Company is growing steak without the cow – CNN

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Wisconsin firefighters rescued a cow from a swimming pool (and there's a photo to prove it) – Appleton Post Crescent

A cow in a swimming pool. You don’t see that every day. 

The Ettrick Fire Department had such an honor Tuesday. The Madison-based CBS affiliate WISC-TV Channel 3000 reported the volunteer department was called to rescue the bathing bovine in the village of Ettrick. 

Ettrick is home to about 500 people and is about 40 miles north of La Crosse. 

The photo, as you might have guessed, has been a hit on Facebook. A post from WKBT News8000 has more than 2,500 shares since yesterday. And you bet there are wisecracks in the comments.

For those concerned, there was a happy ending to the ordeal. The cow was safely removed from the pool.

Contact Shane Nyman at 920-996-7223 or Follow him on Twitter at @shanenyman.

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Must-see: Cow rescued after taking unexpected dip in Wisconsin swimming pool – FOX13 Memphis


Maybe she just wanted a break from the summer heat?

>> Read more trending news

According to WKBT, firefighters in Ettrick, Wisconsin, came to the rescue Tuesday when a cow unexpectedly took a dip in a swimming pool off Whalen Road.

In a Facebook post, the news station shared a photo of the black-and-white cow standing in the water as firefighters look on.

“A ‘Mool’? No, that’s udderly ridiculous, it’s a pool with a cow in it!” WKBT captioned the photo, which has been shared more than 1,800 times. 

>> See the post here

A ‘Mool’? No, that’s udderly ridiculous, it’s a pool with a cow in it! The Ettrick Fire Department responded to a cow in a pool on Whalen Road today. The cow was safely returned home.

Posted by WKBT News8000 on Tuesday, August 20, 2019

The station didn’t offer further details about how rescuers were able to moo-ve the bovine, which “was safely returned home,” the post said.

The Ettrick Fire Department seemed to take it all in stride.

“Well, we made the news I guess, lol,” the department responded in its own post, adding, “At least we got her out safe.”

>> See the post here

Well we made the news I guess lol, at least we got her out safe

Posted by Ettrick Fire Department on Tuesday, August 20, 2019

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Improving cow comfort does not have to be expensive – Hoard's Dairyman

It has been said that you cannot manage what you cannot measure. To many, cow comfort is not something that is easy to evaluate. However, there are audits and scoring programs to help producers gauge their current facilities and determine where changes can be made.

Lindsay Ferlito, Cornell Cooperative Extension, works with producers to help them understand how their facility ranks for cow comfort. She presented “Monitoring and improving cow comfort in freestalls and tie stalls”as the August Hoard’s Dairyman webinar.

A common condition known as “barn blindness” occurs when an owner or employee is used to seeing the operation daily and does not notice when housing situations (or other items) have deteriorated. But, a fresh set of eyes from a third-party auditor can bring items to the attention of management that they may have overlooked.

Ferlito and her colleagues assessed cow comfort in freestall and tie stall barns. Items they monitored included lameness, injuries, lying time, stocking density, milk production, and overall health. The purpose of these evaluations was to determine cow comfort. Or, as Ferlito asked, “What is the cow telling us about their surroundings?”

Their research showed that herds that underwent an audit and received feedback then took the suggestions and made improvements. So, the audit was beneficial to the farm and ultimately the cows. Additionally, consumers want the confidence that the dairy products they are purchasing were produced under good animal handling practices.

What factors were included in these evaluations? Cows were scored for hygiene and body condition scoring (BCS), as well as hock, knee, and neck abrasions. From these scores, improvements can be made in stall design, headlock (or neck rail) position, bedding, and feed management.

When scores for cow comfort are positive, the herd is more profitable. Ferlito reminded listeners that not all changes in cow comfort have to include a huge financial output, like building a new barn, but subtle changes can make an impact. For example, on the farms they studied, increasing the amount of bedding in the stalls improved resting time, which in turn drove production upward.

Producers made favorable comments when they have had their herd evaluated. They appreciated an unbiased opinion and used the information to make improvements. In one instance, the evaluator provided insight that helped the producer identify lameness issues sooner, therefore minimizing the loss in production and stress to the cow.

Suggestions for stall width, length, and bedding surfaces are provided in the webinar. Surprisingly, few herds in Ferlito’s study had the desired dimensions.

Ferlito provided five case studies, looking at both freestall and tie stall facilities. To learn more about the specifics of the studies, you can watch the webinar.

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Adam Lock

Join us next month

Adam Lock, Michigan State University, will present “Incorporating supplemental fatty acids in dairy rations” on Monday, September 9, at noon (Central time).

Dairy cows at different stages of lactation respond differently to combinations of supplemental fatty acids. Lock will discuss how this knowledge can effectively be applied to the feeding and management of high producing cows.

