KJAN Ag/Outdoor

Swimming not recommended signs posted at several Iowa beaches for Labor Day weekend

Ag/Outdoor, News

August 30th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Swimming is not recommended in at least seven of Iowa’s state park lakes for the last holiday weekend of the summer. Mary Skopec is the beach monitoring coordinator with the Iowa Department of Natural Resources. “Right now, we have five beaches that are not recommended for swimming due to E. coli bacteria advisories and we have three beaches that are not recommended for swimming based on algal toxin levels that we see,” Skopec says. Recent heavy rains have contributed to a rise in E. coli bacteria by washing manure spread on farm fields into the lakes.

The beaches where swimming advisories are posted are at Union Grove State Park, Denison Beach, Black Hawk State Park, Backbone Lake, Lake of Three Fires, Prairie Rose Lake, and McIntosh Woods on Clear Lake.

(Radio Iowa)

Final day of Farm Progress Show cancelled due to lightning

Ag/Outdoor, News

August 28th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Foul weather is forcing the cancellation of the final day of one of the nation’s biggest agricultural exhibitions, what’s considered the World’s Fair of everything farm-related. Dena Morgan, spokeswoman for the Farm Progress Show in Boone, says it’s a huge disappointment, but the show will -not- go on today (Thursday) and it’s now closed for the year.

“We’re not going to open,” Morgan says. “It was raining this morning and it was forecast that there was lightning coming through, so we decided to close the show for everyone’s safety.” The show opened Tuesday. Organizers have 600 vendors on the grounds and had been expecting up to 150-thousand visitors over the three-day run.

(Radio Iowa)

2014 Iowa 4-H Hall of Fame Honorees celebrated at the Iowa State Fair

Ag/Outdoor, News

August 27th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Eighty-two counties and two state level Iowa 4-H volunteers were inducted into the Iowa 4-H Hall of Fame during the 2014 ceremony at the 4-H Exhibits Building at the Iowa State Fair on Sunday, Aug. 17. Inductees or their surviving family members were presented a certificate by the Iowa 4-H Foundation as they were introduced on stage. In alphabetical order, Adair to Jackson Counties were recognized at 1:30, while Jefferson to Wright County were recognized at 3:30. A reception, sponsored by donors to the Iowa 4-H Foundation, was held shortly after each of the Iowa 4-H Hall of Fame presentations.

County honorees were selected by their respected counties for their outstanding service and dedication to
4-H, while the Iowa State University Extension and Outreach Iowa 4-H Programs office nominated two honorees this year for their service to Iowa 4-H and beyond. Inductees are selected for their exceptional work in contributing to the lives of 4-H members and the overall 4-H program. Many inductees served as club leaders, youth mentors, fair superintendents, fair board members, Iowa State University Extension county council members, county youth council members, fair judges, financial supporters, chaperones, Iowa 4-H Foundation Trustees, or ISU Extension and Outreach staff members. The inductees have demonstrated dedication, encouragement, commitment and guidance to Iowa’s 4-H’ers through the years.

This year’s honorees by county:

Adair County – Deb Stalter; Adams County – James (Jim) Stalcup; Audubon County – Ed Ahrendsen; Crawford County – Dick & Rona Bromert; Carroll County – Julie Clancy; Cass County – Eleanor Hoove; Fremont County – Phillip Wing; Guthrie County – Jim & Jo Laughery; Montgomery County – Wanda Johnson; Page County – Harold & Shirley Anderson; Harrison County – Paul Lane; Pottawattamie (East) County – Boyd M. Nilan; Ringgold County – Cindy Schlapia & Cheryl Whittington; Shelby County – Linda Heflin;Union County – Paul & Verna Bailey; Mills County – Robert Moore.


Posted County Prices – Wed., 8/27/14


August 27th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Cass County: Corn $3.36, Beans $12.14
Adair County: Corn $3.33, Beans $12.17
Adams County: Corn $3.33, Beans $12.13
Audubon County: Corn $3.35, Beans $12.16
East Pottawattamie County: Corn $3.39, Beans $12.14
Guthrie County: Corn $3.38, Beans $12.18
Montgomery County: Corn $3.38, Beans $12.16
Shelby County: Corn $3.39, Beans $12.14
Oats $3.25  (always the same in all counties)

Posted County Prices 8/26/14


August 26th, 2014 by Jim Field

Cass County: Corn $3.37, Beans $12.02
Adair County: Corn $3.34, Beans $12.05
Adams County: Corn $3.34, Beans $12.01
Audubon County: Corn $3.36, Beans $12.04
East Pottawattamie County: Corn $3.40, Beans $12.02
Guthrie County: Corn $3.39, Beans $12.06
Montgomery County: Corn $3.39, Beans $12.04
Shelby County: Corn $3.40, Beans $12.02
Oats $3.26 (always the same in all counties)

Conservation Progress in Iowa as Farm Progress Show Begins


August 26th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

As the nation’s largest outdoor farm equipment show kicks off today in Boone, one issue in the spotlight is the nation’s largest conservation program. More than 1,400 farms across Iowa and 20,000 farms across the nation are up for renewal for the Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP).

