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Hay

Hay is grass, legumes, or other herbaceous plants that have been cut and dried to be stored for use as animal fodder for large grazing animals raised as livestock, such as cattle, horses and sheep. However, it is fed to smaller domesticated animals such as rabbits and guinea pigs. Pigs may be fed hay, but they do not digest it as efficiently as herbivores. Hay can be used as animal fodder when or where there is not enough pasture or rangeland on which to graze an animal, when grazing is not feasible due to weather, or when lush pasture by itself would be too rich for the health of the animal, it is fed when an animal is unable to access pasture, e.g. the animal is being kept in a stable or barn. Used plants for hay include mixtures of grasses such as ryegrass, brome, Bermuda grass, orchard grass, other species, depending on region. Hay may include legumes, such as alfalfa and clovers. Legumes in hay are ideally cut pre-bloom. Other pasture forbs are sometimes a part of the mix, though these plants are not desired as certain forbs are toxic to some animals.

Oat and wheat plant materials are cut green and made into hay for animal fodder. Straw is used for animal bedding. Although straw is used as fodder as a source of dietary fiber, it has lower nutritional value than hay, it is the leaf and seed material in the hay that determines its quality, because they contain more of the nutrition value for the animal than the stems do. Farmers try to harvest hay at the point when the seed heads are not quite ripe and the leaf is at its maximum when the grass is mowed in the field; the cut material is allowed to dry so that the bulk of the moisture is removed but the leafy material is still robust enough to be picked up from the ground by machinery and processed into storage in bales, stacks or pits. Methods of haymaking thus aim to minimize the shattering and falling away of the leaves during handling. Hay is sensitive to weather conditions when it is harvested. In drought conditions, both seed and leaf production are stunted, making hay that has a high ratio of dry coarse stems that have low nutritional values.

If the weather is too wet, the cut hay may spoil in the field. Thus the biggest challenge and risk for farmers in producing hay crops is the weather the weather of the particular few weeks when the plants are at the best age/maturity for hay. A lucky break in the weather moves the haymaking tasks to the top priority on the farm's to-do list; this is reflected in the idiom to make hay. Hay, too wet at cutting may develop rot and mold after being baled, creating the potential for toxins to form in the feed, which could make the animals sick. After harvest, hay has to be stored in a manner to prevent it from getting wet. Mold and spoilage may cause illness in animals. A symbiotic fungus in fescue may cause illness in cattle; the successful harvest of maximum yields of high-quality hay is dependent on the coincident occurrence of optimum crop and weather conditions. When this occurs, there may be a period of intense activity on the hay farm while harvest proceeds until weather conditions become unfavourable.

Hay or grass is the foundation of the diet for all grazing animals and can provide as much as 100% of the fodder required for an animal. Hay is fed to an animal in place of allowing the animal to graze on grasses in a pasture in the winter or during times when drought or other conditions make pasture unavailable. Animals that can eat hay vary in the types of grasses suitable for consumption, the ways they consume hay, how they digest it. Therefore, different types of animals require hay that consists of similar plants to what they would eat while grazing, plants that are toxic to an animal in pasture are toxic if they are dried into hay. Most animals are fed hay in two daily feedings and evening. However, this schedule is more for the convenience of humans, as most grazing animals on pasture consume fodder in multiple feedings throughout the day; some animals those being raised for meat, may be given enough hay that they are able to eat all day. Other animals those that are ridden or driven as working animals, are only free to eat when not working, may be given a more limited amount of hay to prevent them from getting too fat.

The proper amount of hay and the type of hay required varies somewhat between different species. Some animals are fed concentrated feeds such as grain or vitamin supplements in addition to hay. In most cases, hay or pasture forage must make up 50% or more of the diet by weight. One of the most significant differences in hay digestion is between ruminant animals, such as cattle and sheep. Both types of animals do so by different mechanisms; because of the four-chambered stomach of cattle, they are able to break down older forage and have more tolerance of mold and changes in diet. The single-chambered stomach and cecum or "hindgut" of the horse uses bacterial processes to break down cellulose that are more sensitive to changes in feeds and the presence of mold or other toxins, requiring horses to be fed hay of a more consistent type and quality. Different animals use hay in different ways

