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The Equine Science Center 2017-2018 Annual Report


Equine Science Center 57 US Highway 1 New Brunswick, NJ 08901 Designer Kyle Hartmann Photographers Anna Fojtik Kyle Hartmann John O’Boyle Equine Science Center esc.rutgers.edu


C on ten ts Ta bl e O f

A bou t U s

H ighl igh t s

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Welcome from the Director

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Rutgers University Board for Equine Advancement

Educational Resource Kits Volume 2: Manure Management

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Academic Updates and News

Economic Growth & Industry Sustainability

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Highlights by the Numbers

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2018 New Jersey Junior Breeder Livestock Symposium

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2017-2018 Events: A review through our Facebook Photo Albums

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2018 NESA Competition


R e se arch

Awards

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2018 Gold Medal Horse Farm Award

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2018 Spirit of the Horse Award

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Rutgers Cooperative Extension Award For Excellence

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Chancellor’s Student Staff Excellence Award

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2019 Gold Medal Horse Farm Award

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2019 Spirit of the Horse Award

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Rutgers Cooperative Extension Wilbur Runk Award

Equine Assisted Activities and Therapies (EAAT)

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Evaluation of Cobalt

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Skeletal Muscle Metabolism and Physiologic Performance Measures

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Pasture Forage Production Following Winter Rest

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Type-5 Phosphodiesterase Inhibitor on Pulmonary Artery Pressure

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Northeast-1441 USDA Regional Project


Welcome Dr. Karyn Malinowski, Founding Director

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ince its inception, the Center has established itself prominently within state, national, and international equestrian communities through its research and outreach programs, strategic partnerships with state and federal agencies and private entities, dynamic website, and the widespread recognition and acknowledgment it has received as a result of the impact of its programs. The Equine Science Center is the force behind connecting invaluable research findings to the greater community and in promoting best management practices and knowledge to those caring for and working with horses. Along with our usual involvement in key industry events such as the Open Space Pace, the Jr. Breeder Livestock Symposium, and the Hambletonian Veterinary Conference, to name a few, we also hosted our annual Summer Showcase, the Evening of Science and Celebration, and Ag Field Day at Rutgers Day. By assembling diverse and multifaceted research teams, we are better equipped to thoroughly investigate equine issues that matter to our stakeholders and advance our mission. Center faculty and staff procured approximately $150,000 in grants,

contracts, and sponsorships and approximately $350,000 in gifts during the 12 month reporting period; resulting in one book chapter and 15 refereed journal articles, over 50 extension and outreach media efforts, including popular press articles, and 8 invited talks. Because of the commitment from private donors, the Center was able to fund two research projects (one in support of a graduate student) in the past fiscal year. Led by Public Relations Specialist Kyle Hartmann, the Center participated in two major fundraising activities in 2018. One, Rutgers Giving Day, resulted in us raising over $16,500 from 35 donors, the most of any department or unit at the School of Environmental and Biological Sciences and the New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station. Months of preparation went into assembling on-line posts in pursuit of winning multiple social media challenges offered through the Rutgers University Foundation, as well as raising awareness of the work that the Equine Science Center does. The second was conducted in June, during the ‘Month of the Horse’. This crowd-funding effort was led by RUBEA member Cathy Nicola and Center intern Isabella Pierce through

a on-line website that highlighted faculty, staff, students, and alumni, as well as the research that takes place at the Center’s world-renowned facilities. As part of the campaign, the Center designated certain giving levels to help provide examples of how donor contributions would be used. The Center was active daily on all of its social media channels to highlight its human, equine, and research assets. Similarly to “Giving Day,” Kyle Hartmann, Elena Rizzo, and Jennifer Weinert prepared all of the social media posts to ensure the Center revealed a new post every single day from June 1st to June 30th. RUBEA members also decided to host a telethon in order to help contribute to the campaign. On June 18th at their semi-annual board meeting, they reached out to personal connections in an effort to continue to solicit donations, as well as talk about the exciting research and opportunities happening at the Center. The Center raised 208% of its original $5,000 goal, with 50 donors contributing a total of $10,407. Best,


RUBEA The Rutgers University Board for Equine Advancement

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With a focus on sharing critical research findings from the Center, the Board engages policy and decision makers to highlight the Center’s work. RUBEA members provide volunteer leadership functions to the Equine Science Center. They are selected for their leadership within the equine community or dedication to its advancement; ability to advise the Center on its direction, work product, and to identify development opportunities for the Center; and willingness to financially support the Center in its work. Besides personally pledging a gift, each member fundraises to the best of their ability to bring in additional donors and/or additional contributions annually. Members also serve as advocates for the work of the Center, School, and Experiment Station among their many stakeholder groups. These can include the University administration, alumni, students, prospective students, potential donors, employers, professionals, and the general public.

he School of Environmental and Biological Sciences at Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, differs from other schools at Rutgers because in addition to its teaching, the Agricultural Experiment Station and Cooperative Extension strive to implement research and outreach programs which address high priority needs of New Jersey agriculture. Because the equine industry is recognized as one such high priority, the School established the Equine Advisory Committee in 1992. This committee, made up of a broad base of horse industry representatives and equine enthusiasts, was formed to assist the school in decisions regarding its equine teaching, research and outreach programs, and to promote and support these activities. The Committee was renamed the Rutgers University Board for Equine Advancement (RUBEA), and now focuses on outreach and promotion of the Center. 8


Leadership Board DR. AMY BUTEWICZ Co-Chair WARREN ZIMMERMAN Co-Chair TAYLOR PALMER, JR. Chair-Emeritus RYCK SUYDAM Chair-Emeritus DR. KARYN MALINOWSKI Center Representative

CHRISTOPHER CODEY Member At-Large

CATHY NICOLA Member At-Large

DR. MICHAEL FUGARO Member At-Large

MAX SPANN, JR. Member At-Large

SAM LANDY Member At-Large

JENNIFER WEINERT Graduate Student Representative

ROD LAW Member At-Large 9


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Academics Updates From The Department of Animal Sciences

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The quality of these students is excellent, and is reflected by the number of qualified students who were admitted into veterinary school this fall. Nineteen Animal Science students were admitted into veterinary school this fall, 13 from the class of 2018, and 6 from previous classes. A number of new curriculum development topics have been completed or are in the process of gaining approval. Plans are also underway to revise departmental course offerings to bring more flexibility to the experience-based education requirement. Students will be able to select from a list of proposed courses based on their specific activities, e.g. as Undergraduate TAs, as Ag Field Day Supervisors/ Coordinators, or as non-lab-based research assistants. After serving as Senior Associate Director of the NJ Agricultural Experiment Station and Director of Rutgers Cooperative Extension, Dr. Larry Katz will return to his teaching and research role as a Professor in the Department of Animal Sciences. Dr. Katz will be on sabbatical during the 20182019 academic year, and return to the department for the start of the Fall 2019 semester.

uccessfully hosting the 2018 NESA Competition, the Society of Animal Science (SAS) was selected from hundreds of nominees to receive the “Spirit of Rutgers Award� at the Chancellor’s Student Leadership Gala in early May 2018. NESA stands for the Northeast Student Affiliate of the American Society of Animal Science and American Dairy Science Association. Each year, Animal Science undergraduates from 8-10 northeast universities gather for the NESA competition, which includes livestock judging, quiz bowl, and presentations pertaining to agricultural topics or original student research. Enrollment of new first year students in SEBS topped 800 students for the Fall 2018 semester, well in excess of the targeted goal of around 700 new students. Of those new students, nearly 120 have indicated an interest in declaring Animal Science as their major. With the increased number of first year students, the 40 new transfer students entering this fall, and the 455 continuing students, more than 600 students will be declared Animal Science majors, an all-time record for the major, continuing the tradition of Animal Science as the largest SEBS major. 11


8 INVITED TALKS

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ARTICLES IN REFEREED JOURNALS

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EXTENSION PUBLICATIONS AND OTHER MEDIA

GRANTS & CONTRACTS TOTALING

$119,672

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$334,742 IN DONATIONS & GIFTS

WHICH INCLUDES:

$188,061 $10,407 $16,837 13

TOWARDS THE GWENDOLIN E. STABLEFORD RESEARCH ENDOWMENT FROM THE MONTH OF THE HORSE CROWDFUNDING CAMPAIGN FROM RUTGERS GIVING DAY


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2017-2018 Events

Rutgers Equine Science Center added 2 new photos from December. The Rutgers Equine Science Center would like to congratulate Public Relations Specialist Kyle S. Hartmann for receiving the 2017 Support Staff Rutgers Cooperative Extension Award for Excellence! This award acknowledges the excellent contributions he is making to Rutgers Cooperative Extension and the Rutgers Equine Science Center.

Rutgers Equine Science Center welcomes you to a review of all of the events we hosted & attended in 2017-2018. Come take a look at just some of the many photos taken over the last academic year. From events that were hosted by the Rutgers Equine Science Center, to events that we attended in partnership with our friends and supporters from across New Jersey, we had a very busy year.

#RUESC #Rutgers #RutgersCooperativeExtension #NJAES

#RUESC #Rutgers #EquineScience #Horses

Rutgers Equine Science Center added 90 new photos from November to the : 2017 Evening of Science and Celebration album. Our annual event, the 2017 “Evening of Science & Celebration,” highlights the Equine Science Center’s work in advancing equine health, horse management practices, and solutions to equine industry issues. The event started off with a delicious dinner and continued with numerous presentations on various equine topics and research.

Rutgers Equine Science Center shared 56 new photos to the 2018 Horse Management Seminar album. The 2018 Horse Management Seminar “Gastrointestinal Health and Management” was a huge success. Hosted by the Rutgers Equine Science Center and Rutgers Cooperative Extension, the seminar drew in over 100 attendees.

