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.

Doc Leonard’s Pet Pointers 09-05-2013

Ag/Outdoor, Podcasts

September 5th, 2013 by Chris Parks

w/ Dr. Keith Leonard


ISU professor says “no evidence” of health risk in GMOs


September 5th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

An Iowa State University professor has become a point person in the long-simmering debate over labeling of genetically-modified foods. Ruth MacDonald is chairwoman of I-S-U’s food science and human nutrition programs.  “As a scientist, I am very concerned that we, as a society, don’t take a simple, knee-jerk reaction and say: ‘This is a bad technology. We must throw it out and we must fear it,'” she says. “I think that we need to have an open discussion about what these are and how they’re developed and what the real risk/benefits are.”

MacDonald was part of a panel discussion at an event in Ohio in mid-August, debating the safety of genetically-modified foods, and the next week she participated in an Iowa State University Extension “webinar” on the same topic.  “When there’s no evidence from a scientific perspective that there’s human health concerns for these foods, I have a problem with the argument that, ‘Well, this is scary. We don’t know what it is, so we just must avoid it,'” MacDonald says.

American consumers and farm animals have been eating genetically-modified food for more than 20 years and MacDonald says “there is no evidence” G-M-Os present a health risk.  “We need to be using science and every tool that we have to make sure that we can continue to have the kind of quality foods that we are used to and that we need to survive,” MacDonald says.

Two states have passed laws requiring G-M-O labeling of food, however, and bills have been introduced in another two dozen states that would require such labeling. Critics charge genetically-modified foods can lead to increased allergies or a resistance to antibiotics. MacDonald says it’s hard to determine the actual G-M-O content in food because most products contain a variety of ingredients and while one ingredient may be genetically-modified, only a trace winds up in the final product. MacDonald also finds it ironic that people embrace the latest technology in products like computers, but express fear about using the latest technology in their food.

(Radio Iowa)

Cass County Extension Report 09-04-2013

Ag/Outdoor, Podcasts

September 4th, 2013 by Chris Parks

w/ Kate Olson


State’s hottest week further diminishes crops


September 3rd, 2013 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Iowa’s corn crop has continued to decline as Iowa experienced the hottest week of the year last week. The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s weekly crop condition update released Tuesday says 25 percent of the state’s corn is poor or very poor. That’s up from 21 percent the week before. Just 39 percent is good or excellent down from 44 percent the week before and 48 percent two weeks ago.

Iowa’s soybeans are now 24 percent poor or very poor, up from 20 percent a week ago and 39 percent is good or excellent, down from 45 percent. The conditions generally reflect the national trends. Iowa temperatures averaged nearly 12 degrees above normal and average rainfall was about a third of an inch. Normal for the week is about an inch.

Prairie chicken’s trek surprises Iowa scientists

Ag/Outdoor, News

September 3rd, 2013 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – The long, circular path taken by a prairie chicken has surprised Iowa researchers.  The hen was fitted with a GPS tracker and released April 4 near Kellerton in south-central Iowa. It has logged nearly 1,200 miles since, flying south into northern Missouri and back again, as far north as Guthrie County in Iowa. The bird seems to have settled down in Union County.

Jen Vogel is a research associate at Iowa State University who has monitored Bird No. 112. Vogel says researchers expected the bird to range across perhaps 50 miles. Vogel told The Des Moines Register that researchers “really didn’t expect this distance.”  Scientists have been trying to re-establish the birds in Iowa, where they once were plentiful. Bird No. 112 came from Nebraska.

Iowa State University to sell bacon expo tickets


September 3rd, 2013 by Ric Hanson

AMES, Iowa (AP) — Iowa State University will soon begin selling tickets for its first exposition celebrating all things bacon. Tickets go on sale Friday for the school’s first-ever Bacon Expo, which is scheduled for Oct. 19 in the Scheman Building Courtyard at the Iowa State Center. Officials say 1,200 tickets will be sold at $8 each.

Students are organizing the event, which will offer visitors hundreds of pounds of bacon samples as well as a bacon-eating contest. The expo is aimed at promoting the school’s College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, as well as the impact of pork production in the state.

Tickets can be purchased online.

Corn plants flattened by weekend storm winds

Ag/Outdoor, News, Weather

September 2nd, 2013 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Farmers in central Iowa are finding more damage from a weekend storm that passed though Iowa with enough wind to flatten corn plants in some fields and damage trees. KCCI-TV reports farmers in Dallas County say the early Sunday morning storm brought an end to the recent heat wave but also packed strong wind.

Some corn fields in the area are completely flattened with eyewitnesses saying it was the worst crop damage from a storm they’d ever seen. Law enforcement officers reported to the National Weather Service that some trees were knocked over in Adel. No injuries were reported from the storms, which brought a 20-degree drop in high temperatures to Iowa breaking the nearly week-long record setting heat wave.

Open Burning Ban in Audubon County effective 8/31/13

Ag/Outdoor, News, Weather

August 31st, 2013 by Ric Hanson

State Fire Marshal Raymond Reynolds has ordered a ban on open burning in Audubon County, effective at Noon today (Sat., Aug. 31st).burn ban No one is allowed to engage in open burning in Audubon County, except as specifically permitted by Iowa Code, or until Audubon Fire Chief John Ballou (who represents each fire department in the County), notifies the Fire Marshal that conditions have improved, and no longer threatens life or property.

The burn ban was requested by Ballou, after consulting with fire chiefs in the County, and was made due to the extremely dry nature of brush, grass and timber in the County. If fires start, they can spread rapidly and become out of control.





Iowa DNR positive about rabbit, squirrel hunting

Ag/Outdoor, Sports

August 31st, 2013 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Iowa officials have a positive outlook for the state’s latest rabbit and squirrel hunting seasons. The state Department of Natural Resources says the outlook is based on population surveys and availability of food sources. Both seasons begin today (Saturday).

Officials say southern Iowa has the best rabbit densities heading into the fall, but hunters around the state should see better cottontail numbers when compared to last year. The cottontail season will run through Feb. 28. Officials expect above average numbers for squirrels this season. That’s based on the mast production of several hardwood trees, which tends to be tied to peak squirrel populations. The squirrel season runs through January 31.

Vilsack will lead immigration talk in Des Moines


August 30th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack will be in Des Moines to host a discussion about immigration reform. The former two-term Iowa governor will host what the Agriculture Department describes as a round-table discussion about the importance of immigration reform for Iowa’s agriculture and rural communities. The event will be held this (Friday) morning at Iowa State University’s center in downtown Des Moines.

Vilsack’s participation follows the White House’s release of a report, which argues that immigration reform would help ease a shortage of agricultural workers.