KJAN Ag/Outdoor

Farmers reminded to monitor their mental, as well as physical, health

Ag/Outdoor

October 31st, 2017 by Ric Hanson

Farming remains one of the most dangerous jobs in the U.S. due to the potential for PHYSICAL injury. However, the occupation can also take a toll on a person’s MENTAL health. Doctor Michael Rosman of Harlan is a farmer who also works in the field of agricultural behavioral health. He says most people are well aware of hazards on the farm like heavy machinery and confined spaces, but another risk often goes unnoticed.

“The psychological injuries that occur in farming are less well understood,” Rosman says. “It isn’t what the farmer has done, but conditions that are beyond our control that make farming so perilous. Like weather events, change in agricultural policy or market conditions – those kinds of factors.”

A recent study by researchers at the University of Iowa found the suicide rate among farmers is now 50 percent higher than during the peak of the farm crisis in 1982. Rosman says many farmers allow stress to compound and spiral out of control.

“Most of us can handle two stressors, but when we get to three, they overwhelm us,” Rosman says. “We initially try to overcome the stresses by working even harder. But, when we do that, we usually deprive ourselves of sleep, adequate recreation, and we begin to become overly distressed.”

As stress sets in, Rosman says so do biological factors associated with depression. There’s help for anyone experiencing a stress overload, including farmers. “If we seek treatment or assistance, such as medications and counseling to deal with the stresses, we can restore perspective,” Rosman says. “But, sometimes we avoid seeking help because we’re so bent on trying to take care of things ourselves.”

A program operated by Iowa State University Extension and Outreach is designed to give farmers and all Iowans access to stress counselors and other resources at no charge. The Iowa Concern Hotline is active 24 hours a day, 7 days per week at 1-800-447-1985.

(Radio Iowa)

Manure from dairy farm blamed for deaths of 60K fish

Ag/Outdoor, News

October 31st, 2017 by Ric Hanson

(Update) NEW VIENNA, Iowa (AP) — Authorities are blaming a manure runoff from a dairy farm for killing about 60,000 fish in eastern Iowa. The farm is situated about 3 miles (5 kilometers) east of New Vienna. The fish kill was reported Oct. 9 after fish carcasses were spotted in two creeks downstream in Dyersville. The Iowa Natural Resources Department has issued a notice of violation to the owner, John Hoefler, and is expected to seek restitution for the fish. Among the dead were minnows, white suckers and creek chubs.

Farm groups call for US government to double ag research funding

Ag/Outdoor, News

October 31st, 2017 by Ric Hanson

A coalition of more than 60 farm and commodity groups is asking federal lawmakers to double the funding for agricultural research in the next Farm Bill. Johnathan Hladik (LAW-dick), the policy program director with the Center for Rural Affairs, says that additional money is needed for research to be able to help feed a growing world population. “When you look at the landscape, you look at the charge of agriculture in the coming years, we need to feed more and more people, in some cases, with less land and fewer resources,” Hladik says. “What’s going to get us there is sound research and good science. We took this opportunity to express our support for making sure we have the dollars and support from the federal government there to get this done.”

The requested doubling of federal research funding would take the figure to six-BILLION dollars. “It sounds like a significant chunk of change,” Hladik says, “but this is the type of research that pays off for generations to come and it’s smart to make that investment now, upfront, rather than trying to catch up later on and dealing with what could end up being a significant food shortage.” He says private companies in the U-S have contributed to ag research but the advantage in federal funding is that the research tends to be unbiased. “Over the past decade or so, it’s private companies really stepping up and filling that gap and that could be a really big positive but in a lot of ways that can also tailor the research in a certain direction or limit its scope,” Hladik says. “When you have more general non-partisan dollars that are going to work, it can open up the amount of issues you can look at.”

Hladik says the U-S should look at the commitment China has made to ag research. China is now the world leader in such funding, passing the U-S — which is now in second place. The Center for Rural Affairs is based in Lyons, Nebraska.

