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DNR seeking comments on proposed laws ahead of the 2021/22 deer hunting season

Ag/Outdoor

December 1st, 2020 by Ric Hanson

The Iowa Department of Natural Resources is asking for public input on two laws passed and signed during the 2020 legislative session. The first is from House File 716 that directs the DNR to develop a list of cartridges approved for use in rifles to hunt deer in Iowa.  The following list of cartridges is proposed for inclusion:

.350 Legend .429 DE
.35 Remington .44 Wildey Mag
.356 TSW .44 Remington Magnum
.357 Sig .44 Automag
9×25 Dillion .445 Super Mag
9×23 Winchester .45 Super
.357 Magnum .45 Wildey Mag
.357 Maximum .450 Bushmaster
.357 SuperMag .45 Winchester Magnum
.357 Wildey Mag .451 Detonics
.357/44 Bain & Davis .454 Casull
.375 Winchester .45 Silhouette
.38-55 Winchester .458 Socom
10 mm Auto .460 Rowland
.40 Super .475 Wildey Magnum
.401 Powermag .475 Linebaugh
.400 Cor-Bon .480 Ruger
.38-40 Winchester .50 GI
.41 Remington Magnum .50 Action Express
.41 Wildey Mag .50 Beowulf
.414 SuperMag .500 JRH
.44-40 Winchester .500 Special
.440 Cor-Bon .500 Wyoming Express

Allowable cartridges for use in handguns that were considered for use in rifles but deemed ballistically dissimilar from allowable pistol or revolver cartridges include (these cartridges are NOT proposed for inclusion to the list of allowable rifles to hunt deer in Iowa):

.35 Whelen
.356 Winchester
.358 Winchester
.444 Marlin
.45 Raptor
.45-70 Govt.
.460 S&W Mag
.500 S&W Mag

Hunters interested in additions or subtractions are asked to send their request along with a brief justification to wildlife@dnr.iowa.gov by Dec. 14, 2020.

The second is House File 2455 that requires hunters and dogs to be trained prior to tracking wounded deer. In order to satisfy this requirement, the DNR proposes to provide a form to document the hunter and the dog’s blood tracking training and experience. This form would be kept on file for three years and the hunter and dog(s) would be eligible to track wounded deer during that period. Hunters receiving trespassing or other violations in the act of tracking wounded deer will be deemed “not trained” until a formal blood tracking certification is obtained.

Hunters interested in commenting on this proposed approach are asked to send their ideas to wildlife@dnr.iowa.gov by Dec. 14, 2020.

NRCS Provides $2 Million in Derecho Disaster Assistance

Ag/Outdoor

December 1st, 2020 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, IOWA, Dec. 1, 2020 – The USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) has preapproved the funding of 150 applications totaling more than $2 million across 26 Iowa counties to help farmers affected by the Aug. 10 Derecho windstorm apply or replace damaged conservation practices on their land. NRCS will fund disaster recovery applications through the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) – a voluntary program in which NRCS provides financial and technical assistance to ag producers to address natural resource concerns.

Of the 150 applications:

•                     142 are for seeding cover crops to protect soil from erosion and to keep a living root in the soil until the 2021 planting season;

•                     6 are to replace previously USDA-funded high tunnel systems that many fruit and vegetable growers use to help extend the growing season and improve crop quality; and

•                     2 are to replace previously USDA-funded roofs or covers on livestock waste storage facilities.

Scott County had the most applicants with 24, followed by Linn County with 16, and Benton and Tama Counties with 12 apiece. Approved applicants will receive higher EQIP payment rates than normal due to the special disaster recovery. NRCS offered an early start waiver that allowed applicants to implement the conservation practice before the application was officially approved.

Iowa farmers were unable to harvest an estimated 850,000 cropland acres this fall, due to Derecho winds that blew as hard as 140 miles per hour. For more information about conservation practices and programs for your land, contact your local NRCS office or go to www.ia.nrcs.usda.gov. USDA Service Centers are temporarily restricting in-person visits in Iowa because of elevated rates of coronavirus community spread, but USDA employees will continue to assist agricultural producers with programs and services.

