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SD Grassland Coalition Annual December Road Show

Categorized: Livestock, Beef, Horse, Land, Water & Wildlife, Profit Tips, Sheep, Reports to Partners, Agronomy, Corn, Other Crops, Land, Water & Wildlife, Profit Tips, Soybeans, Wheat, Healthy Families, Food Safety, Health & Wellness, Gardens, Master Gardeners

BROOKINGS, S.D. - The South Dakota Grassland Coalition, SDSU Extension and other partnering organizations celebrate another successful year by offering a great educational opportunity to members and non-members alike during the 2017 Road Show December 11 - 15 coming to several South Dakota Communities. 

Gabe Brown will be the featured speaker during the roadshow stops in Hot Springs, Chamberlain, Crooks, Watertown and Aberdeen. 

Event organizers ask that attendees RSVP to the contacts listed for each location below if possible for the meal, but walk ins are welcome. Registration at each event will begin at 9:30 am. Cost is Free to current Grassland Coalition members and $30 for non-members and includes a 1-yr membership with admission to Coalition events, tours, etc. For any general questions, contact Judge Jessop at 605.280.0127.

"The South Dakota  Grassland Coalition has really done well in identifying with producers in South Dakota and the region," said Pete Bauman, SDSU Extension Range Field Specialist.

Bauman is one of many SDSU Extension staff who work closely with the South Dakota Grassland Coalition. He was involved in developing the agenda for the road show.

"The annual road show not only reflects how well the Coalition's leadership listens to the needs of our producers, but it also reflects how willing the Board members are to lead," Bauman said.

More on Gabe Brown

Gabe Brown is recognized as a national leader in the soil health movement. He converted his North Dakota farm from conventional tillage and grazing practices to a regenerative approach that has drastically reduced input expenses and increased profitability. These new management practices have also improved the overall health of his soil, livestock and lifestyle.

During the road show, Gabe will share details of transitioning a farm away from conventional mentality and methods. He will discuss how the decision to embrace alternative management has improve the health of the air, water, plants, animals and people associated with his operation's farming and grazing strategies.

"Gabe Brown's message was very impactful when he joined us in 2015, and we have no doubt that his message will resonate with all who attend, regardless of what type of operation you are currently managing - and regardless of where in South Dakota you operate your farm or ranch business," Bauman said.

2017 SD Grassland Coalition Road Show Agenda

Hot Springs
Date: Monday, December 11, 2017

Time: 9:30 a.m. - 3 p.m. (MST)
Location: American Legion Hall (1045 Jennings Ave, Hot Springs, 57747)
RSVP to: Dave Ollila, SDSU Extension Sheep Field Specialist
605.394.1722 or by email  

Chamberlain
Date: Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Road Show & Annual Meeting
Time: 9:30 a.m. - 3 p.m. (CST)
Location: AmericInn (1981 E King St, Chamberlain, 57325)
RSVP to: Judge Jessop - S.D. Grassland Coalition
605.280.0127 or by email
*Following the road show, the S.D. Grassland Coalition Annual Meeting will begin at 12:35 p.m. 

Crooks
Date: Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Time: 9:30 a.m. - 3 p.m. (CST)
Location: Crooks Community Center (701 S Western Ave, Crooks, 57020)
RSVP to: Judge Jessop, S.D. Grassland Coalition
605.280.0127 or by email

Watertown
Date: Thursday, December 14, 2017

Time: 9:30 a.m. - 3 p.m. (CST)
Location: Codington County Extension Complex (1910 West Kemp Ave)
RSVP to: Pete Bauman, SDSU Extension Range Field Specialist, by email or (605) 882-5140  or Jan Rounds, by email or at 605.882.5140    

Aberdeen
Date: Friday, December 15, 2017

Time: 9:30 a.m. - 3 p.m. (CST)
Location: Dakota Event Center (720 Lamont St S, Aberdeen, SD 57401)
RSVP to: Valeree DeVine, 605.426.6951 ex.3 or by email 

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Resource For Caregivers of Native American Elders

Categorized: Healthy Families, Aging

BROOKINGS, S.D. - Native Americans have a rich culture that is important when addressing aging and caregiving. When working with Native American elders, Leacey E. Brown, SDSU Extension Gerontology Field Specialist encourages caregivers to review resources developed by Native People for Native people.

Some of these resources can be found at the National Resource Center on Native American Aging.

"This group works to identify Native elder health and social issues and works to support community-based solutions," Brown explained.

Through the Resource Center, caregivers can access education, training and technical assistance. Their website also provides access a variety of resources, including a needs assessment tool, newsletters, exercise curriculum, and caregiver curriculum. Please visit the National Resource Center on Native American Aging to learn more.

Disclaimer: The preceding is presented for informational purposes only. SDSU Extension does not endorse the services, methods or products described herein, and makes no representations or warranties of any kind regarding them.

Courtesy of iGrow. Native Americans have a rich culture that is important when addressing aging and caregiving. When working with Native American elders, Leacey E. Brown, SDSU Extension Gerontology Field Specialist encourages caregivers to review resources developed by Native People for Native people. 

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Wessington Springs Annual Springs Showdown

Categorized: 4-H & Youth, South Dakota 4-H

BROOKINGS, S.D. - 4-H youth and other beef project enthusiasts packed the Jerauld-Buffalo Counties 4-H grounds November 5, 2017, to participate in the annual Springs Showdown Calf Show.

Eighty youth from Nebraska, Iowa, Minnesota and South Dakota exhibited 90 breeding heifers and 50 market steers and heifers. The show also included a 4-H livestock judging contest and livestock skill-a-thon.

"This show provided 4-H youth with a great opportunity to demonstrate their beef and livestock knowledge," said Audra Scheel, SDSU Extension 4-H Youth Program Advisor - Sanborn, Aurora & Jerauld/Buffalo Counties.

Brady Jensen, South Dakota State University Livestock Judging Coach evaluated the cattle and youth showmanship skills.

"Tremendous quality throughout the show," Jensen told spectators and exhibitors as he chose the top five in the steer show at the end of the day.

Several individuals and area businesses sponsored the event.

"As a non-profit show, sponsors play a huge role in the success of this show and we couldn't do it without their support. $10,000 in sponsorships and entry fees were paid back to youth in attendance," Erin Yost, Springs Showdown committee treasurer.

Awards

Top five overall breeding heifers included: Champion, Sydney Johnsen, Wessington, with a purebred Simmental heifer; Reserve Champion, Storm Johnsen, Wessington, with a Maine-Anjou heifer; third place, Trevor Bergh, Florence, with an Angus heifer; fourth place, Lex Larson, Valentine, Nebraska, with a Hereford heifer; fifth place, Harlee Heim, Wessington Springs, with a Foundation Simmental heifer.

Top five overall market beef included: Champion, Tate Bergh, Florence, with a crossbred steer; Reserve Champion, Abbi Henderson, Adel, Iowa, with a Charolais steer; third place, JD Thompson, Wessington Springs, with a Chianina steer; fourth place, Talli Heim, Wessington Springs, with a crossbred steer; and fifth place, Abbi Henderson, Adel, Iowa, with a market heifer.

Showmanship

Top five beginner showmanship winners: Champion, Kinsly Altena, George, Iowa; Reserve Champion, Piper Blum, Reliance; third place, Chance Blum, Reliance; fourth place, Teagan Scheel, Alpena; fifth place, Kerstynn Heim, Wessington Springs.

Top five junior showmanship winners: Champion, Raylee Fagerhaug, Wessington Springs; Reserve Champion, Trever Bergh, Florence; third place, Payton Beare, Ree Heights; fourth place, Sydney Johnsen, Wessington; fifth place, Lex Larson, Valentine, Nebraska.

Top five senior showmanship winners: Champion, Fletcher Larson, Valentine, Nebraska; Reserve Champion, Storm Johnsen, Wessington; third place, Allyson Beninga, Sioux Falls; fourth place, Lauren Verlinde, Tracy, Minnesota; fifth place, NaLea Dunsmore, Wessington.

4-H Livestock Judging Contest

Thirty-nine youth competed in the livestock judging contest. Youth evaluated feeder calves, market goats, and breeding ewes. The beginner ages also tested their knowledge with sheep parts identification while junior and senior age groups evaluated a sow class based on EPDs.

Top Five Beginners:

First place, Teagan Scheel, Jerauld-Buffalo Counties
Second place, Kerstynn Heim, Jerauld-Buffalo Counties
Third place, Jayna Blume, Hughs County
Fourth place, Rylan Fagerhaug, Jerauld-Buffalo Counties
Fifth place, Makynna Heim, Jerauld-Buffalo Counties

Top Five Juniors:

First place, Mason Schelske, Jerauld-Buffalo Counties
Second place, Payton Tobin, Jerauld-Buffalo Counties
Third place, Landen Christensen, Jerauld-Buffalo Counties
Fourth place, Payton Beare, Hand County
Fifth place, Dillon Kammerer, Meade County

Top Five Seniors:

First place, Riley Larson, Jerauld-Buffalo Counties
Second place, Talli Heim, Jerauld-Buffalo Counties
Third place, Quinten Christensen, Jerauld-Buffalo Counties
Fourth place, Sawyer Naasz, Brule County
Fifth place, Lex Larson, Cherry County, Nebraska

4-H Livestock Skill-a-thon

Youth tested their knowledge identifying breeds of livestock and the continent they originated. In the equipment category youth identified tools used with artificial insemination. The parts of digestive systems in swine and goats were identified. Youth also were able to look at 17 different cuts of meat from a beef animal and label the retail and whole cuts accordingly.

Top Two Seniors:

First place, Quinten Christensen, Jerauld-Buffalo Counties
Second place, Sawyer Naasz, Brule County

Top Two Juniors/Beginners:

First place, Carissa Scheel, Jerauld-Buffalo Counties
Second place, Mason Schelske, Jerauld-Buffalo Counties

The beef project area is just one of many different project areas 4-H offers. For more information about how to get involved as a member or volunteer, contact your local Extension office. A complete listing can be found on iGrow.org.

More about South Dakota 4-H

SDSU Extension's 4-H Youth Development Program is a partnership of federal (USDA), state (Land Grant University), and county resources through youth outreach activities of SDSU Extension. Youth learn and experience Leadership, Health and Wellness, Science and Ag-Vocacy through a network of professional staff and volunteers reaching more than 9,000 enrolled members with yearly programming efforts to an additional 35,000 youth participants.

Courtesy of iGrow. During the Springs Showdown Calf Show, Abbi Henderson, Adel, Iowa was awarded Reserve Champion in the market beef class with a Charolais steer.

Courtesy of iGrow. During the Springs Showdown Calf Show the following five beginner showmanship winners include: Champion, Kinsly Altena, George, Iowa; Reserve Champion, Piper Blum, Reliance; third place, Chance Blum, Reliance; fourth place, Teagan Scheel, Alpena and fifth place, Kerstynn Heim, Wessington Springs.

Courtesy of iGrow. During the Springs Showdown Calf Show, Harlee Heim, Wessington Springs, ranked fifth overall in the breeding heifers class with a Foundation Simmental heifer.

Courtesy of iGrow. During the Springs Showdown Calf Show, Storm Johnsen, Wessington, received Reserve Champion in the overall breeding heifers class with a Maine-Anjou heifer.

Courtesy of iGrow. During the Springs Showdown Calf Show, Tate Bergh, Florence, was named champion in the overall market beef class with a crossbred steer.

Courtesy of iGrow. During the Springs Showdown Calf Show, Talli Heim, Wessington Springs, placed fourth in the overall market beef class with a crossbred steer.

Courtesy of iGrow. During the Springs Showdown Calf Show, Trevor Bergh, Florence, placed third overall breeding heifers with an Angus heifer.

Courtesy of iGrow. During the Springs Showdown Calf Show, JD Thompson, Wessington Springs, placed third in the market beef class with a Chianina steer.

Courtesy of iGrow. During the Springs Showdown Calf Show, Lex Larson, Valentine, Nebraska ranked fourth in the overall breeding heifers class with a Hereford heifer.

Courtesy of iGrow. During the Springs Showdown Calf Show, Sydney Johnsen, Wessington received champion overall in the breeding heifers class with a purebred Simmental heifer.

Courtesy of iGrow. During the Springs Showdown Calf Show, the top five senior showmanship winners include: Champion, Fletcher Larson, Valentine, Nebraska; Reserve Champion, Storm Johnsen, Wessington; third place, Allyson Beninga, Sioux Falls; fourth place, Lauren Verlinde, Tracy, Minnesota and fifth place, NaLea Dunsmore, Wessington.

Courtesy of iGrow. During the Springs Showdown Calf Show the top five junior showmanship winners include: Champion, Raylee Fagerhaug, Wessington Springs; Reserve Champion, Trever Bergh, Florence; third place, Payton Beare, Ree Heights; fourth place, Sydney Johnsen, Wessington and fifth place, Lex Larson, Valentine, Nebraska.

