LISBON - Cornell Cooperative Extension of St. Lawrence County is organizing a drive-yourself tour July 30 at Five Mile Farm, a dairy operation that also raises beef, at 227 Five Mile Line Road in Lisbon. Organizers describe the farm as a progressive beef operation; the tour will include time for discussion.
A few years ago Mark Akins and his family added on to their dairy freestall barn to provide an area to feed out the Angus beef calves that his son Ryan and daughter Allison were raising as part of a cow-calf operation. Their timing was very good because beef prices increased and have stayed high for the last few years.
The beef barn is designed with a very open ridge roof and gated pens that make it possible to move the calves to a handling area for weighing and other tasks. The calves are fed excess feed from the dairy operation and finish at the age of 16 months at about 1,300 lbs.
The Akins also feed out purchased calves. In the future, they hope to raise enough calves themselves by breeding their low group dairy cows to an Angus bull.
The 2012 Census of Agriculture counts 12,077 beef animals across the Northern New York region of Clinton, Essex, Franklin, Jefferson, Lewis and St. Lawrence counties.
The free tour will begin at the farm at 6:30 p.m. For more information, contact Cornell Cooperative Extension Livestock Educator Betsy Hodge at 315-379-9192 or firstname.lastname@example.org.