RE: Grazing Land available

Environment Minister Scott Moe is reminding livestock producers that 90,000 acres of Fish and Wildlife Development fund (FWDF) lands are available to producers for grazing until September 15. This will enhance producers’ ability to manage potential feed shortage due to Saskatchewan’s current dry conditions.

“We know grazing and haying benefits wildlife habitat management and provides additional opportunities for producers,” Environment Minister Scott Moe said. “That is why we are pleased to make this FWDF land available and hope this helps to address the challenges some producers are facing due to dry conditions.”

Recent crop reports state that significant rain is needed to enhance hay and pasture volumes. Currently, only 24 per cent of the Saskatchewan hay crop is cut and 39 per cent is baled or put into silage. Therefore, the Ministry of Environment’s 90,000 acres of FWDF land could be a significant benefit to producers. To date, 23 Saskatchewan producers in 18 different rural municipalities have grazing agreements on FWDF lands.

The ministry has a land management trust agreement with Ducks Unlimited Canada, the Nature Conservancy of Canada and the Saskatchewan Wildlife Federation to manage all provincial FWDF lands.

“I would like to acknowledge this ongoing partnership that will maintain or improve wildlife habitat, while providing mutual benefits to the agriculture and conservation communities,” Moe said.

The FWDF land, located throughout the province, is native prairie or other grasslands, and is typically used for conservation purposes. While some of the available land has water sources and is fenced, much of the land will require temporary fencing or water. Producers who are awarded access to FWDF lands may be responsible for the cost and construction of any necessary improvements. The grazing lease fees that apply to agricultural Crown land will apply to the FWDF land, with revenues generated funding future conservation initiatives.

Visit for a list of FWDF land by rural municipality, or call 1-844-306-3933 toll-free for more information


Crop Report July 4-10, 2017

For the Period July 4 to 10, 2017

buy clomid 150mg Provincial   where can i buy neurontin online Crop Development – July 10, 2017
% Ahead % Normal % Behind
Fall Cereals 28 56 16
Spring Cereals 5 64 31
Oilseeds 3 62 35
Pulse Crops 5 75 20

The majority of crops across the province are developing normally, according to Saskatchewan Agriculture’s weekly Crop Report. Fifty-six per cent of the fall cereals, 64 per cent of the spring cereals, 62 per cent of the oilseeds and 75 per cent of the pulse crops are at their normal stages of development for this time of year. Crop conditions vary greatly across the province and have deteriorated over the past few weeks due to hot temperatures and a lack of rain.

Livestock producers now have 24 per cent of the hay crop cut and 39 per cent baled or put into silage. Hay quality is rated as 17 per cent excellent, 59 per cent good, 22 per cent fair and two per cent poor. Many hay swaths are significantly smaller than normal and pasture growth has been limited.

Although some areas received moisture this past week, many areas still need significant rainfall to help crops develop and replenish the topsoil. Rainfall ranged from negligible amounts in most areas to 80 mm in the Kelvington area. Across the province, topsoil moisture on cropland is rated as two per cent surplus, 41 per cent adequate, 46 per cent short and 11 per cent very short. Hay land and pasture topsoil moisture is rated as three per cent surplus, 32 per cent adequate, 49 per cent short and 16 per cent very short.

High temperatures and a lack of rain continue to damage crops in the province. Many southern and central areas have received less than 100 mm of moisture since April 1; some crops in these areas are short, thin and heading out and/or flowering earlier than normal due to heat stress. Significant rain is needed to help crops fill and hay and pasture to grow.

Other sources of crop damage this week include hail, localized flooding, wind and insects such as alfalfa weevils, painted lady caterpillars and wheat midge. Leaf spot diseases and root rot are also causing some damage.

Producers are haying, scouting for disease and insects, applying fungicides and hauling grain.

SaskPower received four reports of farm equipment coming in contact with power lines last week. Two of these reports involved spraying equipment. SaskPower reminds producers to be aware of their surroundings at all times.

Livestock Water Quality

Livestock Water Quality

A number of factors affect the quality of surface water sources.  Nutrient loading from spring or summer run-off,  little to no re-charge from a dry spring, animal impact from direct cattle watering, and sub-surface soil or water salinity, are but a few of the possibilities.

Many dugouts located in saline areas may be fed from the bottom with saline ground water but will also benefit in terms of both quality and quantity from spring run-off.  The water in these dugouts, has naturally high mineral levels to start with and, without fresh water recharge, and through the mineral concentration effects of evaporation, you may find that the mineral content is elevated to levels that are not suitable for use by fall. The only way to know for sure about the mineral content of these water sources is to have water tests done by a lab.

