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.

Mild winter boosts Iowa’s pheasant population


June 13th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – Iowa should see an increase in its pheasant population this year, thanks to the mild winter and warm spring.  The Iowa Department of Natural Resources says its nesting forecast predicts the population will increase by more than 40 percent. Wildlife biologist Todd Bogenschutz says it would be the first statewide increase in more than six years.  He says the pheasants will be able to expand and reoccupy grassland habitats where they’ve been depleted by five severe winters.  Bogenschutz says a roadside survey in August is the best gauge of the pheasant population. He says during the past 50 years there have been weather conditions similar to this year about six times, and the average increase in pheasant populations during those years was 42 percent.

Volunteers Needed to help sort waste in Iowa State Parks

Ag/Outdoor, News

June 12th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

The Iowa Department of Natural Resources Green Veterans AmeriCorps members will be leading volunteers in waste audits at Iowa’s state parks this summer. Volunteers are needed to assist with separating, weighing, documenting, and bagging recyclables for processing. The information collected will be used to determine the feasibility of onsite recycling in state parks.

Waste audits are planned locally, for Lake Manawa State Park, June 18th, from 9 a.m. – Noon, and at Lake Anita State Park, July 2nd, from 8:30 a.m. – Noon. Volunteers should wear clothing suitable for sorting waste and close-toed, comfortable shoes. Other safety equipment and instructions will be provided onsite. For more information or to pre-register contact Kaitlyn Vitko at Kaitlyn.Vitko@dnr.iowa.gov or 515-725-0153. Volunteers will meet at park campgrounds.

Waste audits are being performed at several state parks may help identify additional sustainability-related opportunities. Waste sorts are sponsored through partnerships with the DNR Land Quality Bureau, DNR Iowa Green Veterans AmeriCorps program, and Iowa Waste Exchange. For more information on the state park recycling study, contact Tom Anderson at 515-281-8623 or tom.anderson@dnr.iowa.gov.

50th Anniversary Celebration for Prairie Rose State Park to be held Saturday

Ag/Outdoor, News

June 12th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

The Iowa Department of Natural Resources says a celebration will be held Saturday, June 16th, to mark the 50th anniversary of Prairie Rose State Park in Shelby County. The program will be held outside the park office and shop area at 2:30 PM. Refreshments will be provided and the Friends of Prairie Rose will sell commemorative t-shirts and have historic photos on display.

In an effort to preserve Iowa’s natural beauty and provided outdoor recreational facilities, plans for Prairie Rose and more than a dozen other state parks were initiated in the 1933 25-Year Conservation Plan. Actual construction of the dam did not begin until 1958 and the park was dedicated on June 16, 1962. Today, Prairie Rose provides the outdoor recreation it was intended for to more than 100,000 plus visitors each year. The park offers a wide variety of amenities including a campground, cabins, picnic areas and more than seven miles of multi-use trails. The 218-acre lake — popular for fishing, boating and swimming — is currently under renovation.

For more information about the event or Prairie Rose State Park, contact Park Manager Michelle Reinig at 712-773-2701 or michelle.reinig@dnr.iowa.gov<mailto:michelle.reinig@dnr.iowa.gov>

US government holds steady on corn supply estimate


June 12th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – The U.S. government says its estimate of the corn supply that will be left at the end of the year remains unchanged. Ending stocks are closely watched because significant changes can affect prices. The Department of Agriculture estimated in a report released Tuesday that 851 million bushels of corn will be left at the end of the current season.

Also left unchanged is the estimated average price for corn at $5.95 to $6.25 per bushel. Prices for corn to be delivered in July are 8 cents lower $5.83 per bushel.  Soybean ending stocks for the season are projected at 175 million bushels, down 35 million. The estimated average soybean price is unchanged at $12 to $14 per bushel.  Soybean prices for July fell 3 cents to $14.21 in morning trading.

Sen. Grassley says so far, so good on farm bill debate


June 12th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

Debate is underway in the U-S Senate on legislation that could greatly influence Iowa’s number-one industry. From what he’s seen of the farm bill so far, Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley says it will bring positive changes to the agricultural landscape, including the potential elimination of government subsidies to farmers.
The current farm bill expires at the end of September. The new measure would authorize U-S-D-A programs for the next five years. Some members of Congress say the farm bill represents the most significant reform in agricultural policy in decades and Grassley agrees, it has potential. The end of subsidies has been sought for years as they pay farmers regardless of crop prices. Crop insurance programs would be expanded so farmers could still be compensated in cases of weather disasters like drought or flood. Grassley says he also wants to put a firm cap on the amount farmers can earn from farm programs.