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I-29 Moo University 2018 Winter Workshop Series

Categorized: Livestock, Dairy

BROOKINGS, S.D. - The I-29 Moo University collaboration will be offering their Winter Workshop Series January 8-12, 2018. They encourage all dairy producers, students, stakeholders and industry personnel to attend.

The series focus is From Field to Bunk: Growing and Feeding Dairy Quality Forages. The workshop series will take place in five locations including: Mandan, North Dakota; Watertown, South Dakota; Pipestone, Minnesota; Orange City, Iowa and Norfolk, Nebraska.

Register by December 29, 2017. Registration is $50 per person and $25 for students. Late registration is late $65 and $30 for students. Late registration fees begin December 30. To register, visit the iGrow Events page.

Workshop Series Details

  • North Dakota workshop will be held January 8, 2018 in Mandan at the Baymont Inn & Suites (2611 Old Red Trail Northwest Mandan, North Dakota 58554);
  • South Dakota workshop will be held January 9, 2018 in Watertown at the Codington County Extension Complex (Kitchen Mtg. Room) (1910 West Kemp Avenue, Watertown, SD 57201);
  • Minnesota workshop will be held January 10, 2018 in Pipestone at the Pipestone Veterinary Services (1801 Forman Drive, Pipestone, MN 56164);
  • Iowa workshop will be held January 11, 2018 in Orange City at the Sioux County Extension Office (400 Central Ave. NW, Suite 700, Orange City, IA 51041); and
  • Nebraska workshop will be held January 12, 2018 in Norfolk at the Lifelong Learning Center at Northeast Community College (NECC), (601 East Benjamin Ave., Norfolk, NE 68701). 

Learning Objectives: To improve the sustainability of the dairy production system. Attendees can expect the following:

  1. Learn to incorporate cover crops and new forage genetic lines into the forage production system for dairies.
  2. Producers will increase their understanding of forages and cover crops in dairy rations.
  3. Improve dairy and labor management skills in the areas of feeding management and safety protocols. 

Workshop Agenda 
9:30 a.m. - Registration & Refreshments
10 a.m. - New Forage Genetic Lines and how they Impact the Dairy Industry - Bruce Anderson, Professor of Agronomy, UNL Extension Forage Specialist

  • Learn how forage genetic improvements in corn silage, sorghums and cover crops can influence the soil health and dairy diet performance in your operation.

10:45 a.m. - Cover Crops - incorporating them into your Forage Production System - Sara Berg, SDSU Extension Agronomy Field Specialist

  • Learn about cover crop incorporation into your fields, rotation considerations and planting methods.

11:30 a.m. - Break
11:45 a.m. - Incorporating Cover Crops into Dairy Rations - James C. Paulson, Associate Professor Forage Specialist and Nutritionist

  • Incorporate the nuts and bolts of cover crops into your dairy farm, maximizing nutrition and profitability.

12:30 p.m.  - Lunch
 1:30  p.m. - Sponsor recognition
 2:00  p.m. - Silage Pile Safety training for you & your employees - Keith Bolsen, PhD, Professor Emeritus, Kansas State University, "The Silage Man,"  Nationally known speaker in silage production and safety practices.

  • Is your silage program safe? Silage safety practices and considerations to come home safely at the end of the day for you, your employees and family members.

 2:45 p.m. - Evaluating Dairy Diets from the Nutritionist, to the Employee, to the Cow.- Co-presented -  Fernando Diaz, DVM, PhD - Dairy Nutrition and Management Consultant - Rosecrans Dairy Consulting  & Tracey Erickson, SDSU Extension Dairy Field Specialist

  • Understand feeding inefficiencies as you deliver diets to your dairy herd.

3:30 pm - Evaluation & Adjourn

For more information, contact the I-29 Moo University Winter Workshop: From Field to Bunk, Program Committee Chairs; Tracey Erickson, SDSU Extension Dairy Field Specialist by email or 605.882.5140; or Kimberly J. Clark, UNL Extension Dairy Educator by email or 402.472.6065.

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Glenn Muller Receives Animal Science Award

Categorized: Livestock, Beef, Dairy, Horse, Pork, Sheep

BROOKINGS, S.D. - Glenn Muller, Executive Director of the South Dakota Pork Producer’s Council (SDPPC), was recently recognized with the South Dakota State University Friend of the Department of Animal Science Award during the Department’s scholarship and awards banquet.

Muller is a graduate of SDSU with a degree in Agricultural Education. During his time at SDSU he was a four-year participant in Little International, the largest student-run livestock exposition in the United States. He later returned to judge the Little International swine competition and served as Master of Ceremonies for the event in 2012. Three of Muller’s children and two of their spouses have attended SDSU.

“Glenn Muller’s leadership throughout the livestock industry in support of the Department of Animal Science has been critical to our success,” explains Joe Cassady, SDSU Animal Science Department Head. “The faculty could not have selected a more deserving individual for this recognition.”

Muller’s experiences in agriculture include teaching agriculture and serving as FFA advisor at West Lyon Community School in northwest Iowa, as well as teaching Adult Farm/Ranch Management at Southeast Technical Institute in Sioux Falls. He has worked in the agriculture division of First American Bank and was employed in risk management of the swine procurement department of John Morrell and Co.

Muller served as President of the South Dakota Pork Producers Council in the early 1990s. He was invaluable in helping SDSU develop an extension swine program relevant to the needs of South Dakota’s pork producers. During his tenure at John Morrell, he was instrumental in the company’s accommodation of SDSU judging teams and helped welcome SDSU Animal Science classes both for educational opportunities within the plant and tours of the facility. He was a strong supporter of John Morrell’s contribution to SDSU’s Pork Classic basketball game, which raises $10,000 annually in support of Animal Science scholarships. He also instigated a program to provide $2,000 annually to both the SDSU Livestock Judging Team and the SDSU Swine Club.

Muller received the 2013 South Dakota Honorary Master Pork Producer Award, 2014 SDSU Gamma Sigma Delta Honored Alumni Award and 2015 Sioux Falls Area Chamber of Commerce Agri-business Citizen of the Year.

“Glenn has been a tremendous leader for all of agriculture,” Cassady relates. “He has assisted the SDSU Animal Science Department in multiple ways for more than 25 years, including supporting fundraising and legislative efforts that led to construction of our new SDSU Swine Education and Research Facility.” Muller’s efforts with the state legislature were essential in helping the project win both approval and $2 million in state support. Muller’s relationship with the Minnesota and Iowa pork councils helped gain additional support and substantial contributions to the building project.

Cassady says, “Many of the donors’ gifts to the Swine Education and Research Facility project were a direct result of Glenn’s hard work. With his leadership the South Dakota Pork Producers Council voted to provide $25,000 for a Master’s Degree assistantship to support an assistant manager at the new facility. The assistant manager position is critical to successful operation of the facility.”

Muller has also been supportive of both SDSU research and protecting the health of South Dakota’s livestock industry. He was one of four leaders who worked diligently to obtain funding for renovation of the South Dakota Animal Disease Research and Diagnostic Laboratory (ADRDL). “It was Glenn’s contacts and the respect people have for him as a leader that helped propel the approval for the renovation,” Cassady notes. Muller served as a speaker for the ADRDL groundbreaking on August 31.

To learn more about the SDSU Department of Animal Science, contact Cassady by email.

Photo: Glenn Muller, Executive Director of the South Dakota Pork Producer’s Council, left, is presented with the SDSU Friend of the Department of Animal Science Award by Dr. Joe Cassady, SDSU animal Science Department Head.

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Look Beyond Input Marketing Claims

Categorized: Agronomy, Corn, Other Crops, Profit Tips, Soybeans, Wheat

BROOKINGS, S.D. - Collecting unbiased data from well-designed research can have a large impact on farmers' bottom.

"Farmers spend millions of dollars on agronomy products each year. The best way to determine if a product or practice is effective prior to purchase or implementation, is to ask for the data and research backing a company's claims," explained Sara Berg, SDSU Extension Agronomy Field Specialist.

Berg is part of a multi-state team of Extension personnel working together to clear up confusion among producers when it comes to research. Together they have published a series of articles which delve into four research topics including: replicated vs. side-by-side comparisons, how to set up on-farm research, interpreting research terms and data, and the topic of this article, interpreting and clarifying ag product marketing claims.

This is the fourth and final article, written by this team, to help producers see legitimate research from biased information produced to sell inputs. To view past articles, visit iGrow and search by Sara Berg's name.

In addition to Berg, the team includes: Lizabeth Stahl, University of Minnesota; Josh Coltrain, Kansas State University; John Thomas, University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

See through marketing ploys

New on-farm technology provides many farmers with real-time data access. "With large amounts of data and fast access to information and product marketing, producing a commodity requires many decisions," Berg added. "Knowing that a product has been tested and shown to make a difference should be a deciding factor when making purchases. Yet, it is not that simple in most cases."

The reason? Berg explained that although data may be included on packaging, sometimes companies leave vital information off when advertising because many view it as confusing and unnecessary.

"False research claims or partial truths are found alongside accurate claims about quality products in marketing around the world," Berg said. "Separating falsified or misleading claims from those that are not is crucial."

One method Berg said some marketers use is to display limited data in a skewed or biased manner by changing the scale of a graphic (Figure 1). Another method is to add disclaimers (Figure 2), or provide vague information and/or nothing to compare the product claims to (Figure 3). However, some companies and institutions provide excellent data with honest results for farmers to choose from; even in these cases, one must understand how to interpret the data (Figure 4).

"When a product is falsely promoted, often the customer is provided only baseline information needed to make a sale. It is vital that farmers take time to look over product information, ask questions and understand data presented to them," Berg said. "Marketing claims are not always falsified or skewed, but knowing how to spot poorly-backed claims can provide farmers peace of mind in knowing they are investing in products or adapting practices that have been properly tested."

Figure 1. Yield trial results (fictional example). The scale on the Y-axis begins at '40', which can create an optical illusion for the reader and skew the appearance of data. When the axis does not begin at '0', results can be misleading. In addition, no statistical analysis and little background information is provided, so the reader has no way of knowing if, for example, yields are from strips in fields or replicated trials.

Figure 2. Alfalfa yield trial results (fictional example). There is no background information about how or where the data was collected and there are no statistics for the reader to determine if significant differences were found. In addition, the disclaimer at the bottom of the table could nullify any findings should the company choose to do so.

Figure 3. Hybrid characteristic advertisement (fictional example). This figure describes a corn hybrid with highly enticing descriptive words that may catch the reader's attention. No data is provided and there is nothing to compare the above product claims against.

Figure 4. Comprehensive table (fictional example). Table includes relevant background information about the trial and statistics to help in interpretation of the information provided.

For more information on research trials and statistics see parts 1, 2, and 3 of this 4-part article series. If questions should arise, contact an SDSU Extension agronomy team member for data interpretation assistance. A complete listing can be found at iGrow under the Field Staff Listing.

Courtesy of iGrow. New on-farm technology provides many farmers with real-time data access. "With large amounts of data and fast access to information and product marketing, producing a commodity requires many decisions," Berg added. "Knowing that a product has been tested and shown to make a difference should be a deciding factor when making purchases. Yet, it is not that simple in most cases."

The reason? Berg explained that although data may be included on packaging, sometimes companies leave vital information off when advertising because many view it as confusing and unnecessary. 

Courtesy of iGrow. One method Berg said some marketers use is to display limited data in a skewed or biased manner by changing the scale of a graphic.

Figure 1. Yield trial results (fictional example). The scale on the Y-axis begins at '40', which can create an optical illusion for the reader and skew the appearance of data. When the axis does not begin at '0', results can be misleading. In addition, no statistical analysis and little background information is provided, so the reader has no way of knowing if, for example, yields are from strips in fields or replicated trials.

Courtesy of iGrow. Figure 2

Courtesy of iGrow. Figure 3

Courtesy of iGrow. Figure 4

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Kelli Larson new Program Assistant

Categorized: 4-H & Youth, South Dakota 4-H

BROOKINGS, S.D. - Kelli Larson recently joined the SDSU Extension team to serve as an SDSU Extension Program Assistant.

In this role, Larson will provide support and assistance to SDSU Extension staff working in 4-H Programming and Youth Development Operations.

"Kelli has a strong background in customer service and agriculture along with a bachelor's degree in Animal Science from SDSU, and that combination is a tremendous asset to the South Dakota 4-H program," said Donna Bittiker, SDSU Extension State 4-H Program Director.

More about Kelli Larson

Growing up, Kelli Larson showed horses as a 4-H member. She remembers the experience as a highlight of her summers and teaching her valuable life skills. "I met so many people who were interested in the same things I was. I learned to cheer for my competitors and, whether I won or lost, 4-H taught me to help everyone out," Larson said.

Prior to this new role with SDSU Extension, Larson worked in the SDSU College of Agriculture & Biological Sciences Academic Programs Office as a senior secretary.

She is eager to serve South Dakotans through this new role. "I enjoy working with people and being part of a team. I have a lot of respect for the professionals who work to promote 4-H and youth programming and look forward to providing them with the support they need to best serve South Dakota."