To end the night, the 2018 Spirit of the Horse Award and the 2018 Gold Medal Horse Farm Award were presented to their respective recipients in recognition of their continuing efforts in improving the lives of both horses and people.

Special thanks to Dr. Burt Staniar from Penn State, Dr. Mary Durando from Equine Sports Medicine Consultants, and Dr. Amy Biddle from the University of Delaware, who joined us for a fun-filled day of education about gastrointestinal health.

#RUESC #EquineScience #Rutgers

Thank you to everyone who attended, and a special thanks to all of the fabulous sponsors! Take a look at some of the great photos from the event. We look forward to seeing everyone during our next event at Rutgers Day! #RUESC #Rutgers #EquineScience #Horses

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Rutgers Equine Science Center shared 1 new photo from March.

Rutgers Equine Science Center shared 60 new photos from April to the album: 2018 NJ Junior Breeder Livestock Symposium - at Rutgers Farm.

The winning picture from Rutgers Giving Day for the #FromYourDeskChallenge of one of our staff members Elena Rizzo at her #RUESC “Desk� with interns Winnie & Jackie!!

The NJ Junior Breeder Livestock Symposium was held on April 7th at the Rutgers Cook Campus Farm and included sessions for all livestock species! Come take a look at some of the great equine sessions including Basic Horse Nutrition, Hay is for Horses, Equine Nutrition Jeopardy, and Equine Science for Kids: Horse Dentition!

#RUGivingDay #EquineScience

#RUESC #EquineScience #JuniorBreedersSymposium

Rutgers Equine Science Center added 10 new photos from April to the: Delaware Valley University President Maria Gallo Visits the ESC album. With her previous background as a dean and director for research and cooperative extension at the University of Hawaii, President Maria Gallo from Delaware Valley University appreciated the extensive work of the Rutgers Equine Science Center in teaching and outreach for the community.

Rutgers Equine Science Center shared 1 new photo from March.

#RUESC #EquineScience #Rutgers

When it comes to school spirit... even the #Horses are glad to be a part of Rutgers University! Dreamer and Elena Rizzo always make sure to have their #ScarletSwag in check before going into the barn! And a big congratulations to both for winning the Scarlet Swag Challenge for #RUGivingDay! #RUESC #EquineScience

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Rutgers Equine Science Center added 1 new photo from April.

Rutgers Equine Science Center added new photos to the album: Ag Field Day at Rutgers Day 2018 - at Rutgers Farm.

Congratulations to Carolayn Munoz, the Student Office Manager at the Rutgers Equine Science Center for being nominated for the 2018 Student Employee of the Year Award. Carolayn joins us from the Federal Work Study Program, and has been with the Center since her first year at Rutgers University.

We were so happy to meet all of the wonderful people at this year’s Rutgers Day. With over 1000 “Equine Science 4 Kids” Sports Bags given away by 1pm, we lost count of how many people stopped by to visit the Equine Exercise Physiology Lab. The “High-Speed Treadmill Demo” filled the Lab to capacity, and was one of the favorite events for everyone in attendance. Be sure to take a look at all of the fantastic pictures from the day!

#RUESC #EquineScience #Rutgers

#RUESC #Rutgers #Horse #EquineScience #AgFieldDay

Rutgers Equine Science Center added new photos from April 28 to the album: Ag Field Day at Rutgers Day 2018 - at Rutgers Farm. Be sure to take a look at all of the fantastic pictures from the “Animal Fitting & Handling” Competition, and some great photos of the Rutgers University Teaching Herd - RUTH.

Rutgers Equine Science Center added 1 new photo from May.

#RutgersDay2018 #RUESC #Rutgers #Horses

Dr. Kenneth McKeever recently presented at the “2nd International Animal Nutrition Symposium of Biofarma” in Rosario, Argentina. The two lectures that he gave were “Nutraceuticals: the Science Behind Them” and “From the Laboratory to the Track: Training Horses.” #RUESC #Rutgers #EquineScience #Horses

Rutgers Equine Science Center congratulates Dr. Kenneth McKeever. The Rutgers Equine Science Center’s very own Dr. Kenneth Mckeever has just been appointed to the newly established Harness Racing Medication Collaborative, a group within the Medication Subcommittee of the United States Trotting Association. #RUESC #Rutgers #EquineScience #Horses

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Rutgers Equine Science Center joins Carolayn Munoz at the Chancellor’s Student Leadership Gala.

Rutgers Equine Science Center congratulates all 2018 Rutgers University graduates!

Congratulations to Carolayn Munoz, for receiving the 2018 Chancellor’s Award for Student Staff Excellence. Carolayn was nominated for the award for her professionalism, ability to help run and manage events, and dedication to the Center.

Shout out to 2015 Rutgers School of Environmental and Biological Sciences graduate Kate Goodman. Completing her Rutgers Master of Business and Science degree in Fall 2017, she had to come back to get a graduation picture with the Rutgers University Teaching Herd - RUTH horse, Wiser!

#RUESC #EquineScience #Rutgers

#RUESC #Rutgers #Horses #ScarletForever #RU2018

Rutgers Equine Science Center added 10 new photos from May to the album: Horse Park of New Jersey 30th Anniversary Celebration - at the Horse Park of New Jersey. New Jersey Department of Agriculture Secretary Douglas Fisher, and other dignitaries from throughout the state, joined the Horse Park of New Jersey at Stone Tavern, Inc. to celebrate the Horse Park’s 30th Anniversary, and completion of the new Grand Prix Arena. #RUESC #Rutgers #Equine #JerseyFreshInternational

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Rutgers Equine Science Center releases a promotional video of the Center, to celebrate the “Month of the Horse.”

Rutgers Equine Science Center added 15 new photos from September to the album: 2018 Open Space Pace & Festival of Horses.

To celebrate passing our halfway point in our crowd funding campaign for the #MonthOfTheHorse, check out the full promotional video online at: http://bit.ly/ESCVideo

The Rutgers Equine Science Center was joined by the Rutgers University Seeing Eye Puppy Raising Club, including 5 puppies who are currently a part of the training program, for The Open Space Pace & Festival of Horses at Freehold Raceway.

#RUESC #Rutgers #EquineScience #Horses

By the end of the day, four of our students had received $1000 scholarships as a part of the scholarship raffle that took place. Everyone, both two and four-legged, had a wonderful time and are already looking forward to next year. #RUESC #EquineScience #Rutgers

RUTGERS UNIVERSITY EQUINE SCIENCE CENTER

Rutgers Equine Science Center added 25 new photos to the album: 2018 Summer Showcase. The Rutgers University Equine Science Center hosted its annual Summer Showcase on Wednesday, July 11. With over 110 participants, it was one of our largest showcases yet! People of all ages joined to see the current research being conducted by the Center, as well as participate in the educational and interactive activities that highlight the main focus areas of the Center.

Rutgers Equine Science Center visited by Dr. Amanda Adams from the University of Kentucky Maxwell H. Gluck Equine Research Center.

The Summer Showcase is one of the Center’s most popular events, as it provides an opportunity for the staff to share their passion of equine science with others! Special thanks to Freehold Director Ronald Rios, who joined us as a representative from Middlesex County NJ, and all of the participants from the Monmouth County 4-H Horse Project part of Monmouth County 4-H.

A huge thanks to Dr. Amanda Adams for visiting Rutgers University to give a seminar for the Department of Animal Sciences at Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey on “Aging, Obesity and Stress… Oh My!,” and for visiting the Rutgers Equine Science Center and the Equine Exercise Physiology Lab. We hope that she had as good a time as we did!

#RUESC #Rutgers #Horses

#RUESC #Rutgers #EquineScience #Horses

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Rutgers Equine Science Center added 1 new photo from October from the 14th International Society for Equitation Science Conference.

Rutgers Equine Science Center added new photos from the NJAEP Wet Labs hosted on the Rutgers Cook Campus Farm.

A huge congratulations to Ellen Rankins, a doctoral student in the Endocrine and Animal Biosciences Graduate Program, housed in the Department of Animal Sciences at Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, for presenting at the 14th International Society for Equitation Science Conference held in Rome, Italy.

The Rutgers Equine Science Center hosted the New Jersey Association of Equine Practitioners Wet Labs on November 3, 2018. The event provided continuing education in ultrasound techniques for veterinarians and allowed the student volunteers to gain knowledge as they assisted with the labs. Attendees were pleased with the event and expressed interest in holding another continuing education event at the Equine Science Center.

Her presentation, “Difficulty of Equine Temperament Assessment in Equine Assisted Activities and Therapies,” comes from her time at the University of Florida where she received her masters.

#RUESC #Rutgers #EquineScience #Horses

#RUESC #Rutgers #EquineScience #Horses

Rutgers Equine Science Center 1 new photos from October of the Gwen Stableford Winner Circle Dedication Ceremony - at the Horse Park of New Jersey.

Rutgers Equine Science Center added 55 new photos from November to the : 2018 Evening of Science and Celebration album.

The Horse Park of New Jersey at Stone Tavern, Inc. celebrated the completion of the Gwen Stableford Winners Circle at a dedication ceremony in the Paddock area of the Park. To learn more about Gwen, a longtime friend of the Rutgers Equine Science Center, please take a look at our story about “The Life and Legacy of Gwendolin E. Stableford” on our Facebook page.

Our annual event, the 2018 “Evening of Science & Celebration,” highlighting the Equine Science Center’s work in advancing equine health, horse management practices, and solutions to equine industry issues.

#RUESC #Rutgers #Horses #Equestrian #HPNJ #HorseParkofNJ

#RUESC #EveningOfScience #EquineScience #Rutgers

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Rutgers Equine Science Center 3 photos to the album 2018 Evening of Science and Celebration.

