4-H’s Small Animal Symposium in Clayton a Hands-on Learning Experience

It wasn’t just the rabbits that were bright-eyed and bushy-tailed at Saturday morning’s Small Animal Educational Symposium — so too were the young 4-H members eager to learn more about caring for their little friends… Attendees from nine New Jersey counties who came to the Gloucester County complex, in Clayton, received first-hand lessons on fundamentals like poultry showmanship as well as preparing rabbits and cavy (think guinea pigs and the like) for judging… Now in its second year, the event put little critters in the spotlight and sometimes on the table while the finer points of their health and handling were taught. Other event attractions included a rabbit-hopping competition and a "Health Check 101" seminar.

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Barbara O’Neill Provides Saving for College Tips Via Tweetchat Forum

iStock_000007697683XLargeOn February 19, Rutgers Cooperative Extension Specialist in Financial Resource Management Barbara O’Neill was a guest “chatter” on WiseBread, a blog for millenials about “living large on a small budget.” O’Neill emphasized in the forum that even modest savings are helpful. “Any amount of college is better than none. what U can now & ramp it up over time ,” tweeted O’Neill. The Tweetchat engaged a wide audience, involving 78 contributors, 1262 tweets, 213,972 reach and 6,587,368 impressions. Read more highlights from the Tweetchat at WiseBread.

Delaware Estuary Summit Charts Course for Aquaculture in the Region

Farm-raised oysters in New Jersey ready for market.

Farm-raised oysters in New Jersey ready for market. Photo by Lisa Calvo.

Managers, educators, and oyster farmers gathered at Cape May’s Grand Hotel late last month for a special session, “Shellfish Culture Now and Tomorrow: Charting a Course for Delaware Estuary Aquaculture,” held in conjunction with the Delaware Estuary Science and Environmental Summit. The Partnership for the Delaware Estuary has hosted the summit every two years since 2005 and it has become as important conference for a variety of stakeholders whose work focuses on the estuary.

The special session about shellfish aquaculture originated with Daphne Munroe, assistant professor at the Haskin Shellfish Research Laboratory (HSRL). Munroe worked with summit organizers and HSRL colleague Lisa Calvo, aquaculture program coordinator, to develop and host the session, which included overviews of shellfish aquaculture in New Jersey and Delaware and an extensive discussion period that engaged conference participates and invited panelists. [Read more…]

Former Rutgers Police Horse Wins “Horse Personality of the Year” Award

Lord Nelson  Courtesy of Lord Nelson blog

Lord Nelson. Photo courtesy of Lord Nelson blog.

Lord Nelson, a former Rutgers University Police Horse, won the inaugural “Horse Personality of the Year” award at the Annual Breeders Awards luncheon, hosted by the New Jersey Department of Agriculture on  January 25.

The 42-year old American Quarter horse was purchased in 1978 by the Rutgers Equine Science Center (ESC). Until his retirement in 2000, Lord Nelson served the university’s Department of Public Safety as a mounted patrol horse as well as help carry the Scarlet Knight mascot across the field at Rutgers football games.

Following his retirement, Lord Nelson became the centerpiece of an interactive youth component called “Equine Science 4 Kids” on the ESC’s website. The site features youth-friendly information on the horse industry and focuses on topics like nutrition, physiology and the environment. Lord Nelson’s inaugural “Horse Personality of the Year” award recognized his commitment to educating young horse enthusiasts. [Read more…]

Rutgers Master Gardeners of Somerset County Helpline Office Opens March 2

The Rutgers Master Gardeners of Somerset County, a volunteer organization of the New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station, are busy getting ready to open the Helpline office in Bridgewater on March 2… The Rutgers Master Gardener Helpline volunteers provide materials and information necessary to obtain a proper soil sample for analysis from Rutgers’ labs, soil pH testing, lawn care and plant, tree and shrub identification, advice about the right plant for the right place and recommendations on deer resistant plant material. With suitable samples, the Master Gardeners can also diagnose plant diseases, identify insects, weeds and other pests of the home and garden and give written advice about cultural recommendations for their control following Integrated Pest Managements techniques.

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