(Radio Iowa)

High Fire Danger continues in Shelby County this week

Ag/Outdoor, News, Weather

October 30th, 2017 by Ric Hanson

The Shelby County Emergency Management Agency says “Due to the winds today , lack of precipitation in the forecast, and a considerable amount of available fuels,”  the HIGH Fire Danger category will be in effect until at least Thursday. At that time authorities will issue another Local update. No outdoor burning is allowed without a permit from your local fire chief. Any fires that are lit are likely to spread out of control, rapidly.

Fall urban trout stocking program underway

Ag/Outdoor, Sports

October 30th, 2017 by Ric Hanson

The Iowa Department of Natural Resources fall trout stocking program is underway. Northeast Iowa Regional Fisheries Supervisor, Mike Steuck (Steyek like bike) says they stock the trout in water bodies that are within 15 to 20 miles of the state’s largest cities. He says the goal is to be in the urban areas and create some excitement and get people out to go trout fishing. Steuck says they hope people will enjoy the trout and then use their trout stamp to fish some of the trout streams in northeast Iowa. Steuck says the trout thrive in the cool streams in northeast Iowa and that’s why they wait to stock them in other areas until the fall.”They can’t survive in temperatures higher than 60 to 70 degrees — so we wait until October or November or even through the ice to stock them — when the waters in those ponds are cold enough to support the trout,” Steuck says.

He says they have a complete list of the lakes and ponds that will be stocked on the D-N-R website. Steuck says many of the communities are hosting events in conjunction with the trout stocking, but he says if you miss an event, you should still be able to find fish. “We stock between 15-hundred and two-thousand fish,” he says. Steuck says you can fish for the stocked trout throughout the fall and even into the ice fishing season. “And it doesn’t take anything special to catch them either,” Steuck says, “any old ice rod, or if it’s open water, all you need is a little spinner and some line on your fishing pole. Cast it out there and you are going to catch trout.” The stocked trout are ready to bring home. “They’re 10 to 12 inches in size and so they’re going to be a half a pound a piece. They should be more than big enough to eat,” Steuck says.

You need a valid fishing license and must pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout. The daily limit is five trout per licensed angler with a possession limit of 10. Children age 15 or younger can fish for trout with a properly licensed adult, but they must limit their catch to one daily limit. The child can purchase a trout fee which will allow them to catch their own limit.

(Radio Iowa)

Cleanup of Page County manure spill complete

Ag/Outdoor, News

October 27th, 2017 by Ric Hanson

CLARINDA—Staff from DNR’s Atlantic field office confirmed that cleanup is complete from a manure spill that occurred Oct. 24 northwest of Clarinda. Contractors worked Wednesday and Thursday to remove approximately 236 tons of manure-contaminated soil from a ditch near the Lee Brooke confinement site. The mix was land applied to crop fields. Commercial manure applicator Jason Sickles will continue to work with Page County to restore the ditch.

A stuck pump valve Tuesday evening caused about 7,000 gallons of manure to pool at the confinement site, and in roadside and drainage ditches that flow into an unnamed tributary of East Tarkio Creek. The DNR says it will consider appropriate enforcement action.

(12:40-p.m. News)

Cruz blocking Northey nominating to USDA post

Ag/Outdoor, News

October 27th, 2017 by Ric Hanson

The Texas senator who won Iowa’s 2016 presidential caucuses has placed a hold on Iowa Ag Secretary Bill Northey’s nomination for a federal job. Texas Senator Ted Cruz is blocking a vote in the senate on Northey’s nomination to be an undersecretary in the U.S.D.A. Cruz is reportedly irked with the way Iowa Senators Chuck Grassley and Joni Ernst pressured the E-P-A Administrator to back off on a plan to reduce the federal biofuels mandate.

Cruz and eight other senators from states that have oil refineries are now asking for a meeting with President Trump. They want to discuss an overhaul of the Renewable Fuels Standard. This group of senators charge the R-F-S hurts jobs in their states. Thirty senators — including the two Republican senators from Iowa — were part of the coalition that pressed the Trump Administration to favor ethanol and biodiesel.

