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.

Voting underway to select cover of 2016 Iowa Travel Guide

Ag/Outdoor, News

October 30th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

An online poll is underway to determine the image that will be used for the cover of next year’s Iowa Travel Guide. Iowa Tourism Office spokesperson Jessica O’Riley says voters can choose from four options. “We’ve got a shot of a scenic overlook at Effigy Mounds National Monument near Harpers Ferry, the world famous Roseman Covered Bridge in Madison County, some bikers on the Wabash Nature Trail in southwest Iowa, and hikers in the Loess Hills,” O’Riley said. The winning cover will be announced on November 4th.

“People can vote now through Wednesday, November 4, at 10 a.m. through our Facebook page,” O’Riley said. The Iowa Tourism Office distributes more than 100,000 copies of the Iowa Travel Guide each year. It can be found at Iowa’s welcome centers or ordered online. “In addition to hundreds of listings of museums, hotels, bed and breakfasts, campgrounds, cabins, and all of those sorts of things, we also include some special features,” O’Riley said. “For next year, we’re have a special feature on Grant Wood because it will be his 125th birthday. So, we’ll have a spread in there to say where you can find Grant Wood pieces, all the way from Cedar Rapids to, of course, the American Gothic House (in Eldon).”

The cover of this year’s Iowa Travel Guide features a photo from Dunnings Springs Park in Decorah. The next travel guide will be released in early 2016.

(Radio Iowa)

USDA Report 10-29-2015

Ag/Outdoor, Podcasts

October 29th, 2015 by Jim Field

w/ Denny Heflin


Cass County Extension Report 10-28-2015

Ag/Outdoor, Podcasts

October 29th, 2015 by Jim Field

w/ Kate Olson


Manure applicators can now get training online


October 29th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

Iowa’s thousands of commercial manure applicators can now get their required annual training through their home office computer. Gene Tinker, an animal feeding coordinator with the Iowa Department of Natural Resources, says the online version of the training program was made available last week. “We’ve taken the training modules that Iowa State Extension and Outreach uses every year and we’ve put those online,” Tinker says, “so certified commercial applicators who need three hours of training can acquire that through three hours of online training, if they’d prefer.”

Confinement site applicators can also get their required two-hours of training on the website. Tinker says the database has been greatly enhanced to make it convenient for Iowa’s 45-hundred certified manure applicators.  “Now, people can log into that database and determine if I’m a confinement site operator, where am I at in my three-year license? Am I due this year for a renewal?” Tinker says. “They can also pay their fees online. They can even print their own certificate.”

Tinker said the online service has been in the planning stages over the last few years and is now online, just in time for the manure application process to start, as fields are harvested. Learn more at: www.iowadnr.gov/manureapplicator

(Radio Iowa)

Atlantic’s “Produce in the Park” planning for the future

Ag/Outdoor, News

October 28th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

Twenty weeks of Produce in the Park came to an end, October 15th, in Atlantic. A follow-up meeting designed to summarize the season and make plans for next year, will be held 4-p.m. October 29th, at the Atlantic Chamber of Commerce’ meeting room. Vendors, volunteers and anyone interested in Produce in the Park are invited to attend.983899_474433592626820_905223236_n

Hundreds of shoppers enjoyed fresh local produce, homemade baked goods, crafts and personal care products. There were 12 vendors on opening day June 4. The number increased to 21.

Produce in the Park is made possible by support and work by many individuals, businesses and organizations. Food demonstrations, activities for kids, education spaces and entertainment were provided each of the 20 weeks which equals 80 activities.

Shoppers were asked to complete a simple survey. They reported that they attended Produce in the Park for the obvious reasons of buying produce, baked goods, crafts and other products. They also came to eat their evening meals. They liked the atmosphere, the music and the opportunity to spend time with family members.

Produce in the Park vendors, producers from other farmers markets and homemade craftsmen will be offering their products at Harvest Market. It is scheduled for Monday, November 23, 3:30 to 7:30 p.m. at the Cass County Community Center. It was a big success last year when it was held for the first time.

Increase in Iowa’s pheasant population expected to boost hunter numbers

Ag/Outdoor, Sports

October 28th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

A lot of hunters are excited about the opening of Iowa’s pheasant season this Saturday (October 31). Todd Bogenschutz, with the Department of Natural Resources, credits an August roadside survey showing the state’s pheasant population has increased by 37-percent. “Our pheasant numbers have bounced up to levels we haven’t seen in about eight years, so I think there’s a little bit of optimism for folks heading out into fields this fall,” Bogenschutz said.

Around 50,000 hunters participated in Iowa’s pheasant hunting season last year — up from 40,000 the previous year. “I’d be surprised if we don’t jump to 60,000 or more this year. It could be the most hunters we’ve seen in a number of years as well,” Bogenschutz said. A good number of pheasants can be found statewide, according to Bogenschutz, but there are areas with thicker populations.