Rutgers Equine Science Center Congratulates Dr. Mike Westendorf.

The 2019 “Spirit of the Horse Award” was presented to Kennis “Buttons” Fairfax and 2019 “Gold Medal Horse Farm Award” was presented to Mortonhouse Farm.

Dr. Mike Westendorf was named “Specialist of the Year” at Rutgers Cooperative Extension’s December 11th meeting and awards lunch! #RUESC #Rutgers #RutgersCooperativeExtension #EquineScience

#RUESC #EveningOfScience #EquineScience #Horses

Rutgers Equine Science Center added 2 new photo from November.

Rutgers Equine Science Center added 1 photo from December.

Learn about Dr. Kenneth McKeever’s recent trip to Australia for the 10th International Conference on Equine Exercise Physiology!

The Rutgers Equine Science Center’s faculty, students, and staff would like to thank all of our friends for their continued support of the Center’s work. We hope that you had a joyous holiday season and wish you all a Happy New Year.

A professor from the Department of Animal Sciences at Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, Dr. McKeever is also the Associate Director of Research for the Rutgers Equine Science Center.

#RUESC #Rutgers #HappyHolidays!

#RUESC #Rutgers #EquineScience #EquineExercisePhysiology

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Be Sure To Follow US!

Rutgers Equine Science Center thanks everyone who was able to attend events we hosted & attended in both 2017 and 2018. Everyone at the Center hopes that you had as great of a time as we have. From our annual “High-Speed Treadmill Demo” at Rutgers Day, to our special “Month of the Horses” fundraising event, we have had some truly memorable times.

facebook.com/RutgersEquineScienceCenter http://instagram.com/ruequinescience

We hope that you continue to join us in the future, and share with others the wonderful opportunities that the Center helps to provide.

pinterest.com/RutgersESC

Be sure to take a look at some of our social media platforms to read, hear, and watch some of the resources that you might not know about.

twitter.com/RutgersESC http://youtube.com/c/RutgersEquineScienceCenter

#RUESC #Rutgers #EquineScience #Horses

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Manure Management Kits Volume 2 of the Center’s Educational Resource Kits

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better their farm, rather than treating it as a negative by-product of having animals on your farm. The resource package is based upon information provided by the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service, and was edited by Dr. Michael Westendorf and the Equine Science Center. Each Manure Management Kit includes 9 information cards, and 2 fold-out infographics. Information on each of the 9 cards covers a specific topic. Each card is then further broken down into sections that allow the reader to take a look at a specific snapshot of information on the front, and key facts on the back. For example, on the “Manure Overview” card, the section “The Basics” covers information about proper management: “When managed properly, manure will be a valuable resource on a farm. Manure is

he Equine Science Center debuted the next educational resource kit “Volume 2: Manure Management” in November at its annual “Evening of Science & Celebration.” Giving away over 100 copies of the resource packages to each one of the attendees, the Center aimed to reach some of its key constituents in the state. Debuting this first to constituents who annually attend the Center’s events, the Center now hopes to take aim at everyone who would need to manage manure in the state of New Jersey. The second of the Center’s Educational Resource Kits, this volume covers various ways to manage, store, and use manure on your farm. From spreading to composting, the Center aims to provide information for farms (in alignment with New Jersey rules and regulations) to use manure to 22


Each Manure Management Folder includes: 2 Infographics on the “Recycling Of Nutrients” and “What is Required”, and 9 information cards with some of the important aspects of manure management. Waste Management developed by the New Jersey Department of Agriculture. Both of these fold-outs are designed in such a way that they can be used a teaching tool, but also attractive enough that they can be hung at the farm as a reminder of the requirements and recommendations. The Center plans to use these for upcoming seminars and events, but if you are interested in purchasing a Manure Management Kit for yourself or a group please use the following link to our order form: http://bit.ly/manurekit

a source of key nutrients for crop production, for example N, P, and K. The organic matter present in manure can improve both soil quality and the waterholding capacity of the soil. However, most horse owners do not have enough land to use the amount of manure that is produced on their farm. Monitoring horse manure so that it does not cause environmental impacts is the goal of manure management.” The infographics cover “Recycling of Nutrients,” which is an overview of the nutrient cycle on a typical farm, and “What is Required,” which covers the criteria and standards for Animal 23


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Economic Growth & Industry Sustainability 2019 State of the New Jersey Horse Racing Industry Report

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Sire Stakes Program in support of Standardbred breeding. In the fall of 2018, the New Jersey Association of Equine Practitioners (NJAEP) conducted a survey of its membership to assess the impact of recent changes in the horse racing segment of the equine industry on veterinary practices involved with horse racing and the breeding of racehorses. Survey data was compiled, and the report prepared, by the Equine Science Center. While changes in New Jersey’s racehorse population have not yet negatively impacted equine practitioners who treat horses that are actively racing, the results of this survey clearly demonstrated that equine practitioners involved in the breeding of racehorses and its associated components have been negatively impacted by the reduction in numbers of racehorse foals being produced in New Jersey

his report updates the 2014 “State of the New Jersey Horse Racing Industry� white paper by Malinowski and Gottlieb which reviewed the health of the New Jersey horse racing segment of the equine industry and compared indicators of horse racing and breeding industry health to those in the neighboring states of New York and Pennsylvania. These two reports now provide 8 years of data which can be used for comparison purposes as to the health of the New Jersey horse racing industry. This report also demonstrated that New Jersey racehorse owners, trainers, and breeders are still unable to compete with purse structures and breeder incentive programs that exist in neighboring states where racing is supported by alternative gaming. This report also came at a time when the state of New Jersey looked to invest in the horse racing segment of the equine industry with an annual $20 million appropriation (for a period of five years) to benefit purse structure at New Jersey racetracks and breeder incentive programs such as the New Jersey

For a copy of the full report, please visit: https://esc.rutgers.edu/research/horse-racing/ 25


2018 New Jersey Junior Breeder Livestock Symposium

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a lab for nutrient analysis and the proper way to measure the amount of feed you offer to your horse. The weights of standardized volumes (i.e. flake, bale or scoop) commonly used to “measure” feed were compared across multiple feed types to demonstrate the importance of feeding by weight rather than volume. After lunch, attendees showed off their knowledge and skills with the always-popular equine jeopardy game. This year, the theme of the game was equine nutrition. The final session was presented by Equine Science Center staff member Elena Rizzo, who discussed equine dentition and dental care. This session marked the debut of a new equine dentition activity developed at the Center by Ms. Rizzo and Public Relations Specialist Kyle Hartmann. This activity challenged participants to determine horse age and sex based on dental patterns and incisor teeth eruptions. The Junior Breeder Symposium is an important education and outreach event, especially for its value in connecting Rutgers, our equine program, and research with youth in the state of New Jersey. In the words of one of the participants, “I want to go to Rutgers when I am older.” And from another, “Thank you for letting me be here. This was the best! I hope you do this again. I hate school, but Rutgers makes me think different! I can’t wait until college!”

he New Jersey Junior Breeder Livestock Symposium was held on April 7th at the Rutgers Cook Campus farm. This annual event is sponsored by the New Jersey Department of Agriculture Junior Breeder program in cooperation with Rutgers Cooperative Extension and is open to both youth and adults. The Junior Breeder Symposium featured hands-on educational workshops for equine, dairy, and small ruminant species as well as beef and rabbits. The first equine session, led by Dr. Carey Williams and Ph.D. student Jennifer Weinert, focused on equine weight management. The presenters demonstrated various methods of measuring horse body weight including weight tapes and an electronic large-animal scale. Attendees also learned how to evaluate body condition scores (BCS) utilizing the diverse breeds and body types of horses in the Rutgers University Teaching Herd. In the next session, Dr. Williams and Jen discussed horse feeding practices and considerations in evaluating hay quality. Participants had the opportunity to observe various grass and legume hay samples, with a special emphasis on the key visual differences between poor and high-quality forages as well as which types of hay are most appropriate for the various nutritional classes of horses. The presenters also showed attendees how to obtain a forage sample and send that sample to 26


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2018 NESA Competition

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n February 24, 2018, Rutgers hosted the Northeast Student Affiliate (NESA) of the American Society of Animal Science and American Dairy Science Association competition. This annual event brings undergraduate student competitors from land grant universities across the northeast to compete in animal science quiz bowl, livestock judging, and paper presentation contests. This year, eight regional schools participated (Pennsylvania State University, University of Maine, University of Rhode Island, University of Connecticut, University of New Hampshire, University of Massachusetts – Amherst, University of Delaware, and Delaware Valley University) with a total of 41 teams of four students each. The morning of the competition began with a livestock judging phase at Cedar Lane Farm in Oldwick, NJ, where students judged 6 different livestock classes: dairy, beef, horses, sheep, swine, and a surprise class - Jersey Giant chickens. Following the judging phase, students returned to the Rutgers Campus to compete in a quiz bowl contest featuring questions from all aspects of animal agriculture including animal physiology, anatomy, husbandry, regulations, breeds, diseases, etc. In the third phase of the competition, paper presentations, one student from each team prepared an 8-minute power point presentation to review an animal science research paper or topic of their choice. Separate from the team competition, individual students had the opportunity to present original

research undertaken as a part of their program of study at their respective institutions. Our competing students were Caroline Pawlowski in 1st place, Taryn Mooney in 2nd place, and Zachary Newman in 4th place. Caroline’s research, conducted as a part of the G.H. Cook Scholars program, focused on the recovery of horse pasture production following winter rest, and was conducted at the Ryders Lane Best Management Practices Demonstration Horse Farm. The NESA competition was organized by members of the Rutgers University Society of Animal Science (SAS), under the supervision of club advisors Drs. Carey Williams and Barry Jesse, as well as student coordinator and Ph.D. student Jennifer Weinert. This effort was made possible by the participation of numerous Rutgers faculty, staff, graduate students, and undergraduate volunteers as well as generous financial support from the Rutgers community and industry sponsors. The SAS executive board was subsequently honored with the “Spirit of Rutgers Award” at the Chancellor’s Student Leadership Gala on Tuesday, May 1, 2018 for their extensive efforts to represent Rutgers and make the NESA contest a successful event. The “Spirit of Rutgers Award” is a Chancellor’s Excellence Award recognizing a student organization that represents the values, traditions, and mission of Rutgers through its outstanding engagement, enthusiasm, and spirit in and commitment to the campus community.

