Monday links

What’s the latest in the fields of agriculture, food safety, animal science and toxicology? Check it out here.

Animal Science:

A whole lot of water goes into that milk — University of Kentucky Ag News
Water is important for most species’ survival. Dairy cows, in particular, require large quantities to produce their famous milk. It’s important for dairy producers to provide plenty of water within a convenient location to keep their herds well hydrated.

The advent of ‘green’ cattle — University of Bristol
A research team recently examined the best way to measure the carbon footprint of pasture-based cattle herds based on assessments of individual animals. This ability to identify “green” cattle within a herd promises more sustainable farming, the team reports.

Food Safety:

Breeding chickens for improved food safety — US Department of Agriculture
A new test developed in Texas could make it easier to breed pathogen-resistant chickens. The test identifies roosters whose blood contains naturally high levels of two key chemicals that mobilize the birds’ innate immune response.

CDC reports Salmonella outbreaks traced to papayas likely over — Food Safety News
A collection of four Salmonella outbreaks traced to Mexican papayas appears to be over, according to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention officials who report at least 251 people across 25 US states were sickened, including two who died.

Agriculture:

Additional hurdle to widespread planting of bioenergy crops identified — Indiana University
A recent study on the decision-making processes of farmers found that farmers have to consider an important factor when considering planting bioenergy crops: option value. This means that farmers take into account price fluctuations for bioenergy crops, meaning fewer of these crops are produced.

Key to better asparagus identified in evolution of sex chromosomes — University of Georgia
An international team of breeders and genome scientists have shed light on not only how to make better asparagus, but also the origin and early evolution of sex chromosomes. They did this by sequencing the genome of garden asparagus.

Toxicology:

Why the fight against opioid abuse is happening at the post office — The Washington Post
Postal inspectors are becoming unlikely front-line responders to the US’s ongoing opioid crisis as people increasingly order drugs via the Internet. Inspectors are intercepting packages, many in small envelopes or packages, containing dangerous synthetic drugs.

Offbeat:

Mysterious Void Discovered in Egypt’s Great Pyramid — National Geographic
Egypt’s Great Pyramid of Giza — one of the wonders of the ancient world, and a dazzling feat of architectural genius — contains a hidden void at least a hundred feet long, scientists have announced.

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