UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Those who want to learn more about raising sheep or goats in southwestern Pennsylvania can attend workshops sponsored by Penn State Extension, the state Department of Agriculture, Fayette County Community Action Agency and Republic Food Enterprise Center.
Four free workshops will be held in November and December. Each will run 6-9:30 p.m. and include a light dinner. Locations and dates are:
• Greene County — Wednesday, Nov. 29, at the Greene County Fairgrounds 4-H Building in Waynesburg.
• Washington County — Thursday, Nov. 30, at the West Alexander Presbyterian Church in West Alexander.
• Indiana County — Wednesday, Dec. 6, at the Penn State Extension office in Indiana.
• Somerset County — Sunday, Dec. 17, at the Laurel Highlands Animal Health Reproduction Facility in Rockwood.
Featured topics will include an overview of sheep and goat production practices, including where to find sheep or goats to purchase as well as selection principles.
Another will cover preparing animals for breeding through flushing and assessing breeding soundness, plus how to handle breeding and lambing or kidding issues.
“Proper feeding and nutrition are key to profitable production, and to keeping sheep and goats healthy,” said Melanie Barkley, Penn State Extension educator. “Common health issues, such as internal parasites and diseases, is another presentation topic.”
Marketing, finances and local grant opportunities will conclude the presentations.
Barkley or Walt Bumgarner, a Penn State Extension educator based in Fayette County, will cover most of the topics at the workshop.
Amy Manko, senior coordinator for sheep, goats and lambs for Republic Food Enterprise, will talk about local grant opportunities for new producers.
Registration is requested no later than a week before the meeting. To register, visit http://extension.psu.edu/so-you-want-to-raise-sheep-or-goats or call the Bedford County Extension office at 814-623-4800.