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The Effects of Equine Assisted Activities and Therapies (EAAT) on Stress and Well-being in Horses and Measures of Symptoms of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder in Veterans Drs. Karyn Malinowski and Ken McKeever, Department of Animal Sciences, Rutgers University, G.H. Cook Scholar, Michael Ye, and colleagues from Monmouth University and South Indiana University, as well as Special People United to Ride (SPUR), partnered to investigate the Effects of Equine Assisted Activities and Therapies on specific measurements of physiological stress and well-being in horses involved in EAAT. This project was funded by the Equine Science Center’s Gwendolin E. Stableford Endowed Equine Research Fund.

The Research Project horses, were selected to participate in the study. Of these, 7 were selected at random to wear ECG units and all 9 were used for blood sampling to measure plasma cortisol and oxytocin. Each horse was randomly assigned to partner with a veteran for 5 EAAT sessions, 1 hour in duration. A standing control was conducted at a later date on which horses did not participate in EAAT. The research was conducted at Sunnyside Equestrian Center in Lincroft, NJ – a part of the Monmouth County park system. Sunnyside is affiliated with Special People United to Ride (SPUR) an Equine Assisted Therapy program approved by PATH, International. Assessment of PTSD symptoms was conducted prior to the beginning of the first session, and immediately after

With the increase in the number of horses being used in equine assisted activities and therapies (EAAT) programs, and with the increasing concern for animal welfare, it is important to understand the impact of such interventions on the stress level and quality of life for the horses involved. The purpose of this study was to test the hypothesis that participation in EAAT would acutely alter physiological markers of stress and well-being, including plasma cortisol, plasma oxytocin, and heart rate variability, in horses and that symptoms of Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) would be reduced after five sessions of EAAT in veterans who had previously been diagnosed with PTSD. Nine healthy geldings, of various breeds, ages 10-23 years, conditioned and experienced as therapeutic riding 31


Conclusions and Future Directions:

the last session on day five, using two recognized measures for PTSD - the Brief Symptom Inventory and the PCL-5 (The PTSD Checklist for the DSM-5). There were no significant day by time interactions for plasma cortisol or oxytocin concentrations in the horses. There was a significant day by time interaction for heart rate; where on day 1, HR (bpm) was significantly lower during the interaction with the veterans. There were no significant differences in heart rate variability variables which is in agreement with the current literature. Post-therapy measures in PTSD symptoms in veterans were significantly reduced except for Interpersonal Sensitivity and Phobic Anxiety. There was an effect of EAAT on heart rate which was significantly reduced on day 2 during the actual EAAT session. EAAT had no effect on respiration rate and systolic or diastolic blood pressure in veterans involved in five sessions of EAAT lasting 60 minutes in duration over the course of five days. Stress levels, as demonstrated by plasma cortisol concentrations and heart rate variability, did not change in horses involved in EAAT sessions with veterans who had been previously diagnosed with PTSD. Furthermore, the horses used in this study did not demonstrate increased levels of well-being as demonstrated by the lack of change in plasma oxytocin concentrations after EAAT sessions. Symptoms of PTSD did change significantly in the veterans who participated in this study.

While equine assisted activities and therapies have been shown to have a positive effect on people with assorted physical and psychological disorders, there is limited research reporting the effect of EAAT on the horses involved. It was the goal of the research reported here to increase our body of knowledge regarding the horses’ levels of stress and/or well-being after interaction with humans engaged in EAAT. A limitation to the current study was the inability to measure the same hormone and physiological measurements for heart rate variability, as done in the horses, due to logistics of this field study. In conclusion, stress levels, as demonstrated by plasma cortisol concentrations and heart rate variability, did not change in horses involved in EAAT sessions with veterans who had been previously diagnosed with PTSD. Furthermore, the horses used in this study did not demonstrate increased levels of well-being as demonstrated by the lack of change in plasma oxytocin concentrations after EAAT sessions. Symptoms of PTSD decreased significantly in the veterans who participated in this study. Further research should be conducted with a larger number of horses to further study the impact of EAAT on horses used in these types of activities and to obtain human subjects who would not be adverse to having the same endocrine and heart rate variables measured as those in the horses.

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Meet

the

Researcher

Dr. Karyn Malinowski Director, Equine Science Center Rutgers – The State University of New Jersey New Brunswick, New Jersey, USA

winning study, The New Jersey Equine Industry 2007: Economic Impact. In 2009 she authored the “Impact of Slot Machines on the Economy, Horse Racing and Breeding Industry, Agriculture and Open Space” and in 2014, the “2014 State of the New Jersey Horse Racing Industry”. Most recently, she completed the 2019 State of the New Jersey Horse Racing Industry Report.

Dr. Karyn Malinowski has been a faculty member at the School of Environmental and Biological Sciences since 1978 in various roles as an Equine Extension Specialist, Animal Sciences Professor, and Director of Rutgers Cooperative Extension from 2002-2008. Her research and extension programs concentrate on improving the well-being and quality of life of the equine athlete while ensuring the vitality and viability of the equine industry, both statewide and nationally. She played a lead role in building the equine science program at Rutgers University and in the formation of the Equine Science Center. A New Jersey native, Malinowski earned three degrees from Rutgers, with a bachelor’s degree in Animal Science, a master’s in Animal Genetics, and a Ph.D. in Zoology, specializing in Equine Endocrinology. Dr. Malinowski is the author of over 50 refereed journal articles and abstracts and numerous book chapters. Her expertise in the area of aging and stress management in horses has resulted in her speaking at numerous international venues, and her extension project entitled, “Careers in the Green Industry: Youth Sow Seeds for Their Future,” which involved horses and adjudicated youth, has served as a model for similar programs around the globe. She also led the effort in developing the Horse Industry Handbook during her presidency of the American Youth Horse Council. Regarding her support for horse racing, Malinowski was a member of the team which conducted the prize-

Further Readings: McKinney C, Mueller MK, Frank N. Effects of therapeutic riding on measures of stress in horses. J Equine Vet Sci 2015; 35:922-928. Rietmann TR, Stuart AEA, Bernasconi P, Stauffacher M, Auer JA, Weishaupt MA. Assessment of mental stress in warmblood horses: Heart rate variability in comparison to heart rate and selected behavioural parameters. Appl Anim Behav Sci 2004; 88.1-2:121-36. Gehrke EK, Baldwin A, and Schiltz PM. Heart rate variability in horses engaged in equine-assisted activities. J Equine Vet Sci 2011; 31.2:78-84. Becker-Birck M, Schmidt A, Lasarik J, et al. Cortisol release and heart rate variability in sport horses participating in equestrian competitions. J of Vet Behav 2013; 8:87-94. Fazio E, Medica P, Cravana C, Ferlazzo A. Hypothalamic-pituitaryadrenal axis responses of horses to therapeutic riding program: Effects of different riders. Physiol and Behav 2013; 118:138-143.

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Evaluation of Cobalt as a Performance Enhancing Drug in Fit Standardbred Racehorses This work was a collaborative effort between Drs. Ken McKeever and Karyn Malinowski, Department of Animal Sciences, Rutgers University, and Dr. George Maylin, Director of New York State’s drug-testing laboratory at SUNY, Morrisville and was funded by the United States Trotting Association.

The Research Project humans. Toxicity to the thyroid and heart limited the use of cobalt in the doses required to stimulate red blood cell production. It is now known that cobalt stimulates the production of the hormone erythropoietin which activates red blood cell formation. Recombinantly engineered erythropoietin (rEPO) and similar EPO analogs have replaced cobalt in the treatment of anemia to avoid cobalt associated toxicities. Under normal conditions cobalt responds to a lack of oxygen in the blood (hypoxia) by causing the Hypoxia Inducible Factor 1a (HIF-1a) to increase DNA binding to the erythropoietin gene sequences and produce more EPO. Thus, cobalt is also considered a gene doper. Large doses of cobalt administered to normal animals cause increased red blood cell production even when hypoxia

