CHS Miracle of Birth Center New at Fair
For Immediate Release
Jan Williams, U of M College of Veterinary Medicine, firstname.lastname@example.org, 612-624-6228
MN FFA, Jim Ertl, email@example.com 651.582.8347, www.ffa.umn.edu
CHS MIRACLE OF BIRTH CENTER NEW AT FAIR
St. Paul, Minn., (August 2006) - Ewes will be lambing, sows will be farrowing, cows will be calving, and fairgoers will be watching throughout the Minnesota State Fair, Aug. 24 through Sept. 4. Eight cows, 16 sows, and 30 ewes are set to give birth during the fair at the newly built CHS Miracle of Birth Center, a 84 x 180 foot modern farm building and the FFA Chapter House and Leadership Center just east of the Lee & Rose Warner Coliseum. The duck pond, chick hatching and rabbit pens that have attracted fairgoers for generations will be there as well.
"Participating in the birth process is one of the most rewarding aspects of being a veterinarian and a food producer. We want to share that excitement with Minnesotans," says Florian Ledermann, a veterinarian from Alexandria, Minn., who is co-chairing the large animal exhibit with Mary Olson, a veterinarian from Mora, Minn.
The Minnesota Veterinary Medical Association (MVMA), the University of Minnesota College of Veterinary Medicine, and the Minnesota State FFA Association partnered in 2001 sponsoring the Miracle of Birth Center. After five years the opportunity to relocate and expand was offered and was accepted.
MMA members and U of M veterinary students will be on hand throughout the fair to assist with the births and to educate visitors on the intricacies of modern reproduction practices. During the birthing and immediately following, health care procedures will be demonstrated such as colostrum testing and administration and warming/drying of the newborns.
“Animal agriculture today no longer resembles "Old MacDonald's farm;” the CHS Miracle of Birth Center better reflects modern animal production practices. Students in Agricultural Education classes, learn the importance of these modern practices. Students demonstrate their knowledge and skills by their involvement in the FFA,” says Jim Ertl with the FFA.
Thanks to fertility management techniques, organizers anticipate several live births each day; of course, the exact timing is still up to Mother Nature. "Mama will do her thing when she’s ready, but veterinarians pretty much have the science down to the day, if not the hour," says Olson.
The newly constructed facility incorporates state-of-the art building practices used by food producers. U of M professor emeritus John Anderson was again consulted for his work in developing housing systems for dairy cattle, helped design the facility.
There will be three sets of bleachers and video monitors for people to watch demonstrations and birthing.
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