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.

Information available for those concerned, about Avian Influenza

Ag/Outdoor, News

May 28th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

The Adair & Guthrie County Emergency Management Agencies have assemble a list of Website and printable information about the Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI). EMA Coordinator Robert Kempf says “This information provides general information, facts, biosecurity guidelines and other information the general public and caretakers of backyard flock may find useful. Adair-Guthrie EMA

These are printable resources from the USDA:
HPAI General Resources and Information
http://www.aphis.usda.gov/animal_health/downloads/animal_diseases/ai/HPAIgeneralresourcesinfo.pdf
Emergency Response Procedures – Depopulation and Disposal
http://www.aphis.usda.gov/animal_health/downloads/animal_diseases/ai/ER-DepopDisposal.pdf
Emergency Response Procedures – Cleaning and Disinfection
http://www.aphis.usda.gov/animal_health/downloads/animal_diseases/ai/ER-CleaningDisinfection.pdf
Emergency Response Procedures – Appraisal and Indemnity
http://www.aphis.usda.gov/animal_health/downloads/animal_diseases/ai/ER-Appraisal-Indemnity.pdf
USDA Avian Influenza Response: Mass Depopulation and Carcass Disposal
http://www.aphis.usda.gov/animal_health/downloads/animal_diseases/ai/QA-MassDepopCarcassDisposal.pdf
HPAI Biosecurity Checklist
http://www.aphis.usda.gov/animal_health/downloads/animal_diseases/ai/HPAIchecklist.pdf

The Center for Food Security & Public Health at Iowa State University has provided this printable sheet of Fast Facts.
http://www.cfsph.iastate.edu/FastFacts/pdfs/avian_influenza_F.pdf

This is a link to the USDA APHIS Website that contains guidance about bio-security for backyard flocks.
http://healthybirds.aphis.usda.gov/

This is a link to a printable Avian Influenza informational brochure.
http://www.aphis.usda.gov/publications/animal_health/2011/ProtectYourBirdFromAI_Eng.pdf

This is a link to the Iowa Department of Agriculture Web Page that contains a list of probable and confirmed Avian Influenza cases in the State of Iowa. The green dates behind the county name are the printable press releases announcing the cases.
http://www.iowaagriculture.gov/AvianInfluenza.asp

Reaction to final “Waters of the US” rule from EPA

Ag/Outdoor, News

May 28th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

The leaders of several Iowa farm groups say they’re worried the E-P-A’s final draft of rules to curb pollution in small waterways and wetlands will subject farm ditches and farm ponds to federal oversight. Iowa Farm Bureau president Craig Hill says this final rule failed to address many of the concerns farmers raised after the E-P-A released a first draft of new Clean Water Act regulations last spring. “The penalties are so severe if you are found to be in breach of the Clean Water Act,” Hill says. “Those penalties can range up to $37,500 per instance. Jail is one of the penalty provisions.” Hill says it appears farmers will have to get federal permits for “normal farming practices.”

“The permitting process is very cumbersome, awkward and expensive,” Hill says. “And, according to what we read in this new rule, farmers will be required to get permits for things they’ve never been required to get permits for before.” E-P-A officials say the new rule covers about three percent more waterways in the United States that have a “direct and significant” connection to lakes and rivers that are already covered by the Clean Water Act. Hill says farmers still aren’t sure whether they’ll have to get permits for the ponds on their property.

“Every pond has an overflow. Well, the overflow is not exempt,” Hill says. “So when they say ponds are exempt it has no meaning because the water that comes out of a pond is, by definition, a water of the U.S.” The new rule failed to answer key questions farmers raised last spring, according to Hill, like what is a lawful grass waterway.

“We know what a grass waterway is in Iowa and farmers are installing those on their own accord. Every spring and fall we’re reshaping and trying to perform conservation, but we turn to NRCS — the Natural Resources Conservation Service — for an outline of what is proper and best management practice and so on,” Hill says. “Well, according to EPA, they will only consider a waterway lawful by their definition.”