(Radio Iowa)

Posted County Prices for 6-12-2012


June 12th, 2012 by admin

Cass County: Corn $5.98, Beans $13.77

Adair County: Corn $5.95, Beans $13.80

Adams County: Corn $5.95, Beans $13.76

Audubon County: Corn $5.97, Beans $13.79

East Pottawattamie County: Corn $6.01, Beans $13.77

Guthrie County: Corn $6.00, Beans $13.81

Montgomery County: Corn $6.00, Beans $13.79

Shelby County: Corn $6.01, Beans $13.77

Oats $2.98 (always the same in all counties)

CCI says Union County vote against hog operations a win

Ag/Outdoor, News

June 12th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

The group Iowa Citizens for Community Improvement (C-C-I) is celebrating a victory in what it calls an escalating fight against requests to build large-scale livestock operations in the state. The Union County Board of Supervisors voted unanimously Monday to recommend that the Iowa Department of Natural Resources deny permits for two proposed five-thousand head hog farms. C-C-I state policy director, Adam Mason, says the Union County vote is one step toward keeping the operations from being built. “Now that the Union County supervisors have recommended denial of this site, the D-N-R will have 30 days to take their recommendation into consideration, review the factory farm construction permit and master matrix, and make their final decision. For us here at C-C-I, we’ll monitor that process, our members in Union County will monitor that process,” Mason says.

In the larger picture, Mason says they get calls daily about proposed livestock operations. He says the group has recently gotten the plans changed for facilities in Dallas, Floyd, Jefferson, and Story counties. There are ongoing fights against facilities in Poweshiek, Union, and Wright counties.  “What we look for here at C-C-I is a deep sense of commitment amongst the community, basically of the community coming together in opposition to this,” Mason explains. “If one person calls C-C-I, we don’t just automatically go out and meet with folks, there has to be a significant number of community members who want to do something about this. What we can do is go out and meet with folks and let them know what has worked in the past to stand up for family farmers and fight back against factory farms.”

The vote by the supervisors does not guarantee the D-N-R will follow its recommendation. “County supervisors and local folks don’t really have much of a say, and that’s something the legislature did back in 2002 when they created the master matrix. That provides public input, but doesn’t give those local folks or the county supervisors final authority, which we would call local control,” Mason says. He says the supervisors’ vote is a positive for residents trying to keep the facilities from being built. Mason says,”But what that means for folks in Union County today is the D-N-R staff will look at this permit application a little bit stronger than they would. But what is comes down to is the D-N-R is underfunded and understaffed as well.”

Mason says the dramatic increase in requests to build large livestock facilities is due to higher prices for hogs and the “lax regulatory environment of the Branstad administration.” Governor Branstad’s spokesman responded with this statement: “Agriculture is the strength behind Iowa’s economic success, and we welcome job-creating pork producers to locate in our state. Governor Branstad believes we must safeguard our environment with commonsense regulations. The regulatory environment remains the same as when Governor Branstad took office, but with the skyrocketing pork prices, it should come as no surprise that producers would expand their operations. Governor Branstad will continue his efforts for cleaner air and water, and believes Iowa’s laws should be enforced.”

(Radio Iowa)

Hot, dry weather putting stress on Iowa crops


June 11th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The continued hot and dry weather is taking a toll on Iowa’s crops. The U.S. Department of Agriculture says in Monday’s weekly report that while most of the corn and soybeans are in good shape, conditions have declined. More than half of the topsoil and subsoil is dry. Sixty-seven percent of the corn is rated good to excellent. That’s down from 75 percent a week ago. Sixty-two percent of the soybeans are in good to excellent condition, a drop from last week’s 71 percent. The USDA says 66 percent of Iowa’s topsoil and 59 percent of the subsoil is very short or short. The statewide average precipitation for the week was 0.07 inch, below the average of nearly 1.2 inches. The report doesn’t include thunderstorms that hit Sunday.

Posted County Prices for 06-11-2012


June 11th, 2012 by admin

Cass County: Corn $5.97, Beans $13.69

Adair County: Corn $5.94, Beans $13.72

Adams County: Corn $5.94, Beans $13.68

Audubon County: Corn $5.96, Beans $13.71

East Pottawattamie County: Corn $6.00, Beans $13.69

Guthrie County: Corn $5.99, Beans $13.73

Montgomery County: Corn $5.99, Beans $13.71

Shelby County: Corn $6.00, Beans $13.69

Oats $2.95 (always the same in all counties)

Farmers fret over high temperatures, low rain

Ag/Outdoor, News

June 8th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) – State climatologists say farmers in Nebraska and Iowa should prepare for persistent drought conditions this summer that could devastate their crops. Nebraska State Climatologist Harry Al Dutcher said Thursday that he expects that ranchers and farmers in the western part of his state will suffer crop damage, unless the weather suddenly becomes cooler and wetter. He says that’s unlikely, given the current conditions. 
Ranchers in western Nebraska and farmers in north-central Iowa say the weather conditions are the driest they’ve ever seen.  The situation is less dire in Iowa, but State Climatologist Harry Hillaker predicts that June will be warmer than usual. High winds are also causing water to evaporate faster.