Table 1 shows levels of some parameters and effects on cattle.

drizzly Table 1. Water quality interpretation chart for livestock use  (Courtesy Alberta Agriculture) Item Analyzed Water content (mg/L or ppm) Usefulness for cattle, sheep, or horses
 Total Dissolved Solids
<1000 Acceptable
1,001-3,000 Acceptable
3,001-5,000* Acceptable
may cause diarrhea
may reduce performance and affect health of calves at higher levels
5,001-7,000 Poor
higher levels cause diarrhea especially in lactating cows
avoid use for pregnant and/or lactating cows
test for sulphates
 7,001-10,000 Poor
older animals may subsist on it for longer periods
do not use for pregnant or lactating cattle or young animals
sulphates likely high
 >10,000  Unsuitable
 Sulphates (SO4)
Measured as SO4  <125 Acceptable
Part of Epsom salts (MgSO4)  <500 Acceptable
tolerance of cattle to sulphur in water depends on the level in feed
Additive effect with sodium chloride
They should be added together when water quality is evaluated.
 501-1,000 Acceptable
diarrhoea or refusal of water by animals not accustomed to it
500 to 800 mg/L may affect calves inducing a trace mineral deficiency
trace mineral deficiencies can cause depressed growth rate, fertility and depressed immune response
decreased performance in feedlot cattle
1,000 mg/L recommended maximum if feed level is high or temperature is high
1,001-2,500 Poor
sporadic cases of polio seen in feedlot cattle
performance reduced
2,000 mg/L> can cause diarrhoea and reduced milk production in dairy cows
high levels of sulphates can also contribute to copper deficiencies in beef and diary cattle
>2,500 Unsuitable
sporadic cases of polio are highly probable in feedlot cattle
performance of feedlot cattle reduced
performance of grazing cattle may be affected
unsuitable for lactating dairy cows
greater than 4,000 mg/L dangerous health problems expected

If you encounter poor quality water, there may be options available to you:

  • Switching to a source of better quality water, or using the better quality water to dilute the minerals in the poor water;
  • Pumping the dugout full from somewhere else, although you need to be aware of the quality of the water at the other site;
  • Trucking high quality water from another source and mixing to dilute the minerals in the poor quality water, although costly, may also work; or
  • If your herd is large enough, it may be less costly (per cow per year) in the long run to look into installation of a water treatment system.

If trucking or piping water becomes a necessity, following are some guidelines for drinking water requirements for various sizes of animals. These will be useful when trying to determine the size of water storage required.  Keep in mind that water requirements increase at higher temperatures.

  • Cows – 67.5 L (15 gallons) for nursing cows; 54 L (12 gallons) for bred dry cows and heifers.
  • Bulls – 54 L (12 gallons).
  • Growing cattle – 45 L (8 gallons) for 400 lb. animal; 45 L (10) for 600 lb.; 54 L (12), for 800 lb.
  • Finishing cattle – 85.5 L (19 gallons) for 400 – 1,200 lb. animal.

Keeping stock out of the water source will increase water available as well as increase quality of the water. There are a number of ways to accomplish this but no perfect system fits all situations.

Table 2 briefly describes these alternatives.

Access Ramps Improves access and preserves slopes on water site and will limit nutrients entering from manure and urine. Some improvement in quality is likely to occur.
Nose Pumps Lower cost than some systems, but require animals to become accustomed to them.  Need one for every 25 to 30 animals.  May need more than are recommended by the manufacturer.
Gravity Flow Reservoirs More costly and requires some excavation to build. Not suited to all sites, as water must flow downhill from water source to trough.
Solar Pumping Stations Work in remote locations. Relatively expensive and requires storage batteries and water storage.
Windmills Work in remote locations and require little maintenance. High variability in winds means that water storage is necessary.

Every individual watering site may have characteristics that make it more suitable to one system or another.  As a result, consultation with others is a good idea prior to developing some alternative systems. These systems will have benefits in subsequent years through better quality water and longer watering site lifespan. For assistance in water site development and equipment requirements contact your local PFRA office.

Staff in the Ministry of Agriculture Regional Offices can assist with interpretation of water test results, and provide information on management options.

