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Seeding in Alberta complete, forage growers struggle with dry weather

Alberta Crop Report: Conditions as of June 11

With the exception of a few feed crops, seeding is essentially finished in Alberta. Producers are actively spraying and scouting fields. Areas of concern vary from smoke and frost in the north to flea beetles and cutworms in other pockets of the province. In the week ending June 11 there were rainfall events providing 15 […] Read more

Thirteen-year-old Liam Christian developed a biodigester that can convert horse manure into enough energy to power an electric horse fence.

Innisfail-area teen gives new meaning to ‘horsepower’

4-H Science Fair project generates renewable energy

One Innisfail-area teen has turned horse manure into horsepower, thanks to an innovative 4-H Science Fair project of his own design. “I wanted to see if the average daily manure produced by one horse would be enough to power electric horse fencing using a biodigester,” said 13-year-old Liam Christian. “I found out that, yes, actually, […] Read more


Canadian farm net cash income fell 20.7 per cent to $11.6 billion, according to Statistics Canada,

Alberta producers see incomes drop by $1 billion last year

Flat revenue, higher expenses squeeze farmers

No matter how you measure it, Canadian and Alberta farm income took a big, double-digit, hit in 2018. The two biggest culprits were flat revenues, in part because of trade restrictions, and higher expenses, including for commercial feed, interest and machinery fuel. For 2018, Canadian farm net cash income fell 20.7 per cent to $11.6 […] Read more

For the third year running, Viterra is providing land at Stettler and two other Alberta terminals for growing projects.

Long-running growing project finds land at last moment

It was a close call, but one of the country’s longest-running Canadian Foodgrains Bank growing projects has successfully seeded its 24th crop. “We did not secure this 70 acres until May 6, which is very late,” Doug Maas, a member of the Central Alberta Growing Project committee, said in an email. “Our committee was looking […] Read more


Beef web resource being preserved

Information that had been available on foragebeef.ca is gradually being added to beefresearch.ca. The Beef Cattle Research Council has been reviewing “hundreds of pages” of information that have been available on foragebeef.ca, an Alberta Agriculture website that the ministry is no longer able to maintain. The council is updating information before moving it over to […] Read more

Some producers use rubber hoses as insulators at the corners and ends of an electric fence, as pictured on the left. Jason Williams says doing this defeats the purpose of insulation as most “rubber” hoses are actually made of carbon, which acts as a conductor. Instead, use proper, store-bought insulators as pictured on the right.

Don’t be shocked when electric fences underperform

Undersized wire, rusty rebar, and ‘rubber’ hoses are common mistakes on many ranches

Want to hear a Captain Obvious statement? Electric fences need to be able to shock animals enough to keep livestock in and predators out. The reality is many electric fences are not up to this basic task. Just ask Jason Williams, who tours the country teaching producers ways to make their electric fences more effective. […] Read more



One weather forecaster predicts rainfall totals will be near normal across much of Alberta while another outlook forecasts a ‘hotter-than-usual summer’ on the Prairies.

Weather forecast calls for normal rainfall

But as with anything, there is an opposite outlook

The Weather Network is predicting Alberta will see slightly above-normal temperatures this summer but possibly above-normal rainfall in the south. “A changeable summer is expected across Alberta with back-and-forth temperature swings that come close to offsetting each other,” it said in its forecast for June to August. “Rainfall totals are expected to be near normal […] Read more


Bov-Innovation will offer a session on reducing drought impact through grazing and forage management.

Drugs and drought on the beef agenda

Alternatives to antibiotics and dealing with drought are on the agenda at this year’s Bov-Innovation. The event, part of the Canadian Beef Industry Conference in Calgary in August, will feature Coaldale vet and rancher Steve Hendrick talking about ways to prevent illness and infections. University of Saskatchewan professor, John McKinnon will speak about balancing rations, […] Read more

This sort of work is risky and should be done outside.

Simple steps for avoiding the nightmare of a barn fire

Annual electrical inspections, hard-wiring equipment, and good housekeeping are proven risk reducers

A barn fire can be one of the most distressing disasters on a farm — no amount of insurance can rectify the loss when livestock are killed this way. Although there are fewer barn fires today, the pure destruction factor has never been higher. Ontario had 89 barn fires from 2014 to 2018, but the […] Read more


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