Matt Russell with Practical Farmers of Iowa says the Conservation Stewardship Program is a working lands program, not a “set aside.” “It’s the whole farm in most cases, all of the conservation practices put together on working lands and then taking those and adding some enhancements,” says Russell.

Through the CSP, participants take additional steps to improve soil, water, and air quality. In the first five years of the program, nearly 60 million acres of farm and ranch land have been enrolled nationwide. Russell says his farm in Marion County has implemented rotational grazing and cover crop practices, along with wildlife areas. They’ve also gone chemical-free, but Russell notes CSP allows for an approach that is greatly flexible and individualized.

“It is farm specific and farmer specific,” he says. “Everything that’s in your contract does improve conservation on your land, but you get to choose based on what your production model is, and what your own interests are in terms of conservation or stewardship.”

For the first class of CSP participants, the window to apply to re-enroll will end on September 12th, while a general sign-up will be coming this fall. More information is available at the Practical Farmers of Iowa website, or through one of the many offices of the Natural Resources Conservation Service across the state.

(Iowa News Service)

Iowa hunting season nears for rabbits, squirrels

Ag/Outdoor, News, Sports

August 26th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Saturday marks the opening day of the annual hunting season for cottontail rabbits as well as fox and gray squirrels. The Department of Natural Resources says hunters should see more rabbits than last year, especially in southern Iowa. The cottontail season runs through February.

The squirrel season also begins Saturday, and DNR forest wildlife coordinator Jim Coffey says numbers should be about the same as last year. The squirrel season continues through Jan. 31.

Farm trade groups form water quality alliance

Ag/Outdoor, News

August 25th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Three Iowa farm trade groups have formed an organization called the Iowa Agriculture Water Alliance to push farmers harder on the implementation of farm practices designed to clean Iowa’s water. The group’s goal is to get more farmers to participate in the state’s Nutrient Reduction Strategy, a voluntary program initiated Gov. Terry Branstad’s administration.

Environmental groups including Iowa Citizens for Community improvement want measurable and enforceable standards. They say the new alliance will do little to improve Iowa water. Iowa CCI says it’s a corporate public relations campaign that won’t change a thing.

Branstad announced the creation of the alliance Monday with officials from Iowa Corn Growers Association, Iowa Soybean Association and the Iowa Pork Producers Association.

The soybean group’s CEO Kirk Leeds is board chairman of the nonprofit alliance.

Tractors everywhere as the Farm Progress show opens tomorrow


August 25th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

A world’s fair of what’s happening in agriculture comes to the central Iowa town of Boone this week with the 61st annual Farm Progress Show. Dena Morgan, marketing specialist for the event, expects up to 100-thousand people to tour the grounds during the three-day event, which starts tomorrow (Tuesday). Morgan says, “All of the major exhibitors will be here, Deere, Case, New Holland, AGCO, Monsanto, Syngenta, just about every company or any product or service that has to do with agriculture will have somebody here.”

When the show started in the 1950s, the event moved between Iowa, Illinois and Indiana. In 2005, it was decided the show would be held in Boone and Decatur, Illinois every other year. The permanent facility in Boone continues to expand.  “When the show site was originally built in 2008 we had 12 streets,” Morgan says. “In 2012, we sold out of all that exhibit space so we added this 13th street. This year, we have oversold that area and had to create an annex.”

That annex in the north parking lot area includes 40 new exhibitors who haven’t been to the show before, including Caterpillar and McCormick. The show is located near Highway 30 and Highway 17 east of Boone.

Learn more at www.farmprogressshow.com

(Radio Iowa)

Farmers’ Almanac predicts another nasty winter

Ag/Outdoor, News, Weather

August 24th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

LEWISTON, Maine (AP) — The folks at the Farmers’ Almanac are feeling a bit smug after correctly predicting the past nasty winter, which featured relentless snowstorms and a polar vortex. Editors of the 198-year-old publication in Maine are projecting more of the same in a few months. The latest edition officially goes on sale this week. It forecasts colder-than-normal and wetter-than-usual weather for three-quarters of the country east of the Rocky Mountains.

The publication, not to be confused with the New Hampshire-based Old Farmer’s Almanac, bases its long-range forecasts on a secret formula based on sunspots, planetary positions and lunar cycles. Modern science doesn’t put much stock in the formula, but modern meteorologists sometimes struggle with long-range forecasts. The national Climate Prediction Center projected milder weather last winter.