KJAN Ag/Outdoor

From County extension to conservation to grain prices, we provide lots of information every day on KJAN.  Here is some of that information on the web too!  We hope you find it useful.

Rural economy appears strong in 10 states

Ag/Outdoor, News

March 15th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — Higher fuel prices haven’t slowed the economy much in rural areas of 10 Midwest and Plains states. A monthly survey of rural bankers showed no change in March. The overall economic index registered 59.6 again this month, and any score above 50 suggests the economy will grow. The bankers appear quite optimistic about the next six months because the confidence index rose to 63 in March from February’s 60.3. Creighton University economist Ernie Goss says there is still a fair amount of uncertainty about the economy, so many farmers and businesses are reluctant to expand. The hiring index rose to 60 in March from February’s 53.7, suggesting businesses are hiring. The survey covers Colorado, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota and Wyoming.

Realtors say Iowa farmland value up 11 percent

Ag/Outdoor, News

March 15th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (AP) — The value of Iowa farmland is up by nearly 11 percent over the last six months as commodity prices remain strong. A survey of real estate agents shows the value of good quality farmland jumped by 10.8 percent to an average of $9,370 an acre. The Iowa Farm and Land Chapter No. 2 of the Realtors Land Institute released its survey on Thursday. The gains varied from 9 percent in northeast Iowa to nearly 13 percent in southwest Iowa from Sept. 1 to March 1. Troy Louwagie of Hertz Farm Management says several factors are driving up values, including high commodity prices and low interest rates. He says land sales have been strong in the last six months, and the survey results are not surprising.

Cass County 4-H Pancake Supper a Great Success

Ag/Outdoor, News

March 14th, 2012 by Jim Field

Participation from community members is critical at the Pancake Supper to ensure the continual success of the Cass County Endowment and 4-H Program. Endowment Committee member Curt Behrends and Youth Action Committee chair Michelle Behrends catch their pancakes.

More than 350 people were served at the 4-H Endowment Pancake Supper, held Tuesday, March 13. The Endowment Committee wishes to thank all of the community members who came out to support this fundraiser which raised more than $2300.  “The current program development fee for each member is 30 dollars and we have more than 250 members so that takes a lot of pancake eating and support from the community,” shared Susan Oliver, Cass County Youth Coordinator.

Proceeds from the 4-H Pancake Supper will directly benefit the Cass County 4-H Program.  This money defrays the cost of the Program Development Fee each year, provides scholarships to send Cass County 4-H’ers to camps and conferences, start up dollars for new programs such as Clover Kids, as well as 4-H program materials and awards.  “With support from the community, the opportunities we can provide are limitless,” says Oliver.

The Cass County 4-H Endowment was established in 2002 as an opportunity for the community to invest in the positive youth development program.  The 4-H Endowment’s sole purpose is to receive and solicit gifts, contributions and bequests on behalf of Cass County 4-H.  The Endowment Committee will accept contributions anytime during the year.

There are a variety of ways community members can contribute to the 4-H Endowment:
*         4-H 400/1000 – A yearly pledge program of $40 to $100 per year for 10 years
*         Memorials – Gifts in memory of family members or friends
*         Tributes – Gifts to honor someone or a special occasion
*         Gifts in Kind – Products of services given to support Cass County 4-H.
*         Life Insurance – Name the 4-H Endowment Fund as a beneficiary and deduct premium costs
*         Securities or Real Estate
*         Charitable Gift Annuity – Transfers assets to the endowment and allows giver to receive continuing income from the assets through his/her lifetime

Anyone wishing to contribute to the Cass County 4-H Endowment may contact Susan M. Oliver, County Extension Youth Coordinator at the Cass County Extension Office at 243-1132.  Contributions can be made out to “Cass County 4-H Endowment” and may be sent to the Cass County Extension Office, 805 West 10th Street, Atlantic, IA 50022.

Cass County Extension Report 03-14-2012

Ag/Outdoor, Podcasts

March 14th, 2012 by Chris Parks

w/ Kate Olsen

Play

Guthrie County Extension welcomes new Office Coordinator

Ag/Outdoor, News

March 13th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

A native of Guthrie Center has returned home to become the new Office Coordinator at the Guthrie County Extension Office. Vicki Frohling (formerly Vicki Hansen) started working at the Extension office on March 5th.

Vicki Frohling

As Office Coordinator, Vicki has the responsibility of coordinating the office needs in Guthrie County, delivered by Iowa State University Extension and Outreach.

She brings to the position a background in health care administration,  and most recently served as the Executive Director of the Russell, Kansas, Area Chamber of Commerce. Frohling graduated from Guthrie Center High School and attended Northwest Missouri State University. She and her husband Wyatt recently moved back to Iowa from Kansas, and live on an acreage three miles west of Guthrie Center.  The couple has two adult children who live in Kansas.

Frohling says she’s “Excited to be living back in Guthrie Center and working for the extension office,” and the she looks forward to becoming an active part of the community. ISU Extension invites you to stop by the Guthrie County Extension Office at 212 State Street in Guthrie Center and welcome Vicki back to Guthrie Center and to her new position.

