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deal more water than the same amount of sand. Still further, the manure that is produced from sawdust is in much finer mechanical condition, and better fitted for use on market gardens or anywhere else.
Mr. HERSEY. Would you use sawdust for bedding ?
Professor WHITCHIER. Yes, sir. I do not believe that two or three bushels of sawdust mixed with several million pounds of earth will very greatly disturb the soil, the farmer, or anybody else. I do not think there is any damage whatever from the use of sawdust; and I do think there are great advantages in getting the manure in a fine mechanical condition.
Mr. R. L. SADD of Connecticut. I would like to ask the professor what he considers the best method of preserving the liquid manure, and how to apply it in order to get the best results? Do we not save it all if we have a tight cellar under the cows?
Professor WHITCHER. Do I understand that you want to save the manure as liquid manure?
Mr. Sado. How are we to save it and apply it to the soil ?
Professor WHITCHER. My idea would be to use sawdust or leaf mold for bedding, which would absorb all the urine.
Mr. Sadd. Could you save it any better than you could by putting it into a tight cellar?
Professor WHITCHER. I have never had any experience with these tight cellars, but I have an idea that the manure would be very apt to come out very wet and in bad shape to handle. I don't know whether you use any bedding, or not. Mr. Sadd. We use bog hay for bedding, and save it in
We increase the value of the manure, we think, nearly double by doing so. Professor WHITCHER. The only thing I can suggest is
. that you must use enough bedding to absorb all the urine.
Mr. SADD. Have you ever tried any experiments to determine the relative value of solid and liquid manures ?
Professor WHITCHER. No, sir; I have not. It has been tested in England, but not in this country.
Mr. LYNDE. At the Amherst Experiment Station, as I understood you, the best cow gave a profit of ninety-three dollars, and the poorest a loss 'of three dollars. I keep a dairy, I sell milk, and I raise stock; that is my business. Now, it is very desirable to have cows that will give ninetythree dollars profit, rather than cows that will make a loss of three dollars. I would like to have the professor tell us how we are going to get cows that will give ninety-three dollars profit, and how long it will take us to do it. Gentlemen who are breeding in order to obtain the very best stock know that there are some difficulties in determining on the calf that will make a first-class cow.
Professor WHITCHIER. That is a very hard question. Its answer would involve an hour's talk ; but I will tell you two or three points that can be brought out in that connection. In the first place, it is the same old answer that applies to everything. The question is often asked, “ If everybody did so-and-so, what would be the result?” In the first place, cverybody will not do it. · It is quite possible for everybody to do it, but we know that they will not. In the second place, if you do not start for a given place, you certainly will not get there. Now, the question of time has really nothing to do with it. If all the farmers of Massachusetts want to get that class of cows, they have got to make a beginning; they cannot all get them at once, they have got to be obtained by careful breeding and by selection. There is an argument in favor of farmers raising their own cows. I understand that the milkmen of Massachusetts are not breeding their own cows to any great extent, but they are trusting to other people to do the breeding. If a man has a herd of fifty cows, and is making butter, he has a method of testing them which will enable him to determine whether each individual cow is profitable, or not. Up in New Hampshire we are interested in making butter, and therefore the value of milk for the production of cream comes in. In Massachusetts, if a man's milk is above the legal standard, he does not have much trouble; if it is a little below it, he is all right; if it is a good deal below it, he is likely to get into difficulty. Suppose a man has fifty cows, and thirty of them are first class or moderately profitable, and the remain
ing twenty are either just on the border line of profit and loss or are a positive loss, is it not better for that man to run those thirty profitable cows, and let the others which are eating up the profits of the good ones go to the butcher, and curtail bis business until he can increase his herd by selection? This question of selection is a question of judgment on the part of the breeder.