Cobalt (Co) is a trace element found in nature. It is an essential nutrient in all vertebrates. Cobalt is required in many physiological and metabolic pathways, most noteworthy, its role as a component of vitamin B12. In addition to its role in supporting many enzymatic reactions, cobalt is involved in red blood cell production (erythropoiesis) and thyroid hormone regulation. Generally, there is sufficient cobalt in the environment including soil, water, air, and vegetation to support normal body functions in animals. Despite the required availability of cobalt in human and animal diets, many dietary supplements and health aids contain varying amounts of the element. Cobalt was reported to stimulate red blood cell production in the 1930s. It was used to treat pernicious anemia, aplastic anemia, and sickle cell anemia in 35


does not exist. The EPO produced from cobalt is species specific. Recently there has been renewed interest in cobalt as a performance enhancing drug (PED) in race horses and human athletes. The possible toxicity associated with its use as a PED has become a welfare concern in the horse industry. Interestingly, a recent research study with horses demonstrated that cobalt did not affect any of the physiological parameters that were measured and it did not have any toxic effect at the dose given (Knych et al., 2014). Unfortunately, this study used a single administration rather than the multiple doses purportedly used in attempts to enhance performance. Another unpublished report suggested that cobalt is toxic to horses when administered at 1,000 times the recommended daily allowance of approximately one milligram per horse. Racing jurisdictions have set thresholds to regulate the use of cobalt because they speculate that cobalt is toxic, and thus, constitutes a health and welfare concern. Unfortunately, there is no unanimous agreement for a threshold at this time because dose-response studies have not been reported. Furthermore, there have been no controlled studies to document the purported performance enhancing effect of exogenous cobalt administration. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to test the hypothesis that cobalt administration would alter biochemical parameters related to red blood cell production as well as markers of exercise performance. Seven healthy, race-fit Standardbreds (4 geldings and 3 mares; 5Âą3 years of age and approximately 490 kg body weight) were used. Before receiving any drug treatment, all four completed a series of baseline testing including an incremental exercise test (GXT) to measure VO2max, biomarkers of performance, vascular volume as well as concentrations of plasma lactate, and erythropoietin. Drug administration commenced seven days after the pre-dosing GXT. Each horse was administered a sterile solution of cobalt salts (50 mg of Co HCl in 10 mL of

saline, IV) at 9:00 in the morning on three consecutive days via the jugular vein. Blood samples were obtained from the contralateral jugular vein before and at 1, 2, 4 and 24 hours after administration of cobalt. Plasma and blood volume were measured one day after the last dose of cobalt; followed by a post-administration GXT performed the next day. Horses were observed for signs of adverse effects of the cobalt administration (agitation, sweating, increased respiration, etc.). Cobalt administration increased plasma cobalt concentration from a pre-administration mean of 1.6 Âą 0.6 ppb to 369 Âą 28 ppb following three consecutive daily doses of the cobalt solution. There were no changes in markers of aerobic and anaerobic performance, nor any changes in plasma erythropoietin (EPO) concentration, plasma volume, resting blood volume, total blood volume, or estimated red blood cell volume.

Conclusions and Future Directions: These results suggest that cobalt concentrations described in this research did not result in a change in biochemical parameters related to red blood cell production and did not affect exercise performance as measured by VO2max. There also were no observed adverse effects seen in the horses used in this study after the administration of 50 mg of Co HCL in 10 mL of saline, intravenously for three consecutive days.

36


Meet

the

Researcher

Dr. Ken McKeever Professor Rutgers – The State University of New Jersey New Brunswick, New Jersey, USA

physiology with a particular interest in the effects of aging on the integration of the cardiovascular, renal, and endocrine systems in the control of blood pressure, blood volume, and fluid and electrolyte balance. On an applied level his research has focused on the effects of performance enhancing practices on the physiological responses of the equine athlete. These studies are just part of the more than 200 book chapters, journal articles and proceedings papers, and more than 60 abstracts that have advanced our understanding of the athletic horse. In his spare time, he plays water polo goalie at the local, national, and international level and is also an amateur genealogist and historian.

Ken McKeever received his B.S. and M.S. degrees in Animal Science from California State Polytechnic University Pomona and Fresno State University. McKeever earned his Ph.D. in Animal Physiology at the University of Arizona where he also managed the University Horse Center and Quarter Horse breeding program. Upon completing his Ph.D., McKeever served for two years as a National Academies of Sciences-National Research Council Resident Research Associate in the Cardiovascular Research Lab at the NASA Ames Research Center in California. From 1987 to 1994 Dr. McKeever developed and coordinated research at the Equine Exercise Physiology Laboratory at the Ohio State University. In 1995 he joined the Faculty in the Department of Animal Sciences at Rutgers University as an Associate Professor and proceeded to build, develop, and coordinate one of the most active equine exercise physiology laboratories in the US. Dr. McKeever earned the rank of Full Professor in 2009 and currently serves as Associate Director of Research at the Rutgers University Equine Science Center. He currently serves as President of the Equine Science Society as well as the Editor-in-Chief of the Comparative Exercise Physiology journal. On a basic level his research has focused on comparative exercise and cardiovascular

Further Readings: Kinobe, R.T. 2016. Towards the elimination of excessive cobalt supplementation in racing horses: A pharmacological review. Research in Veterinary Science 104:106-112. Knych, H.K., R.M. Arthur, M.M. Mitchell, I. Holser, R. Poppenga, L.L. Smith, M.N. Helm, R.A. Sams, C.L. Gaskill. 2015. Pharmacokinetics and selected pharmacodynamics of cobalt following a single intravenous administration to horses. Drug Testing and Analysis 7:619-625.

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Exercise-Related Factors Affecting Skeletal Muscle Metabolism and Physiologic Performance Measures in Standardbred Horses Recent Ph.D. graduate Dylan Klein, under the direction of Drs. Tracy Anthony and Ken McKeever, Departments of Nutritional Sciences and Animal Sciences respectively, at Rutgers University, investigated the effects of acute exercise, training, and detraining on the unfolded protein response and its role in the beneficial adaptations of skeletal muscle to exercise in research funded by the Equine Science Center.

The Research Project Chronic exercise training leads to improved health as well as increased muscle mass and function. A potential mechanism that has been proposed to govern the beneficial cellular adaptations to exercise in mice and humans is a tripartite collection of signal transduction events emanating from the endoplasmic or sarcoplasmic reticulum collectively known as the unfolded protein response (UPR). The sarcoplasmic reticulum (SR) is a membranebound structure found within muscle cells that is similar to the endoplasmic reticulum in other cells. The main function of the SR is to store calcium ions (Ca2+). Cellular activities regulated by the UPR include general protein synthesis and turnover, gene-specific translation, and altered gene expression with the ultimate goal to regain sarcoplasmic reticulum (SR) homeostasis. The UPR is activated in response to cellular stressors such as calcium disturbances, exercise, hypoxia, and

Exercise improves health and increases athletic performance in part through changes in skeletal muscle metabolism and function. The horse possesses an innate ability to exercise and has a large proportion of its body mass as skeletal muscle. As such, horses position themselves as a unique model to understand how exercise impacts skeletal muscle performance and health. Findings from our studies have revealed novel molecular changes in equine skeletal muscle in response to exercise and training. These changes suggest that repeated bouts of exercise decrease markers of muscle injury and damage and increase markers related to muscle’s capacity for turnover and repair. In addition, training alters muscle metabolism towards a profile that is suggestive of an increased ability to produce energy and resist fatigue. Taken together, training confers metabolic adaptations in skeletal muscle that may allow for increased performance and the ability to better recover from strenuous exercise. 39


energy deprivation that affect the SR. If initial attempts to regain SR homeostasis via UPR activation cannot be achieved, the UPR can then become hyper-reactive, promoting cell death (i.e. apoptosis) through a network of transcriptional regulators. Thus, the SR and UPR are critical links between the appropriate cellular responses and adaptations to exercise. Unaccustomed exercise has been shown to activate the UPR in human and rodent skeletal muscle, whereas training habituates this response. As such, the sarcoplasmic –endoplasmic reticulum has been implicated as a potential governor of the beneficial adaptations that occur in skeletal muscle in response to exercise. However, no such research has been conducted in the horse. In the present study, acute incremental exercise, regardless of training status, had no effect on UPR or Ubiquitin Proteasome Pathway (UPP)-related gene expression in skeletal muscle. However, 12 weeks of exercise training did result in alterations in basal gene expression related to the UPR and UPP. These results suggest that acute high-intensity exercise does not induce the transcriptional UPR or UPP in equine skeletal muscle, but that exercise training does alter the basal expression of certain genes, particularly those related to apoptosis, muscle atrophy, and protein turnover. These changes may contribute to the positive biological effects of exercise on skeletal muscle in response to stressors. Habitual exercise leads to improvements in overall health, in part through changes in skeletal muscle’s phenotype. The horse, being over 50% skeletal muscle mass and innately athletic, uniquely positions itself as a model to understand the effects of exercise and training on muscle metabolism. Using an untargeted metabolomics approach in the muscle biopsies of eight Standardbred horses we identified novel metabolic adaptations related to the early and late post-exercise recovery periods, as well as training status. Alterations largely centered on the branched-chain amino acids, microbial-derived xenobiotics, and a variety of lipid and nucleotide metabolites that occurred alongside an

increased resistance to fatigue in the trained state. Branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs) provide several metabolic and physiologic roles. Metabolically, BCAAs promote protein synthesis and turnover, signaling pathways, and metabolism of glucose. There is limited information regarding the changes in equine skeletal muscle BCAA metabolism following exercise and training. Interestingly, training also increased the relative abundances of lipid metabolites in skeletal muscle that have been previously shown to be associated with obesity and insulin resistance in humans. This was accompanied 40


was shown that aerobic capacity was maintained over the detraining period and performance during exercise was not compromised. As such, horses can maintain their athletic capabilities even during prolonged rest periods. These results suggest that a long retraining period may not be required following detraining given that the rest period is preceded by a training period that produces maximal aerobic and exercise capacities.

by increased plasma branched-chain amino acids and phenylalanine, another metabolic hallmark that is predictive of insulin resistance in humans. However, given our previous findings regarding the transcriptional UPR and UPP, these changes may be reflective of a beneficial expansion of the plasma amino acid pool for the purposes of meeting the increased protein turnover demands of skeletal muscle. Further, acute exercise decreased the relative abundances of almost all lipid species in skeletal muscle by 24 hours post-exercise, indicating higher turnover and a greater reliance on lipids as a fuel source in the trained state. Thus, while these results highlight novel exerciserelated metabolomic changes in skeletal muscle of the athletic horse, they also underscore the complexity of certain metabolites and their relationships in health and disease. While training is employed by trainers to increase equine athletic performance, horses may be removed from physical activity due to injury, behavioral issues, and/or overtraining for extended periods of time. Nonetheless, they are still expected to compete at a high level afterwards. As such, it is important to characterize the physiologic and performance changes that occur during extended periods of training and detraining so that the appropriate decisions can be made concerning retraining and the successful resumption of competitive endeavors. Our studies also showed that exercise training in horses results in a rapid and sustained increase in aerobic and athletic capacities. However, these changes occurred without any improvement in body composition. Interestingly, during the initial 12 weeks of training, geldings outperformed mares during exercise, possibly due to differences in overall fat mass (approximately 30kg). Given a longer training period (72 weeks), exercise performance is maximally sustained in both sexes and is ultimately not hindered by the accumulation body fat. Following 20 weeks of confinement to dry lot paddocks, it

