Animal Science Teams Represent WI 4-H at North American International Livestock Exposition

Wisconsin 4-H had six animal science teams and two individuals attend the National 4-H contests in Louisville in November held during the North American International Livestock Exposition (NAILE). Wisconsin teams demonstrated their critical thinking, teamwork, and public speaking skills, as well as a high level of animal science knowledge that they have built over years of practice and commitment to the program. Trent Laufenberg, Jackson County Livestock Quiz Bowl member, noted “I’m taking away the abilities in communication and reasoning that I have developed through my time on the team. As well as the friendships and connections with people I have made.”

Four individuals from the State Dairy Judging Contest in August represented Wisconsin on November 7th at the National 4-H Dairy Judging Contest. Brady Bleck of Glenbeulah, Emma Dorshorst of Marshfield, Justyne Frisle of Prairie Farm, and Abigail Powers of Menomonie were coached by Matt Dorshorst of Marshfield and Jim Powers of Menomonie. The team won Reserve Champion overall and took first place in reasons. In addition to the team’s success, Justyne Frisle was the individual Overall Champion and took first place in reasons.

The Livestock area sent three teams to Louisville for their nationally recognized 4-H events. While representing Wisconsin is an honor, participating in these competitions is the culmination of their careers in their respective events. Participating in these contests represents many hours and years of preparation, dedication, and teamwork for this fine moment. The Livestock Quiz Bowl Team from Jackson county won Reserve Champion honors. Jackson won this trip in March of 2020 at the state contest held at UW Madison. Team members were Trent Laufenberg, Kaden Moseley, Grace Kling, Austin Laufenberg and Wyatt Berg. Trent Laufenberg was 5th and Kaden Moseley was 9th in the number of quiz questions answered. This team was coached by Jessie Oberlin.

The Grant County team placed 4th in the National Livestock Skillathon and were 4th team in identification, 4th team in evaluation, and 1st team in quality assurance. Jessica Patterson individually was 3rd overall, 8th in quality assurance, and 1st in Identification. Grant won this trip in March of 2020 at the state contest held at UW Madison. Team members were: Jessica Patterson, Abby Meier, Avery and Mason Crooks. This team was coached by Dennis Patterson.

Iowa county represented Wisconsin well in a competitive livestock judging contest. Team members were: Emma Steffes, Joey, Ellie and Annie Robinson. Iowa County won this trip from the state contest in June of this year. This team was coached by Mike Robinson, Lora Springer, Jeff Thomas, and Matt Heins.

Wisconsin is extremely fortunate to have six belt buckles coming back to Wisconsin. Lots of commitment and practice goes into their success; congratulations to everyone and thank you to all of the coaches and parents for their support.

The horse project was also well represented at the National 4-H contests. Kewaunee County members Lexy Nowak, Danica Nowak, and Ellah DeGrand along with coach Marty Nowak represented Wisconsin in the Horse Judging contest. Coach Nowak noted that “Judging is important because I feel producers need to know and understand what to look for when selecting animals to purchase. It is important to select animals that are going to structurally be able to make it a long time and have longevity…If students know what to look for structurally the chances of them wasting their money are less.” Additionally, Lexina Lenhardt of Hartford and Allison Harikkala of Greenville represented the state in Horse Demonstration and Public Speaking, respectively.

Finally, Brandon Boyd and Owen Hemling from Dodge County are the Avian Quiz Bowl team that represented Wisconsin at the National 4-H Poultry and Egg Conference on November 17th and 18th. The Avian Bowl is a double elimination contest for state teams patterned after other knowledge bowls. Contestants must have a comprehensive knowledge of subject matter for several species of poultry, food safety, physiology, nutrition, eggs, and other subjects.

The Wisconsin 4-H Foundation helped to fund the travel and registration expenses of the national teams, and the Dairy Judging team was additionally funded by the Joe and Sharon Darcey Youth Enhancement fund.

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