Mr. J. S. PERRY of Worcester. This question which is under discussion at the present time is a question that I have seen agitated in the papers and heard spoken of a great deal. It is one that I do not believe any of us are wise enough to fathom. It is all very well for the speaker to say, - Sift out your cows.” Our agricultural papers say, “ Why don't you sift out your cows, and sell the poor ones for beef? If you will do that, your cows will pay a profit.” I have had a little experience in keeping cows, and I have found out one thing. Here is a cow that will give twenty quarts of milk a day for a certain season ; she is all right every way. The next season that cow will come in in just as good shape every way as regards flesh and all surrounding circumstances, as far as the observation of man can perceive, but that season she will give but ten quarts of milk a day. Now, I say no matter how wise we are in regard to breeding cows, this is a fact, and there is not a milkman in this hall who will not substantiate what I
say. What real benefit is it to weed out our cows, as we are told to do by the professor, as we are told to do by the agricultural papers ? Every man who keeps cows will testify that a cow that does well one year or perhaps for a series of years is very apt to have an off year. I do not believe there is a man in the hall who will not agree with me in this statement. The sifting out of cows is an impossible thing. Then in regard to breeds. I have gone out and bought little scrub cows for twenty or twenty-five dollars, and I have paid a hundred dollars for cows; and I have found that the little scrub cows beat the hundred-dollar cows. Now, what are you going to do about it? I would like to ask the professor if he can tell me why it is that a cow in good health, apparently, will give twenty quarts per day one year and another year but ten?
Mr. WARE. I am surprised that our friend who is so wise in most things should display such poor judgment in paying a hundred dollars for those cows.
Professor WHITCHER. Of course I cannot explain any such thing as that. All I can say is, that I should not expect that cow to come back the next year to twenty quarts a day. If she had dropped down from twenty to ten, I should expect her to continue to give but ten quarts a day.
Mr. LYNDE. That is not so. I have known them to come down to ten quarts, and go up to twenty-two.
Professor WHITCHER. Are you talking about averages throughout the whole year, or are you talking about the best thing a cow can do after calving? Sometimes a cow
a will come in and give a large amount of milk for a short period of time, and then taper right off. Mr. LYNDE. That is not what Mr. Perry means.
He means that she gives that amount of milk throughout the year, and he can see no reason why she should not do as well the next year as she did formerly.
Professor WHITCHER. I would like to know how common that thing is ?
Mr. LYNDE. I do not say it is a common thing, but it is sometimes the case. Professor WHITCHER. It has never been the in
my experience. I doubt very much if it is a common rence.
Mr. CHAMBERLAIN. Several years ago there was a milk law passed, which established a standard, and some twenty of my cows do not come up to that standard. What shall I do? Mr. Wheeler of Grafton, a very large producer of milk, said the only thing he could do was to turn the milk of his twelve grade cows into butter, and then he had hard work to keep up to the standard.
Professor WHITCHER. That opens up a very dangerous subject for discussion. We have some detinite ideas in regard to it ourselves. I do not believe in a law that causes adulterated milk to pass muster, while the pure article is condemned as adulterated. Therefore I do not have much sympathy with the milk laws as they are now. As a matter
of fact, a cow that gives a large yield of milk does not give phenomenally rich milk. I might illustrate. We have a pretty good chance to study this question. We have four breeds, and four cows of each breed. Now, the cow that gives the largest amount of milk gives milk that would not pass if subjected to the test in New Hampshire or Massachusetts. On the other hand, the cow that gives six and one-half per cent of fat is the cow that gives the smallest quantity of milk. Her milk costs $1.35 per hundred pounds, and the cow that gives the large quantity of milk produces it at a cost of about $0.68 per hundred. The two things, quantity and quality, must be taken into consideration. All the twenty-quart cows do not come up to the standard. think a twenty-quart cow that will come up to the standard is a pretty bard thing to get. I think the milk laws will have to be modified in the next ten years.
Mr. DYER. I want to inquire about the tests that the professor has mentioned. Does he recommend Babcock's as the most practical one for the average farmer to use?
Professor WHITCHER. I do not know as I would recommend that as the best. I think I would recommend Beimling's. It has been recommended by Professor Cooke of the Vermont Experiment Station. The advantage is that much. less time is required to make a test. I have never seen the machine myself, but Professor Cooke's recommendation leads me to think it is a good thing.
Mr. DYER. Is there any practicable way of testing our cows without the use of those things which you speak of?
Professor WHITCHER. The one I speak of is really as simple as anything that has any accuracy at all. Of course there is the old cream test, which I don't believe any one seriously believes to be of any use.
There is also the churn test. It is not a scientific test, but it is a good commercial
If it takes twenty pounds of the milk of one cow to make a pound of butter, and it takes twenty-five or twentysix pounds of another cow's milk to make a pound, you have the relative value of the milk of those two cows; but it is not a very accurate matter, because the butter will contain a greater or less amount of water. I think Beimling's and