Maryland Milk Moos Newsletter Header
Updated: January 19, 2022

December 17, 2021  |  Volume 2, Issue 4


Despite the mild weather over the last week, winter is finally here! Fluctuating temperatures are hard on all animals, particularly when temperatures go from below freezing to well-above freezing in a single day. Be sure to watch out for signs of respiratory illness and digestive disorders.

Don’t forget to sign-up for the FSA’s Dairy Margin Coverage (DMC) program for 2022 before February 18th. USDA has made several updates to the program for 2022 and MDA has announced that it will cover premiums for 2022 enrollment. Visit for more details.

Next month, there will be a Technology (bus) Tour to Kutztown, PA, sponsored by AMS Galaxy. See page 19 for additional details about that event as well other educational opportunities.

In this issue, we focus on farmland transition, winter calf management, management of high fertilizer prices, and updates on the dairy extension team’s recent grazing study with bred heifers. If there is a specific topic that you would like for us to focus on in future issues, please contact me (; 301-432-2767 ext. 324).

Best wishes for a Happy New Year in 2022!

Best Regards,
Sarah Potts Extension Specialist, Dairy & Beef


Farmland Transition

By Jeff Semler Extension Educator, Washington County

Depending on your source, it is estimated 40% to 70% of family farms will transition over the next 15 years, and 80% of the rented farmland in our country could be owned and controlled by those who didn't grow up on the farm or operate...Read more

Winter Calf Management Tips for Mitigating Illness

By Sarah Potts, Extension Specialist, Dairy & Beef

Although in our region we are not typically subjected to the brutally cold winters that are characteristic of the Upper Midwest, we are challenged by temperatures that fluctuate dramatically throughout the winter months. It is not...Read more

Research Update: Effect of an Improved Grazing Management System on Dairy Heifer Performance

By Amanda Grev,  Extension Specialist, Forage and Sarah Potts,  Extension Specialist, Dairy & Beef

This past spring, we initiated a study at the Central Maryland Research and Education Center Clarksville Dairy farm to investigate the effects of improved grazing management on bred heifer performance. The objectives were to determine the effect of improved grazing management on heifer...Read more

Managing Soil Fertility in Times of High Prices

By Amanda Grev, Ph.D. Extension Specialist, Forage

Fertilizer prices have continued to climb, with prices increasing as much as 76 to 151% within the last year alone (Figure 1). Current predictions are that fertilizer prices are expected to remain elevated for at least the next six...Read more

Potomac Edison Agriculture Incentives

Are you interested in reducing your energy consumption and saving money on your electric bill?  Potomac Edison's Energy Solutions for Business Program offers incentives to their Maryland commercial and industrial customers for installing high-efficiency agricultural equipment.  Incentives cover up to 50% of the total project cost and are available for:

  • Automatic milker takeoffs
  • Dairy scroll compressors
  • Dairy refrigeration tune-up
  • Engine block heater timers
  • Heat reclaimers
  • High-efficiency ventilation fans
  • Livestock waterers
  • Low-pressure irrigation
  • VFDs on dairy vacuum pumps

For a full listing of eligible measures and incentives, please visit

For questions, please contact Melissa Felton at or 443-529-0855

Events & Announcements

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Maryland Milk Moos is a quarterly newsletter published by the University of Maryland Extension that is focused on dairy topics related to Nutrition and Production, Herd Management, and Forage Production. To view previous editions click here...

Comments and suggestions regarding the newsletter are always welcome. References to commercial products or trade names are made with the understanding that no discrimination is intended and no endorsement by the University of Maryland Extension is implied. Articles and photographs may be reprinted with permission.

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