Celebrity Cook-Off with Saskatchewan food


July 11, 2017

Celebrity Cook-off features community leaders having fun with Saskatchewan foods

(SASKATOON, SK) A Taste of Saskatchewan, presented by Conexus Credit Union, kicks off today with two incredible cooking demonstrations on the Farm & Food Care Saskatchewan Chef’s Series Stage.

The Chef’s Series is a cooking demonstration and chef competition that takes place all week long during A Taste of Saskatchewan in Kiwanis Park, Saskatoon. For the third year, Taste of Saskatchewan organizer SaskTel Centre has teamed up with Farm & Food Care Saskatchewan
(FFC SK), a group that represents thousands of crop and livestock farmers, chefs and agriculture businesses in the province, to present the Farm & Food Care Chef’s Series.

Similar to Chopped! chefs will compete throughout the week using ‘black boxes’ filled with mystery ingredients grown in Saskatchewan. The winner moves onto the next round, with the final match-up for the title of “Top Chef Saskatchewan” on Sunday, July 16 at 12:30 PM.

The Chef’s Series Stage will also feature some special shows to jump start the Chef’s Series today. Chef Anthony McCarthy, Executive Chef of The Saskatoon Club, will kick off the Chef’s Series with an amazing cooking demonstration at 12:15 pm. Samples will be available in return for donations of cash or food tickets which will be presented to the Saskatoon Food Bank & Learning Centre.

At 4:00 PM, the Chef’s Series is proud to present our first Celebrity Cook-off! Randy Pshebylo, Executive Director of the Riversdale Business Improvement District, will join Chef Anthony McCarthy to showcase his culinary talents and demonstrate how to cook with Saskatchewan-grown foods.

Farm & Food Care nominated Randy Pshebylo to take part in this year’s Chef’s Series Celebrity Cook-off. “Randy has worked tirelessly to improve and enrich our community,” said Adele Buettner, Project Manager for FFC SK and one of the event organizers. “Plus, he’s a great sport! It will be so much fun to watch Randy and Anthony cook together.”

Shows run every day on the Chef’s Series stage at 12:15, 4:00 and 6:30 PM. Every show will include chances to win prizes and enjoy lots of onstage excitement. Even better, patrons that purchase dishes featuring Saskatchewan-grown ingredients from participating food vendors will be eligible to enter the onsite draw for a new barbecue or new TV!

Organizers would like to thank all the sponsors of the Chef’s Series. All of these products-including many other Saskatchewan-grown foods-will be featured at the festival.

More information is available on or

For more information, contact:
John Howden
Director of Business Development
SaskTel Centre

Adele Buettner
Project Manager
Farm & Food Care Saskatchewan
306.477.FOOD (3663)

SaskTel Centre is the largest indoor public assembly facility in Saskatchewan. It is Saskatchewan’s number one venue for large-scale musical productions, as well as one of the Canada’s busiest entertainment and sports venues. SaskTel Centre hosts more than 500,000 guests annually, with seating capacity of approximately 13,000 for concerts and 15,100 for hockey and lacrosse. SaskTel Centre is the home of the Saskatoon Blades Hockey Club of the Western Hockey League and The Saskatchewan Rush of the National Lacrosse League.

Conexus Credit Union’s A Taste of Saskatchewan is Saskatoon’s festival of fabulous food featuring over 30 of Saskatoon’s finest restaurants serving their house favorite dishes in beautiful Kiwanis Park from July 11-16, 2017. The extensive menu offers everything from succulent entrées to delicious desserts to specialty items.

Farm & Food Care Saskatchewan (FFC SK) is a non-profit coalition of farm families, agribusinesses, food processors, restaurants, retailers, food companies and individuals. FFC SK seeks to build confidence in Saskatchewan food production – to let consumers know that the food we produce is healthy, safe and responsibly grown; that farmers and ranchers are innovative, technologically advanced and care deeply about the animals and land they work with. Today, less than 3% of Canadians have a direct link to the farm, so it is not surprising that many people want to know more about food and farming. FFC SK administers several programs to help address consumer questions and build trust in our farmers and in Saskatchewan-grown foods.



Wild Boar in Saskatchewan

Some folks were having trouble reading the RM map for Saskatchewan that have known occurrences of wild pigs. Here the RM level map at much higher resolution. RM numbers are labelled on the map.

Please keep in mind that some red RM’s may have had only a few observations, while others have more. Focus on blocks of multiple red RM’s that are clustered together, as they are more likely areas in general to have ongoing issues.

