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Animal Science

Livestock (beef, sheep, and swine) and poultry account for approximately 48 percent of the gross revenue generated in the agricultural sector of Virginia's economy. Additionally, the livestock and poultry industries provide a ready market for many of the feed crops produced in Virginia. For the livestock and poultry enterprises to remain economically viable and sustainable, they must use a systems approach to decision-making that integrates science-based principles in the areas of animal care and management (including health, nutrition, parasites, facilities), the environment (including animal waste disposal), and food quality and safety. Forages (hay, pasture, and silage) are the primary source of nutrition for beef cattle and sheep, as well as horses and goats. Forage quality and quantity can have significant impacts upon cost of production. Effective management alternatives that enhance profitability and sustainability are presented through producer clinics, workshops, on-farm meetings, field days, seminars, fact sheets, and newsletters that deal with methods to improve production efficiency and marketing strategies.

Engaging with Communities

Virginia Cooperative Extension specialists in community viability work with Extension agents, campus-based faculty, organizational partners, communities, and individuals to further opportunity and build capacity in five program areas:   

Examples of our work include training county elected officials, educating entrepreneurs, facilitating collaborative projects, supporting the growth of community food systems and local economies, enhancing agent skills and community capacity in facilitation and leadership, conducting problem-driven research, and creating publications and tools that address critical community needs.

Do you have a question about Community Viability?

Perhaps one of the Community Viability specialists below can help you. Contact a Community Viability specialist or direct a question to them using our Ask an Expert system.

Community Viability Specialists

See a list of our Community Viability Specialists

4-H Community Clubs in Botetourt County - come and join!

What is a 4-H Community Club?  It is a group of boys and girls interested in learning about a specific topic or a general interest that meets once a month in the evening.  Depending on events and special club projects 4-H members may meet more often.  4-H is open to all boys and girls ages 9 to 18, as of September 30 of the current year.  Limited opportunities for boys and girls ages 5 to 8 are available, see 4-H Cloverbuds brochure below.   For more information on each 4-H club, click below.  If you are interested in joining one of our 4-H Community Clubs or have an interest in other 4-H opportunities, please contact Tyler H. Painter, Botetourt 4-H Extension Agent for more information, or (540) 473-8260.  

Botetourt 4-H Cooking Kings Club.pdf

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Botetourt 4-Honey Bee Club.pdf

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Botetourt 4-H Horse and Pony Club.pdf

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4-H Robotics Brochure.pdf Botetourt 4-H Robotics Club

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4-H Livestock 4-H Botetourt Livestock Club

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Botetourt 4H General Brochure.pdf 4-H General

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Botetourt 4-H Outdoor Skills Club.pdf

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Botetourt 4-H Shooting Education Club.pdf

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Botetourt 4-H Teen Leadership Club.pdf

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NEW!  4-H Gardening Club - vegetables and ornamentals, a hands on program,  for more information call (540)473-8260. 



Botetourt County 4-H Summer Camp

 J U N E 1 7 - 2 1 , 2 0 2 4

 W.E. Skelton 4-H Educational Conference Center, Smith Mountain Lake, Wirtz, VA


Registration for 4-H Camp opens Monday, March 25th, 2024

(No registrations accepted any earlier)

First come, first serve basis, space is limited


Botetourt County Youth (ages 9 - 13 as of September 30, 2024 or turn age 14 in 2024)

A limited number of Camp Scholarships are available based on need, call, (540) 928-3210 to apply. To be considered, scholarship applications must be completed and returned by Monday, March 18th.


Tyler Painter

Extension Agent, 4-H Youth Development

Virginia Cooperative Extension-Botetourt

P.O. Box 217

(9 W Main Street)

Fincastle, VA 24090 

(540) 928-3210


Cost: $385.00 per camper

$185 deposit due with the registration form and the remaining balance of $200 due by May 10th or the full fee can be paid at registration. 

Cost Includes: Bus transportation, Meals, Lodging, Classes, and a 4-H Camp t-shirt

Campers Must Supply: Sheets or Sleeping Bag, Pillow, Pillow Case, Blanket, Towels, Toiletries 

Bus Transportation:

  • Sign-in & Departure: Monday, June 17, 2024, 8:30 am, Lord Botetourt High School cafeteria, Daleville, VA 
  • Return & Sign-out: Friday, June 21, 2024, 12:00 pm, Lord Botetourt High School , Daleville, VA

Download and complete the registration form below: 

2024 camp registration.pdf

Archery, Artistic Adventures, Canoeing, Low Ropes/Games & Initiatives, CampTok, Climbing, High Ropes, Basic Horsemanship, Kayaking, Riflery, Small Animal Science, STEM, Swimming, Wilderness Survival, and MANY MORE!

Anyone that registers for 4-H Camp will receive a packet of information in the mail in April, that will have forms, class requests, and other information included. Those forms will need to be returned to the office ASAP, as classes are assigned on a first-come, first-serve basis with all necessary paperwork and enrollment information completed. 

Any additional questions can be directed to our office at (540) 928-3210 or