To learn more about South Dakota 4-H and how you can become involved, contact your local SDSU Extension 4-H Youth Program Advisor. A complete listing can be found at iGrow under the Field Staff Listing.

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Donation to SDSU Feed Processing Facility

Categorized: Livestock, Beef, Dairy, Sheep

BROOKINGS, S.D. - Lone Star Enterprises, Lennox, S.D., has donated a new Triple Lone Star roller mill to the South Dakota State University (SDSU) feed processing facility.

The SDSU feed processing facility produces more than 1,250 tons of feed annually for the university’s livestock teaching and research facilities for beef, dairy, equine, sheep and swine. This equipment upgrade replaces two machines previously used in the feed processing facility.

“This donation will help us to ensure that the quality of the feed we’re milling, in support of our educational and research units, is representative of current industry standards,” says Dr. Joseph Cassady, Animal Science Department Head. 

The new roller mill will allow feed to be milled at a higher quality and consistency, so livestock will achieve increased feed utilization.

“The Lone Star roller mill is easy to use and maintain,” says John Goebel, SDSU feed processing facility manager. ”It’s very well built and allows for worry-free grain processing that needs little monitoring.”

The SDSU feed processing facility employs SDSU students to assist with processing and packaging feed for the various educational and research units. A Lone Star representative initially proposed the donation.

“We’re proud to be able to collaborate with SDSU on facilitating the means for students to have a state-of-the-art machine to process grains so they can understand how processed grains can influence the nutrition and health of animals,” says Brenda Bakken, CEO, Lone Star Enterprises. “It’s a good feeling to provide opportunities to local communities and South Dakota State University students.”

Lone Star Enterprises is a family owned and operated company based in Lennox, S.D., with 13 employees. Lone Star has also donated a roller mill to the North Dakota State University feed processing facility.

For more information about the SDSU Animal Science Department, visit their website here. For more information about Lone Star Enterprises, visit the Lone Star Enterprises website.

Photo: Brenda Bakken, CEO, Lone Star Enterprises, left, stands near the Triple Lone Star roller mill that the company recently donated to SDSU. Bakken is joined by Dr. Joseph Cassady, SDSU Animal Science Department Head, and John Goebel, SDSU feed processing facility manager.

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Enjoy the Holiday Season at McCrory Gardens

Categorized: Community Development, Communities, Gardens, Gardening

BROOKINGS, S.D. - Join in the holiday fun at McCrory Gardens! 

“This holiday season, McCrory Gardens is offering something for everyone,” says Lisa Marotz, McCrory Gardens Director of Operations. ”We’re excited to see folks come out and enjoy the holidays in the gardens and arboretum as they make this a part of their holiday tradition.”

Mark your calendars now for the exciting holiday events that McCrory Gardens has to offer:

The big man himself will be visiting McCrory Gardens! Bring the kids to visit with Santa at no charge on Sunday, Dec. 3 from 2-5 p.m. 

Before or after visiting with Santa, ride in a horse-drawn trolley through the arboretum. Trolley rides depart from the Education and Visitor Center from 2-4:30 p.m., with the last ride leaving at 4 p.m. Tickets are $10 for adults, $5 for SDSU students with their student ID, $5 for youth age 6-15, and kids 5 and under are free.

Enjoy an evening stroll through a holiday wonderland of lights. McCrory Gardens are open evenings from 5-7 p.m. from Dec. 2-31 for the third annual Garden Glow. The Garden Glow includes an enchanted forest of fresh evergreen trees lining the terrace lawn, each dressed in 1,000 twinkling lights. Santa’s summer home will be on view as the iconic Cottage in the Gardens will be decked out, and Santa’s workshop will be available for guests to peek in and see what the elves are busy making. New this year in the Garden Glow is Candy Land. Based on the classic children’s board game, the Perennial Garden will include all of the stops along the Candy Land path.

“Garden Glow is great fun for all generations,” adds Marotz. “It’s a popular spot for couples to get engaged and for families to make wonderful holiday memories.”

McCrory Gardens Education & Visitor Center will once again be home to the largest fresh evergreen tree in Brookings—at about 20 feet. 

Admission for Garden Glow is as follows: McCrory Gardens members, SDSU students with a current ID and kids 5 and under can get in for free; adults are $4; and youth age 6-15 are $2.

Santa will also be at McCrory Gardens several evenings from 5-7 p.m. as well: Dec. 4, 10, 11, 17 and 18. Visits to see Santa are free.

If you can’t make it to bring the kids to see Santa while he’s here, children can still let him know what they want for Christmas. McCrory Gardens offers a place where kids can drop off their letter to be sent to the North Pole.

While visiting McCory Gardens for these holiday events, get your holiday shopping done at the gift shop, which features unique souvenirs and keepsake items.

“Of course, none of this would be possible without support from McCrory Gardens’ wonderful donors,” Marotz says. “Many local residents don’t know that we’re privately funded.”

For more information about McCrory Gardens, visit the McCrory Gardens website

Photo: Lisa Marotz, McCrory Gardens Director of Operations.
 

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Young Entrepreneur Credits 4-H for Developing Confidence

Categorized: 4-H & Youth, South Dakota 4-H

By Lura Roti, for SDSU Extension/iGrow.org

Carrots don't grow on vines like tomatoes, a fact all gardeners understand. Yet, if you've never pulled a carrot top, unlodging the vibrant vegetable from the soil, it may be one of many misunderstood food facts, explains Anna Maifeld, owner of Glory Garden, an online source for fresh, local produce and eggs.

"A mom was visiting my garden with her kids and was shocked to learn carrots grow underground," Maifeld says.

How vegetables are grown and harvested is one of many reasons, the young entrepreneur invites Glory Garden customers to visit her Crooks garden throughout the growing season.

"Visiting the garden helps (customers) be closer to their food," she explains. "Knowing where your food comes from and being connected with the person who grows it, is really what's at the heart of the local food movement."

Her ability to connect with customers has helped the 21-year-old grow her business.

"When I first started, I thought I'd spend 90 percent of my time in the garden and 10 percent of the time marketing."

In reality, Maifeld says she spends more time marketing her business than she does in her garden - posting recipes, blogging, maintaining her website and giving presentations to potential customers.

The 4-H alumnus credits her confidence in presenting information and answering questions to the years of serving as a club officer, giving talks, public presentations and judging competitions she participated in throughout her 4-H career.

As a young 4-Her "I was nervous and my voice would get shaky." Overtime and with years of practice giving presentations and answering judge's questions, "I became pretty confident and, today, I am no longer nervous."

Maifeld recently gave a five-minute presentation on Glory Garden to a group of more than 50 during a 1 Million Cups event in Sioux Falls.

"4-H definitely helped me with that. If I had not done 4-H, I would have fallen through the floor. I simply would not have had the confidence," she says of the event that introduced a few new consumers to Glory Garden.

Glory Garden: Giving Customers a Choice

Four years ago, before launching Glory Garden, Maifeld was like many 17-year-olds. She spent a lot of time in the months leading up to graduation trying to figure out what she wanted to do after high school. She knew that she did not want to pursue a college degree. She knew she loved gardening.

"I liked gardening, being outside - even weeding. I thought, 'if I could be outside, working in the sun and getting exercise, and if I could make a business out of this, that is what I wanted to do,'" she recalls.

Maifeld began doing research to determine how she could turn her passion for gardening into a viable career. She considered the CSA (community supported agriculture) business model. In this model, customers pay a yearly membership fee to a vegetable grower in exchange for a weekly supply of fresh produce.

Through her research, she discovered customer retention in a traditional CSA model was only 30 percent.

"To me that didn't seem sustainable. I didn't want to have to rebuild my customer-base each year," Maifeld says. "What I heard from CSA members is they don't get to choose what vegetables they receive. What if they don't like eggplant? Or, they don't know what to do with a pound of rutabagas?"

Listening to this feedback, Maifeld designed Glory Garden to give customers the option to select the type and quantity of produce they wanted to purchase.

"I wanted to give my customers a choice of what they received," she explains. "And, I didn't want to spend my Saturdays at a Farmers Market wondering if the produce I grew and picked would sell."

Twice each week, during the growing season, she takes an inventory of what is ready to pick and then posts that information on her website. Customers select the vegetables they want and the quantity. Maifeld picks the fresh vegetables and delivers the produce to her customers at one of six pick up locations.

Four years later, her Glory Garden continues to expand. In the off season, Maifeld dedicates time to making homemade rag rugs and other items for her Etsy shop and running a sewing/alteration business.

"I enjoy the fact that by owning my own businesses I get to spend my time doing what I enjoy. That is also challenging, because when there is a job to be done, no matter how long it takes, there is no one else here to do it but me," she says.

To learn more about Maifeld and Glory Garden, visit the Glory Garden website.

To learn about how you can become involved in 4-H as a member or volunteer, contact your local SDSU Extension 4-H Youth Program Advisor. A complete listing can be found at iGrow under the Field Staff Listing icon.

Courtesy photo. Anna Maifeld is the owner of Glory Garden, an online source for fresh, local produce and eggs. She credits 4-H with helping her develop skills necessary to grow her business.

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Farm Credit Services of America Donation Supports SDSU Precision Agriculture Building Project

Categorized: Livestock, Beef, Dairy, Land, Water & Wildlife, Pork, Profit Tips, Sheep, Agronomy, Corn, Other Crops, Land, Water & Wildlife, Profit Tips, Soybeans, Wheat

BROOKINGS, S.D. - South Dakota State University is pleased to announce it has received a $500,000 gift from Farm Credit Services of America to support the construction of a Precision Agriculture Facility on the SDSU campus.

The facility will be a hub for research, teaching and innovation that covers the entire spectrum of precision agriculture and will enable collaboration with differing disciplines within that space.

Interim Dean of the College of Agriculture and Biological Sciences, Don Marshall, states, “SDSU is extremely grateful to Farm Credit Services of America for their support of the Precision Ag project at this substantial level. Their generosity and our shared vision of the future of agriculture will help position SDSU students and researchers to address the grand challenges of global food security with technology and efficient production methods that sustain our natural resources for future generations.”

SDSU offers the first four-year Precision Agriculture degree in the U.S. The degree is a collaborative effort encompassing the Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering Department, Agronomy, Horticulture and Plant Science Department and College of Engineering. The SDSU Precision Agriculture degree keeps students at the cutting edge of the rapidly evolving intersection of agronomics, high-speed sensor technology, data management and advanced machinery development. Students will be prepared for lifelong careers that support economically and environmentally sustainable agriculture.

“We, like our customers, are interested in efficient practices that maximize production and profits. We are proud to support South Dakota State University as it helps lead innovation in agriculture”, notes Bob Schmidt, Senior Vice President for FCSAmerica in South Dakota. “Graduates from this program will be ready to meet the technology and expertise needs of employers in agronomy, equipment and more. Producers will have additional support in applying precision ag to their operations because of the work that will be done in this facility.”

Photo: Bob Schmidt, Senior Vice President for FCSAmerica in South Dakota, second from right, presents a $500,000 gift in support of the SDSU Precision Agriculture Facility to SDSU President Barry Dunn, second from left, Bill Gibbons, Interim Director of the South Dakota Agricultural Experiment Station, left, and Interim Dean of the College of Agriculture and Biological Sciences Don Marshall, right. 

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Dakota Fresh Food Hub Connects Local Restaurants

Categorized: Community Development, Local Foods

By Lura Roti for SDSU Extension/iGrow

It's 8 a.m. Thursday morning and already the Bread and Circus kitchen is full of activity prepping for the day's lunch and supper crowds.

Staff chop vegetables, fry salted almonds, breakdown pork shoulders, roast beets and mix ingredients for the restaurant's vege-burger.

Amidst preparations, Chef Jordan Taylor takes a few moments to greet Lee Storo and inspect a delivery of local produce.

"What do you think of these carrots," Storo asks, holding up a bunch of robust carrots boasting heirloom shades of white, red, yellow and violet.

Below the carrots, more crates are laden with swiss chard, onions, butternut squash, potatoes and heirloom tomatoes; all produce raised locally by members of the Dakota Fresh food hub.

Dakota Fresh food hub was organized two years ago to unite South Dakota farmers, like Storo and his wife Mary, who operate Mary's Kitchen and Gardens on 10 acres of farmland north of Beresford, and connect these small farmers with wholesale consumers - food markets and restaurants, like Bread and Circus.

"Buying from Dakota Fresh is smarter because I am supporting the local guy and more often than not, these smaller farmers are doing things the right way," explains Taylor, who has spent his entire career as a chef cooking with fresh, local ingredients.

On any given day, 90 percent of the ingredients used in his lunch or dinner menu are locally sourced. As he discusses his menu, Taylor casually names the farmer who raised nearly every ingredient - mushrooms for the veggie burger were grown in Renner by Jerry Ward of Hackberry Hollow Farm; the beets and butternut squash used in the beet butternut squash salad are from Mary's Kitchen and Gardens; pork belly was purchased from Ashby Natural Pork in Adrian, Minnesota; the bread was baked by Dakota Earth in Alcester and the chicken, used in his Moroccan chicken salad, was raised by Free Happy Farm in Brookings.