The president of the Iowa Corn Growers Association says the E-P-A seems to be “restricting” farmers efforts to “voluntarily improve our environment,” rather than partnering with farmers to advance conservation measures. The chair of the Sierra Club’s Iowa chapter praised the E-P-A’s rule, arguing it is “a critical step toward protecting streams and wetlands that feed our drinking water supplies.” Experts offer conflicting opinions about the rule’s potential impact on the lawsuit the Des Moines Water Works has filed against three northwest Iowa counties.

(Radio Iowa)

USDA Report 05-28-2015

Ag/Outdoor, Podcasts

May 28th, 2015 by Chris Parks

w/ Denny Heflin

Play

Egg prices for food producers triple due to bird flu

Ag/Outdoor, News

May 27th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

The price of eggs used by food manufacturers has more than tripled in recent weeks, largely due to the outbreak of bird flu spreading across Iowa, the nation’s number-one egg-producing state. Avian flu has affected more than 21-million egg-laying hens in Iowa so far, with more operations being added to the list almost daily. U-S-D-A poultry economist Alex Melton says food company officials are worried about supply.

Melton says, “When there is a scare in any sort of national market for any commodity, you often see a sharp increase in price followed by a tapering as people are able to take more stock and get more information.” Melton says it’s hard to say how high costs will eventually climb, since no one knows when the avian flu outbreaks will stop. Eggs used in food processing cost 64-cents a dozen back in April, but now the price is over two-25 a dozen. Melton says prices have started to taper, but stabilizing costs depend on the egg industry’s ability to replace and sustain the current flock.

Melton says, “Egg producers can take different actions to try to extend their productivity by either keeping a laying hen in action longer and speeding up repopulation of barns with new pullets.” Roughly ten-percent of the egg-laying hens in the U-S have been affected by avian flu and more than one-third of Iowa’s birds. The latest two probable cases in Iowa were announced Tuesday in commercial egg-laying operations in Adair and Webster Counties.

The Adair County operation has 975-thousand birds, while the facility in Webster County has 160-thousand. If confirmed, it will take the total number of outbreaks statewide to 66. State ag officials say, so far, more than 19-million commercial layers and pullets have been euthanized in Iowa.

(Radio Iowa)

Planting held up in southwest Iowa by wet conditions

Ag/Outdoor, News

May 27th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

The latest U-S-D-A crop report shows wet weather has slowed planting progress — especially in the southwest part of the state. Overall, 96-percent of the corn crop has been planted, which is one day ahead of last year, and three days ahead of the five-year average. In southwest Iowa, just 81-percent of the corn has been planted, and I-S-U Extension Agronomist, Aaron Sauegling says it’s just been too wet.

“We’re still behind. There’s still corn to be planted in portions of southwest Iowa. There’s actually a fair amount of soybeans to go. I have some producers that have yet to plant any soybeans, and I have some producers that are done,” Sauegling says. Farmers have just had to wait for things to dry up. “It gets close, and there have been some producers that have tried to push that a little bit — to try to literally mud some of this crop in — and it’s just not fit.

Soil conditions have just not allowed us to go out in the field,” Sauegling says. Sauegling says farmers are monitoring weather forecasts, while also keeping an eye on the calendar. “We don’t want to panic too much at this point, but once you start to get to June, we’d sure like to get a chance to get some of the beans in.”

Across the state 81-percent of the corn that’s planted has emerged, which is six days ahead of last year and four days ahead of normal. Soybean planting is 70-percent complete, behind last year’s pace for the first time this year. Thirty-two percent of the soybean crop has emerged, slightly ahead of last year and normal.

(Radio Iowa)

Cass County Extension Report 05-27-2015

Ag/Outdoor, Podcasts

May 27th, 2015 by Chris Parks

w/ Kate Olson

Play

Adair-Guthrie County EMA statement on Avian Influenza

Ag/Outdoor, News

May 26th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

The Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship is responding to the PROBABLE CASE of highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) in Adair County at the Rose Acres Stuart Egg Farm. According to Adair-Guthrie County Emergency Management Coordinator Bob Kempf, the Department has quarantined the premises and once the presence of the disease is confirmed, all birds on the property will be humanely euthanized to prevent the spread of the disease.

The Stuart Egg Farm is a commercial laying operation with an estimated 975,000 birds. Initial testing showed it positive for H5 avian influenza. Additional confirmatory testing is pending from the APHIS National Veterinary Services Laboratories (NVSL) in Ames.

Because of the possible economic impact if the disease is confirmed both the Adair & Guthrie County Board of Supervisors have approved Emergency Disaster Declarations as of May 26th. Kempf asks residents to “Please avoid this area to help eliminate the spread of any potential HPAI Virus and to allow work to be done.”

350th Street from Pinewood Road (P20) to Riverside Avenue is closed to Thru Traffic and Riverside Avenue from 350th Street to 110th Street is closed to all traffic to help with this situation. If you have question about HPAI you can contact the Iowa Concern Hotline at 800-447-1985 or go  to www.iowaagriculture.gov/avianinfluenza.asp

2 probable cases of avian influenza in Adair and Webster Counties

Ag/Outdoor, News

May 26th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

The Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship said Tuesday it was responding to two probable cases of highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) in Adair and Webster counties. With the new announcements, Iowa now has 66 cases of the disease in the state. The Department has quarantined the premises and once the presence of the disease is confirmed, all birds on the property will be humanely euthanized to prevent the spread of the disease.

Adair 1 – Is a Commercial laying operation with an estimated 975,000 birds that has experienced increased mortality. Initial testing showed it positive for H5 avian influenza. Additional confirmatory testing is pending from the APHIS National Veterinary Services Laboratories (NVSL) in Ames.

Webster 1 – Is a Commercial laying operation with an estimated 160,000 birds that has experienced increased mortality. Initial testing showed it positive for H5 avian influenza. Additional confirmatory testing is pending from the APHIS National Veterinary Services Laboratories (NVSL) in Ames.

As the Department receives final confirmations of the disease updated information will be posted to the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship’s website at www.iowaagriculture.gov/avianinfluenza.asp. The Center for Disease Control (CDC) and Iowa Department of Public Health considers the risk to people from these HPAI H5 infections in wild birds, backyard flocks and commercial poultry, to be low. No human infections with the virus have ever been detected and there is no food safety risk for consumers.

Farmers Market Vouchers for Seniors 2015

Ag/Outdoor, News

May 26th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

Connections Area Agency has announced that the state is continuing the Farmers Market voucher program for older Iowans. With this program, seniors meeting income requirements can obtain vouchers that they can use at participating area Farmers Markets to buy $30.00 worth of fresh, locally grown produce. If you have questions about eligibility, please check with your local senior center. Applications for the vouchers will be available at your local senior center the week of June 1st.

Your completed application guarantees you a booklet, but there is a limited number, so contact your local senior center if you are interested in this program. Once you have a completed application, you can return to your local Senior Center to pick up your vouchers. Applications for Council Bluffs residents are now available at The Center, located at 714 S. Main Street.

The distribution date for Council Bluffs vouchers will be once again held at The Center on Monday, June 8th from 9am – noon. Again, your completed application guarantees you a booklet, so you may come at any time on June 8th to the Center to present your completed application and obtain your vouchers. Seniors (age 60 and older) in all other communities in Cass, Fremont, Harrison, Mills, Montgomery, Page, Pottawattamie and Shelby counties will receive their vouchers through their local senior center.

Program Criteria:
• Must be at least 60 years of age or older
• Annual income must be less than
$21,775 Single
$29,471 Married
• Only one original application allowed per individual. No photocopies or duplicate applications allowed

Dates to Remember:
• Immediately: Applications will be available in Council Bluffs at The Center, 714 S. Main
• June 1, 2015: Applications and vouchers are available at all local Senior Centers outside of Council Bluffs.
• June 8, 2015: Council Bluffs Farmers’ Market voucher distribution at The Center, 714 S. Main from 9am – Noon for seniors with a completed application.

Labor day Weekend Campsite Reservations open Soon

Ag/Outdoor, News

May 26th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

Just as one holiday ends, it is time to think about another. Campers hoping to reserve spots for the 2015 Labor Day weekend need to mark June 4 on their calendars, when reservations for a Friday arrival open. Sherry Arntzen with the DNR Parks Bureau, says “Even by June 4 some sites will already be reserved by campers arriving prior to the holiday weekend. “And electric sites always go quickly.”

For more information on Iowa’s state parks and to make a reservation, visit www.iowadnr.gov/parks