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GILLETT - Mention milk production in Wisconsin and nearly everyone thinks of Holsteins, Jerseys, and maybe a few other breeds of cattle.  However, there are other species that can share in the limelight.  

Dairy goat herds in Northeast Wisconsin continue to grow both in number and size, as more processors utilize goat’s milk for cheese and other products.

To provide both commercial farms and 4-H and FFA members up-to-date information on nutrition, parasite control and reproduction, UW-Extension in Marinette, Oconto, and Shawano Counties are hosting a Goat Production Clinic from 9:45 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 17, at the Gillett Community Center (200 East Main Street, next to the Gillett Library). 

All attendees will take part in the morning topics of discussion: Nutrition Basics and FAMACHA.  Dwayne Splan, Owner – Splan Nutrition Consulting, LLC, will review ‘Nutrition Basics for the Dairy Goat Herd’ to start the day, sharing his experience on ration development and ensuring you are meeting your herd’s nutritional needs.  

The last half of the morning will focus on parasite management, specifically the FAMACHA method of sheep and goat parasite management decision-making. Gene Schriefer, Agriculture Educator, Iowa County UW-Extension, will be leading this important discussion.

After lunch, two in-depth topics will be on the docket, with attendees choosing one.  

Dr. Vicky Lauer, Professional Services Veterinarian with Animart, LLC., will be sharing methods and management techniques on ‘Improving Breeding and Kidding’ in the goat herd.  

The other topic choice will be ‘Getting the Most from your Pastures’, facilitated by Scott Reuss, Marinette County UW-Extension Agriculture Educator. This discussion will feature techniques to get started in an efficient grazing system, and how to maximize both forage productivity potential and animal productivity of meat and dairy goats, with high applicability to sheep producers, as well.

The cost of the event is $30 and includes lunch and materials. The registration fee will be waived for local 4-H and FFA youth members that show goat or sheep at one of the three host counties’ fairs and who pre register with the Oconto UW-Extension Office.

Pre-registration is requested by calling the Oconto County UW-Extension office at 920-834-6845 or by mailing the registration form found at shawano.uwex.edu/upcoming-events.  

Walk-in registration will be accepted, but may include a late fee of $10. 

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