Northern Epirote Declaration of Independence

The Northern Epirote Declaration of Independence occurred on February 28, 1914, as a reaction to the incorporation of Northern Epirus into the newly established Principality of Albania. The region of Northern Epirus, which corresponds to modern-day southern Albania, came under the control of the Greek forces during the Balkan Wars of 1912–13. However, the subsequent Protocol of Florence assigned it to the newly established Albanian state, a decision, rejected by the local Greek population; as the Greek army withdrew to the new border, a Panepirotic Assembly was organized by the representatives of Northern Epirus in Gjirokastër. Given the fact that union of Northern Epirus with Greece had been dismissed by the European Great Powers, they decided that only autonomy or alternatively an international occupation would be appropriate for the region. Georgios Christakis-Zografos, the head of the assembly, declared the independence of the Autonomous Republic of Northern Epirus. In a proclamation to the people of Northern Epirus, Zografos maintained that their aspirations were ignored, since the Great Powers had rejected self-government within the Albanian state.

Following negotiations between Albanian and Northern Epirote representatives in early May, with the intervention of the Great Powers, the Protocol of Corfu was signed. According to this agreement, Northern Epirus would be an autonomous self-governing part of Albania under the suzerainty of the Albanian prince. However, the Protocol, which recognized the Greek character of the region, was never implemented due to political instability in Albania that time. During the First Balkan War, the Greek Army breached the Ottoman defences in the Epirus front and advanced further north. Thus, after the end of the war Greece controlled the historical region of Epirus; however the Treaty of London and the Protocol of Florence awarded the northern part to the newly established Principality of Albania. This area which coincided to the former Ottoman provinces of Ergiri and Görice, became known by the Greeks as Northern Epirus; this decision by the European Great Powers was unpopular among the local Greek population.

By the terms of the Protocol of Florence, the Greek government was obliged to evacuate its forces from the area to the new Greco-Albanian border line. The Greek government however raised concerns about the evacuation process of the Greek forces, pointing out to the Great Powers that the newly established Albanian state was unable to secure the region immediately. In particular the Greek government and the local population feared the possibility of reprisals and atrocities at the hands of Albanian irregular groups. In order to arrange the details of the evacuation with the International Commission of Control, an organization set up by the Great Powers to secure peace and stability in the region, the Greek prefect of Corfu moved to Vlorë, where the provisional government of Albania was based. Meanwhile, the Greek authorities reassured the local Greek population that the Greek government would undertake initiatives to secure for them recognition of minority status and rights in Albanian legislation.

The Greek authorities warned the population of the town of Korçë that any action against incorporation into Albania would be fruitless. They insisted that the Greek army would only hand over control of the region to regular Albanian units led by Dutch officers from the International Commission, whereas the Greek forces would fire upon any irregular Albanian bands who attempted to enter the region. Before the evacuation of the Greek Army began, an assembly of representatives of Northern Epirus, the "Panepirotic Assembly of Argyrokastro", took place on 13 February 1914 at Gjirokaster. Given the fact that unification of Northern Epirus with Greece had been dismissed by the Great Powers, the assembly decided that they would only accept local autonomy, or failing that, an international occupation, they declared that the population of Northern Epirus felt betrayed by the official Greek government, which not only refused to provide arms, but agreed to withdraw in order to allow the Albanian forces to proceed with the occupation of Northern Epirus.

The Assembly triggered a series of events. Georgios Christakis-Zografos, a former Greek foreign minister and native of the region, arrived at Gjirokaster and discussed the situation with the local representatives. In order to ensure the protection of the local population, Zografos proposed three options to the European Powers for Northern Epirus: full autonomy under the nominal sovereignty of the Prince of Albania, extensive administrative or cantonal-type autonomy with a gendarmerie recruited among locals, or a period of direct control by the Great Powers for such time until foreign troops could be withdrawn without endangering the local populace; the Northern Epirote representatives demanded formal recognition of the particular educational and religious rights of the local Greek Orthodox population. Moreover, for the coastal region of Himara, the Assembly claimed the same privileges and autonomous status it had enjoyed during the Ottoman era. On February 22, Zografos sent a note to the representatives of the Great Powers where he addressed the present situation: The Panepirotic Assembly gathered in Argyrokastro has charged us to request that you agree to call the attention of your Governments to the condition created for the Greek Orthodox Christians who have been put in Albania's possession by the declaration of the Powers.