Conclusions and Future Directions: Results from three studies funded by the Equine Science Center suggest that acute high-intensity exercise does not induce the transcriptional UPR or UPP in equine skeletal muscle, but that exercise training does alter the basal expression of certain genes, particularly those related to apoptosis, muscle atrophy, and protein turnover. These changes may contribute to the hormetic effects of exercise on skeletal muscle. However, given our previous findings regarding the transcriptional UPR and UPP, these changes may be reflective of a beneficial expansion of the plasma amino acid pool for the purposes of meeting the increased protein turnover demands of skeletal muscle. Further, acute exercise decreased the relative abundances of almost all lipid species in skeletal muscle by 24hrs post-exercise, indicating higher turnover and a greater reliance on lipids as a fuel source in the trained state. Thus, while these results highlight novel exerciserelated metabolomic changes in skeletal muscle of the athletic horse, they also underscore the complexity of certain metabolites and their relationships in health and disease. Our results also suggest that a long retraining period may not be required following detraining given that it is preceded by a training period that produces maximal aerobic and exercise capacities. 41


Meet

the

Researcher

Dr. Dylan J. Klein Ph.D. Graduate - Nutritional Sciences Graduate Program Rutgers – The State University of New Jersey New Brunswick, New Jersey, USA

Dr. Klein is a graduate of Rutgers where he earned his Bachelor’s of Science in nutritional sciences, and Ph.D. from the Nutritional Sciences Graduate Program. Much of Klein’s research interests utilize the equine athlete as a comparative model for understanding exercise physiology and metabolism. His work focused on the molecular and cellular adaptations that govern the beneficial effects of exercise in skeletal muscle, and improve performance and promote health. Further, his research characterizes the relationship between body composition and maximal aerobic capacity over periods of training and detraining. The journey that led Klein to work with horses is one of irony. His best friend’s father owned and raced Thoroughbred horses, in middle school he worked at Perretti Farms as a summer farmhand, and Dylan’s grandfather – who always wanted to be a jockey – asked that upon his death he be cremated and his ashes spread at the Monmouth Park Racetrack. Yet, it wasn’t until his second year of graduate school that Klein ever handled a horse. Nonetheless, he felt right at home and considered himself extremely lucky to be working with such an amazing animal. Dr. Klein is now an Assistant Professor in Health and Exercise Science at Rowan University.

Further Readings: Bryan, K., B.A. McGivney, G. Farries, P.A. McGettigan, C.L. McGivney, K.F. Gough, D.E. MacHugh, L.M. Katz, and E.W. Hill. 2017. Equine skeletal muscle adaptations to exercise and training: evidence of differential regulation of autophagosomal and mitochondrial components. BMC Genomics. 18.1:595. Fonseca, R.G., D.A. Kenny, E.W. Hill, and L.M. Katz. 2013. The relationship between body composition, training and race performance in a group of Thoroughbred flat racehorses. Equine Vet. J. 45.5:552-557. Kearns, C.F., K.H. McKeever, H. John‐Alder, T. Abe, and W.F. Brechue. 2002. Relationship between body composition, blood volume and maximal oxygen uptake. Equine Vet. J. 34.S34: 485-490. Mach, N., Y. Ramayo-Caldas, A. Clark, M. Moroldo, C. Robert, E. Barrey, J.M. López, and L. Le Moyec. 2017. Understanding the response to endurance exercise using a systems biology approach: combining blood metabolomics, transcriptomics and miRNomics in horses. BMC Genomics. 18.1:187. McGivney, B.A., S.S. Eivers, D.E. MacHugh, J.N. MacLeod, G.M. O’Gorman, S.D. Park, L.M. Katz, and E.W. Hill. 2009. Transcriptional adaptations following exercise in thoroughbred horse skeletal muscle highlights molecular mechanisms that lead to muscle hypertrophy. BMC Genomics. 10.1:638.

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Recovery of Pasture Forage Production Following Winter Rest in Continuous and Rotational Horse Grazing Systems

Current Ph.D. student Jennifer Weinert, under the direction of Dr. Carey Williams, Department of Animal Sciences, Rutgers University, evaluated pasture production in rotational and continuous grazing systems after winter grazing exclusion. This research, funded by the Equine Science Center was conducted at the Rutgers Ryders Lane Environmental Best Management Practices Demonstration Horse Farm.

The Research Project to lower pasture yield over time, thus increasing costs for supplementary feed and/or pasture renovation. Additionally, overgrazed pastures may not be able to provide an adequate amount of forage to meet the nutritional needs of horses and could result in decreased body condition, especially in horses that are hard-keepers or have increased nutrient requirements due to exercise, growth, or lactation. One of the main BMPs that can be utilized to prevent overgrazing of horse pastures is rotational grazing. Correct management of rotational grazing systems ensures that pasture forage has adequate time to rest and recover before another grazing bout, thereby preventing the overgrazing

Implementation of pasture Best Management Practices (BMPs) can have numerous economic and environmental benefits for horse producers. One primary goal of BMPs is to minimize overgrazing of horse pastures, which typically occurs when pastures do not produce at a high enough rate to provide adequate available forage for grazing. Overgrazing can negatively impact both the environment and the financial health of horse operations. Overgrazing can lead to a lower percentage of vegetative cover in pastures, increasing the potential for erosion and nutrient losses from runoff. Overgrazing can also damage health of pasture stands and result in soil compaction which contributes 44


Conclusions and Future Directions:

commonly seen in more traditional, continuously-grazed pastures. Winter rest of pastures is also recommended to ensure adequate availability of spring forage for grazing. However, rest alone may be insufficient to compensate for overgrazing in continuously-grazed pastures. The objective of this study was to quantify the effect of intense grazing in a continuous and rotational horse grazing system on pasture condition and herbage composition in a subsequent growing season following winter grazing exclusion. Pasture forage yield, persistence, and quality were assessed monthly in two horse pastures, one continuous (CON) and one rotational (ROT), from April to August 2017. Prior to this study, pastures had been committed to grazing in their respective management system for 27 months. Horses were then removed from the pasture fields in November 2016, and fields were not grazed throughout the duration of the current study. Herbage mass was greater in ROT in May, June, and July, while sward height only differed by grazing system in May. Overall, prevalence of planted grass species was greater in ROT than CON. Furthermore, there was an association between pasture forage composition and grazing management system at all sample points other than in August. Additionally, sward components were most affected by previous grazing system in April and May, with a greater proportion of live leaf in ROT than CON.

These results demonstrated that even after prolonged rest, previous management of pasture influenced forage re-growth. Moreover, winter rest alone may not be sufficient to mitigate overgrazing of continuous pastures. Differences in yield between continuous and rotationally managed pastures persisted throughout much of the growing season following winter exclusion, and a total of nine months of rest was required for herbage mass in the continuous field to reach similar levels as the rotational field. Vegetative cover in the rotational field was consistently above the recommended levels for prevention of erosion and nutrient runoff, while low levels of vegetative cover in the continuous field presented an increased erosion risk in the early spring. Findings of this study support the implementation of rotational grazing practices as a means of optimizing long-term pasture production. Further investigation is needed to assess the impact of rotational grazing practices on equine metabolic and digestive health to ensure that recommended pasture management practices are not only environmentally and financially sound, but also promote optimal horse health.

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Meet

the

Researcher

Dr. Carey Williams Associate Extension Specialist Rutgers – The State University of New Jersey New Brunswick, New Jersey, USA

where she performs research on the BMPs. Dr. Williams has been author or co-author of over 40 scientific journal articles in her field of expertise. She has also authored eight book chapters on antioxidants, oxidative stress, supplements, or pasture management for horses. Along with self-written publications, you may have seen her name in various publications like The Horse, Equus, Practical Horseman, and The Blood Horse as an ‘expert’ interviewee. You may have also listened to one of her webinars or appearances on radio shows.

Carey A. Williams, Ph.D. joined Rutgers University in July 2003 as its Equine Extension Specialist and the Associate Director of Extension at the Equine Science Center, taking an active role in teaching, conducting research, and working with the equine and academic communities to ensure the viability of the horse industry in New Jersey. A Wisconsin native, Dr. Williams started her schooling with a bachelor’s degree in equine science from Colorado State University (1998), where instead of strengthening her passion for veterinary medicine, she realized her passion for nutrition and teaching. She went from there for a master’s and doctorate degrees in Animal and Poultry Sciences (with an emphasis on equine nutrition and exercise physiology) and graduated in June 2003 from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University. At Rutgers, Dr. Williams maintains a herd of Standardbred horses for nutrition, exercise, and pasture research. Her exercise work dealt with strategies for decreasing the stress of intense exercise through nutritional modification and antioxidant supplementation. Her nutrition and pasture work has focused on different grazing systems and how they impact horse health and the environment. She has also maintained a Best Management Practice Demonstration Horse Farm

Further Readings: Allen, E., C. Sheaffer, and K. Martinson. 2012. Yield and persistence of cool-season grasses under horse grazing. Agron. J. 104:1741-1746. Bott, R.C., E.A. Greene, K. Koch, K.L. Martinson, P.D. Siciliano, C. Williams, N.L. Trottier, A. Burk, and A. Swinker. 2013. Production and environmental implications of equine grazing. J. Equine Vet. Sci. 33:1031-1043. Kenny LB. 2016. The effects of rotational and continuous grazing on horses, pasture condition, and soil properties [thesis]. Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ. Martinson, K.L., P.D. Siciliano, C.C. Sheaffer, B.J. McIntosh, A.M. Swinker, and C. A. Williams. 2017. A review of equine grazing research methodologies. J. Equine Vet. Sci. 51:92104.

