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.

First Iowa farms hit by bird flu nearing restocking time

Ag/Outdoor, News

July 21st, 2015 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — One of the first Iowa turkey farms to get bird flu is getting nearing the time at which birds can be restocked but most of the 77 farms affected are still weeks away from introduction of new flocks. Iowa Department of Agriculture officials said Tuesday all farms have been cleared of dead chickens and turkeys but disposal of manure, compost and other waste continued at 18 farms.

All birds that died or were euthanized have been incinerated, buried or taken to landfills. Iowa lost 34 million chickens and turkeys in the bird flu outbreak that began in mid-April. The last reported case was June 16. One turkey farm in Calhoun County will finish a required 21-day fallow period this week and if tests remain negative may begin restocking.

MO. man found guilty of numerous hunting violations in Taylor County

Ag/Outdoor, News

July 21st, 2015 by Ric Hanson

Officials with the Iowa Dept. of Natural Resources say a Missouri man was found guilty by a jury of illegal deer hunting in southwest Iowa’s Taylor County. 61-year old Michael K. Kahnert, of Branson West, Mo., was found guilty of six counts of fraudulently obtaining resident hunting, deer and turkey licenses, three counts of not having valid non-resident hunting and deer licenses, one count of taking/hunting deer out of season, one count of illegal taking of an antlered whitetail deer, and two counts of illegal taking of antlerless whitetail deer.

He was sentenced on June 18th. Kahnert was ordered to forfeit the antlers and pay more than $11,400 in fines, court costs and liquidated damages. Kahnert has been suspended from hunting or obtaining any licenses for three years.

The state of Iowa is a member of the Wildlife Violator Compact, which is an agreement between participating states that prohibits a person whose hunting or fishing privileges are suspended in one state from participating in those activities in another state, including Missouri.

Conservation Officer Andrea Bevington has been actively investigating residency fraud cases like this since 2009. Unfortunately, this type of case is not unique in her territory. Bevington said “Iowa is known for trophy whitetail deer attracting people from across the United States and other countries. Unfortunately, these trophies sometimes draw individuals who fraudulently obtain resident licenses and rob the opportunity for a deer of a lifetime from a lawful hunter.”

Residency laws were changed in 2009 to identify a growing problem in Iowa of non-residents falsifying records to illegally obtain resident licenses.

Grand Opening held for Atlantic Activities area at Sunnyside Park

Ag/Outdoor, News

July 21st, 2015 by Ric Hanson

A ribbon cutting ceremony was held today (Tuesday) at Sunnyside Park in Atlantic, for a new, activities area.

Atlantic Ambassadors and others at the Sunnyside Park Activities Area ribbon cutting. (Ric Hanson/photo)

Atlantic Ambassadors and others at the Sunnyside Park Activities Area ribbon cutting. (Ric Hanson/photo)

The site, located just south of the Parks and Rec Building off Sunnyside lane, features a recently installed horseshoe pit area, along with green space for several activities, including Bocceball, which Parks and Rec Director Roger Herring said is a “Great, fun game.” He said it’s also one of the fastest 55 and older resort-type games, that’s found at many retirement communities in the southern tier of states.

There’s also a badminton court, Croquet and other activities. There are also benches and tables available for people who want to play checkers or other board games. The equipment is available free of charge, but you should call ahead to make sure it’s available on the day or days you intend to use them.

Parks and Rec Director Roger Herring thanked the Dean Orstad Family and the Trevor Frederickson Foundation for their contribution to and support of the activities area, through the installation of the horseshoe pit area. That section of the activities area has four, regulation-size horseshoe pits.

Roger Herring talks about Dean Orstad with his extended family members looking on.

Roger Herring talks about Dean Orstad with his extended family members looking on.

Plaques recognizing Dean Orstad will be mounted in the horseshoe pit area recognizing his contribution and enthusiasm for outdoor activities at Sunnyside Park. The final site plans for the activities area was approved by the Parks and Rec Board in the early Spring of 2014. Roger Herring said he would love to drive by and see Senior Citizens using the Activities area of park a couple of days a week at least, and people of all ages using it in for family get togethers.