"Buying local is important to me because I don't want to feed people what I don't want to eat," Taylor says.

Farm to table right here in South Dakota

Initially aided by a two-year Local Foods Promotion Program Implementation grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) awarded to SDSU Extension in 2015, Dakota Fresh food hub is led by a board of directors made up of its farmer members.

"This grant has allowed us to get the infrastructure in place to get this business model rolling," says Kari O'Neill, SDSU Extension Community Vitality Field Specialist who helped administer the grant. "Watching individuals make a profit as small farmers is really inspiring."

Prior to the food hub, many of Dakota Fresh's 17 members marketed their own produce and made their own deliveries.

"It can be complicated for us to get our products into the hands of multiple customers on our own. I did sell to some Sioux Falls customers previously, but today my sales have increased substantially because the food hub streamlined our marketing allowing us to focus more on production," explains Kristianna Gehant Siddens, an Astoria farmer who raises culinary and seed garlic as well as grassfed lamb.

The system she references allows her to bring her garlic to a local aggregation point - saving her precious time to focus on the demands of her farm. It also created one point of contact for farmers and those wanting local produce, increasing efficiencies for farmers as well as those buying wholesale produce.

"It really makes things easier," says Rachel Saum, Produce Manager at Co-op Natural Foods, an organic, natural and whole foods grocery store that serves about 2,000 customers each week.

Saum explains that the food hub sends her an e-mail each week listing what produce is available locally from 17 farmers. "I send an e-mail back and get one delivery. It makes for a more efficient system - it's really worked well for us."

Prior to Dakota Fresh, Saum would need to contact 12 to 15 individual growers to access the produce she can now access through one e-mail.

Carnaval Brazilian Grill's Chef, Nicholas Skajewski, echoes Saum's comments. "I was sourcing local before the food hub, but it wasn't easy. I would have to drive to the Farmers Market downtown and hope I got there before everyone else or buy from the Natural Foods Co-op," says Skajewski, listing freshness as a large factor for buying locally grown produce.

"There is such a difference. First, visually; the color of fresh vegetables that were given time to ripen before they were harvested - they are vibrant. And, no chemicals or hormones were added to give them that natural color," he explains. "When they were just picked the day before, or even that morning, you get a much more true, earthy flavor."

Recognizing that many who dine at the locally-owned Brazilian restaurant appreciate locally-sourced produce, Skajewski includes the name of farmers who raise the produce and the South Dakota town where it was grown throughout the restaurant's diverse salad bar.

"As a local business, supporting local businesses is key for us," Skajewski says.

The face of fresh

Like Taylor, as Skajewski slices into a mushroom, he acknowledges its grower, Dan Rislov, owner of Dakota Mushrooms and Microgreens from Sioux Falls. "It's nice when you can build a relationship with the person growing the ingredients. I asked Dan a while back if he would also grow portabellas for me, and he did," says Skajewski.

He plucks a few leaves of oregano and shares another story. The Beresford herb producer, Tammy Andrews, employs members from the high school FFA chapter to help harvest her herbs. "They get a kick out of seeing the herbs they pick end up in one of our dishes that ends up on Facebook."

Getting to know the consumers of their produce is a bonus benefit to her gardening business, says Mary Storo. "We have been doing this long enough that we have gotten to see our customers' kids grow up," she says of the Farmers Market and CSA (community supported agriculture) side of her business. "Building relationships with customers is another way this food hub is completely different from a truck that backs up to the door and food that is delivered by its driver, not the farmer who grew it. It's important to us as an organization that we continue to grow those relationships."

Courtesy of iGrow. Bread and Circus chef and co-owner, chef Jordan Taylor, greets Lee Storo and inspects a delivery of local produce. Storo and his wife, operate Mary's Kitchen and Gardens on 10 acres of farmland north of Beresford. They are among 17 farmers who make up Dakota Fresh food hub, a South Dakota-based organization that connects small farmers with wholesale consumers - food markets and restaurants, like Bread and Circus.

Courtesy of iGrow. Carnaval's Chef Nicholas Skajewski preps some local produce he recently purchased from Dakota Fresh food hub - a South Dakota-based organization which connects local farmers with restaurants and food markets.

Recognizing that many who dine at the locally-owned Brazilian restaurant appreciate locally-sourced produce, Skajewski includes the name of farmers who raise the produce and the South Dakota town where it was grown throughout the restaurant's diverse salad bar.

"As a local business, supporting local businesses is key for us," Skajewski says.  

Courtesy photo. Kristianna Gehant Siddens, an Astoria farmer who raises culinary and seed garlic as well as grassfed lamb is one of 17 South Dakota farmers to belong to Dakota Fresh food hub - a South Dakota-based organization which connects local farmers with restaurants and food markets.

Courtesy of iGrow. Carnaval's Chef Nicholas Skajewski preps some local produce he recently purchased from Dakota Fresh food hub - a South Dakota-based organization which connects local farmers with restaurants and food markets.

Recognizing that many who dine at the locally-owned Brazilian restaurant appreciate locally-sourced produce, Skajewski includes the name of farmers who raise the produce and the South Dakota town where it was grown throughout the restaurant's diverse salad bar.

"As a local business, supporting local businesses is key for us," Skajewski says.

Courtesy of iGrow. A crate of local produce ready to deliver to one of several Sioux Falls' restaurants and food markets who purchase wholesale local produce from the Dakota Fresh food hub, a South Dakota-based organization which unites South Dakota farmers who raise produce, honey, meat and eggs with South Dakota businesses, like restaurants and food markets.

Courtesy of iGrow. Local produce lines the shelves at Co-op Natural Foods, one Sioux Falls business which buys from the Dakota Fresh food hub, a South Dakota based organization which unites South Dakota farmers who raise produce, honey, meat and eggs with South Dakota businesses, like restaurants and food markets.

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2018 South Dakota 4-H Calendar

Categorized: 4-H & Youth, South Dakota 4-H

BROOKINGS, S.D. - During the 2017 South Dakota State Fair, 2,556 photos taken by South Dakota 4-Hers were evaluated by judges. Those photography exhibits which were selected as Judge's Choice and Honorable Mention winners will be featured in the annual South Dakota 4-H Calendar.

"Photos that wow the judges are marked with a "WOW" on their exhibit tag, placed in a separate area and are then re-evaluated for entry into the calendar," said Amanda Stade, SDSU Extension State 4-H Events Management Coordinator.

Twenty-five Judge's Choice and 25 Honorable Mention photos were selected to be included in the 2018 calendar.

The 2018 calendar will include images from 45 4-H youth, ages 8 to 18 from 26 South Dakota counties.

Judge's Choice photos were awarded to: Laci Svennes, Beadle County; Tyler Neth, BonHomme County; Steven Neth, BonHomme County; Sawyer Naasz, Brule County; Nicolette Schmidt, Clark County; Jennifer Tonak, Clark County; Garrett Mertens, Grant County; Joel Opdahl, Hamlin County; Noah Everson, Hamlin County; Haley Schnathorst, Hand County; Caleb Hodges, Lake County; Juliana Hodges, Lake County; Gracen Juffer, Lincoln County; Adam Bishman, Lincoln County; Alex Ruud, Lincoln County; Brittany Hazel, Minnehaha County; Jaden Crowser, Pennington County; Alissa Stephens, Pennington County; Tanner Eide, Potter County; Brooklyn Beringer, Potter County; Brooklyn Swenson, Sanborn County; Mackenzie Jordan, Union County; Heather Maier, Yankton County. Some youth had more than one photo receive a Judges Choice award.

Honorable Mention photos were awarded to: Madelyn Larsen, Beadle County; Callie Mickelson, Campbell County; Emily Rolfes, Clay County; Kaitlyn Sandland, Davison County; Callie Westendorf, Douglas County; Nicolette Hoffman, Douglas County; Landon Coyle, Hand County; Mercedes Jarding, Hanson County; Johnathon Neuharth, Hughes/Stanley County; Tobe' Carias, Lincoln County; Isabelle Vargas, Lincoln County; Heather Storbakken, Marshall County; Ella Stiefvater, McCook County; Jonathan Butler, McPherson County; Kodi Retzer, McPherson County; Mercedes Shangreaux, Pennington County; Olivia Miller, Pennington County; Abby Steen, Roberts County; Jaxen Dockter, Roberts County; Kellen Rempp, Roberts County; Zane Rohde, Tripp County; Wade McClanahan, Tripp County; Heather Maier, Yankton County. Some youth had more than one photo receive an Honorable Mention.

Fundraiser to support South Dakota 4-H

All proceeds from calendar sales will go to promote 4-H events. The 2018 South Dakota 4-H Calendar is available online at the iGrow Store.

More about South Dakota 4-H

SDSU Extension's 4-H Youth Development Program is a partnership of federal (USDA), state (Land Grant University), and county resources through youth outreach activities of SDSU Extension. Youth learn and experience Leadership, Health and Wellness, Science and Ag-Vocacy through a network of professional staff and volunteers reaching more than 9,000 enrolled members with yearly programming efforts to an additional 35,000 youth participants.

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Managing Soil Maximizing Profit Meeting Dec 1

Categorized: Livestock, Beef, Land, Water & Wildlife, Profit Tips, Agronomy, Corn, Other Crops, Land, Water & Wildlife, Profit Tips, Soybeans, Wheat

BROOKINGS, S.D. - SDSU Extension will host the Managing Soil Maximizing Profit meeting Dec. 1, 2017 in Sioux Falls.

"This meeting is designed for farmers and agriculture professionals interested in learning more about maintaining healthy soil while remaining profitable," said Sara Berg, SDSU Extension Agronomy Field Specialist.

The meeting will be held at the SDSU Extension Regional Center in Sioux Falls (2001 E. 8th St. Sioux Falls, SD 57103). Meeting registration begins at 8:15 a.m. (central). Speakers begin at 8:45.

All are welcome to the meeting, which features information on a variety of agronomic topics presented by farmers, and SDSU, NDSU and UNL Extension staff and faculty as well as a representative from Natural Resources Conservation Service.

November 24, 2017 is the registration deadline. To register, visit the iGrow Events page or call 605.782.3290. To cover costs, this meeting is $20. Certified Crop Advisor credits are available. Participants can also register the day of the event.

Topics include: commodity outlook, cover crop systems, livestock integration, Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) programs, carbon cycling, and no-till planting.

Workshop speakers include: Jack Davis, SDSU Extension Crops Business Management Field Specialist; Peter Sexton, SDSU Southeast Research Station; Doug Landblom, NDSU Animal Scientist; Deron Reusch, USDA-NRCS District Conservationist; Jose Guzman, SDSU Assistant Professor; Paul Jasa, UNL Extension Research Engineer, and South Dakota farmers. 

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Transportation to the 2017 Range Beef Cow Symposium

Categorized: Livestock, Beef

BROOKINGS, S.D. - SDSU Extension is providing free transportation to the 2017 Range Beef Cow Symposium held Nov. 28-30 in Cheyenne, Wyoming at Little America (2800 West Lincolnway Cheyenne, Wyoming 82009, 800.445.6945).

"Producers attending can expect to learn from leading experts and producers discussing markets, genetics, drought and mineral management, as well as other current issues," said Julie Walker, Professor & SDSU Extension Beef Specialist.

To register and for complete symposium details visit the Ragen Beef Cow Symposium website.

Transportation details

Deadline to reserve a seat is November 22, 2017. To reserve a seat on the bus, contact Paulette Morse at 605.394.1722. The bus will depart from the SDSU Extension Regional Center in Rapid City, November 27 at noon MDT.

Note: If your hotel reservations are not at Little America, you will be responsible to find transportation from your hotel to the conference.

Speaker details

Greg Hanes with the U.S. Meat Export Federation will address symposium attendees on international beef trade. Jim Robb, Senior Agricultural Economist at the Livestock Marketing Information Center, will share insight into factors affecting the 2018 livestock and feed grain outlook. CattleFax will be sharing tips on managing risk in the beef industry.

Several speakers will focus on the beef end-product. Deb VanOverbeke, Georgo Chiga Endowed Professor, will start this topic off with an overview of the most recent National Beef Quality Audit.

The Culinary Kitchen will provide a meat cutting demonstration.

Cindy Goertz, Wyoming Pure and John Lundeen, National Cattlemen's Beef Association will be part of a consumer demand panel discussion.

The agenda is filled with many more experts including:

Justin Derner at the High Plains Grasslands Research Station, will share some different perspectives on drought management.

Troy Hadrick will share their success through using genetic tools for selection and marketing of beef.

Bob Weaber at Kansas State University and Matt Spangler at University of Nebraska are teaming up to provide insight in genetic selection versus visual appraisal in animal selection.

Craig Bieber will share some of his cattle management when dealing with droughts.

Symposium registration

Preregistration for the symposium is available online at the Range Beef Cow Symposium website. Registration prior to Nov. 15, 2017 is available for $120 per person or $60 per student. After Nov. 15, prices increase to $160 and $80 respectively.