(Radio Iowa)

Shelby County Extension offers farm transition course for Women in Ag: Managing for Today and Tomorrow

Ag/Outdoor, News

October 27th, 2017 by Ric Hanson

Every successful business has a business cycle, and eventually that business will need to transition to a new business cycle or begin to decline. A farm or ag based business with an effective plan for the future can have a positive start in the next business cycle. To help women involved in agriculture plan for a future farm transition, Shelby County Extension is offering Managing for Today and Tomorrow beginning November 2nd, in Harlan.

The course will be held on Thursday nights November 2, 9, 16, 30 and Dec 7, from 6-9pm at the Shelby County Extension office at 906 6th Street, Harlan, Iowa. Topics will include planning for a successful retirement, family and business finances, estate planning terms and methods of transfer. A light meal will be served before the program at 5:45pm. The cost for the course is $75.

Pre-registration is required. To register online, visit the event calendar on the Shelby County Extension website (https://www.extension.iastate.edu/shelby/). Registration forms are also available at the Extension office to register by paper mail. Contact the Shelby County Extension Office with questions by calling 712-755-3104.

Adams County officials seek sealed bids for land sale

Ag/Outdoor, News

October 27th, 2017 by Ric Hanson

Officials in Adams County have given notice that The County of Adams (“Seller”) will sell through the acceptance of sealed bids for the properties described below. Sealed bids shall be received by Adams County Auditor’s office, 500 9th Street, Corning, IA 50841, no later than 9:00 a.m. Monday, December 4, 2017 by mail or in person. The sealed bid envelopes shall be clearly marked attention:
Adams County Board of Supervisors 500 9th Street, Corning, Iowa 50841 ATTN: Sealed Bids-Sale of Property.

Bids emailed or otherwise electronically submitted cannot be accepted and will be rejected.
Project Name: County Farm

  • Lot 1 of Parcel “A”, Parcel “B” or both Lot 1 of Parcel “A” and Parcel “B”
  • Parcels of Land Located in a portion of SE1/4 of Section 1 of 71-34
  • Bids for Lot 1 of Parcel “A” will have the option of building removal

Bids will be reviewed and awards made or bids rejected at the Adams County Board of Supervisors meeting on December 11, 2017.

Bid packets may be picked up in the Auditor’s Office in the Adams County Courthouse during regular business hours (8:30-4:30). For more information, contact Rebecca Bissell, Adams County Auditor at 641.322.3340

Meeting to discuss Green Valley and Thayer Lake water quality improvement plans

Ag/Outdoor, News

October 26th, 2017 by Ric Hanson

CRESTON – Iowans interested in the results of DNR studies to improve water quality in Green Valley and Thayer lakes in Union County can attend a meeting Nov. 8. Citizens are encouraged to bring their questions and ideas to improve the lakes to the meeting for discussion.

Green Valley Lake is on the state’s list of impaired waters for high levels of algae, low levels of dissolved oxygen, and low water clarity. Thayer Lake is on the impaired waters list for high levels of algae and low water clarity. The studies, or DNR water quality improvement plans, show how these problems are caused by too much phosphorus in the lakes. The problems impact recreation on the lakes and aquatic life.

The plans explore the amounts and sources of phosphorus entering the lakes and offer potential solutions to reduce those levels and work toward fixing the problems. The documents are designed as a guide for local resource agencies, partners, stakeholders and residents to improve the lakes. Staff from the DNR’s Watershed Improvement Program will be on hand to deliver a presentation and answer questions.

The Nov. 8 meeting will be held from 6 to 7:30 p.m. at the Southwestern Community College, 1201 W. Townline St. in Creston in Room 124 of the Performing Arts Center. Those not able to attend the public meeting can receive more information at www.iowadnr.gov/Environmental-Protection/Water-Quality/Watershed-Improvement/Water-Improvement-Plans and can submit comments on the plans by Nov. 27 via: