June 2015
Your trusted source for protecting farms, forest, land and water.
Summer is in full swing for all the programs at the Watershed Agricultural Council. A self-guided day of creamery farm tours are being held this Sunday, June 21st by the Catskills Family Creameries group. The Agricultural Program has welcomed a slew of interns working hard taking soil samples and assisting technicians on farms this summer. The Forestry Program is hosting a log bucking workshop at the end of the month and the Easement Program is wishing their Stewardship Coordinator luck as he begins a new farming venture.

It's a busy time of year, but be sure to take some time to enjoy the working landscapes we are all working so hard to protect!

A view of the South Kortright Valley in Delaware County     Photo by C.Magnan
Economic Viability

June is National Dairy month and no one knows dairy like farmers in the Watershed! Celebrating our local creameries in style, the Catskills Family Creameries are hosting their third annual Come Travel the Milky Way Tour this Sunday, June 21 from noon to 5 p.m. Located throughout Delaware and Schoharie Counties, this is a self-guided, one-day tour of farmstead creameries in the Catskills region. The six collaborating farms are opening their gates and creameries, inviting the public to meet the cows and goats that produce milk, and demonstrating how butter, yogurt, cheese, milk and kefir are made!   


Visitors making on-farm purchases will receive a commemorative, soft-sided insulated cooler (while supplies last). Come Travel the Milky Way will be held rain or shine. For more information visit catskillsfamilycreameries.com    

Loggers taking part in the
2011 Log Bucking Workshop


On June 30th, the Forestry Program is holding a Log Bucking Workshop for loggers at Cannonsville Lumber in Deposit, NY. Log bucking is the process of cutting up a felled tree after the limbs have been removed. Depending on how loggers buck, they can significantly affect the value of the logs they remove from the woods. Good bucking can make the difference between a logger profiting or losing money on a job.


The Log Bucking Workshop focuses on bucking methods, markets, grading rules, and defects. Loggers will get the opportunity to use bucking computer software to practice maximizing value from a variety of logs. 


This workshop is organized by CCE of Columbia & Greene Counties under a sub-contract with the WAC Forestry Program. 

Nutrient Management Specialist Kari Shaw
taking soil samples during her 2011 internship

This summer the Nutrient Management Team has three soil sampling interns. Collectively they will take 1,350 soil samples that in turn will be used to build nutrient management plans for various farms. Kevin Brown of Davenport is a student at Eastern University, Ashley Moeller is from Hobart and just graduated from Unity College in Maine, and Jacob Blake is from New Hampshire and is currently a student at SUNY Cobleskill.


The Small Farms Program welcomes Dan Gehl, a Trout Creek native who graduated from Binghamton University. His duties include taking over 200 soil samples, completing Agricultural Environmental Management (AEM) Tier I and Tier II's, and assisting the Small Farms Team in various ongoing projects with Whole Farm Planning and Best Management Practices (BMP) Implementation.

The Large Farms Program welcomes another intern, Nikki Sebastian, who will assist the Agricultural Program with designing and Implementing BMPs. A Bloomville native who has worked on her family's farm her whole life, she is currently a senior at SUNY Morrisville and will graduate with Bachelor's Degree in Renewable Resources Technology.   

Lastly, filling the newly created Whole Farm Planning Intern position is Ben Hendee who has 15 years of programming experience. His summer intern tasks include obtaining and processing over 100 soil samples, assisting in the completion of Annual Status Reviews specializing in verifications with a conservation footprint development and validation, developing Geographic Information System (GIS) field tools with remote office electronic viewing capabilities and assisting the Nutrient Management Team in the development of plans following the new 590 Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) standards.


Thank you to all of the Watershed Agricultural Program summer interns for your hard work and assistance toward the agricultural program's goals!

Conservation Easements


Congratulations to Connor Young on a new and exciting opportunity!


Connor will be moving to Massachusetts where he will be filling a newly created Livestock Manager position with the Trustees of Reservations. The Trustees are the oldest land trust in the county, based solely in Massachusetts, dedicated to protecting the environmental resources and landscape of the state. In this capacity, a major aspect of the organization's efforts are geared towards agricultural land development and production through locally based, sustainable farm operations. Connor will be charged with establishing infrastructure and the operation for a new farm primarily intended for beef finishing and other livestock production. The Trustees multi-farm network will allow for the flow of cattle, forage and equipment with the hope of selling grass-finished beef directly to the community that surround the farms and the residents of Boston. 


Connor has been a much appreciated and highly regarded asset to WAC. We wish him good luck in all his ventures!

One Drop, Many Ripples
Milky Way Tour:
Come travel the Milky Way! Catskill Family Creameries is hosting their annual Milky Way Tour on Sunday, June 21st!
More Information

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Heather Magnan | (607) 865-7090, ext. 217