September 23, 2012

Farm briefs: Sept. 23, 2012


---- — Horse owners urged to vaccinate

ALBANY — State Agriculture Commissioner Darrel J. Aubertine is urging horse owners across New York State to vaccinate their horses against Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE) and West Nile Virus (WNV). This is especially important since parts of New York have mosquito activity into late November.

Aubertine is reminding horse owners to vaccinate against these diseases due to recent cases of EEE found in horses in St. Lawrence and Westchester counties, along with a case of WNV found in a horse in Saratoga County. The Department of Agriculture and Markets has made veterinarians across the state aware of these confirmed cases.

Humans cannot become infected by handling or being exposed to an infected horse. Horses cannot spread either virus to or from other horses, people or pets. Mosquitoes transmit both diseases from birds to horses. Typical symptoms of EEE in equines include staggering, circling, depression, loss of appetite and sometimes fever and blindness. Clinical signs of WNV in horses include lethargy, weakness in the hind quarters, stumbling, lack of awareness, head tilt and head twitching, convulsions, circling, partial paralysis and coma.

Horses exhibiting neurologic signs, like those listed above, need to be promptly reported by veterinarians to the State Department of Agriculture and Markets’ Division of Animal Industry at 457-3502 in addition to their local Health Department.

Horses suffering from neurologic problems must always be handled with extreme caution, since they may be unpredictable and there is also the possibility that rabies may be the cause.

For more information on EEE and West Nile Virus in horses, visit:

Adirondack Harvest fall events featured

KEENE — Northern New York’s calendar is full of fall festivals and events

Laurie Davis, who coordinates Adirondack Harvest, the community-based farm and local development and promotion program, said these Adirondack Harvest celebrations provide consumers with opportunities to meet farmers, visit farms, taste products and become Adirondack Harvest members.

Events include the Great Adirondack Rutababa Festival that will be held from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. today in Keene.

World-class chefs serve free samples of rutabaga dishes, the 2012 Rutabaga King and Queen will be crowned and a Fetch-a-‘baga contest for dogs will be held. A Mr. ‘Bagahead decorating contest for kids, clowns, educational exhibits, music and the High Peaks Hula Hoop championship are also featured. Food tent admission is $5 ($15 for a family). 

Also, on Oct. 25, from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. in Westport, a Food Preservation Workshop will be held. Participants learn how to make apple jelly and pie filling at Cornell Cooperative Extension of Essex County. The cost is $10 and class size is limited. To reserve space, call 962-4810, Ext. 401.

NYSERDA announces $1.1M rebate program

ALBANY — The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) is holding a Buy Green, Save Green Rebates for New York State Local Governments program, which is making $1.1 million available to encourage small municipal governments to replace inefficient appliances and equipment with energy-efficient models. The program begins Tuesday.

The rebates will pay 75 percent of the purchase price of eligible products, which include ENERGY STAR refrigerators, dehumidifiers, commercial dishwashers, room air conditioners, imaging equipment (including copiers and fax machines; digital duplicators; printers, scanners and all-in-one devices; and mailing machines) as well as compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs) and light emitting diode light bulbs (LEDs) in quantities of 10 or more.

Advanced power strips in quantities of two or more will also be eligible for the rebate.

Since there is no ENERGY STAR designation for power strips, a list of eligible power strips is posted on

“This program will assist municipalities across New York State to invest in energy efficiency measures that will help reduce their operational costs through lower energy bills,” said Francis J. Murray Jr., president and CEO of NYSERDA.

The $1.1 million includes funding from a U.S. Department of Energy Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant award received by New York State to stimulate energy efficiency in small municipalities and a DOE State Energy Program award, which provides financial and technical assistance to states through formula and competitive grants.

Details about the program and information on eligible products can also be found at