Wiota Wind Energy to give Public Tours Monday

Ag/Outdoor, News

March 13th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

Officials with USDA Rural Development have announced Iowa’s USDA Director Bill Menner will be in Wiota Monday, March 19th, to participate in a public tour of Wiota Wind Energy’s new 1.5-megawatt hour wind turbine. The turbine, which is located at 68752 Independence Road in Wiota, will be open for public tours from 4 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. Representatives will be on hand to talk about the project and answer any questions.

Wiota Wind Energy LLC was formed in 2011 and includes several private local investors. The organization’s first commercial sized community-owned wind turbine is expected to generate as many as 5,900-Megawatt hours of energy annually, with a design life of 20 to 25 years. A power purchase agreement has been made with the local power cooperative.

USDA Rural Development participated in the project by providing a $504,733 loan guarantee through its Rural Energy for America Program (REAP).

Grassland Fire Danger Index Expected to range from “High” to “Very High” Today

Ag/Outdoor, News, Weather

March 13th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

340 AM CDT TUE MAR 13 2012

INCREASING WINDS AND NEAR RECORD HIGH TEMPERATURES TODAY WILL RESULT IN A HIGH TO VERY HIGH GRASSLAND FIRE INDEX THIS AFTERNOON OVER A PORTION OF THE WESTERN COUNTIES OF IOWA. THE AREA OF GREATEST CONCERN IS GENERALLY ALONG AND WEST OF A CORRIDOR FROM NEAR IOWA COUNTY HIGHWAY 4 WESTWARD. THE GREATEST DANGER WILL BE THIS AFTERNOON WHEN WINDS ARE EXPECTED TO INCREASE TO 10 TO 20 MPH WITH GUSTS TO NEAR 30 MPH. EXTREME CAUTION IS ADVISED TODAY.

BURNING IS NOT RECOMMENDED IN THESE AREAS. SMALL FIRES MAY QUICKLY SPREAD INTO DRY GRASSES AND FIELDS…RESULTING IN LARGER AND UNCONTROLLED GRASS FIRES. THE DANGER IS NOT EXPECTED TO LOWER TO THE “MODERATE” FIRE RISK UNTIL LATE TONIGHT.

FOR MORE DETAILED INFORMATION: http://www.crh.noaa.gov/product.php?site=DMX&product=RFD&issuedby=DMX

Audubon FFA Chapter receives recognition

Ag/Outdoor, News

March 12th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

Audubon High School FFA Advisor Brittany Elmquist says the Audubon High School Chapter of the FFA has been awarded a $1,500 “Planting a Seed” grant from the Iowa Food & Family Project. The grant will be used to conduct activities which increase agricultural awareness and interest among youth in food production and life sciences. The “Planting a Seed” program is sponsored by Pioneer Hi-Bred, in cooperation with the Iowa FFA Foundation.

The Audubon FFA and other grant recipients, will conduct programs this spring that stimulate interest among K-through 12 students in agricultural careers, and emphasize the role science and technology play in providing wholesome food, using less land and fewer inputs. The Audubon Chapter of the FFA plans to host a “Poverty Dinner” for the entire Audubon High School student body, grades 8-through 12. The goal of the event is to increase awareness about food insecurity and the important role farmers play in providing greater quantities of wholesome food for more people.

The dinner will be held during lunch on March 21st, with students randomly assigned to one of three Socio-economic levels that represent proportional global standards of living. The meal might be one of just rice and beans eaten on the floor, or, a nice four-course meal…depending on the students’ assigned socio-economic status. Prior to the dinner, FFA members will discuss scenarios which set the stage for the meal, and what the average day is like for people in the various levels around the world.

During the week leading up to the event, the Audubon FFA Chapter will post facts about agriculture and related Ag-science careers. The chapters’ members will also be recognized April 23rd at the Iowa FFA State Leadership Conference in Ames. The State Chapter determined to have conducted the most innovative and successful activity, will be presented with a $1,500 Award of Excellence, to be used for general chapter activity.

House votes to protect landowners from lawsuits filed by trespassers

Ag/Outdoor, News

March 9th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

The Iowa House has endorsed the idea of new protections for property owners when trespassers get injured. It means a property owner — or the person renting the property — is not liable for injuries trespassers may suffer if the property’s in good condition. Representative Mary Wolfe, a Democrat from Clinton, supported the bill. “What we’re trying to do here makes sense,” she says. “…I think it clarifies some gray areas in the law. I think it can protect homeowners, which is what we want to do.” But critics, like Representative Kurt Swaim of Bloomfield, say the bill does not protect the accidental trespasser.

“That’s the mother that’s taking her child out on Halloween night. That’s a hunter that inadvertantly gets on the wrong land,” Swaim says. “…The person who gets on the wrong land has some fault, but we don’t bar that person from any recovery.” Recovery is another way of suing for money to cover injuries or “pain and suffering.” The bill passed on a 68 to 30 vote. Only three members of the Iowa House spoke during debate of the legislation — and all three are lawyers.

(O.Kay Henderson/Radio Iowa)

USDA Report 03-08-2012

Ag/Outdoor, Podcasts

March 8th, 2012 by Chris Parks

w/ Dave York

Play