Prior to dedicating that area of the park, Herring and Assistant Parks Director Seth Staashelm gathered with Atlantic Area Chamber of Commerce Ambassadors at the new Camblin Shelter at Sunnyside Park, to talk about the latest park improvements.

Business group hopes to broker water agreement

Ag/Outdoor, News

July 21st, 2015 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – A Des Moines business group says it wants to find a solution to a water quality dispute that has prompted the city’s water utility to sue three counties. Des Moines Water Works claims that drainage districts in those counties act as conduits in moving nitrates from farm fields into a river, which serves as one of two sources of drinking water for city residents.

As a result, the utility says it spent hundreds of thousands of dollars to reduce nitrates to levels the federal government deems safe. The lawsuit is set to go before a federal judge next summer. The Des Moines Register reports that the Greater Des Moines Partnership wants to bring together business, farming, water, environmental and legislative leaders to find long-term solutions to Iowa’s water-quality issues.

Register for Preserve the Taste of Summer Lessons and Workshops

Ag/Outdoor, News

July 21st, 2015 by Ric Hanson

Iowans can learn how to “Preserve the Taste of Summer” during online lessons and hands-on workshops from Iowa State University Extension and Outreach. The online lessons already are available and workshops are planned for July and August, 2015, including a jam and jelly workshop August 8th from 9 am to 12 noon, at the Cass County Fairgrounds.ISU Extension

Preserve the Taste of Summer is a comprehensive food preservation education program including online lessons, hands-one workshops and printable resources and recipes. The two-part educational series includes online classwork, covering topics such as food safety, canning basics, canning acid foods, pressure canning low-acid foods, preparation and canning of pickled and fermented foods, making and preserving fruit spreads, freezing foods, storage of frozen and refrigerated foods, and drying foods. The lessons can also be taken in a group session at the Extension Office by prior arrangement.

Once the “classroom” sessions are completed, participants can choose from four different hands-on workshops, each lasting approximately three hours, where they will practice specific preservation skills in a kitchen and take home a freshly preserved product. The four workshop choices include Hot water bath canning (salsa making) and freezing, Jams and dehydrating, Pickle making and Pressure canning.

The home food preserver registration fee is $35 and covers all eight online lessons and one hands-on workshop. The professional level of “Preserve the Taste of Summer” qualifies as continuing education for Iowa teachers and registered dietitians. The registration fee is $100 and covers all eight online lessons and two hands-on workshops.

Cass County Extension will be hosting a Jams and Dehydrating workshop in the Cass County Fair Foodstand on Saturday, August 8th from 9 AM to Noon. Other upcoming classes include a July 30yh Pressure Canning workshop in Adair County, an August 13 Pickling workshop in Carson, and an August 20th Salsa workshop in Adair County. All of these workshops require completion of relevant classroom sessions prior to attending the workshop.

For more information on cost and getting enrolled in the classes, visit the Preserve the Taste of Summer website at www.extension.iastate.edu/humansciences/preserve-taste-summer. You can also call the Cass County Extension Office at 712-243-1132 to learn more about the program, to inquire about the Group Viewing option for the classwork, or to pick up food preservation publications.

Food Preservation publications, covering 8 different types of home food preservation, with detailed recipes, can also be downloaded at no cost from the ISU Extension Online Store (https://store.extension.iastate.edu/).

USDA secretary not ready to declare bird flu outbreak over

Ag/Outdoor, News

July 20th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) – U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack says he’s not ready to declare the Midwest bird flu outbreak over. While no new cases of the H5N2 virus have been detected over for over a month, Vilsack told The Associated Press on Monday that the threat hasn’t passed. Vilsack said poultry producers have caught a break thanks to the summer weather because warmer temperatures tend to kill the virus.

But he also said his agency is aware of the need to be prepared in case the disease reappears this fall. He noted that USDA officials and poultry industry groups plan to meet in Iowa next week to discuss those plans. Bird flu has cost Midwest poultry producers about 48 million birds, mostly egg-laying chickens in in Iowa and turkeys in Minnesota.

