I watched it devour a whole nest of tent caterpillars. Yellow-billed Cuckoos, we need a lot more of them - they prefer to eat hairy caterpillars like the eastern tent caterpillar that defoliate trees. The Yellow-billed Cuckoo, Coccyzus americanus, sometimes called the rain crow, nests and forages in the riparian forests along our...
There are many harbingers of Spring in Swoope; the yellow blooms of daffodils and forsythia, the sounds of spring peepers, and pastures changing from brown to green are only a few. My favorite harbinger of Spring is the arrival of Tree Swallows, Tachycineta bicolor. I start looking for them in late February....
Note: The text of this post became an OPED piece distributed by the Bay Journal News Service on 10/17/2017. Click here to view or download the pdf of the article. USA Today published it on 10/19/17
While we often hear of new technology to address climate change, it is important to remember that farmers have been keeping carbon out of the atmosphere for countless generations. In what is sometimes called “carbon farming,” carbon dioxide is captured by plants and stored in the soil. Trees turn carbon...
America's Most Successful and Largest Conservation Program on HOLD. The Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) - America’s most successful and largest conservation program on private, “working” lands is on hold, except for CREP (but not in Virginia, I'll explain later). Earlier this month USDA instructed its county offices to process only...
The downstream and upstream pictures in this post were published by the Bay Journal in William Funk's article "Virginia Faulted for Handling of Cattle Pollution in Shenandoah". Cattle Destroy Streams and the Aquatic Ecosystem. Livestock that have access to streams and rivers pollute the water with their manure and urine....
This blog post was modified to become an oped piece for the Bay Journal News Service. They distributed it on March 7, 2017. USA Today published it on March 17th as "Want a cleaner river? Keep cow pies out, plant trees". E. Coli Cut By One Third One of the most...
Shandong Tranlin, a Chinese company, wants to buy crop residues to make paper products. Farmers may be selling the most important ingredient for soil health to Shandong Tranlin. Shandong Tranlin, a multi-national, Chinese company, operates as Vastly in the US. They are building a $2 billion paper making plant in...
Want To Know What Sustainability Is? The Cistercian monks of the Holy Cross Abbey in Berryville, Virginia are on a journey to maintain the monastery, their way of life and a 1,200-acre farm on the Shenandoah River. Saving Place Saving Grace is a documentary about a community on a path to sustainability....
“Bobby calls Jeanne ‘the Princess of Swoope’ with good reason. Her life as a pearl-earring-wearing, calf-roping cattle farmer unfolds in these hilarious, tragic, and beautiful stories in this uniquely written book.
This is a fun read that will make you laugh and cry. It will compel you to be more observant of nature and to be a better steward of land, soil, water, and animals.”
Scott NordstromLarge Animal Veterinarian & Cattle Farmer
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