Single-day registration passes are available for $50 and increase to $60 after Nov. 15. For individuals wanting to attend only the half-day, hands-on sessions on Nov. 30, registration is $35 prior. After Nov. 15 these registration fees increases to $60.

Evening meal tickets for Nov. 28 and 29 are also offered for an additional fee.

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Importance of Pregnancy Detection in a Dry Year

Categorized: Livestock, Beef

BROOKINGS, S.D. - With moisture levels below average in much of South Dakota, cattle producers may find results from pregnancy checking their herd useful in making management decisions moving forward, said Taylor Grussing, SDSU Extension Cow/Calf Field Specialist.

"Pregnancy testing cows and removing open or even late cows from the herd may preserve valuable feed resources if drought conditions continue," Grussing said.

Pregnancy Testing Considerations

Although there are costs associated with pregnancy checking, $3 to $8 per head, Grussing urged producers to consider the value this one practice can have on other areas of the cow/calf operation.

"The overall cost of preg testing the herd is still likely less than it will cost to feed open cows throughout the winter," she said.

To maximize the investment, she recommended producers take advantage of the labor available on the day the herd is pregnancy checked to complete a few more tasks.

Below Grussing outlines a list of tasks to consider: 

  • Pregnancy check early to determine AI or early bull bred cows from late bred cows, identify twins and plan facilities and labor for the calving season.
  • Sort cows into groups to meet nutritional needs. Young heifers and older cows may need to be separated from the rest of the herd to provide more nutrients versus overfeeding the entire herd to increase energy to a few thinner cows.
  • Tag cows by calving date so it is easier to identify which cows will calve first come calving season; example: green = February, yellow = March, red = April, etc.
  • Check conformation of cows and make note of bad feet, legs, teeth, lumps, body condition score, etc. Use this data to create cow groups that may need to be sold, or have more TLC this winter (Example: take this group to the close pasture with a corral versus trailing them to pasture 5 miles away with no corral).
  • Begin winter parasite control and scour vaccine administration.
  • Weigh cows if possible. Knowing average weight of cows in the herd can help with designing rations and calculating feed inventory for the winter.
  • Compare calf weaning weight to cow weight. If cows are not weaning enough of their body weight, should certain cows be culled?
  • Pounds weaned per female exposed is calculated by taking total pounds of weaned calves divided by total cows that were exposed during the breeding season. This value is a key indicator of successful operations. It takes into account weaning weight and reproductive rates. If this number is low, first determine if it is due to poor reproductive rates (breeding, calving) or if is due to genetics or days of age.
  • Establish a marketing plan for open, late bred, poor-doers and cows culled for other reasons (attitude, feet, udder, etc.) Determine if the current market is profitable or if cows should be fed until prices go higher. Visit this iGrow link to learn more

Grussing and the SDSU Extension team is here to help when making management decisions. A complete listing can be found at iGrow under the Field Staff LIsting icon.

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Helping Your Farm or Ranch and Community

Categorized: Livestock, Beef, Profit Tips, Agronomy, Corn, Other Crops, Profit Tips, Soybeans, Wheat, Community Development, Communities

BROOKINGS, S.D. - When farmers and ranchers see the census in their mailbox this year, SDSU Extension urges them to take the time to fill it out.

"Through the Census of Agriculture, producers can show the nation the value and importance of agriculture. They can help influence the decisions that will shape the future of American agriculture for years to come," said Ruth Beck, SDSU Extension Agronomy Field Specialist of the confidential data collected only once every five years. "By responding to the Census of Agriculture, producers are helping themselves, their communities and all of U.S. agriculture."

Beck explained that the Census of Agriculture provides the only source of uniform, comprehensive and impartial agricultural data for every county in the nation.

Results show developing trends as well as needs throughout agriculture.

"The information collected is used by many, including farmers, ranchers, industry, research and the government," she said. "The information is very useful and can be used to advocate for agriculture and shape government policy," Beck added.

Fill out census by Feb. 5, 2018

The response deadline is February 5, 2018. All responses are secure and confidential as required by law. To make the process even easier, this year the census has an improved online questionnaire.

What data does the census collect?

The Census of Agriculture, taken only once every five years, looks at land use and ownership, operator characteristics, production practices, income and expenditures.

"For America's farmers and ranchers, the Census of Agriculture is their voice, their future and their opportunity," Beck said.

To learn more, visit the Ag Census website.

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Sheep Shearing School in ND and SD

Categorized: Livestock, Sheep

BROOKINGS, S.D. - Sheep shearing and wool classing schools will be held in Hettinger, North Dakota November 18-20, 2017 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. (MST). A sheep shearing school will also be held in Brookings December 6-8, 2017 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. (central).

"Competent shearers and wool handlers are an important infrastructure components to the growth and development of the sheep industry," said David Ollila, SDSU Extension Sheep Field Specialist.

The sheep shearing schools are co-hosted by SDSU Extension and North Dakota State University Extension and will provide education and resources for sheep producers to improve the quality of their wool clip as well as an opportunity to network with professionals within the sheep shearing and wool marketing circles who could provide service to the producer.

Instructors for the shearing school include: Mike Hagens, Professional Sheep Shearer, North Dakota; Wade Kopren, Professional Sheep Shearer, South Dakota; Alex Moser Professional Sheep Shearer, Iowa and Travis Hoffman, Ph.D. North Dakota and Minnesota Sheep Extension Specialist.

Instructors for the classing school include: Lisa Surber, Ph.D., Level IV Wool Classing Instructor. North Dakota State University Extension is the sole sponsor of this school.

Specific topics covered during the shearing schools include:

  • Professional shearing pattern
  • Tagging and eyeing equipment maintenance and repair
  • Wool handling and preparation

Topics covered during the wool classing school include:

  • Wool fiber growth, development and production
  • Objective measurement of wool
  • Genetic selection programs
  • Hands-on wool grading
  • Wool contamination and handling practices
  • Wool classing, packaging, labeling and marking
  • Test for Level 1 certification

The Sheep Shearing school in Hettinger will be held at the at the Adams County Fairgrounds (4th Avenue) and the Wool Classing school in Hettinger will be held at the Hettinger Armory (4th Avenue).

The Sheep Shearing school in Brookings will be held at the SDSU Sheep Research and Teaching Unit 2 miles North of SDSU Campus on Medary Avenue/77.

To register

The registration deadline for the schools is November 3, 2017. Cost for the shearing school is $125 per person and includes; tuition, a handbook, DVD and wool beanie. Cost for the wool classing school is $150 per person and includes tuition and materials.

Experienced and nonexperienced are encouraged to attend. The shearing schools are limited to 20 students per school and the wool classing school is limited to 16 students. Class size allows for one-on-one instruction.

Scholarships are available.

For more information and to register for the North Dakota schools, contact Chris Schauer at 701.567.4323 or by email.

For more information and to register for the South Dakota school, contact Jeff Held, Professor & SDSU Extension Sheep Specialist at 605.688.5165 or by email.

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YFS Fullerton Farm featured in USDA’s National Farm to School Month Spotlight

Categorized: Community Development, Communities

BROOKINGS, S.D. - To celebrate National Farm to School Month, the U.S. Department of Agriculture highlighted Box Elder's YFS Fullerton Farm in "The Dirt" newsletter.

Operated by Rapid City Youth & Family Services (YFS), Fullerton Farm is a thriving outdoor education center designed to educate youth on the benefits of a nutritious, adequate diet and the value of wellness.

This fall, YFS teamed up with SDSU Extension to host a community Harvest Festival. More than 340 adults and children attended this free, family-friendly event at Fullerton Farm.

"Teaming up with community partners, like Youth & Family Services, is a great way to educate South Dakotans and provide applicable health and wellness information to improve the health and wellbeing of youth and families throughout the community," said Prairey Walkling, SDSU Extension Community Development Field Specialist.

The Harvest Festival provided community members with a taste of YFS's vision for family engagement and wellness.

"The children had a fabulous time digging in the dirt pile, tasting honey, fruits and vegetables and pedaling a bicycle with a blender attached to make fruit smoothies," said Darcie Decker, YFS Nutrition Director.

With a mission to help close the opportunity gap for thousands of disadvantaged children living in western South Dakota, YFS said Fullerton Farm is a venue they use when providing education about the importance of good nutrition and wellness through YFS' eight comprehensive programs, including two Head Start programs (Center-Based Head Start and Home-Based Head Start) and YFS' sponsorship of the Child and Adult Care Food Program.

Fullerton Farm offers its guests an opportunity to learn about growing, preparing and preserving fresh produce. The farm has helped increase access to fresh fruits and vegetables for children and families; given children opportunities to develop a taste for healthy foods while they're young; and encourages children and families to grow some of their own food. "We believe that if children grow veggies and help prepare them, they are much more likely to eat them," said Sharon Oney, YFS Grants Administrator.

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4-H Members & Friends Invited to Nov. 17 Rapid City Rush Hockey Game

Categorized: 4-H & Youth, South Dakota 4-H

BROOKINGS, S.D. - The Rapid City Rush welcomes 4-H supporters to a fun filled night of hockey November 17, 2017 with events starting at 5:30 pm.

4-H members, parents, leaders, alumni and supporters are invited to a pregame social. Those associated with 4-H will also be given an opportunity to participate in a ceremonial pre-game puck drop and high five tunnels to welcome the team onto the ice. These activities - and more - will be followed by taking a 4-H picture on the ice.

Anyone interested in showing their 4-H spirit by attending the hockey game can purchase tickets through the SDSU Extension 4-H offices in Custer, Fall River, Meade, Butte/Lawrence and Pennington Counties for a reduced rate of $15 per ticket.

The order deadline is November 3, 2017. After November 3, 2017, please contact the Pennington County 4-H office as tickets will still be available at an adjusted rate.

"Our goal is to get 1,000 4-H members, parents, alumni and supporters at the game," Matthew Olson, SDSU Extension 4-H Youth Program Advisor - Pennington County.

For more information, contact the SDSU Extension Pennington County 4-H Office at 605.394.2188 or by email.
 

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Blanket Buddies is the 2017-18 4-H Youth Council Service Project

Categorized: 4-H & Youth, South Dakota 4-H

BROOKINGS, S.D. - Blanket Buddies is the 2017-2018 South Dakota 4-H Youth Council's statewide community service project.

"The Youth Council challenges each county 4-H program to make the most number of fleece tie blankets to donate to a local health care facility, shelter and/or food pantry," said Hilary Risner, SDSU Extension Regional 4-H Youth Program Advisor.

4-H clubs, affiliates and families are encouraged to contribute to the overall county impact by making blankets as an activity following their business meetings.

"This is a fantastic opportunity for 4-H members to have exposure to teamwork to accomplish a goal, but also to understand the importance of giving back to our local communities," said Risner. "It's crucial that youth understand the impact a simple act can have on members of our community."

Any 4-H entity interested in participating in this project should contact their county 4-H office for more information on recording the number of blankets made and donated. The public is welcome to join in assisting in this service project. To contribute to your county's overall number of blankets, please contact the local county 4-H office or SDSU Extension 4-H Youth Program Advisor. A complete listing can be found on iGrow under the Field Staff listing.

This service project will run the majority of the 2017-2018 4-H year, with impact reports due in August. A summary of the impact will be announced at the 2018 South Dakota State Fair.

"Youth will truly be putting their 'Hands to Larger Service' with this project," said Risner.

For more information on contributing to this community service project, contact your local county 4-H office or Risner at 605.394.1722 or by email.

More about South Dakota 4-H

SDSU Extension's 4-H Youth Development Program is a partnership of federal (USDA), state (Land Grant University), and county resources through youth outreach activities of SDSU Extension. Youth learn and experience Leadership, Health and Wellness, Science and Ag-Vocacy through a network of professional staff and volunteers reaching more than 9,000 enrolled members with yearly programming efforts to an additional 35,000 youth participants.

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Vondrak is New SDSU Extension Community Health Assistant

Categorized: Community Development, Communities

BROOKINGS, S.D. - While most of her peers let their taste buds decide whether they consume a snack or not, Melissa Vondrak needs to first review the ingredients list.

"I was diagnosed with Celiac disease when I was 12. All of a sudden I went from being normal and eating anything I wanted, to having to completely change my diet so that I avoided gluten," explains the new SDSU Extension Community Health Assistant.

A Registered Dietitian helped Vondrak and her mom navigate the gluten-free world and motivated Vondrak to pursue a degree in Dietetics at South Dakota State University.

In her role as an SDSU Extension Community Health Assistant, Vondrak will work with South Dakotans as an community dietitian for the Sioux Falls Health Department; guide SDSU Extension staff to help youth make healthy eating and lifestyle decisions as the Fuel Up to Play 60 program facilitator for Team Nutrition, and she will provide nutrition education to individuals and families as a Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Education (SNAP-Ed) and Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program (EFNEP) educator.

"Melissa has the personal and professional experience to serve South Dakotans in this diverse role," said Suzanne Stluka, SDSU Extension Food & Families Program Director.