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Meet

the

Researcher

Jennifer Weinert Ph.D. Student & Graduate Teaching Assistant Rutgers – The State University of New Jersey New Brunswick, New Jersey, USA

Campus Laboratory Farm. In that capacity, she oversaw management and maintenance of 60-90 universityowned teaching horses and all equine facilities, including over 40 acres of pasture land. Ms. Weinert also took on a new role managing the UW-River Falls Horse Breeding Program, with responsibilities including ultrasonography and insemination of mares, foaling, and collection and processing of stallion semen. Since beginning her Ph.D. studies at Rutgers, Ms. Weinert has worked under the guidance of Dr. Carey Williams. Ms. Weinert began her dissertation research in 2018 investigating the effect of integrated cool- and warm-season rotational grazing systems on horse pasture production as well as equine metabolism and the gut microbiome.

Jennifer Weinert is a non-traditional Ph.D. student in the Endocrinology and Animal Biosciences Graduate Program at Rutgers University. She received her bachelor’s degree in Animal Science – Equine Emphasis from the University of Wisconsin-River Falls and went on to work in the western performance horse sector of the equine industry. Ms. Weinert’s background in 4-H and AQHA competition as a youth initially led her to pursue a career in horse training. Working at reining horse training facilities in Texas and Wisconsin provided invaluable practical experiences and gave Weinert an even greater appreciation for the scope of the equine industry. Following her time in industry, Ms. Weinert returned to UW-River Falls to manage the equine enterprise at the

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Effects of a Type-5 Phosphodiesterase Inhibitor on Pulmonary Artery Pressure in Race Fit Horses Dr. Ken McKeever, Professor of Animal Sciences and colleagues Drs. Ric Birks and Mary Durando from Equine Sports Medicine Consultants in Delaware looked at the potential use of a Type-5 Phosphodiesterase inhibitor to reduce blood pressure as a treatment for “bleeding” or exercise induced pulmonary hemorrhage (EIPH). This research was funded by Equine Sports Medicine Consultants, LLC.

The Research Project enhances a horse’s performance ability independent of any effect on the severity of bleeding. Horses lose weight after receiving furosemide four hours before race time. The reduction in body weight is due to increased urination and water loss, coupled with the fact that horses have restricted access to feed and water for the four hours prior to racing, can result in significant weight loss (1520 pounds). This can result in an exercise performance advantage over horses not receiving furosemide. Ideally, a solution to the treatment of EIPH would be one that effectively lessens the severity of bleeding without performance enhancing effects that one sees with furosemide. Because EIPH is believed to be caused by an increase in blood pressure during strenuous exercise, treating the horse prior to racing with an agent that actually lowers blood pressure would be ideal. This study was performed to determine the optimal

The proposed pathophysiologic mechanism for pulmonary hemorrhage includes high pulmonary vascular pressures during strenuous maximal exercise, with resultant thickening of pulmonary vein walls and decreased luminal diameter and increased intravascular pressure at the level of the pulmonary capillaries. Some lung capillaries rupture under the high-pressure conditions that exist during heavy exercise. Although exercise induced pulmonary hemorrhage (EIPH) has been recognized for decades, researchers still have more questions than answers when it comes to the cause and prevention of this problem. While research has shed light as to why horses bleed during strenuous exercise, there is no consensus regarding the true cause of EIPH. The main controversy surrounding the use of furosemide in racehorses is whether the drug actually 49


dose and timing of E4021 (EIPHISOLTM) to reduce pulmonary artery pressure (PAP) during treadmill exercise. Eight (4 geldings, 4 mares) unfit Standardbreds (4-8 years of age, and approximately 490 kg body weight) were conditioned for the entire trial. Speed and duration increased weekly until weeks 12-14, when three treadmill Graded Exercise Tests (GXT) were performed to document stable fitness (VO2max). Two randomized crossover experiments then used Simulated Race Tests (SRT) to determine the optimal dose and timing of IV administration of E4021 prior to exercise. In the first experiment, researchers evaluated the effect of two doses of the drug (50 versus 100 mg) and administration at two time points (45 versus 90 minutes prior to exercise) and compared this to the control group which received no drug. In experiment 2, all treated horses received drug treatment at 90 minutes prior to exercise, compared to the control group which received no drug. The effect of three drug doses were compared: 100 mg; 150 mg; or 200 mg. The SRT used a two minute warm-up followed by two minutes at 110% VO2max; followed by a two minute recovery period. Pulmonary artery pressure, electrocardiographs, VO2, and VCO2 were measured continuously and blood samples (3 mL) were collected anaerobically at the end of the warm-up; and at one and two minutes during race speed, and at the end of recovery to measure partial pressure of oxygen in arterial blood; partial pressure of carbon dioxide; pH; arterial oxygen saturation; concentrations of the electrolytes sodium, potassium, and calcium; concentrations of lactate, glucose, and hemoglobin; and packed cell volume or hematocrit. The major finding was that the 100 mg dose administered 90 minutes before exercise resulted in the lowest pulmonary artery pressure. There were no differences in pulmonary artery pressure in experiment 2 which compared the doses of 100 mg, 150 mg, and 200 mg of drug given 90 minutes prior to exercise. While E4021 did lower pulmonary artery pressure

when given at the dose of 100 mg 90 minutes before exercise, it did not alter markers of aerobic or anaerobic performance. The reduction of pulmonary artery pressure of approximately 30 mmHg seen with 100 mg dose at 90 minutes prior to exercise represents a clinically significant effect.

Conclusions and Future Directions: The reduction of pulmonary artery pressure of approximately 30 mmHg seen with 100 mg dose at 90 minutes prior to exercise represents a clinically significant effect as the reduction in pulmonary blood pressure falls below the recognized threshold for capillary stress failure in the lungs of strenuously exercised horses. Future directions are dependent upon funding and requests from the FDA as part of the approval process. Potential studies will include field trials and treadmill experiments using clinically affected horses.

50


Meet

the

Researcher

Dr. Ken McKeever Professor Rutgers – The State University of New Jersey New Brunswick, New Jersey, USA

volume, and fluid and electrolyte balance. On an applied level his research has focused on the effects of performance enhancing practices on the physiological responses of the equine athlete. These studies are just part of the more than 200 book chapters, journal articles and proceedings papers, and more than 60 abstracts that have advanced our understanding of the athletic horse. In his spare time, he plays water polo goalie at the local, national, and international level and is also an amateur genealogist and historian.

Ken McKeever received his B.S. and M.S. degrees in Animal Science from California State Polytechnic University Pomona and Fresno State University. McKeever earned his Ph.D. in Animal Physiology at the University of Arizona where he also managed the University Horse Center and Quarter Horse breeding program. Upon completing his Ph.D., McKeever served for two years as a National Academies of Sciences-National Research Council Resident Research Associate in the Cardiovascular Research Lab at the NASA Ames Research Center in California. From 1987 to 1994 Dr. McKeever developed and coordinated research at the Equine Exercise Physiology Laboratory at the Ohio State University. In 1995 he joined the Faculty in the Department of Animal Sciences at Rutgers University as an Associate Professor and proceeded to build, develop, and coordinate one of the most active equine exercise physiology laboratories in the US. Dr. McKeever earned the rank of Full Professor in 2009 and currently serves as Associate Director of Research at the Rutgers University Equine Science Center. He currently serves as President of the Equine Science Society as well as the Editor-in-Chief of the Comparative Exercise Physiology journal. On a basic level his research has focused on comparative exercise and cardiovascular physiology with a particular interest in the effects of aging on the integration of the cardiovascular, renal, and endocrine systems in the control of blood pressure, blood

Further Readings: Gross, D.K.; Morley, P.S.; Hinchcliff, K.W.; Wittum, T.E. Effect of furosemide on performance of Thoroughbreds racing in the United States and Canada. Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association, 215, 670-675, 1999. Hinchcliff, K.W. Effects of furosemide on athletic performance and exercise-induced pulmonary hemorrhage in horses. Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association, 215, 630635, 1999. Soma, L.R.; Birks, E.K.; Uboh, C.E.; May, L.; Teleis, D.; Martini, J. The effects of furosemide on racing times of Standardbred pacers. Equine Veterinary Journal, 32, 334-340, 2000. Takahashi, T.; Hiraga, A.; Ohmura, H.; Kai, M.; Jones, J.H. Frequency and risk factors for epistaxis associated with exercise-induced pulmonary hemorrhage in horses: 251,609 race starts (1992-1997). Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association, 218, 1462-1464, 2001.

