I think we should all be on here to communicate with one another and help one another get what we want if at all possible. So, for fun, let's communicate to each other about what we WANT MOST for our operations....
If you could make one wish for something-ANYTHING- for your operation, what would you wish for?
I will go first. I want equipment that burns Nat Gas instead of Diesel.
More good, experienced labor. Got too much to do and not enough time and people to get it done. Good help is hard to find. It can be especially hard sometimes because we are near a city and a lot of time we can't compete with the "city" jobs (benefits, pay etc.) People will work but if you have them do something they don't really like doing (shoveling manure, etc.) or get on them too hard for breaking something that could be prevented with more knowledge and experience, they can just leave and find a job in the city. It's a fine line to walk.
AGREED. Unfortunately, experienced laborers tend to feel like the grunt work is for the rookie's and indirectly refuse it. Sometimes directly too. I have had guys that literally just take a hike when delegated a task they feel superior to. I'm not familiar with your area and worker regulations etc., but, if you would like, I would be glad to pass on some ideas that have helped a lot of my partners in this regard.
A cure for PRRS. I think if you eliminated that you could treat the rest of the diseases and crap that comes with it including human stress. I know its stretching a lot considering there are over 350 strains of it but that's my wish.
I like the ambition behind your wish! If only I was smart enough to come close to curing it. I have heard great things about the vet group from NC State and the McREBEL procedures to help with that.
We use Bob Blume (I think I killed his last name) from AMVC. AMVC feed somwhere around 70,000 sows and are continuing to study PRRS. A couple years ago they had a color coded map of all the farmers they work with. They pin-pointed each strain and colored the map and surprisingly our nieghbors each had a different characteristic in the same strain. Meaning it mutated in that mile distance. So we couldn't blame the neighbor for spreading it and everything around is modern confinement so it isnt direct or even in-direct contact from birds or large varmits or even air distributed. Around here psudorabies and PRRS took out the small farrowing operations-stress from it all.
AMVC looks to be a great company. I could be very wrong, but my initial thought when reading this(mutation in 1 mile radius) was Aerosols or insects. Sounds like its putting a lot of stress on your entire area. Have they developed feed with preventative nutrients or antibiotics for it yet? I am very interested in this now. My company works with many cattle/horse farms, but I have only done nutrient management for my hog guys row crops. Please educate me my man. What solutions are working etc.?
I feel like if we knew what the isolates were for the separate strains, a reverse bio-chemical filtering system could be engineered to at least prevent it from reaching confinement areas.
We got hit big time a couple years ago in farrowing and gestating (for some reason we dont have issues with growers or finishers other than stuff you get with PRRS like mulberry heart or lung issues. But even then the percentage is low. So Bob gave us three choices same as what they were doing; you could not do anything and let it take its course. You could blood test baby pigs who look infected and isolate it and spin it into a serium and shoot the entire sow herd to get everyone sick at the same time. (It works like the flu in that everyone in the family could get sick at the same time or one or two people don't get sick but everyone else does.) The third option is to buy the modified live virus and infect the herd with what could be a new strain to them. We went with option two and we bought gilts to counter-balance the potential swing, boy was that terrible. By the time we got the serium back we were at about 60%-70% death loss (baby pigs)in the farrowing out of 84 sows so we knew we were hot but when we shot everybody we ended up killing 5 gilts 3 more were sterile and abortion throughout was horrible. We did recover after about a year and then it started to spike again but the strain was closer to the modified live virus so we shot the sows again and had no reaction. We thought that was odd but Bob reasured us that with their testing they were coming across that too. So I just shot everyone again with PRRS (this will be the 4 time. Its a 6 month shot.) with a little reaction each time. We are not sure if it is working but we haven't seen that spike that we had which is what Bob said is what our target should be.
Wow. My heart goes out to ya bud. I am humbled by things like this as I have been whinin about my corn's situation back home in Kentucky this year( about to nearly forfeit 1100 acres if no rain in the next week or so). I am very interested now in talking with my bio engineers to see about developing something(feed or liquid) that targets the development of immunity bacteria to counter-act in the sows to at least reduce risk or enhance the recovery. With this thing runnin rampid is it becoming next to impossible to let a herd out of confinement into pasture?
Large enough and paid off so I could do it full time. :)
I want to find a way to make our farm profitable enough so that i can do it full time. We have 250 acres of flood irrigated ground and 180 acres of non-irrigated dryland alfalfa with about 700 acres of crp. I just wish i could run numbers and figure out a way to make it be a full time operation.. I am currently running it while going to college majoring in Ag Education.