Local Posted County Prices 11/30/2020

Ag/Outdoor

November 30th, 2020 by Ric Hanson

Cass County: Corn $3.98 Beans $11.34
Adair County: Corn $3.95 Beans $11.37
Adams County: Corn $3.95 Beans $11.33
Audubon County: Corn $3.97 Beans $11.36
East Pottawattamie County: Corn $4.01 Beans $11.34
Guthrie County: Corn $4.00 Beans $11.38
Montgomery County: Corn $4.00 Beans $11.36
Shelby County: Corn $4.01 Beans $11.34

Oats $2.70 (always the same in all counties)

Donated deer hides benefit disabled veterans

Ag/Outdoor, Sports

November 28th, 2020 by Ric Hanson

(IA DNR) Hunters donated more than 4,100 deer hides to Elks Lodges across Iowa last year, which was a slight decrease from the 2018-2019 season. The Iowa DNR says the deer hides are used by the Veterans Leather Program to make professionally-crafted leather gloves for veterans in wheelchairs and also turned into leather used for therapy programs for recovering veterans.

The Veterans Leather Program relies on the charity of hunters to donate their deer hides. Hunters willing to donate their hides are encouraged to contact the local Elks Lodge for drop off locations or visit www.elks.org/lodges to find the nearest lodge. The therapeutic kits and gloves are distributed at no cost to the veterans.

Iowa deer exchange attracts over 300 participants

Ag/Outdoor, Sports

November 28th, 2020 by Ric Hanson

(IA DNR) – The inaugural season for the Iowa Deer Exchange has attracted 350 Iowans who indicated they were interested in receiving venison and 60 hunters willing to provide it.  The deer exchange, along with the Help us Stop Hunger (HUSH) program, allows hunters an opportunity to provide high quality lean protein to their neighbors, while continuing to do what they enjoy – hunting deer. Officials say they are pleased with the participation we’ve seen thus far, and the large number of registered recipients shows there’s an audience who wants venison. They’re encouraging hunters who are making their plans now to consider picking up another doe tag and registering to donate venison.

To sign up for the Iowa Deer Exchange, go to www.iowadnr.gov/deer then scroll down to Iowa’s Deer Exchange Program link and fill out the required fields. The database creates a map and table with information deer donors and deer recipients can use to get connected. There is no cost to participate. It is illegal to sell wild fish and game in Iowa.

Hunter who prefer to use the HUSH program are encouraged to contact a participating locker before they harvest a deer to see if the locker has any additional drop off instructions. The list of participating lockers is available at www.iowadnr.gov/deer the scroll down to the Help Us Stop Hunger link. The HUSH program is a partnership between the Iowa DNR, the Food Bank of Iowa and participating meat lockers.

Economist predicts 2021 to be a good year for ag sector

Ag/Outdoor, News

November 26th, 2020 by Ric Hanson

(Radio Iowa) – Creighton University economist Ernie Goss says this year’s increase in farm income is leading to an increase in farmland prices. “Farmers are out there and they’re feeling better about the economy, but unfortunately we’re not seeing it in the businesses on what we call ‘Rural Mainstreet,'” Goss says. Every month, Goss surveys rural bankers for a Rural Mainstreet Index. His latest survey indicates the economy in Iowa and nine other states in the Great Plains and Mountain West will dip in the current 4th quarter.

“It looks like we’re hitting a hiccup in the global economy and a hiccup in the US economy and, for that matter, in the regional economy,” Goss says. “Growth is just slowing down and potentially moving what was a V shaped recovery into a W shaped recovery — in other words, back down into the recession.” But Goss says farmland and commodity prices have beem climbing fairly dramatically this fall, leading to optimism in the ag sector. About a third of U.S. farm income this year will have come, though, from the Trump Administration’s payments to make up for trade losses and Goss says those are likely to end with the Trump presidency.

“On the flip side, we’re likely to see the Biden Administration be a little more positive on trade,” Goss says. “…You’ve got some positives and some negatives. I expect 2021 – at least as we sit here now — to be pretty good for the agricultural sector given the expansion on trade.” And Goss says rising global oil prices are generally good news for the state’s ethanol industry as well.

Find beautiful pictures in Iowa to remember this ugly year

Ag/Outdoor, News

November 26th, 2020 by Ric Hanson

(Radio Iowa) – Most of us won’t likely remember 2020 fondly but as we enter the year’s home stretch, Iowans are urged to find something beautiful and capture an image of it. Kevin Techau, executive director of Keep Iowa Beautiful, says the organization’s 20th annual photography contest is now accepting entries. “We have five categories: Iowa Landscape, Iowa Water, Iowa Cities, Iowans in Action and Iowa Wildlife,” Techau says. “Contestants can enter as many times as they’d like in any of these categories to capture the beauty of Iowa and we do have prizes to award the best photography.”

Keep Iowa Beautiful was co-founded by former Governor Robert Ray in 2000 as a way to help communities make the state a better place to live, work and raise a family. Photography was one of Ray’s favorite hobbies, so the photo contest has been an annual staple ever since. A panel is being assembled to narrow down the best entries. “We’re going to have a round of judges that will pick winners from each of the five and those will go into the Robert D. Ray Best of Show Award,” Techau says. “In fact, Governor Ray’s eldest daughter, Randi Ray, will be one of the judges who helps make that decision.”