Before joining the SDSU Extension team this September, Vondrak spent a year as a dietetics intern with Montana State University. Throughout the year, she gained a variety of experiences, including, but not limited to, working with community supported agriculture (CSA) farmers, teaching food preservation classes and working alongside dietitians at a hospital in Billings, Montana assessing the nutritional status of patients and assisting in medical nutrition therapies.

"I know how much working with a dietitian helped me. I will work to make a difference in the lives of South Dakotans through community nutrition outreach and one-on-one guidance," Vondrak said.

Courtesy of iGrow. Melissa Vondrak is the new SDSU Extension Community Health Assistant.

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SDSU Students Receive National Dairy Scholarships

Categorized: Livestock, Dairy

BROOKINGS, S.D. - Three South Dakota State University (SDSU) students have been recognized for their achievements by being awarded scholarships from the National Dairy Promotion & Research Board (NDPRB).

Kirby Krogstad, Baltic, S.D., Audrey Souza, Milbank, S.D., and Jacob Weg, Worthington, Minn., will each receive a $2,500 scholarship from the NDPRB through Dairy Management, Inc. (DMI)

“The recognition for these students speaks to the quality and experience they bring with them when they come to SDSU,” says Dr. Vikram Mistry, SDSU Dairy & Food Science Department Head. “They are committed to dairy and the industry’s future. These are accomplished students and young professionals on their way to being contributors in the dairy industry.”

The annual scholarships are given to sophomore, junior or senior students enrolled in collegiate programs that emphasize dairy, including communications, marketing, business, economics, nutrition, food science and agricultural education.

“It’s gratifying and humbling to have the work I do as a student recognized,” says Krogstad. “It is also a testament to our department and the opportunities that they provide us students. Our Dairy & Food Science Department surrounds us with an amazing environment to flourish as we begin our careers.”

Scholarships are awarded based on academic achievement, interest in a dairy career and demonstrated leadership, initiative and integrity. Candidates complete an application, submit their college transcript and write a short statement describing their career aspirations, dairy-related activities and work experiences.

For more information about the SDSU Dairy and Food Science Department, contact Dr. Vikram Mistry by email.

Audrey Souza, Milbank, S.D.

Jacob Weg, Worthington, Minn.

Kirby Krogstad, Baltic, S.D.

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Beginning Farmer & Rancher Symposium

Categorized: Livestock, Beef, Dairy, Horse, Pork, Sheep, Agronomy, Corn, Other Crops, Land, Water & Wildlife, Soybeans, Wheat

BROOKINGS, S.D. - SDSU Extension will host the Beginning Farmer & Rancher Symposium November 15, 2017 on the campus of South Dakota State University in Brookings.

To register for this free event, visit the iGrow Events page.

Transitioning back to the farm or ranch is the focus of the keynote speaker. Dr. Shannon Ferrell from Oklahoma State University will present, Having "The Talk" With Mom and Dad: Transition Strategies for Beginning Farmers.

"With many of the next generation thinking about returning to the family operation, there are a lot of questions that need to be asked and answered to make the transition occur," said Heather Gessner, SDSU Extension Livestock Business Management Field Specialist.

Today, there is a lot of information available on setting up an estate plan, however, a transition plan and learning to work with each other is a very important component for the operation and family to create. Dr. Ferrell does an excellent job addressing this," Gessner said.

Finances and other experts featured

The event will also feature a panel discussion on finances. "Finance is a big component to South Dakota operations, and understanding how the lending industry looks at new and beginning farmers is important," Gessner said.

The lenders selected for the panel will provide a first-hand knowledge to the attendees about that they need to be learning.

The Beginning Farmer & Rancher Symposium wraps up with the Voices of Experience panel.

"These 30 to 40-year-old individuals, who make up the panel, more than likely represent where beginning farmers and ranchers see themselves in 10 years," Gessner said.

The Symposium is geared toward 18 to 22-year-old college and technical education students however, any beginning farmer or rancher and families are encouraged to attend.

Agenda for Beginning Farmer & Rancher Symposium

11:30 a.m. Registration and check in begins at the Volstorff Ballroom, SDSU Student Union (Student Union Lane)
Noon Welcome from Donald Marshall, Interim Dean of SDSU College of Agricultural and Biological Sciences
12:30 p.m. Keynote Speaker, Shannon Ferrell, Having "the Talk" with Mom and Dad: Transition Strategies for Beginning Farmers
1:45 Break
2 p.m. Finance Panel-What bankers want you to know
3:15 p.m. SDSU Ice Cream Break
3:45 p.m. Voices of Experience Panel-Beginning farmers that have been in our shoes
4:45 p.m. Door prize announcements and wrap-up

This event is free to all attendees due to sponsorship funding from the following sponsors: Farm Credit Services, The First National Bank of Sioux Falls, South Dakota Farm Bureau Young Producers Council, South Dakota Ag and Rural Leadership, the Farm Legacy Group, Farm Service Agency, South Dakota Department of Agriculture, the South Dakota Center for Farm and Ranch Management, Wells Fargo, First Dakota National Bank and the Natural Resource Conservation Service. 

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Annual Sanborn County Fun Horse Show

Categorized: 4-H & Youth, South Dakota 4-H

BROOKINGS, S.D. - Thirty-seven 4-H members representing eight South Dakota counties gathered on October 1, 2017 at the 4-H Grounds in Forestburg for the Sanborn County Fun Horse Show an annual event held as a kickoff event for National 4-H Week by participating in horse safety training, and improving their horsemanship skills in several individual events.

"Working with horses builds confidence and provides responsibility for children, but nothing is more important than their safety," said Audra Scheel, SDSU Extension 4-H Youth Program Advisor - Sanborn, Aurora & Jerauld/Buffalo Counties.

To provide safety education, Eric Kobernusz of Mt. Vernon was invited to present during the event. Kobernusz served as the horse safety instructor and judge throughout the day. He taught members basic horse safety skills.

Safety is always at the forefront of any project done in 4-H.

Other information he taught included:

  • How to pick up a horse's foot
  • Safe ground handling
  • Checking tack
  • Loping each direction in the correct lead
  • Turning a horse on its forehand and hind quarter
  • Backing the horse on the ground

Events were held to reinforce what the youth learned earlier in the day.

Ribbons were awarded in each event to the top six finishers in each class of beginner, junior and senior participants.

Points were totaled and Grand Champion and Reserve Champion ribbons and prizes were awarded to overall beginner, junior and senior participants.

This event was sponsored by Sanborn County 4-H leaders.

To learn more about how you can become involved in 4-H as a member or volunteer, contact your local SDSU Extension 4-H Youth Program Advisor. A complete listing can be found at iGrow under the Field Staff Listing.

Results from the Sanborn County Fun Horse Show are as follows:

Showmanship

Senior:

           First place, Mason Moody, Sanborn County
           Second place, Samantha Ford, Davison County
           Third place, Katelin Deneke, Jerauld-Buffalo County
           Fourth place, Olivia Husmann, Davison County
Junior:
            First place, Abby Kolousek, Jerauld-Buffalo County
            Second place, Bailey Feistner, Sanborn County
            Third place, Tori Buffington, Beadle County
            Fourth place, Hannah Heezen, Jerauld-Buffalo County
            Fifth place, Cooper Ducheneaux, Davison County
Beginner:
            First place, Cash Martinez, Hutchinson County
            Second place, Alexis Roesler, Jerauld-Buffalo County
            Third place, Ella Kolousek, Jerauld-Buffalo County
            Fourth place, Hudson Fouberg, Lake County
            Fifth place, Cannon Zoss, Sanborn County
            Sixth place, Ashley Pommer, Davison County 
 
English Equitation
Junior:
            First place, Kate Long, Davison County
            Second place, Emerson Nielsen, Lincoln County
            Third place, Abby Kolousek, Jerauld-Buffalo County
            Fourth place, Bailey Feistner, Sanborn County
            Fifth place, Delaney Zoss, Sanborn County
Beginner:
            First place, Cash Martinez, Hutchinson County
            Second place, Ella Kolousek, Jerauld-Buffalo County           
 
Stock Seat
Senior:
            First place, Olivia Husmann, Davison County
            Second place, Samantha Ford, Davison County
Junior:
            First place, Bailey Feistner, Sanborn County
            Second place, Emerson Nielsen, Lincoln County
            Third place, Delaney Zoss, Sanborn County
            Fourth place, Abby Kolousek, Jerauld-Buffalo County
            Fifth place, Tori Buffington, Beadle County
            Sixth place, Cooper Ducheneaux, Davison County
Beginner:
            First place, Cash Martinez, Hutchinson County
            Second place, Alexis Roesler, Jerauld-Buffalo County
            Third place, Cannon Zoss, Sanborn County
            Fourth place, Ella Kolousek, Jerauld-Buffalo County
            Fifth place, Hudson Fouberg, Lake County
            Sixth place, Ashley Pommer, Davison County
 
Reining
Senior:
            First place, Samantha Ford, Davison County
            Second place, Olivia Husmann, Davison County
            Third place, Katelin Deneke, Jerauld-Buffalo County
Junior:
            First place, Delaney Zoss, Sanborn County
            Second place, Bailey Feistner, Sanborn County
            Third place, Abby Kolousek, Jerauld-Buffalo County
            Fourth place, Emerson Nielsen, Lincoln County
            Fifth place, Tori Buffington, Beadle County
            Sixth place, Kayeleigh Bowden, Beadle County
Beginner:
            First place, Cash Martinez, Hutchinson County
 
Ranch Riding
Senior:
            First place, Samantha Ford, Davison County
            Second place, Olivia Husmann, Davison County
            Third place, Katelin Deneke, Jerauld-Buffalo County
Junior:
            First place, Abby Kolousek, Jerauld-Buffalo County
            Second place, Bailey Feistner, Sanborn County
            Third place, Delaney Zoss, Sanborn County
            Fourth place, Emerson Nielsen, Lincoln County
Beginner:
            First place, Cash Martinez, Hutchinson County
            Second place, Ella Kolousek, Jerauld-Buffalo County                        
 
Trail
Senior:
            First place, Samantha Ford, Davison County
            Second place, Katelin Deneke, Jerauld-Buffalo County
Junior:
            First place, Cooper Ducheneaux, Davison County
            Second place, Tori Buffington, Beadle County
            Third place, Delaney Zoss, Sanborn County
            Fourth place, Hannah Heezen, Jerauld-Buffalo County
            Fifth place, Bailey Feistner, Sanborn County
            Sixth place, Emerson Nielsen, Lincoln County
Beginner:
            First place, Alexis Roesler, Jerauld-Buffalo County
            Second place, Cash Martinez, Hutchinson County
            Third place, Ella Kolousek, Jerauld-Buffalo County
            Fourth place, Hudson Fouberg, Lake County
 
Key Hole
Senior:
            First place, Mason Moody, Sanborn County
            Second place, Samantha Ford, Davison County
            Third place, Katelin Deneke, Jerauld-Buffalo County
Junior:
            First place, Bailey Feistner, Sanborn County
            Second place, Kayden Turner, Sanborn County
            Third place, Tori Buffington, Beadle County
            Fourth place, Hannah Heezen, Jerauld-Buffalo County
            Fifth place, Riley Roduner, Jerauld-Buffalo County
            Sixth place, Abby Kolousek, Jerauld-Buffalo County
Beginner:
            First place, Ella Kolousek, Jerauld-Buffalo County
            Second place, Cash Martinez, Hutchinson County
            Third place, Shay Bechen, Sanborn County
            Fourth place, Hudson Fouberg, Lake County
            Fifth place, Cannon Zoss, Sanborn County
            Sixth place, Alexis Roesler, Jerauld-Buffalo County
 
Pole Bending
Senior:
            First place, Samantha Ford, Davison County
            Second place, Katelin Deneke, Jerauld-Buffalo County
            Third place, Mason Moody, Sanborn County
Junior:
            First place, Hannah Heezen, Jerauld-Buffalo County
            Second place, Tori Buffington, Beadle County
            Third place, Delaney Zoss, Sanborn County
            Fourth place, Riley Roduner, Jerauld-Buffalo County
            Fifth place, Kayeleigh Bowden, Beadle County
            Sixth place, Abby Kolousek, Jerauld-Buffalo County
Beginner:
            First place, Ella Kolousek, Jerauld-Buffalo County
            Second place, Cash Martinez, Hutchinson County
            Third place, Cannon Zoss, Sanborn County
            Fourth place, Hudson Fouberg, Lake County
            Fifth place, Alexis Roesler, Jerauld-Buffalo County
            Sixth place, Ashley Pommer, Davison County
 
Barrel Racing
Senior: 
            First place, Samantha Ford, Davison County
            Second place, Mason Moody, Sanborn County
            Third place, Katelin Deneke, Jerauld-Buffalo County
Junior:
            First place, Hannah Heezen, Jerauld-Buffalo County
            Second place, Delaney Zoss, Sanborn County
            Third place, Tori Buffington, Beadle County
            Fourth place, Bailey Feistner, Sanborn County
            Fifth place, Kadyn Turner, Sanborn County
            Sixth place, Kayeleigh Bowden, Beadle County
Beginner:
            First place, Alexis Roesler, Jerauld-Buffalo County
            Second place, Ella Kolousek, Jerauld-Buffalo County
            Third place, Cash Martinez, Hutchinson County
            Fourth place, Hudson Fouberg, Lake County
            Fifth place, Cannon Zoss, Sanborn County
            Sixth place, Ashley Pommer, Davison County
 
