yuba-Sutter Fair. As a way to market his steer, Williams, like many other exhibitors, hand-delivers letters to businesses and community members who will potentially support the Junior Livestock Auction. Such tasks develop public speaking and communication skills, and remind young people to keep the primary goal in sight. “The most important part of raising a steer is creating a quality product for the buyer,” says Williams. “It's a lot of fun and I've learned a lot, but it is definitely hard work.”
Upcoming educational opportunity:
Youth and adults looking for additional resources, can visit the 4-H Youth Development Program for free curriculum and project sheets pertaining to animal and environmental sciences. Guides for livestock care can be found for several animal species through the UC Davis, Veterinary Medicine Extension program.
- Author: Maddison Easley
Last week the Sierra Foothill Research and Extension Center was fortunate to host a group of high school-aged 4-H students and adults for a short tour of our facilities. About half of the group was visiting from Wisconsin through an exchange program and noticed the significant difference in landscape and ecosystem types. The other portion of the group members were locals involved with Yuba-Sutter 4-H. We discussed the role of the REC system, focusing on our own Center and why it is important to have research facilities available. Previous projects, such as the Forbes Hill Oak Clearing, were talked about and visually showcased. The tour concluded at the charming Yuba River Education Center, following a short hike on one of our nature trails.
It was a relaxing, educational, and enjoyable interaction with young aspiring minds and devoted adults. The staff at SFREC are looking forward to the next engagement involving 4-Hers or other local youth. Conservation, cooperation, communication, and commitment. These are four concepts that were highlighted that I hope our visitors will remember, practice, and share.
- Author: Jeremy James
SFREC was in need of a pair of interested, capable, and flexible hands for the summer to help with a renewed effort to communicate the broad array of activities currently underway and outline the many opportunities for research, education and outreach at the Center. We were fortunate to hire Maddison Easley for the job. With strong roots in the local agricultural community and an accomplished Agricultural Communications student at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, she is a perfect fit for the position.
1) Communicate what SFREC has to offer researchers, educators and the broader agricultural community
2) Connect those interested in rangeland management, watersheds, beef management, and other focused agricultural and natural resource based topics with SFREC
3) Confirm relationships to encourage long-lasting, mutually beneficial partnerships
When asked about a guiding philosophy for her career development Maddison quoted Ralph Waldo Emerson, “Unless you try to do something beyond what you have already mastered, you will never grow.” Many of us can relate to this mindset as a stimulus of agricultural innovation and the larger entrepreneurial mindset driving our agricultural and natural resource communities. She is off to great things, wish her well when you have a chance.