KJAN Ag/Outdoor

Controversial corn crib-turned-gazebo is filled with food

Ag/Outdoor, News

November 25th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

A corn crib that’s caused some controversy in the western Iowa town of Carroll is being put to good use. The corn crib was being used by a couple in town as a backyard gazebo. Several neighbors have complained about the wire and metal structure, calling it an eyesore. Monday evening, Carroll residents were being challenged to fill the corn crib with canned food to be donated to the local Food Bank. Summer Parrott helped organize the food donation drive.

“Carroll is community where we help our neighbors and I really just wanted to bring everything together so we could focus on something positive during the holiday season,” Parrott said. A Girl Scout group that Parrott teaches will help collect the donations. Parrott said she was bothered by the negativity that seemed to be swirling around the community over the gazebo issue. “When I first read the news story about what was going on with the gazebo, I just immediately thought this is such a first world issue,” Parrott said. “There are so many bigger things to be worried about within the community, let alone the world, that we don’t need to keep perpetuating all of the negativity going back and forth.”

Parrott said the owners of the corn crib/gazebo, Jeff and Cindy Heuton, were quick to agree to the food drive idea when she approached them about the idea of filling the structure with canned goods.

(Radio Iowa)

Indoor Harvest Market set for this evening in Atlantic

Ag/Outdoor, News

November 24th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

About twenty vendors are expected to come together this evening for the first-ever indoor Harvest Market, in Atlantic. The event takes place from 4-to 8 pm at the Cass County Community Center, next to the fairgrounds. Project Manager of Cass County Farmers Markets, Chelsea Amundson said the Harvest Market will feature a wide variety of Winter produce, including squash, pumpkins, sweet potatoes, a wide variety of onions, garlic and dried herbs. There’s also baked bread, pies and cakes.

There will also be a great variety of local, hand-made crafts and gifts to select from. Tasting samples available at the event include goat and sheep milk cheese, and related non-edible products, such as lotions and soaps. There’s also kettle corn available for you to take home, along with chocolate chip cookies, and even beer sampling.

The family-oriented Harvest Market features lots of activities for the kids, as well, including a face painter, music and more. A recipe judging contest starts at 4-pm, with the winners, including the People’s Choice Award, being announced at 5:30.

Funding for the project, sponsored by the Cass County Local Food Policy Council and Farmers Markets of Cass County, is provided by a USDA Rural Enterprise Grant, and is supported by the Atlantic Area Chamber of Commerce as well as Cass County/ISU Extension.

For more information about the Harvest Market contact Chelsea Amundson at the Atlantic Area Chamber of Commerce at 712-243-3017.

Farm Bill Options Meeting in Atlantic on December 4

Ag/Outdoor, News

November 21st, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Farmers and landowners are invited to learn more about new programs authorized by the Agricultural Act of 2014, commonly known as the Farm Bill, at an informational meeting on December 4th. The session, hosted by Iowa State University Extension and the USDA Farm Service Agency, is scheduled from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. at the Cass County Community Center, 805 West 10th Street in Atlantic.

Tim Eggers, Iowa State University Extension and Outreach Field Agricultural Economist, and Max Dirks, Cass County Executive Director for the Farm Service Agency, will lead the discussion. Because of the new Farm Bill, landowners are deciding whether to reallocate base acres and update yields. It is the first opportunity to make those changes since the 2002 Farm Bill.

According to Eggers, “Now is a good time for landowners and tenants to talk about the benefits of updating yields.” The Farm Bill meeting will introduce these new programs: Price Loss Coverage, County Agricultural Risk Coverage, and Individual Agricultural Risk Coverage. Eggers will also discuss how the new crop insurance product, Supplemental Coverage Option, interacts with the Price Loss Coverage program.

Eggers said, “The farm safety net has changed with the new Farm Bill. The common anchor across the new programs is the marketing year average price.” He continued, “I want farmers and landowners to understand their risk management options under the new Farm Bill and consider what they can protect against.”

There is no cost to attend the meeting. To make sure there are enough handouts and seats, please pre-register by calling Cass County Extension at 712-243-1132 or emailing xcass@iastate.edu

Atlantic Yard Waste site hours to change effective 11/24/14

Ag/Outdoor, News

November 20th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Officials with the City of Atlantic have announced a seasonal change in operation of hours for the Yard Waste site. Effective Monday, Nov. 24th, the Winter Hours of Operation for the site are as follows:

Saturdays, from 9:00 am. to 5:00 pm.

The City reminds the citizens to bring only trees, branches, grass, garden waste, and/or leaves.

USDA Report 11-20-2014

Ag/Outdoor, Podcasts

November 20th, 2014 by Chris Parks

w/ Denny Heflin


Cass County Extension Report 11-19-2014

Ag/Outdoor, Podcasts

November 19th, 2014 by Chris Parks

w/ Kate Olson discussing the Harvest Market on November 24th at the Cass County Community Center.


Hunters on pace to kill roughly same amount of deer in Iowa as last season

Ag/Outdoor, News, Sports

November 19th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Last year, hunters in Iowa killed fewer than 100,000 deer for the first time since the mid-1990s. Jim Coffey, forest wildlife research technician for the Iowa Department of Natural Resources, says it’s possible hunters will harvest a similar number of deer this season. “We’re right on pace for where we were at this time last year with almost 24,000 deer being harvested so far,” Coffey says. Only bow hunting of deer is allowed right now in Iowa and the bow hunting season is about halfway complete.