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52


Northeast 1441 USDA Regional Project: Environmental Impacts of Equine Operations

The Research Project Rutgers faculty members Drs. Michael Westendorf and Carey Williams led a regional group of collaborating scientists in the Northeast-1441 USDA Regional Project, Environmental Impacts of Equine Operations. These researchers represent programs at more than 10 institutions from the University of Florida to the University of Minnesota to the University of Massachusetts. The goal of their work is to further research and outreach concerning the impact of horse farm management

practices on various environmental parameters including water, air, and soil quality. The NE-1441 Project is a longterm, on-going effort to improve the understanding of equine-environmental interactions, entering the final year of its second five-year project cycle. Scientists working on the NE-1441 Project convened for their annual meeting in August 2018 hosted by the University of Maine to share the progress of work conducted at their respective institutions. 53


Research Highlights:

• Multiple institutions are investigating the potential of

• Efforts to combat parasite resistance are underway at

various alternative forages for grazing in horse pasture systems. Studies at the University of Maryland focused on various cool- and warm-season turfgrass varieties, with tall fescue and zoysiagrass found to have the greatest wear tolerance. Researchers at the University of Florida have begun grazing studies in bermudagrass fields interseeded with perennial peanut as a novel forage. At the University of Minnesota, a number of studies have been conducted on alternative forages such as teff, winter hardy ryegrass, low-lignin alfalfa, and cover crops such as radishes, turnips and clover. At Rutgers, rotational grazing studies are underway to assess the utility of integrating a cold-tolerant bermudagrass and a forage variety of crabgrass into tradition cool-season rotational grazing systems.

both the University of Massachusetts and Pennsylvania State University. Pennsylvania State University continues work through their SARE-funded project, Reducing Parasite Resistance on Equine Operations Using a Comprehensive, Whole Farm Approach.

• Other

studies have centered on grazing behavior and horse health, with a particular interest in weight management and forages low in non-structural carbohydrates. The University of Maryland is investigating the effects of grazing muzzles on behavior and weight loss. Researchers at the University of Maine have developed GPS collars capable of long-term monitoring of grazing activity in cattle, which could have applications in equine grazing projects. North Carolina State University has conducted numerous studies on restricted grazing regimens with dual goals of horse weight management and prevention of overgrazing in pastures.

• Researchers at the University of Maine are studying

the impact of manure composting on the prevalence of antibiotic resistant coliforms in horse manure.

Outreach Highlights:

• Rutgers University partnered with the New Jersey

• Pennsylvania

State University has begun a new outreach initiative with the Amish community in their state to provide information on veterinary care, nutrition, and pasture management.

NRCS and farms across the state of New Jersey to host “Night of Wine and Equine Events” focused on educating the horse community and promoting environmental best management practices (BMPs) in farm management and grazing.

• Other outreach activities on-going at many of the

member institutions include hosting workshops and webinars as well as developing new video content on management practices for their websites and related courses.

• Multiple institutions are offering pasture management and environmental stewardship short-courses, including the University of Minnesota, North Carolina State, and Pennsylvania State University.

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Future Projects As the NE-1441 group prepares for its next five-year cycle, areas of continued interest include topics in pasture management such as alternative forages as a mechanism to extend the grazing season, parasite resistance and management, soil quality and nutrient recycling, and natural weed control. Other interests include aspects

of manure and carcass disposal/composting including fly control, ammonia emissions, bedding type and use, chemical and antibiotic use, and the presence of antibiotic resistant bacteria. Researchers will also focus on economic implications of recommended management practices and the adoption of these practices on a nation-wide scale.

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Awards GOLD MEDAL HORSE FARM AWARD

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The award, part of the New Jersey Equine Environmental Stewardship Program, gives recognition to outstanding equine farms for their dedication to environmental sustainability and management. It also underscores the efforts of the New Jersey equine industry to maintain the beauty of the Garden State. The program is a collaborative initiative by the New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station at Rutgers University, the Equine Science Center, and the New Jersey Department of Agriculture.

he 2018 winner of the Gold Medal Horse Farm award was Dorsett Farms in Woolwich Township, New Jersey. With the boarding and breeding farm residing on 70 acres, its staff is passionate about preserving a safe and friendly environment where both Arabian horses and their riders thrive. Owners Larry and Ann Dorsett are dedicated to mentoring newcomers to Arabian horses and to helping the breed continue to thrive in the Northeast region of the United States. 57


SPIRIT OF THE HORSE AWARD

L

aurie Landy, the Founder of Special Strides Therapeutic Riding Center, received the 2018 “Spirit of the Horse Award” for her contributions to “improving the quality of life for all individuals who pass through the stable gates; patients, riders, families, volunteers, staff, donors, and community members.” Opening their doors in 1998, Laurie combined her passion as an occupational therapist with her

love of horses. A non-profit organization devoted to improving the lives of individuals with special needs, Special Strides uses a unique combination of horses and therapy to improve the lives of everyone who arrives at their door. Based in Monroe Township, New Jersey, Congress Hill Farm encompasses facilities on 200 acres which include training areas (both outdoor and indoor) and wooded trails. 58


RUTGERS COOPERATIVE EXTENSION AWARD FOR EXCELLENCE

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browse and understand the accomplishments of the center. In addition to the annual report, Kyle relaunched the website and other social media platforms to make them more user friendly. In doing so, he was promoted to Public Relations Specialist for his expertise in design and interpersonal communication. Kyle is also credited with organizing the Center’s most popular events, such as the annual “Evening of Science and Celebration” and the 15year Anniversary weekend long symposium “Horses 2017: The Best of The Best.” Kyle’s excellent abilities to organize and plan have been monumental in expanding the Center’s outreach efforts and its presence within the New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station and Rutgers Cooperative Extension.

yle Hartmann, after only three years of working at the Center, was selected to be the recipient of the 2017 Rutgers Cooperative Extension Award for Excellence! It marks the shortest term of employment in which an employee has received this award. This award has been given annually since 1991 and identifies an individual that exemplifies excellence in his department, provides outstanding performance with special challenges, overcomes difficulties to achieve his goals, makes great contributions to Rutgers Cooperative Extension, and makes an impact in his department and locally as he represents the university. Within his first months of employment, Kyle redesigned the annual report to a “magazine style” format, with an option to download it as an interactive PDF, allowing readers to efficiently 59


CHANCELLOR’S STUDENT STAFF EXCELLENCE AWARD

C

student workers and volunteers in their roles both in the day-to-day operations of the Center and as eventday support staff. Carolayn was instrumental in the preparations for and the smooth execution of Horses 2017: “The Best of the Best” conference. Carolayn was in charge of all registration for the event and managed student volunteers during the check-in period which saw over 200 people walk through the door. Carolayn’s outstanding work with the Equine Science Center was recognized when she was nominated for and received a Student Staff Excellence Award at the Chancellor’s Student Leadership Gala on May 1, 2018. This university-wide distinction is awarded to a student employee who “exceeds job expectations, and displays exceptional and exemplary initiative, dedication, and service.”

arolayn Munoz is a Rutgers senior majoring in Biomedical Sciences. Carolayn joined the Equine Science Center as a member of the Center’s student staff through the federal workstudy program at the beginning of her freshman year in the Fall 2015 semester. Carolyn’s work ethic, critical thinking skills, and leadership ability led to her promotion to a formalized leadership role as the Student Office Manager in 2016. As part of her job, Carolayn works closely with Public Relations Specialist Kyle Hartmann to keep the Center’s office operating efficiently and effectively. Carolayn also assists with the design and roll-out of promotional materials for the Center as well as providing support for planning of Center programs and events. One of Carolayn’s greatest contributions to the Center lies in her ability to guide and mentor other 60


GOLD MEDAL HORSE FARM AWARD

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He has adopted numerous environmental management practices, including rotational grazing, vegetative buffers, fencing, and pasture improvements, which all increase environmental sustainability. Proper manure management is adhered to, with manure being collected, stockpiled, and spread regularly on pasture and hay ground. Using this method, John is able to fertilize the hay and pastures that are used to feed the horses and cows, decreasing the amount of feed that needs to be purchased. John has hosted numerous field days and Rutgers University classes on his farm, even including an on-farm research project to determine the effects of animal diet upon waste excretion.

he 2019 Gold Medal Horse Farm was awarded to Mortonhouse Farm, owned by John Crater. Mortonhouse Farm is an equine and beef cattle farm located in Long Valley, New Jersey. Primarily a boarding and pleasure horse farm, the 110-acre farm is composed of 35-40 acres of pasture and keeps up to 20 horses. Horses spend most of the year outside and spend little time indoors. The farm also includes more than four miles of trails for horseback riding, and is connected to a larger trail network. John has been involved in numerous conservation programs on his farm, including the development of a Comprehensive Nutrient Management Plan. 61


SPIRIT OF THE HORSE AWARD

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ennis “Buttons” Fairfax, a internationally renowned horseshow judge and clinician from Westfield, New Jersey, received the 2019 “Spirit of the Horse Award” for his lifelong commitment to advancing the proper care and management of horses, and for his contributions to youth education.

Buttons’ lifelong passion has been horses and their relationship with people. Being able to share his knowledge of horses with others is what he finds most rewarding. His goal of opening the equine world to inner-city children provides them with a unique experience that they might not have previously thought possible. 62


RUTGERS COOPERATIVE EXTENSION WILBUR RUNK AWARD

J

ennifer Weinert received the 2018 Wilbur Runk Award from Rutgers Cooperative Extension. This award is given to outstanding graduate students whose faculty mentor is an Extension Specialist. Jennifer is a Ph.D. Student in the Endocrinology and Animal Biosciences Graduate Program, housed in the Department of Animal Sciences.

Her current work is focused on the use of rotational grazing systems in horse pastures. Jennifer is also exploring the use of different cool and warm season grasses to lengthen the period of grass availability during the growing season, and thereby reducing the amount of hay that has to be fed.

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esc.rutgers.edu

Equine Science Center Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey Administrative Services Building II 57 US Highway 1, South New Brunswick, NJ 08901

Profile for Rutgers University Equine Science Center

Equine Science Center's 2017-2018 Annual Report  

The Equine Science Center at Rutgers University releases the 2017-2018 Annual Report.

Equine Science Center's 2017-2018 Annual Report  

The Equine Science Center at Rutgers University releases the 2017-2018 Annual Report.