Patti Hurtgen

The author is the online media manager and is responsible for the website, webinars, and social media. A graduate of Modesto Junior College and Fresno State, she was raised on a California dairy and frequently blogs on youth programs and consumer issues.

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At this upstate New York farm you can cuddle a therapy cow for $75 an hour – CNBC

The therapist will see you now — in the barn. 

At Mountain Horse Farm, a 33-acre bed-and-breakfast in upstate New York, visitors can brush, pet, play and snuggle with therapy cows during hour-long “cow cuddling” sessions priced at $75 per couple. A trained equine therapist and and a farm employee join each therapy session. No prior experience with animals is necessary and participants are simply asked to sign a waiver and wear closed-toe shoes.

Suzanne Vullers, who co-owns the farm with her husband, tells CNBC Make It that while visitors range in age from 12 to 75, sessions with the cows are especially popular among millennials.

“The younger generation lives and has grown up in a technology-filled world where lots of interactions are via a screen,” Vullers says. “It’s easy to get disconnected from nature and animals, but we need those things to stay healthy and happy. Spending time on our farm where it’s beautiful and quiet and where you can connect with soulful horses and cows can help [with] restoring that connection with the natural world.”

Photo courtesy of Mountain Horse Farm

The farm’s Horse & Cow Experience also offers wellness sessions with miniature horses for people suffering from stress, anxiety, grief and loss. While horses tend to stand, the farm’s two Scottish Highlander cross-bred cows, Bonnie and Bella, often lie down in the grass – and visitors are encouraged to join them.

Animal-based therapy overall continues to be an overwhelming wellness and mental health trend with businesses catering to goat yoga and emotional support animals extending beyond just the usual dog to ducks and alligators.

According to a 2011 report from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the National Health Center for Health Statistics, almost 60% of hospice care providers who offer complementary and alternative therapies suggested pet therapy to patients. That year, the National Service Animal Registry had 2,400 service and emotional support animals in its records. Today there are about 200,000 registered service and emotional support animals, The New York Times reported in June.

Human-animal interaction is known to lower stress and boost social skills, and science backs the benefits of specifically cuddling cows. Similar to meditation, hugging a cow can slow your heart rate and lower anxiety. According to NPR, “the body temperature of a cow is higher than humans’, and their heart rate lower, so cuddling up with one is relaxing.”

For those at Mountain Horse Farm, cow cuddling can be just what one needs to feel a bit more at ease. “It may bring relaxation, reduce anxiety, help you find answers to life questions and simply make you happy,” Vullers says.

The farm’s Horse & Cow Experience sessions are offered May 1st through October 31st.

Like this story? Subscribe to CNBC Make It on YouTube!

Don’t miss: This woman’s goat yoga business is bringing in 6 figures

Photo courtesy of Mountain Horse Farm

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Cow Gut DNA Study Finds Bugs that Could Up Meat and Milk Yields – Drovers Magazine

Cutting-edge DNA technologies have discovered thousands of bugs in cows’ stomachs that could improve meat and dairy production, and keep cattle healthy.

The findings build the clearest picture yet of how the microbes in a cow’s rumen – the first of its four stomachs – help cattle to digest, and extract energy from, their food.

Researchers from SRUC, the University of Edinburgh’s Roslin Institute and the Rowett Institute at the University of Aberdeen analysed the rumen contents of hundreds of cows and discovered thousands of bacteria, as well as archaea – a separate group of single-celled organism.

Pinpointing which microbes are essential for livestock wellbeing and food production could inform future breeding programmes.

These microbes enable cattle, and other ruminants, to convert plants and low-value products that humans cannot eat into food with high nutritional value, such as meat, milk and cheese.

The microscopic organisms provide cattle with nutrients and energy, contribute to the animals’ health and, as a bi-product, release methane which is a concern for global warming.

The latest research follows on from a study by the same team last year, in which DNA data from 42 cows was analysed. Until this study, the diverse mix of bacteria and archaea that live in the rumen was poorly understood. Scientists had been unable to link DNA analysis to food digestion, animal health and greenhouse gas emissions.

The team used the latest DNA technologies, including a handheld sequencing device that can quickly generate DNA data that is incredibly long and detailed. This allowed the researchers to completely sequence the genomes, from beginning to end, of several new bacterial species.

They studied samples from 283 cows, identified almost 5,000 new strains of microbe and more than 2,000 novel species – microbes that previously no-one knew existed.

Hundreds of thousands of novel enzymes, whose instructions are encoded in the DNA, may have potential uses as biofuels, or in the biotechnology industries. By analysing their genetic information, the team pinpointed previously unknown enzymes that can extract energy and nutrition from plant material.

The study is published in the journal, Nature Biotechnology.

