The Ohio Soil Health Card evaluates a soil’s health or quality as a function of soil, water, plant and other biological properties identified by farmers. The card was developed for farmers by farmers with assistance from Ohio State University Extension and the Natural Resources Conservation Service (USDA-NRCS). The card is a tool to help you monitor and improve soil health based on your own field experience and a working knowledge of your soils.
As livestock producers try to reduce their cost of production, many look at ways to reduce their feed cost. Feed costs have been identified as the largest single cost of livestock production, making up 50 to 70 percent of the total cost of production. To reduce feed cost, producers are exploring options to extend the grazing season. Typically, corn (Zea mays L.) is grown and harvested by livestock producers for either grain or silage.
Many factors need to be considered when developing watering sources for livestock. Adequate amounts of water are needed to maintain high levels of production. Limiting water intake reduces animal performance quicker and more drastically than any other nutrient deficiency (Boyles). Improving springs or seeps by excavating, cleaning, capping or providing a collection and storage area improves the distribution of water and preserves water quality.
Limitation of water intake reduces animal performance quicker and more dramatically than any other nutrient deficiency (Boyles). Water constitutes approximately 60 to 70 percent of an animal’s live weight and consuming water is more important than consuming food (Faries, Sweeten & Reagor, 1997). Domesticated animals can live about sixty days without food but only about seven days without water. Livestock should be given all the water they can drink because animals that do not drink enough water may suffer stress or dehydration.