The reported number of bucks taken this season has increased by 1,000 compared to last year, while the reported doe harvest is down 1,000. “That’s not too uncommon because of the way we’ve changed regulations this year, plus a lot of our bow hunters are out there seeking that buck,” Coffey says. The number of deer killed by hunters in Iowa has declined for eight consecutive years. But, Coffey says hunters are still getting plenty of chances to fire their weapons.

“We’ve been hearing good reports from our hunters. The deer have been active. The cold spell starting Sunday kind of slowed things down…but with the warm spell coming up this weekend and the rut going on, it’ll be a good weekend to be out,” Coffey says. Iowa’s first shotgun deer hunting season begins on December 6, with the second shotgun season starting December 13. Most hunters are hoping to spot a big buck, but probably won’t see anything like the one shot just southeast of Des Moines back in October.

“Probably the biggest buck that’s been talked about was the one in Marion County. That was shot fairly early in the season and has been creating quite a stir on the Internet,” Coffey said. That buck was shot with a muzzleloader by Joe Franz on his property. The website trophy pursuit dot com ( http://www.trophypursuit.com ) posted video of Franz’s hunt and claims the buck could be “the largest ever taken on professional video.”  You can view the video on the link below:


Minnesota Avian Adventure Trip Offered by Conservation Boards

Ag/Outdoor, News

November 18th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

The Cass, Sac, and Carroll County Conservation Boards have teamed up to host a fun birding trip to northeast Minnesota and the world famous Sax-Zim Bog and Duluth area. Officials say they’re excited about this opportunity and look forward to showing folks lots of amazing birds, as well as enjoying some of northeast Minnesota’s culture and charm. The trip will be held Jan. 16th through the 19th, 2015. The registration deadline is Dec. 31st. Cass Co Conservation Board

The cost is $480 for a single person, or $645 for double occupancy ($322.50 per person). Your registration fee covers transportation, three nights of hotel rooms, guides, one lunch, and snacks/refreshments on the bus.

Informational sessions about the trip will be held in Cass County:

  • December 1st Lewis Public Library 5 PM
  • December 8th Anita Public Library 6 PM
  • December 9th Atlantic Public Library 5 PM

For more information regarding a full itinerary and registration information, please contact Lora at lkanning@casscoia.us or 712-769-2372

Among the birds participants should expect to see is: Great Gray Owl, Northern Hawk Owl, Snowy Owl, Evening Grosbeak, Pine Grosbeak, Sharp-tailed Grouse, Ruffed Grouse, Boreal Chickadee, Red and White-winged Crossbills, Bohemian Waxwing, American Three-toed Woodpecker, Black-backed Woodpecker, Northern Goshawk,  Black-billed Magpie, Common Redpoll, and possibly Hoary Redpoll and Boreal Owl. Also, numerous loons, gulls, and scoters are hoped to be seen on Lake Superior near Two Harbors and Duluth. Other sea ducks, including Long-tailed Duck and Harlequin Duck are sometimes seen, too.


Pest Control Operators Course Offered Dec. 3, 2014

Ag/Outdoor, News

November 18th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Shelby County will host a Pest Control Operators Continuing Instructional Course (CIC) for commercial pesticide applicators Wednesday, Dec. 3, 2014. The program will be shown at locations across Iowa through the Iowa State University Extension and Outreach Pest Management and the Environment (PME) program.

The local site for the Dec.3 CIC is 906 6th Street, Harlan. Registration begins at 8:30 a.m. followed by sessions from 9 to 11:30 a.m. The registration fee is $60 on or before Nov. 26 and $70 after Nov. 26. To register or to obtain additional information about the CIC, contact the ISU Extension and Outreach office in Shelby County by phoning 712-755-3104.

The 2014 course will provide continuing instructional credit for commercial pesticide applicators certified in categories 7A, 7B, 8, and 10. The course will cover topics such as effects of pesticides on groundwater and other non-target sites; effective bed bug and termite treatments, new and efficient cockroach and rodent control, and pesticide application techniques that limit human exposure.

Additional information and registration forms for this and other courses offered through the PME Program can be accessed at www.extension.iastate.edu/PME.


Corn harvest is ahead of the average for the first time this year

Ag/Outdoor, News

November 18th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

The latest U-S-D-A crop report says farmers harvested one-tenth of the state’s corn crop during the week that ended Sunday. The report says cold temperatures and snow halted most other ag activities during the week. Ninety-two percent of Iowa’s corn acreage was harvested which matched 2013 and is two days ahead of the five-year average. It’s the first time this season that corn harvest was ahead of the normal pace. The cold weather was welcome by some, including Brad Sorenson, who farms 24-hundred acres near Harlan.

“We got done Friday. Had to wait ‘til the ground froze so we could finish up,” Sorenson says. The rain-soaked fields had kept Sorenson and others from making progress. “Ground was so saturated that the ground had to freeze to carry the weight of the combine and the grain cart so we could get the last fields done,” Sorenson explains. “It was somewhat of a struggle this year.” Although the weather was wet, Sorenson says things eventually turned out pretty well when it came to the harvest.

“In early October, they we were afraid we’d have to spend 20 to 25 cents a bushel to dry it. And, the weather went in our favor and it dried in the field for us, and we saved a lot of money doing that,” according to Sorenson. Only about ten-percent or less of Iowa’s corn crop remains in the fields. South-central Iowa continued to trail behind the rest of the state with only 79-percent of the corn harvest complete. The soybean harvest was nearing completion with 98-percent of the acreage harvested.

(Radio Iowa)