Rainer Roehe, Professor of Animal Genetics and Microbiome at SRUC, said: “We’ve identified some 5,000 novel genomes of microbial species in the rumen that all play a vital role. Not only do they enhance breeding and nutrition to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from cattle, they also improve production efficiency, product quality and animal health.”

Professor Mick Watson, Head of Genetics and Genomics at The Roslin Institute, said: “The cow rumen is a gift that keeps on giving. We were surprised by how many completely new microbes we have discovered, which is far more than in our previous study. The findings will inform studies of cow health and meat and dairy production for many years to come.”

For more on the cattle microbiome and the role of microbes in animal health, see these articles from BovineVetOnline:

Dissecting the Microbiome

Nursing Could Benefit Microbiome, Vaccine Response

USDA Funds Study of Plant and Animal Phenomics and Microbiomes

Encourage the “Good Bugs”

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Scientists want to mass-produce seaweed that stops cows burping methane – CNET


University of the Sunshine Coast Associate Professor Nicholas Paul holds up a container of the pink seaweed Asparagopsis.

University of the Sunshine Coast

In 2014, Australia’s national science agency CSIRO discovered that by adding the pink seaweed Asparagopsis to a cow’s diet, it reduces the amount of the gas produced by the cow up to 99 per cent.

Now scientists want to farm Asparagopsis on a large scale to reduce Australia’s greenhouse gas emissions — and the world’s.

University of the Sunshine Coast (USC) Associate Professor Nicholas Paul said if enough pink seaweed was grown it could help to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in Australia by an impressive 10 percent, according to ABC news on Wednesday.

“When added to cow feed at less than two percent of the dry matter, this particular seaweed completely knocks out methane production,” Paul said in a statement on Wednesday. “It contains chemicals that reduce the microbes in the cows’ stomachs that cause them to burp when they eat grass.”

The USC team headed by Paul is currently working at the Bribie Island Research Centre in Moreton Bay, Australia to learn more about how to grow the pink seaweed species to better figure out a solution to scale-up of production of the seaweed.

The best way to increase the pink seaweed supply is to find the fastest way to grow it outside of a lab.

“We know the chemical composition of Asparagopsis and we know the chemical compounds, so now we want to maximize the concentration of that chemical so we can use less seaweed for the same effect,” USC Seaweed Research Group project scientist Ana Wegner said in a video about the discovery. 

“If we’re able to work out how to scale up the seaweed to become at a level that can feed all of the cows and the sheep and the goats around the world then it’s going to have a huge impact on the climate,” Paul said in the video. 

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This Tasty Seaweed Reduces Cow Emissions by 99%—and It Could Soon Be a Climate Gamechanger – Good News Network

A puffy pink seaweed that can stop cows from burping out methane is being primed for mass farming by Australian researchers.

The particular seaweed species, called Asparagopsis, grows prolifically off the Queensland Coast, and was the only seaweed found to have the effect in a study five years ago led by CSIRO. Even a small amount of the seaweed in a cow’s diet was shown to reduce the animal’s gases by 99%.

Associate Professor Nick Paul, who is the leader of the Seaweed Research Group at the University of the Sunshine Coast (USC), said that if Australia could grow enough of the seaweed for every cow in the nation, the country could cut its greenhouse gas emissions by 10%.

“Seaweed is something that cows are known to eat. They will actually wander down to the beach and have a bit of a nibble,” Dr. Paul said.

RELATED: Student Treks to Yellowstone and Finds Bacteria That Eats Pollution and ‘Breathes’ Electricity

“When added to cow feed at less than 2% of the dry matter, this particular seaweed completely knocks out methane production. It contains chemicals that reduce the microbes in the cows’ stomachs that cause them to burp when they eat grass.”

The USC team is working at the Bribie Island Research Centre in Moreton Bay to learn more about how to grow the seaweed species, with the goal of informing a scale-up of production that could supplement cow feed on a national—and even global scale.

Photo by USC

“This seaweed has caused a lot of global interest and people around the world are working to make sure the cows are healthy, the beef and the milk are good quality,” Dr. Paul said.

“That’s all happening right now. But the one missing step, the big thing that is going to make sure this works at a global scale, is to make sure we can produce the seaweed sustainably.

LOOK: Trees Growing Out of Buildings Could Help Heal China’s Air Pollution Problem

“If we’re able to work out how to scale up the seaweed to such a level to that can feed all of the cows and the sheep and the goats around the world, then it’s going to have a huge impact on the climate; it’s going to address a whole lot of carbon-neutral agendas that different countries have; and it’s ultimately going to save us all billions of dollars,” he concluded.

This article was reprinted from the University of the Sunshine Coast.

(WATCH the intriguing interview with Dr. Paul below)

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