The contest was expanded this year in honor of the 20th anniversary. “The first prize winner in each of the categories, the prizes are $100, $75 for second and $50 for third place, and then in the Best of Show, first place will be $500, second place $250 and third place $100, and then we’ll have a public award where the public can vote for their favorites and we’ll have $100 prize for the winners in that category.”

There’s a $5 fee for each photo entered with a deadline of December 18th. The rules and entry forms can be found at the website: www.keepiowabeautiful.com.

Reminder to support local food businesses

Ag/Outdoor, News

November 26th, 2020 by Ric Hanson

(Radio Iowa) – Many of us will enjoy a Thanksgiving meal today (Thursday) prepared at home — while some have purchased a prepared meal and will have it delivered. The Iowa Farm Bureau’s director of agriculture analytics and research, Sam Funk, says it is important as we move past the holiday to continue supporting local restaurants and other businesses. “I think there is a lot of that food service sector right now who are depending on people being able to use carry out and bringing those cash flows into your local community,” he says. Funk says it helps those businesses — and it also helps those ag producers who supply food to them. “We depend on all segments of our food service industry in order to make for a strong and thriving community. And frankly, to strengthen the opportunities that we have to be able to market products all throughout that supply chain,” according to Funk.

Funk says the U-S has one of the lowest costs of food in the world — but there are still people struggling — and that is important to remember. “I’m hopeful that we will all remember those that might not be as fortunate as even we are. And at the same time, if we have a warm place to be able to lay our heads at night and a roof over our families, hopefully, we will be able to think about those who are having a tougher time right now,” Funk says. He says the pandemic has forced us to become isolated from others and limited the opportunities to go out and volunteer. But he says that doesn’t mean we still can’t help out by donating to food banks and to organizations that help others. “There’s still opportunities that we have to be able to give. And if there is an opportunity that we have to be able to volunteer again — I think that’s an important aspect to carry forward,” Funk says.

Funk says he is confident Iowans will continue meeting the challenges we are facing and will continue helping others as well.

Iowa Tribe creates national park on Nebraska-Kansas border

Ag/Outdoor, News

November 25th, 2020 by Ric Hanson

LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) — The Iowa Tribe of Kansas and Nebraska is creating the nation’s largest tribal national park on a forested bluff overlooking the Missouri River and a historic site of its people. The tribe says the 444-acre park will allow it to tell the story of the Ioway people and provide a rustic getaway where people can hike, camp and bird-watch.

The Omaha World-Herald reports that the Ioway Tribal National Park will overlook a historic trading village once used by the Ioway people to barter for buffalo hides and pipestones with other tribes. That site includes three burial mounds that date back 3,000 years.

 

Atlantic FFA places 4th in Iowa FFA Farm Business Management CDE

Ag/Outdoor, News

November 25th, 2020 by Ric Hanson

Atlantic High School Agriculture Instructor and FFA Advisor Eric Miller reports the Atlantic FFA Chapter placed 4th in the annual Iowa FFA Farm Management Career Development Event virtually on November 12th. Members of the first place team included: Drey Newell, Caroline Pellett, Gunner Kirchhoff, and Garrett Reynolds.

Drey Newell, Caroline Pellett, Garrett Reynolds, Gunner Kirchhoff

FFA teams from 26 chapters participated in this year’s Career Development Event designed to provide the student an opportunity to display their agricultural knowledge and skills in the area of Farm Management. The 95 individuals who participated in the event each completed an objective test which had three sections: economic principles, records and analysis, and risk management. All team members worked together to solve a problem related to break even analysis.

The Iowa FFA Farm Business Management Career Development Event was made possible with support from the Iowa Farm Business Association through the Iowa FFA Foundation. Dr. Ron Deiter, Professor of Economics at Iowa State University, Ames, Iowa, was the Career Development Event coordinator and prepared the test.

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The Iowa FFA Association is a youth organization of over 16,100 student members as part of 246 local FFA chapters across Iowa. The FFA mission is to make a positive difference in the lives of students by developing their potential for premier leadership, personal growth and career success through agricultural education. The Iowa FFA Association was organized by delegates from 23 schools at Iowa State College on May 17, 1929 and is an integral part of public instruction in agriculture. The Iowa Department of Education provides leadership and helps set direction for FFA as a service to local agricultural education programs. For more, visit the Iowa FFA Association online at IowaFFA.com, on Facebook, and Twitter.