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On Farm Sustainability: A Poultry Growers Perspective. Arthur Halterman Baker, West Virginia . Lost River – Native Trout Stream Lost River becomes “lost” near Wardensville, WV Resurfaces in Wardensville about 3 miles away Drains to Chesapeake Bay

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on farm sustainability a poultry growers perspective

On Farm Sustainability: A Poultry Growers Perspective

Arthur Halterman

Baker, West Virginia

watershed facts
Lost River – Native Trout Stream

Lost River becomes “lost” near Wardensville, WV

Resurfaces in Wardensville about 3 miles away

Drains to Chesapeake Bay

Largest poultry producing watershed in State

Watershed Facts
history of family on farm
History of Family on Farm
  • Family ownership of the farm – 1932
  • Grandfather raised poultry, cattle, sheep & hogs
  • Father began farm operations in 1952
  • I began operating the farm in 1986
history of poultry on farm
History of Poultry on Farm
  • Grandfather started as an independent poultry grower, then began raising birds for Shawnee Milling Co of Petersburg, WV.
  • Father started out with broilers. Switched to turkeys with Shawnee and then with Rockingham, Rocco and WLR.
my role on the farm
My Role on the Farm
  • Raised broilers for Rocco while in college
  • After taking over farm, I brooded range turkeys for Rocco
  • In 1991, I began rising breeders for WLR- now Pilgrim’s Pride
current operation overview
Current Operation Overview
  • Raise 15,000 breeders in 2 houses
  • 70 head of beef cattle
  • 140 acres of grassland
  • 190 acres woodland
  • 7 acres of riparian area and wetlands
community involvement
Community Involvement
  • 2008 US Egg and Poultry Association Family Farm Environmental Excellence Award
  • 2006 WV Poultry Association Environmental Award Winner
  • 2003 Recipient of WV Primary Environmental Educator
  • Member of WV Farm Bureau and WV Poultry Association
  • Active Ruritan and Parks Commissioner
environmental practices
  • One of first producers to sign up for Potomac Land Treatment Watershed Project (PL-534)
    • Litter shed & composter
  • Partnership between federal, state and local governments to make water quality improvements to the land within the Potomac River Drainage
potomac headwaters land treatment watershed project pl534
Potomac Headwaters Land Treatment Watershed Project (PL534)
  • 10 Year Project completely voluntary participation addressing nutrients within Potomac Valley
  • Special allocation of money though legislation
  • Focused on manure and nutrients from livestock operations

PL-534 Accomplishments

  • $14 M dollars worth of agricultural improvements on over 300 ag operations
  • Nutrient management, waste storage, buffers, relocation of livestock feeding areas
halterman voluntary practices
Halterman Voluntary Practices
  • Maintaining manure spreader calibration
  • Preserving riparian buffers in hay fields
  • Sustaining practices from past programs
  • Integrated Pest Management
  • Storm water management around poultry houses
  • Signed up for CREP in 2005
    • 3840 Feet of stream bank fencing
    • Planted 850 trees
    • Partnered with US Fish and Wildlife partners for Wildlife to install 5.2 acres of riparian buffer
    • ½ mile of stream bank protected
    • ½ acre riparian tree planting
  • Partnering with Cacapon Institute to monitor and perform research on low cost deer fence project
environmental practices are important
Environmental Practices are Important
  • Commitment to lifelong teaching about agriculture and the environment
  • Goal is to leave land in better condition for next generation
  • Showing others that farmers are committed to protecting the environment will help guard the farming community from future regulations
  • There can be a partnership between the agricultural and environmental community
future practices
Future Practices
  • Looking at alternative energy such as solar or wind
  • Working to coordinate voluntary buffers on 7,300 linear feet of small stream in Baker community
  • Designating 7 acres of streamside property to be used as “outdoor classroom” for schools and community to promote environmental education
baker run conservation society
Baker Run Conservation Society
  • Founded one of the first watershed associations in the State of WV
  • Currently serving as President of this group
  • Partnering with many groups to bring educational opportunities and make environmental improvements within the watershed
chesapeake bay and wv farmers
Chesapeake Bay and WV Farmers
  • Local farmers were involved in the Chesapeake Bay program and working in developing the local tributary strategies
  • Farmers are willing to improve local watersheds which consequently improve the Bay
keys to success
Keys to Success
  • Education is key to sustainability
  • Regulation is not the answer
  • More cost share is needed
  • Programs need flexibility
  • Farmers need to participate in programs
  • Practices not only help environment but also improve farm production