Farmers in the Northeast are exploring options to adapt to the changing climate.
Higher average temperatures and more intense rains impact farms and can take a toll on livestock. Intensive rotational grazing, silvopasture, and cow houses are practices that can increase resiliency to the changing climate. Other practices include: hub ponds, integrated pest management, healthy soils, and riparian forest buffers.
Dickinson College is a private liberal arts college in Carlisle, PA. Their farm provides food for the college campus and local community while creating a distinctive hands-on learning experience for students. The college has a Climate Action Plan with a goal to achieve carbon neutrality by reducing and offsetting carbon emissions. To help reach that goal, the farm uses several methods to mitigate or adapt to changes in the climate. This tour explores the silvopasture systems and adaptive management practices at Dickinson College Farm. Silvopasture systems combine the management of trees, livestock, and forage on the same piece of land. These practices help with climate change mitigation while also increasing the resiliency of the farm to extreme weather and climate change risks. By increasing species diversity, the farm system can better adapt to change. Silvopasture also enhances the existing cattle operation and supports the whole farm system. Through this tour, you can learn more about integrating plant and animal production to create a more sustainable and resilient production system.
Tour Tip: Click and hold to move around, and select the icons within for information.
Smart Phone or Tablet? We suggest going here for an improved virtual experience!
Available resources from this tour:
- Pennsylvania Agroforestry: Success in the Farm and Forest Mosiac
- Assessment of IPM HUB Strategy on the Dickinson College Farm
- National Climate Assessment: Northeast
- Integrated Pest Management
- Agroforestry Notes: Forest Grazing, Silvopasture, and Turning Livestock into the Woods
- Economic Losses from Heat Stress by US Livestock Industries
- Forest Vegetation Management (Penn State Extension)
- Conservation Biological Control (Xerces Society)
- Biological Control (Cornell)
- Nutrient and Pest Management (NRCS)
- Integrated Pest Management Program (NIFA)
- Conservation Practices for Your Pennsylvania Farm (Pennsylvania Grazing Lands Coalition)
- Introduction to Integrated Pest Management in Organic Farming Systems
- Invasive Plants (Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources)
- Silvopasture (USDA)
- Soil Health Literature (NRCS)
- Grazing Systems: Flash Grazing (NDMC)
- Recognizing Heat Stress (ARS)
- Cover Crops and Soil Health (NRCS)
- Cover Crops for Livestock Grazing (Penn State Extension)
- Grazing Cover Crops Requires Management and Balance (Noble Research Institute)
- COMIC: Mob Grazing (Gold Shaw Farm)
- Profiles in Soil Health: Bill Totemeier (NRCS)
- Riparian Forest Buffers (USDA)
- Cumberland County: Yellow Breeches Watershed (Stormwater PA)