“As far as best densities in the state, there’s kind of a band that goes from northwest Iowa, down through Fort Dodge, and then over toward Louisa County,” Bogenschutz said. Lower pheasant counts were recorded in southwest, south central and northeast Iowa. Iowa’s pheasant hunting season this year runs from October 31 to January 10.

(Radio Iowa)

White House lauds Iowa, Nebraska “climate-smart” farmers


October 26th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Two Nebraska farmers and one from Iowa have been recognized by the White House for their efforts to support the government’s sustainable and climate-smart agriculture program. A statement from the White House Monday credits Keith Berns, of Bladen, Nebraska, with educating farmers and ranchers about the importance of soil health and carbon sequestration.

Martin Kleinschmit, of Hartington, Nebraska, an organic grain and cattle farmer, mentored others through a four-year program that enrolled 60,000 Nebraska acres in a USDA organic transition program.

Timothy Smith of Eagle Grove, Iowa, who grows soybeans, corn and cover crops on his family’s Century Farm, was recognized for his work with the Iowa Soybean Association and other groups to implement new farming methods designed to strengthen soil health and improve water quality.

Shelby County Fire Danger reduced to “Moderate”

Ag/Outdoor, News, Weather

October 26th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

The Shelby County Emergency Management Agency reports, with much of the crop being in the bins now, the amount of fuel necessary for opening burning to spread beyond an intended area, has been reduced. Therefore, the local Fire Danger threat is being reduced to “Moderate,” from now through late this week.

Moderate Fire Danger ratingOfficials warn that grassland is still very dry, and fires which start there can run for a long time until out of fuel, and spread to structures. Persons are advised to please let your Fire Chief know in advance of the time and location of any burns to prevent needless responses from local volunteer firefighters. The next update will be Thursday October 29, 2015

ISU prof: Iowa is losing $1B in productivity due to soil erosion

Ag/Outdoor, News

October 26th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

The director of the Iowa Water Center says the state’s farmers are losing more than one-BILLION dollars a year in revenue due to soil erosion. Rick Cruse, who’s also an agronomy professor at Iowa State University, is part of a team of scientists working on what’s called the Iowa Daily Erosion Project. Cruse says that billion-dollar figure is a very conservative estimate of Iowa’s annual losses.

Cruse says, “We’ve looked at our estimates of soil erosion since we broke the prairie in Iowa, and based on the erosion estimates since that time and up until now, we’ve lost somewhere around six-and-a-half to seven inches on average across the state.” The research dates all the way back to 1850 and determined that more than a half-foot of topsoil has been lost in the past 16-plus decades of Iowa farming.

While six or seven inches of dirt may not sound like much, Cruse says the rich, black topsoil is what enables Iowa to be one of the world’s leaders in food production. When the precious soil is whittled away, so is Iowa’s livelihood. “The soil changes as you go down and at deeper depths,” Cruse says. “Most people understand, if you try to grow grass on a construction site or you try to grow grass or a garden in that subsoil material that’s left over after they scrape the topsoil, that’s essentially the same thing we see in the fields if soil continues to erode and we take that topsoil away.”

Many incentive programs are in place and farming techniques are being used that are designed to slow erosion, but Cruse says none of them have fixed the problem. “We need perennials in some parts of the landscape in Iowa if soil loss is going to be reduced to an acceptable level,” Cruse says. “The question you asked is, are these (programs) working, they’re working, they’re helping, but all of these are parts of a system. Any one thing alone is not the answer but putting the pieces together is.”

The Iowa Daily Erosion Project is made up of scientists from I-S-U, the University of Iowa, Colorado State University, the National Soil Erosion Research Lab, and the USDA National Laboratory for Agriculture and the Environment.

(Radio Iowa)

2015-2016 “Excellence in Agriculture” Scholarship Applications Now Available

Ag/Outdoor, News

October 23rd, 2015 by Ric Hanson

(RALSTON, Iowa) Oct. 23, 2015 —High school seniors pursuing a career in agriculture or an ag-related field are invited to apply for West Central® Cooperative’s 2015-2016 Excellence in Agriculture scholarship. The Excellence In Agriculture scholarship program awards four $1,500 scholarships for any accredited post-secondary program. Applications are available at any West Central location, from area high school guidance counselors, or online at west-central.com

West Central CoOp logoScholarship Requirements:

1. Applicant and/or parent must be a voting member, in good standing, of West Central.

2. Applicant must be a high school senior and graduate in the spring of the 2015-2016 school year.

3. Applicant must have a cumulative high school GPA of 2.5 or better on a 4.0 scale through his/her junior year.

4. Applicant must pursue a career in agriculture or enter an ag-related field of study at any accredited post-secondary school of his or her choice.

5. Dependents of directors and officers of West Central are not eligible to apply for these scholarships.

Applications must be returned by Jan. 29, 2016. If you have questions regarding West Central’s Excellence In Agriculture scholarship program, please contact Alicia Clancy, Director of Communications, at (712) 667-3334.