Michigan 4-H Cloverbud Snapshot Sheet: 4-H Beef, Sheep, Swine & Meat Goat Project (4H1722)

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February 6, 2017 - Author:

WHAT’S IT ALL ABOUT?

The 4-H beef, sheep, swine and meat goat projects allow young people to learn about breeds, animal selection, grooming, showmanship and careers.

  • Learn the basic principles of animal science by helping, watching, caring for and keeping records on one or more head of livestock.
  • Gain knowledge of feeding and handling animals.
  • Identify parts of the animal.

THE BIG PICTURE

Starting Out:
  • Learn about animal health and proper care.
  • Identify the breed or breeds of your animal.
  • Locate and name common parts of an animal.
  • Learn about what your animal eats.
Learning More:
  • Learn what equipment you need to show your animal.
  • Attend a fair or event in another county to see how they exhibit or raise their animals.
  • Learn more about biosecurity and keeping you and your animal healthy.
Expanding Horizons:
  • Learn what to do if your animal is sick.
  • Start keeping records about your animal.
  • Learn about why we raise animals for food consumption.

CURRICULA & RESOURCES

Michigan 4-H Resource

http://4h.msue.msu.edu/4h/ livestock

Michigan 4-H Animal Science Cloverbud Record Book:

http://msue.anr.msu.edu/resources/cloverbud_ animal_record_book 4-H Curricula

http://4-h.org/parents/curriculum/

Other Resources

Michigan Sheep Breeder’s Association: http://www.misheep.org/

Michigan Club Lamb Association: http://www.michcla.com/

Michigan Pork Producers Association: http://www.mipork.org/

Michigan Cattlemen’s Association: http://www.micattlemen.org/

Michigan Boer Goat Association: http://michiganboergoat.org/

HOW CAN PARENTS SUPPORT CLOVERBUD PROJECTS?

Parents play an important role in helping their children find out what they like and don’t like. As a parent, you can be support­ive and encourage your child to try new things. Be there to help them figure out the answer when they have questions. Don’t just answer the question for them, but help them know where to go to find the answer. The important part of a cloverbud project is not the outcome, but the experience children have while participating. It’s OK if your child ends up not liking their current project, but they should finish it and then try something else. Remember, cloverbuds are at an age where they can explore lots of different topics to try and find the ones they really want to focus on in the future.

FOCUS ON BEEF, SHEEP, SWINE & MEAT GOATS

Science
  • Weigh the amount of feed your animal eats and track it.
  • Make a graph of how much weight your animal gains.
  • Observe your animal to track normal and abnormal behaviors.
Communication
  • Pick a part of the animal and design a poster on that part.
  • Talk to your club leader about your animal.
Citizenship & Leadership
  • Volunteer to help other animal owners with their animal project.
  • Volunteer your animal for a community petting zoo.
Life Skills

QUESTIONS TO THINK ABOUT:

  • What was your favorite part of this activity/project?
  • What do you know now that you did not know before?
  • What do you want to explore more/ next?

HOW CAN YOU GET INVOLVED?

  • Contact your local Michigan State University (MSU) Extension office for workshops, activities and events.
  • Tour a livestock farm.
  • Attend a livestock show and observe the judges and their techniques.
  • Attend a 4-H livestock project meeting.
  • Visit a local veterinarian to learn about animal health.
  • Complete a Michigan 4-H Cloverbud Animal Science Project Record Book to track experiences with your animals.

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Tags: 4-h, 4-h animal science, 4-h cloverbuds, 4-h cloverbuds (ages 5-8), animal science, science & engineering

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