Prather: Market animal weigh-in, tagging on the horizon

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The weigh-in and tagging date for 4-H/FFA market beef was Feb. 7. Now it’s time to weigh-in and tag 4-H/FFA market lambs, goats, and swine.

The weigh-in and tagging of these market animals is mandatory for 4-H/FFA members to show or sell their animals at the Moffat County Fair.

Weigh-in and tagging for market sheep and market goats is scheduled for 4 to 6:30 p.m. Wednesday at the Moffat County Fairgrounds. It will take place in the barn on the east end. Each 4-H/FFA member is allowed to weigh up to three market lambs and/or goat animals at this initial weigh-in.

Market swine weigh-in and tagging will take place from 3 to 7 p.m. Thursday at the fairgrounds swine barn.

Each 4-H/FFA member is allowed to weigh up to three market swine animals at this initial weigh-in.

Members with swine are asked to use the fairgrounds’ east entrance. Unloading of the animals will take place on the south side of the swine barn at the two middle sliding doors.

To comply with state fair, the Moffat County Fair Board has adopted the official weight range for market hogs to be 230 to 280 pounds (fair weight).

Where market animals, in general, are concerned, the fair board has adopted the following weigh-in rule: Scrotums must be dried up with obviously no viable testicular tissue on all market animals before arriving at the mandatory weigh-in or 4-H/FFA members will not be allowed to weigh-in, show, or sell their animals.

According to a letter sent to 4-H/FFA members with market animals, during the weigh-in and tagging, it’s the member’s responsibility to unload the animal(s) and to help get them to the designated tagging and weigh-in area.

However, there will be a weigh-in crew on hand to assist members, if needed.

Once on the scale, each market lamb, goat, and/or swine will be weighed and tagged by a designated crew only. Then it’s the member’s responsibility to get the animal off the scale and loaded up again.

In addition, in order for the weigh-in and tagging process to run efficiently and quickly, the following actions are recommended:

Members are asked to please stay out of designated areas as it makes it difficult for the weigh-in crew to do their job, increases the chance for error, and members risk the animal not being processed.

Existing ear tags should be removed before arriving at the fairgrounds.

Siblings need to have the animal(s) picked out before arriving at the scheduled weigh-in as it slows down the process and increases the risk of mistakes being made when deciding which animal(s) belong to which member last minute.

A 4-H/FFA youth member, or their representative, must accompany each animal to help provide information to the weigh-in crew.

Members are asked to bring enough help to manage livestock.

Members can get weight information about their animals by calling the extension office anytime after the weigh-in.

State fair-nominated market animals will also be processed during the mandatory weigh-in and tagging. Members are to take all market swine nominated for state fair to the May 6 weigh-in.

However, where market goats and lambs are concerned, only three animals will be processed May 5.

If a 4-H/FFA member has larger quantities (over three) of these market animals that are to be nominated for state fair, a time will need to be arranged May 11. Members need to let the extension office know, during weigh-in, that they need a time scheduled for May 11. (There will be no other date to get the nominations done.)

4-H/FFA members with a state fair nominated animal(s) must be present at weigh-in to fill out and sign a nomination card. Each animal nominated for State Fair is required to be tagged with an “official” county tag. The member’s premises identification number is required for state fair nominated animals.

There will be a $5 per animal/per specie charge for quantities above two market animals nominated.

Payment is due at the time of processing. This charge is being implemented state-wide.

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