Break-away Roping
Senior:
            First place, Mason Moody, Sanborn County
 
Flag Racing
Senior:
            First place, Mason Moody, Sanborn County
            Second place, Samantha Ford, Davison County
 
Junior:
            First place, Hannah Heezen, Jerauld-Buffalo County
            Second place, Bailey Feistner, Sanborn County
            Third place, Riley Roduner, Jerauld-Buffalo County
            Fourth place, Delaney Zoss, Sanborn County
            Fifth place, Cooper Ducheneaux, Davison County
            Sixth place, Abby Kolousek, Jerauld-Buffalo County
 
Beginner:
            First place, Ella Kolousek, Jerauld-Buffalo County
            Second place, Cash Martinez, Hutchinson County
            Third place, Cannon Zoss, Sanborn County
            Fourth place, Shay Bechen, Sanborn County
            Fifth place, Alexis Roesler, Jerauld-Buffalo County
 
Overall:
Grand Champion Senior: Samantha Ford, Davison County 4-H member
Reserve Champion Senior: Mason Moody, Sanborn County 4-H member
 
Grand Champion Junior: Bailey Feistner, Sanborn County 4-H member
Reserve Champion Junior: Delaney Zoss, Sanborn County 4-H member
 
Grand Champion Beginner: Cash Martinez, Hutchinson 4-H member
Reserve Champion Beginner: Ella Kolousek, Jerauld-Buffalo 4-H member

Courtesy of iGrow. Katelin Deneke, a Jerauld-Buffalo 4-H member pictured here competing in reining during the 2017 Sanborn County Fun Horse Show held at the 4-H Grounds in Forestburg. 

Courtesy of iGrow. Cannon Zoss, a Sanborn Co. 4-H member recently participated in the 2017 Sanborn County Fun Horse Show held at the 4-H Grounds in Forestburg.  

Courtesy of iGrow. Olivia Husmann, a Davison Co. 4-H member recently participated in the 2017 Sanborn County Fun Horse Show held at the 4-H Grounds in Forestburg. 

Courtesy of iGrow. Eric Kobernusz of Mt. Vernon led equine educational workshop and served as the horse safety instructor and judge during the Sanborn County Fun Horse Show held at the 4-H Grounds in Forestburg. 

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National Volunteer E-forums are Now Offered

Categorized: 4-H & Youth, South Dakota 4-H

BROOKINGS, S.D. - 4-H Volunteer e-forums can now be held at your local, county SDSU Extension Offices to accommodate your time and travels.

To set up a time and connection, contact your local SDSU Extension.

Help S.D. 4-H by recruiting leaders to attend these last two sessions.

"These sessions depend upon group interaction," said Audrey Rider, SDSU Extension Volunteer Development Field Specialist.

Those who attend volunteer e-forums will be given ideas and resources to enhance their involvement, strengthen their impact and 4-H club.

"The sessions are designed to energize volunteers and provide them with a great opportunity to learn while networking with other volunteers, county-based and SDSU Extension staff," Rider said.

Sessions offered include:

November 2, 2017

Topic: STEMming into Animal Science, Growing True Leaders
Time: 6 to 7:30 p.m. (central)
Details: Build on the roots of 4-H as we STEM our way into agriculture and animal science for experienced and new 4-H'ers.
Gain resources to incorporate Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) leaders through traditional animal sciences project areas in communities.
Volunteers will gain ideas for planning and organizing fun, educational sessions for youth.

December 7, 2017

Topic: Helping 4-H'ers Grow in Life & Work
Time: 6 to 7:30 p.m. (central)
Details: In 4-H, all youth can explore their future. Club meetings, events, camps, and after-school programs are places to develop life skills and expand their interests through 4-H.
During this session volunteers will share ideas, receive resources, and see a variety of successful programs that help youth focus on life-long learning, workforce readiness, and career exploration. Caring adults can help all young people make decisions and create their own positive future.

To learn more, contact your local SDSU Extension Youth Program Advisor, a complete listing can be found at iGrow under the Field Staff Listing.

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Sign Up To Join 2018 4-H Shooting Sports Hunting Team

Categorized: 4-H & Youth, South Dakota 4-H

BROOKINGS, S.D. - South Dakota 4-H now offers the Shooting Sports Hunting discipline. Sign up for an opportunity to join the State 4-H Hunting Shooting Sports team by November 13, 2017.

"In order to expand the awareness of this discipline which leads to a greater appreciation of the outdoors, 4-H in South Dakota will field a team for the 2018 National 4-H Shooting Sports Competition," said John Keimig, SDSU Extension 4-H Associate.

This is the first year the hunting discipline is offered in South Dakota. In the Hunting Discipline, competitors shoot in three discipline areas as well as participate in knowledge and skill challenges.

During the 2017 championships, the Hunting division shooting disciplines were archery, rifle and shotgun. There was also animal identification and orientation challenges as well as decision-making tests.

Apply before November 13, 2017

Selection for the Hunting team will be done through an application process. Applications are due to the State 4-H Office no later than November 13, 2017.

Based on applications, six individuals will be selected to receive training for the national competition.

"We will hold several practice sessions throughout the winter while a process will be used to select four of those six whom will make up the official team," Keimig said.

To apply, you must be a senior 4-H member who is currently involved in 4-H Shooting Sports Program. Applications are available on iGrow.

Selected applicants will be notified by December 1, 2017, at which time a practice schedule will be organized.

Participants should plan to attend at least three practices during the December to May time period.

"Participation in every discipline is not required but a basic familiarity with them will help," Keimig said.

He added that youth who have gone through hunter safety classes offered by South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks will have had a good foundation for much of the knowledge necessary.

South Dakota 4-H will make use of technology to decrease travel expense and time for practices.

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La Nina Watch Hints at Winter Season Climate Outlook

Categorized: Livestock, Beef, Dairy, Land, Water & Wildlife, Profit Tips, Sheep, Agronomy, Corn, Other Crops, Land, Water & Wildlife, Soybeans, Wheat

BROOKINGS, S.D. - A La Nina climate pattern is more likely than not, according to a recent forecast from the National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA) Climate Prediction Center.

"Currently, La Nina is 55 to 65 percent likely to affect our climate in the 2017-18 winter season," said Laura Edwards, SDSU Extension State Climatologist.

Historically, La Nina climate patterns have often meant colder than average winter temperatures in the Dakotas. However, Edwards explained, this is not consistent, as La Nina events, since 1985, have not been as cold as those between 1950 and 1985.

"For the Northern Plains region there is no correlation between La Nina and winter season precipitation, and as a result it is challenging to forecast winter snowfall," she said.

Both of these historical patterns are reflected in the NOAA climate outlook released October 19, 2017.

For the months of December through February, much of the northern tier states are more likely to be colder than average, including northern South Dakota.

As far as precipitation, Edwards said there is a slightly increased chance of wetter than average conditions in western South Dakota.

"The fall season is often a season of transition," Edwards said. "This year is no exception as there have been both warm and cool periods with the western region remaining largely drier than average this season and the eastern region has had above average rainfall."

Drier weather has combines rolling

Soybean harvest is nearing completion in South Dakota's northern tier counties, which have been drier overall in recent weeks. Harvest is now underway in southern counties as drier weather has arrived and soil moisture has reduced.

Drought conditions continue to hold steady in the west. Some vegetation in drought-stricken areas did begin to green up after receiving rainfall in September.

"This does not help grazing this year but indicates that there is some hope for pasture recovery next spring if climate conditions are favorable after this year's drought," Edwards said.

Source: NOAA. Temperature outlook for December 2017 through February 2018. 

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Local Foods Connects Consumers to Growers

Categorized: Healthy Families, Foods & Nutrition, Community Development, Local Foods

BROOKINGS, S.D. - Consumers who want to know more about where and how their food is raised are creating a bigger voice nationally.

"The increasing sales of local foods provides a bright spot for agriculture and a way to bring young farmers into agricultural production," said Kari O'Neill, SDSU Extension Community Vitality Field Specialist.

O'Neill referenced a U.S. Department of Agriculture statistic which found more than 160,000 U.S. farmers sold $8.7 billion of local food directly to consumers, retailers, institutions, and local distributors in 2015.

Of those producers 81 percent sold all their food within 100 miles of their farm.

"In rural communities, boosting local and regional markets can have a great impact on local economies and help keep rural families on the farm," O'Neill said. "New farmers can produce more food products on fewer acres and add value to operations that may have been in the family for years, or on new land where creativity in growing products for sale can provide a good income."

To aid American farmers wishing to sell local, Congresswomen Chellie Pingree of Maine introduced a bipartisan bill that would ease some of the hurdles small farmers face in the direct marketing of food products they raise. Readers who want to learn more can read about this in a Morning Ag Clips article found here.

To learn more about South Dakota's local food initiatives, contact O'Neill by email.

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Chute Side Vaccine Management Tips

Categorized: Livestock, Beef, Profit Tips

BROOKINGS, S.D. - A good vaccination program is only as good as the techniques used in each step of administration, said Taylor Grussing, SDSU Extension Cow/Calf Field Specialist.

"Seventy percent of beef operations administer vaccines to cows and calves at least one time every 12 months," said Grussing. "With many dollars being invested in vaccines and herd health each year, it's important to make sure the vaccines are taken care of, as well as administered correctly for livestock wellbeing and to help producers get the most bang for their buck."

Chute Side Tips

Below, Grussing outlines some tips to simplify the process and help producers stay organized during fall processing.

1. Start with clean equipment - draw up boiling or hot water into the syringe barrel and dry as much as possible. Periodically, syringes can be taken apart and boiled for a more thorough cleaning; however, some plastic or nylon syringes may not hold up to this process. Do not use chemical sterilants.

2. Keep vaccines cool and out of direct sunlight - Sunlight and UV light will inactivate vaccines so keeping vaccines and syringes in a cooler with ice packs while processing is critical during warm temperatures.

Low cost vaccine coolers can be made with a plastic bucket and lid or Styrofoam cooler by cutting holes in the lid or side. More elaborate vaccine coolers can be made with plastic coolers, pvc pipe and a drill.

Oklahoma Cooperative Extension Service provides instructions for making a Chute Side Vaccine Cooler here.

3. Label Everything - label all vaccines to corresponding syringes with duct tape or different colored knobs and markers.

In addition, label the place in the vaccine cooler where they should be stored after every use to prevent mistakes. A simple 1, 2, 3 system can be utilized to alleviate any need to remember exact names of products.

4. Mix for 30 minutes - When mixing modified-live virus (MLV) vaccines, do not mix more vaccine solution than can be injected within 30 minutes.

Since MLV should be used right away and cannot be stored for future use, if an unexpected interruption occurs - chute breaks or cattle numbers do not match up with the amount of vaccine that is available - producers don't want to be stuck throwing out unused mixture.

Use a clean transfer needle to mix products and draw up new doses into the syringe with a brand-new needle every time to prevent contamination.

5. Check label for dosage and route of administration - To avoid giving the wrong dose of a vaccine or using the wrong administration method, take a few minutes to re-read vaccine labels and set syringes to the correct dosage before starting.

Also, determine the correct method of administration (subcutaneous or intramuscular) and put the correct size and length of needed on the appropriate syringe.

6. Clean and inspect - clean everything up and inspect all equipment before properly storing.

"These simple steps can help maximize efficiency when working cattle, while also improving efficacy of health programs leading to more profitable cattle on the operation," Grussing said. "Once everything is in order, processing cattle is much more enjoyable for everyone involved."

She also encouraged producers to utilize beef quality assurance best management practices by giving vaccinations in front of the shoulder in the neck region.

"Proper injection sites are not only are safer for the animal and handler but also the meat quality and wholesomeness," Grussing said.

Courtesy of iGrow. A good vaccination program is only as good as the techniques used in each step of administration, said Taylor Grussing, SDSU Extension Cow/Calf Field Specialist. One tip Grussing shares is to label all vaccines to corresponding syringes. Figure 1. Labeled cooler and vaccines ready for anyone who is loading syringes.

Courtesy of iGrow. A good vaccination program is only as good as the techniques used in each step of administration, said Taylor Grussing, SDSU Extension Cow/Calf Field Specialist. One tip Grussing shares is to label all vaccines to corresponding syringes.

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Deadline for 2018 Pasture, Rangeland, Forage Rainfall Index Insurance

Categorized: Livestock, Profit Tips

BROOKINGS, S.D. - November 15, 2017 is the deadline to apply for 2018 Pasture, Rangeland and Forage insurance coverage. Before signing up, Matthew Diersen, Professor & SDSU Extension Risk/Business Management Specialist explains several aspects of the insurance which South Dakota livestock producers should consider.