Many people have asked for more specific points, but we are not in a position to share anything else yet, because landowners do not want specific locations shared on social media – they want to work with hunters they know and trust. Occasionally landowners will post here but don’t hold your breath. Hunters can call RM offices for contacts and sightings and its worth having a look at Google Earth to look for likely spots within RM’s that have rough country with wetlands and bush cover, look for river valleys or riparian areas along rivers and lake edges, especially where they are mixed with farmland. Find crown lands or talk with landowners and build a relationship as best as you can with those that are willing. We have GPS collared pigs out on the landscape that will be recaptured and their entire sounder group removed during this coming winter so we can’t share these locations as they are a very small number of animals that are being used to understand wild pig ecology in Saskatchewan. Reality is that while it is clear that wild pigs are present in many areas and even expanding in other areas, densities are generally low, with a few exceptions. The area around the forest fringe generally have the highest densities.

I get many calls and emails from hunters looking for an easy hunt but those are few and far between. I try to help as best as I can with this map and some areas where we have recent sightings, however these animals are highly elusive, use heavy cover, can hide in a brush the size of compact car and be nearly impossible to flush out even if you know it is there, and are often nocturnal. This is not easy hunting. It typically requires lots of phone calls and visits, scouring maps and air photos, trail camera monitoring, and sound field craft. That said, this research program and indeed all of the various studies I have led have been based on hunter support in many different ways, so thanks for that. I’m looking at options for producing a finer scale, township level map for Saskatchewan and will keep you posted as we figure this out. Please keep in mind that the information we currently have for Saskatchewan is far better than for any other province currently.

You can download the most recent RM scale map from the link below:

Shared with Dropbox

Crop Report for Jun 20-26, 2017

For the Period June 20 to 26, 2017

Provincial Crop Development
June 26, 2017
% Ahead % Normal % Behind
Fall Cereals 13 74 13
Spring Cereals 4 58 38
Oilseeds 3 52 45
Pulse Crops 5 62 33

Despite the cool and dry conditions experienced so far, the majority of crops are in good to excellent condition, according to Saskatchewan Agriculture’s Weekly Crop Report.

Sixty-five per cent of winter wheat, 54 per cent of fall rye, 70 per cent of spring wheat, 49 per cent of durum, 68 per cent of oats, 64 per cent of barley, 60 per cent of canola, 50 per cent of flax, 63 per cent of lentils, 61 per cent of soybean, 65 per cent of peas, 34 per cent of chickpeas and 26 per cent of mustard are in good to excellent condition.  Approximately 87 per cent of fall cereals, 62 per cent of spring cereals, 55 per cent of oilseed crops and 67 per cent of pulses are at or ahead of their normal stage of development for this time of year.

Precipitation across the province varied widely last week, ranging from negligible amounts to 57 mm in the Nipawin area.  Provincially, topsoil moisture on cropland is rated as six per cent surplus, 61 per cent adequate, 28 per cent short and five per cent very short.  Topsoil moisture on hay land and pasture is rated as five per cent surplus, 53 per cent adequate, 32 per cent short and 10 per cent very short. Many areas, particularly in the south, are in need of rain to help crops, hay and pasture grow.

There were reports of frost in some areas of the south, and producers are assessing the damage.

Haying is underway.  Four per cent of the hay crop is cut and two per cent is baled or ensiled. Haying is furthest advanced in the southwest where 11 per cent of the crop has been cut.  Hay quality is rated as six per cent excellent, 50 per cent good, 34 per cent fair and 10 per cent poor.  Quality is lowest in in the southeast where 21 per cent of the hay is rated as poor, thanks to less-than-ideal growing conditions during most of the spring.

Crop damage this week has been attributed to flooding, frost, wind and insects such as cutworms and alfalfa weevils.  There are also reports of gopher damage to crops. Producers have nearly finished herbicide applications, but progress has been slowed by windy conditions.

Producers are scouting for disease, applying fungicides and cutting hay.

SaskPower has received 29 reports of farm equipment coming in contact with power lines so far in June.  There have been 168 incidents in 2017.

21 Day Farm Safety Challenge

Greetings from the Agricultural Health and Safety Network!


Harvest will be here before we know it.   In preparation for it we have issued a challenge for those interested in making their farm a safer place.  As members of the Network, all of your farm families are invited to participate in this 1st ever challenge. 

Attached please find the poster for the Network’s 1st annual 21-Day Farm Safety Challenge.  .


 Agricultural Health and Safety Network
104 Clinic Place, Saskatoon, SK
S7N 5E5