The populace of Epirus believed it had the right to hope that Europe, tearing it away

Civitella Paganico

Civitella Paganico is a comune in the Province of Grosseto in the Italian region Tuscany. It features the main economy of the region, interspersed with dense forest, it is home to a variety of animal species. Civitella Paganico is home to the Petriolo hot springs, which have been enjoyed by travelers for thousands of years. Civilization in Civitella Paganico dates back to the Palaeolithic age, it is home to Roman remains. During the Middle Ages, the land was controlled by the Ardengheschi family, the Republic of Siena, the Grand Duchy of Tuscany; as of 2013, it is home to 3291 people. Civitella Paganico contains a number of small villages, the largest of, Paganico; the municipal seat is located in Civitella Marittima. Civitella Paganico is home to an Etruscan tomb, found undisturbed in 2007; the remains of 30 people were found in the small enclosure. Civitella Paganico is located in the Province of Grosseto, it is bordered on the north and east by the Province of Siena, on the south by the comunes of Campagnatico and Cinigiano, on the west by Roccastrada comune.

The territory is within the valley of the Ombrone river. The municipal seat is located in the frazione of Civitella Marittima. Civitella Paganico covers 19,271 hectares; the hilly landscape is marked by areas of dense forest interspersed with cultivated farm land. The forests host a wide variety of plant life including juniper and cypress trees. Animal life includes deer, hare and wild boar. Elevation in the comune ranges from 44 to 596 metres above sea level. On the northern edge of Civitella Paganico lie the Petriolo hot springs. Evidence of civilization in Civitella Paganico dates back to the Palaeolithic age; the village of Pari retains evidence of Roman habitation. During the 12th century, Civitella Paganico was owned by the Ardengheschi family. Beginning in 1254, the family began to reduce their holdings as the land came under the control of the Republic of Siena, selling the last of it to Sienese families in 1371. Following the fall of the Republic in 1555, much of the land was annexed by the Grand Duchy of Tuscany.

The Petriolo hot springs were known in ancient times and were frequented by the Etruscans and Romans. Written mention of it dates back to 1130; as the site gained famed for alleged curative properties during the Middle Ages, numerous famous people came to visit. Pope Pius II frequented the site. A number of Papal Bulls were issued from the Civitella Paganico as a result; the Republic of Siena instituted a tax on bathers. There were four baths on the site, one of which remains today. A resort hotel is under construction; the population is 12.7% children under 15, 26.6% people aged 65 or older, 60.7% people aged 15–64. 50.1% of the population is married. 15.3% of residents are foreigners, with natives of Romania making up the largest portion, followed by Morocco, Macedonia. The patron saints of Civitella Paganico are Saint Sebastian; the economy of Civitella Paganico is dependent on agriculture. As of 2013, Civitella Paganico is home to 3291 people, it contains a number of frazioni. Casale di Pari is the highest point of the comune.

Casenovole was once an important court of the Counts of Ardengheschi. Civitella Marittima, a hilltop town of 350, dates to the Etruscan period. Dogana is a small village in the countryside. Monte Antico is home to a famous castle. Paganico, the most populous town of the comune, was built by the Republic of Siena, it is home to the church of San Michele Arcangelo, which houses several frescoes painted by Biagio di Goro Ghezzi, the only intermediate school of the comune. Pari is located near the Petriolo hot springs and was the favorite home of 19th-century writer Federigo Tozzi. In 2007, an archaeology student named Andrea Marcocci unearthed an undisturbed Etruscan tomb in Civitella Paganico, near the castle of Casenovole; the site, nicknamed the "Tomb of the Badger" because of a badger den at the tomb's entrance, dates to between third and second century BC, a time when the Etruscan civilization was in the process of being conquered by the Romans. Marcocci first found the opening in 1991, but kept it a secret for 16 years, thinking it would be robbed.

When logging nearby threatened to uncover the site, who grew up in the area, decided it was time to investigate the site. He teamed up with amateur archeologists to excavate the site; the excavation team found a narrow corridor that led to a 2 metres long, 1.79 metres wide burial chamber filled with dirt. When the dirt was excavated and his colleagues found 80 artifacts, including vases, mirrors of ceramic and bronze and rings. Of the urns, 25 were terracotta, 3 stone, 2 bronze; the ashes of 30 people were discovered, an unusually high number for a single Etruscan tomb. Marcocci hypothesized the urns belonged to a single family, with the smaller urns belonging to their servants. Official website