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In the region

Penn State Extension to host sheep scanning school

UNIVERSITY PARK — Penn State Extension will host Sheep Scanning Certification School, April 23 to April 25 at Penn State’s University Park campus, to train ultrasound technicians to measure carcass characteristics, which can help sheep producers select superior genetics to improve their flock.

Livestock producers often are looking for qualified technicians to measure carcass characteristics in their breeding stock, according to Melanie Barkley, senior extension educator who is coordinating school. This information now can be collected accurately using ultrasound technology.

“The school is a great opportunity for technicians to learn methods to scan sheep to collect loin-eye area, loin-eye depth, back fat and body-wall thickness,” she said. “Producers will also learn how to submit this data to the National Sheep Improvement Program.”

The cost of the school is $200, which includes lunch and refreshments for all three days plus educational materials. Registration is required by April 15.

The school, which runs from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. each day, will be held at the Penn State Meats Lab the morning of April 23 and at the Penn State Beef and Sheep Center for the remainder of the time. Participants are asked to bring their own ultrasound unit. A limited supply of units will be available to share on a first-come, first-served basis.

Individuals can register online at https://extension.psu.edu/sheep-scanning-certification or by calling (877) 345-0691. The workshop is sponsored by Penn State Extension and the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Sheep Industry Improvement Center.

For more information, contact Barkley at the Penn State Extension office in Bedford County at (814) 623-4800 or meh7@psu.edu.

4-H volunteers attend state leader forum, conference

STATE COLLEGE — Six 4-H volunteer leaders from Juniata County 4-H recently attended the Pennsylvania State 4-H Leader Forum held at the Ramada Conference Center. The 2019 Leader Forum was attended by more than 100 4-H volunteer leaders from across the state.

The state 4-H conference opened with Juniata County and State Assistant 4-H Program Leader, Karen Hack, as the keynote speaker. Hack serves as a leader in the Juniata County 4-H Seeing Eye Puppy Club, as well as in the Pennsylvania State 4-H office. As a 4-H alumni, still working in the program, Hack shared skills she developed over her years of 4-H involvement.

Additional 4-H leaders from Juniata County included Heather Imes (Chicken Wranglers Poultry Club), Suzie Burchfield (Shooting Sports Club), Betty Jean Swartz, Marianne Theurer and Laura Bomgardner (Seeing Eye Puppy Club), and Sharon McCahren (Sew Many Stitches). Each leader attended workshops they individually selected. Tracks for the educational workshops were leadership/camp, STEM, animal science, clothing and textiles and general.