Final Two-Cylinder Expo held in Waterloo

Ag/Outdoor

July 20th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

WATERLOO, Iowa (AP) – This year was the last for a convention that brought together John Deere fans and restoration experts from around the country to Iowa.
The 25th and final Two-Cylinder Expo was held Saturday at the National Cattle Congress grounds in Waterloo.

Organizer Jack Cherry says that expo honors, such as for excellent restoration of a machine, will still continue. He launched the Two-Cylinder Club in 1985, and it now has more than 13,000 antique John Deere tractor fans. Cherry tells the Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier that he’ll miss seeing people who refurbish vintage equipment converge at the Cattle Congress grounds to show their work.

Day camp in NW Iowa targets kids AND grandparents

Ag/Outdoor, News

July 17th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

A park in northwest Iowa plans to hold a two-day camp later this month designed specifically for kids and their grandparents. Karess Knudtson, with the Dickinson County Nature Center in Okoboji, is organizing what’s being called “Grandpa, Grandma, & Me!” She says the idea is to bridge generations and let both age groups grow together and create memories.

“The older generation as well as the younger generation can serve as both a learner as well as a teacher,” Knudtson says. “That becomes a very wonderful experience for them.” Knudtson says the camp has no theme, which allows for more hands-on activities like cooking, hiking and kayaking. It’s often difficult for kids and grandparents to coordinate schedules, so Knudtson says this an opportunity for both generations to spend some quality time together.

“We might get into some cooking, we might cook a snack one of the days, maybe making some Chapstik from our beeswax that we have from our bees here.” The camp is scheduled for July 30th and 31st and targets children between the ages of 5 and 13. The cost is $75 per child.

(Radio Iowa)

ISU Extension and Outreach to hold 2015 farm land valuation and leasing meetings

Ag/Outdoor

July 17th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

Lower crop prices have had a heavy impact on Iowa’s farmers and many are forming their financial plans based on continued low prices. Farmland values and rental rates are heavily influenced by farmers’ current and future revenues. So what does the future hold for Iowa land values and rents? Find out at the land valuation and leasing meeting being held in your area. Iowa State University Extension and Outreach works to bring unbiased information to both land owners and renters to help both parties make successful management decisions.

The land valuation and leasing meetings discuss current land values, rental rates, trends and projections of how values and rents might change in the coming years. Other topics will include: how to calculate a rental rate based on county specific information, the variety of leasing arrangements that land owners and tenants may use, and the expected cost of crop production in the coming year.

There will be a leasing meeting held on July 29th at 9:30 am in Harlan, Iowa, at the Shelby County Extension Office, located at 906 Sixth Street. The cost is $20/person pre-registered, or $25/person without pre-registration. Attendees will receive a land leasing handbook with reference and resource materials. The workshop will last approximately 2 ½ hours. Shane Ellis, ISU farm management specialist for the west central region of the state will be presenting. To register, please call the Shelby County Extension office at 712-755-3104.

ISU Extension and Outreach offers a Beginning Farmer Night

Ag/Outdoor

July 17th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

Getting started in agriculture can be a daunting undertaking that requires a significant amount of resources. To help beginning farmers, both young and not so young, Iowa State University Extension and Outreach is providing a Beginning Farmer Night on July 22 in Harlan, IA. The presentation starts at 6pm and will be held at the Shelby County Extension office located at 906 Sixth Street.

This meeting will focus on state and USDA programs designed to help new and some existing farmers find the capital resources to start or expand their operation. Existing farmers and landowners may be interested to learn about programs that reward them for mentoring or leasing land to beginning farmers. Speakers will include Steve Ferguson of the Iowa Finance Authority, Bill Anderson with USDA Farm Service Agency, and Shane Ellis, ISU Farm Management Specialist.

This will be an excellent opportunity for current and future producers to learn about beginning farmer programs and loans available directly from program administrators. Bring your questions for an open and friendly group discussion. For more information and to RSVP, please call the Shelby County Extension office at (712) 755-3104.

(Press Release)