"The insurance relies on a relationship between rainfall timing and forage production amounts," Diersen explained. "Producers insure against low precipitation during specific intervals for localized grids that ideally match their haying or grazing needs."

In South Dakota, the coverage is based on a Rainfall Index with indemnity payments tied to a lack of rainfall in a given area. Rainfall is grid-level and not farm- or ranch-level when measured against data made available since 1948.

"There is usually not a grazing history for individual farms, but county hay yields can be used as a proxy to measure the desired correlation," Diersen said.

Sporadic rainfall early in 2017 focused attention on insurance for pasture and forages for livestock feed. And, although the premiums to purchase Pasture, Rangeland and Forage insurance are subsidized similar to other crops, participation or use remains low.

In 2017, more than 75 million acres were insured with Pasture, Rangeland and Forage insurance nationwide. In South Dakota, despite a record 3.1 million acres insured, the percent of permanent pasture and rangeland covered is still less than 14 percent of the 22.5 million acres eligible, based on the 2012 Census of Agriculture.

"The use by county shows wide variation and no obvious pattern in where producers are using Pasture, Rangeland and Forage insurance coverage (Figure 1)," Diersen said.

The highest percent of acres covered, 67 percent, was in McCook County compared to no acres insured in Hamlin County.

"There can be wide variation between neighboring counties," Diersen said.

For example, 28 percent of acres in Harding County were insured, while only 7 percent of acres in Perkins County were insured.

"When aggregated, the benefits to the insured look quite clear," Diersen said.

For example, as of early October, 2017, South Dakota producers paid $10.8 million in premiums and received $17.1 million in indemnity payments.

"However, that masks the performance for individual locations," said Diersen.

He explained that while some producers have been surprised by large payments, others have been disappointed by small payments.

Correlation between rainfall & yields

Because the insurance relies on a relationship between rainfall timing and forage production amounts, producers have to allocate or weight acres across intervals.

For specific intervals in a given grid, the correlation may be very low between rainfall and yields. Other grids may have a stronger correlation, suggesting better performance of the insurance.

"There is not a lot of yield data to make robust judgments about performance," Diersen said. "But back-testing suggests some weighting methods may improve the effectiveness of the coverage."

Higher weights may be used for intervals that are correlated with low yields. Using weights in multiple intervals often, though not always, improves the correlation compared to using single intervals.

"Using a high weight for a given interval may forgo subtle relationships among intervals," he said.

New in 2018

Starting in 2018, the South Dakota non-irrigated haying base rate varies by district, ranging from $125 to $271 per acre.

The grazing base rates can change from year to year and for 2018 range from $16.20 to $35 per acre.

"Producers have to pick a productivity level from 60 percent to 150 percent of the county base," Diersen said. "They may consider a higher level if their replacement feed cost is high or a lower level if they have low yields in district."

He added that producers may also elect a low productivity level if their yields have been poorly correlated with rainfall in their grid, thus reducing premium costs for less-effective coverage.

Producers have to pick a coverage level from 70 to 90 percent of their grid base price level. Most 2017 acres in South Dakota were covered at the 90 percent level despite its lower subsidy rate. Some acres were covered at the 85 percent level. The tendency for high coverage levels increases the frequency of indemnity payments, but at premium costs.

For more information, interested insurable parties can contact a crop insurance agent or go on-line to the Risk Management Agency's Pasture, Rangeland and Forage insurance page. In addition, readers can visit iGrow and look up the Pasture, Rangeland and Forage insurance factsheet "Pasture, Rangeland, Forage (PRF) Rainfall Index Insurance, also available here.

Figure 1. Share of pasture acres insured with PRF in 2017.

Figure 2. Base rates by reporting district for grazing and haying in 2018

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Food Safety Modernization Act Produce Rule Answered

Categorized: Healthy Families, Food Safety

BROOKINGS, S.D. - The Food Safety Modernization Act Produce Rule was developed by the Food and Drug Administration to ensure that fresh fruits and vegetables are grown in ways to minimize any food contamination risks.

"The Food Safety Modernization Act Produce Rule covers activities from field preparation through growth and harvest to storage and transport of the fresh produce," explained Rhoda Burrows, Professor & SDSU Extension Horticulture Specialist.

While many of South Dakota growers will be exempt (see below), Burrows encouraged all growers to learn and employ basic principles of food safety.

She explained that the Produce Rule builds on previous programs, such as GAPs (Good Agricultural Practices), which have been a basis for food safety certification demanded by many wholesale buyers.

"The Produce Rule is the first time the Food and Drug Administration has issued regulations for fruit and vegetable production. It was developed in response to a number of produce-related food-borne illness outbreaks in recent years," Burrows said.

For producers, it may seem that rules and guidelines for growing fresh produce safely are constantly changing, as new laws and regulations are being phased in each year. To help address the confusion of many growers, Burrows shared answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about which laws or regulations apply to them.

Before she gets to the questions, Burrows explained that the Food Safety Modernization Act covers only produce that is "commonly consumed raw" such as lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers, melons, etc.

"Lists are available, in case a grower is not certain whether a given vegetable falls under the rule - for example, asparagus does not, but green beans and summer squash do," she said.

Your questions answered

Question: What do I legally have to do to market my fresh produce at a farmers market in South Dakota?

Answer: You will need a sales tax license for South Dakota and submit the sales taxes to the state. If you use a scale, you will need to have one that can be calibrated and certified by South Dakota Weights and Measures. Beyond that,

1. If your total produce sales are less than $26,000 per year, you do not fall under any produce regulations. You are still responsible for the safety of your produce, but there is no paperwork that you need to file.

2. If your total produce sales are over $26,000 and $500,000 per year, but over 50 percent of your "food" sales (and that includes grain and livestock) are at South Dakota farmers markets, restaurants or otherwise directly to consumers, you need to keep receipts to verify the destination of your produce. You also need to display your farm name, address, and contact information at the farmers market, or on produce containers delivered to the consumer.

Again, you are responsible for the safety of your produce, and we recommend you learn about produce safety through a GAPs or other food safety training, but it is not required by the state or federal government.

3. If your sales are over $500,000 per year, or more than 50% of your "food" sales are to wholesale markets, you fall under the full FSMA regulations. The rules are being phased in starting in 2018, and you need to take an official Produce Rule training as soon as possible to learn all that you will need to do and record. Contact Burrows for assistance.

Question: What all does the Food Safety Modernization Act Produce Rule cover?

Answer: The rule is very comprehensive. A major section covers water source (wells and surface water require regular testing; surface water cannot be used post-harvest).

Other sections cover "biological amendments" (manure, compost, compost tea); domestic animals and wildlife intrusions; worker health and safety; harvest and post-harvest handling and storage. In addition to the guidelines themselves, all of the above require detailed record-keeping to verify that regulations were followed.

Question: My farm is certified organic. Are the records I keep for that certification sufficient for FSMA rules?

Answer: The record-keeping you have in place for organic certification will certainly be helpful, but you will need to add some aspects.

A publication is being prepared to help you with this, although if you take the Food Safety Modernization Act Produce Rule training, you can see for yourself what you may need to add or alter in your current system.

Question: I can't keep birds from flying overhead and dropping on my produce in the field. What do I do?

Answer: A similar question is "Do I have to destroy my produce if a couple of deer walk through my field?" The FDA realizes that farms exist in the midst of nature and does NOT require farms to take measures to exclude animals from outdoor growing areas, or to destroy animal habitat.

The strategy instead is to recognize the food safety risks that animals might incur - primarily feces.

Growers should walk through their fields during the season and at harvest and mark any areas with feces. The feces can be carefully removed, being certain to remove all feces, along with crop or soil that may have been contacted, using a covered container.

Produce in the near vicinity (the distance depends on the crop, as well as whether there has been rainfall that might've splashed or spread the contamination) should not be harvested. All workers should be trained to watch for and know how to deal with contamination.

Question: What if my field flooded?

Answer: If flooding occurs, the timing and extent are critical.

If the flood occurs more than six months before harvest, and the water was NOT known to be heavily contaminated, such as by a feedlot or with chemical contamination, the crop can be harvested and used.

Within six months of harvest, if water all originated from pooling within the field, there is much less risk of contamination and it is not classified as a flood.

If water from outside the field floods the field and the harvestable portion of the crop was in direct contact, the produce is considered adulterated by the FDA and cannot be used as human food.

If the harvested portions of the plants, for example peppers, were above flooding, risk is much lower, and the grower should use good judgment about the probably of splashing, as well as of the source of the water.

To more information, or to participate in a Food Safety Modernization Act Produce Rule training, contact Burrows by email. The South Dakota Department of Agriculture helps fund food safety education and assistance for fruit and vegetable growers through a Specialty Crops Block Grant.

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Apply for the 2018 National 4-H Conference Trip

Categorized: 4-H & Youth, South Dakota 4-H

BROOKINGS, S.D. - It's time for South Dakota 4-H members 16 to 18 years old to apply for the 2018 National 4-H Conference held in Chevy Chase, Maryland April 7 - 12, 2018.

"This is an amazing opportunity for South Dakota 4-H teen members," said Amanda Stade, SDSU Extension State 4-H Events Management Coordinator.

As a delegate 4-H members will attend training workshops, become acquainted with government and have the opportunity to meet with state leaders. They visit various Federal Agencies to present on topics that they have researched during the week. They also go on tours of the Monuments on the Washington Mall.

"This conference gives 4-H members an opportunity to engage in personal development experiences that increase their knowledge, resources, and skills while they discuss topics affecting youth and 4-H programming nationwide," said Matthew Olson, SDSU Extension 4-H Youth Program Advisor for Pennington County. "During the conference they are empowered to create positive social change in their communities and have the opportunity to practice and apply their skills in a real-world setting."

For South Dakota 4-H members, the National 4-H Conference trip is sponsored and fully funded by the South Dakota 4-H Livestock Industry Trust Fund.

Application deadline is Jan. 1, 2018. To apply, youth should fill out the electronic application found here. Youth must be 16 - 18 years old by the date of the event. Applicants should submit their applications to their local SDSU Extension 4-H Youth Program Advisor. A complete listing can be found at iGrow under the Field Staff Listing.

Once received, a designated selection committee will review applications and notify youth who are selected to attend National 4-H Conference as a delegate.

More information can be found with the application materials.

Conference overview and history

The National 4-H Conference is a premier professional and leadership development event for 4-H members, ages 16 - 19, across the U.S. and its territories.

The conference is administered by the National 4-H Headquarters of the National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) within the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA).

Held annually, except for several years during World War II, the camp's mission is to assist in the development of the next generation's leaders. Delegates attend training workshops, become acquainted with government and have the opportunity to meet with state leaders. More information on National 4-H Conference can be found on the 4-H website.

This experience has been a tradition for 4-H members since 1927.

In 1958, the event name, formerly known as the National 4-H Club Camp, was changed to National 4-H Conference.

Prior to 1959, delegates slept in tents on the grounds of the National Mall in front of the Department of Agriculture (USDA) in Washington, DC. In 1959, the meeting moved from the National Mall to the newly founded National 4-H Center in Chevy Chase, MD (right outside of Washington, D.C.). 

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McCook & Roberts 4-H Members at National 4-H Dairy Conference

Categorized: 4-H & Youth, South Dakota 4-H

BROOKINGS, S.D. - 4-H members Brianna Schock of McCook County and Kassidee Lentsch of Roberts County represented South Dakota during the National 4-H Dairy Conference held in conjunction with World Dairy Expo in Madison, Wisconsin October 1-5, 2017.

"This event brings future dairy leaders from more than 30 U.S. states and Canadian provinces together to build upon their knowledge of the dairy industry," said Lauren Hollenbeck, 4-H Youth Program Advisor in Clay, Yankton and Union Counties.

During the event, Schock and Lentsch joined with other youth to learn about production, processing, marketing and the use of dairy products.

"They also developed a greater understanding of careers available in the dairy industry such as production, biotechnology, genetics and marketing - among others," Hollenbeck said.

The conference focused heavily on leadership and networking between industry professionals and future dairy professionals.

The conference provided many opportunities to practice both leadership and networking.

"We learned how to get out of our comfort zone and talk to new people," said Brianna Schock, 17, of Salem.

The trip was made possible with the support of the S.D Livestock Industry Trust Fund, Glacial Lakes Energy, Midwest Dairy Association and Associated Milk Producers, Inc. (AMPI).

Courtesy of iGrow. 4-H members Kassidee Lentsch (left) of Roberts County and Brianna Schock (right) of McCook County represented South Dakota during the National 4-H Dairy Conference held in conjunction with World Dairy Expo in Madison Wisconsin October 1-5, 2017. They are pictured here with Lauren Hollenbeck (middle), 4-H Youth Program Advisor in Clay, Yankton and Union Counties.

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Grazing in the Shoulder Season

Categorized: Livestock, Beef, Dairy, Horse, Pork, Sheep

BROOKINGS, S.D. - There has been an increasing push towards lengthening the grazing season in order to feed less hay, and with good reason, explained Jimmy Doyle, SDSU Extension Natural Resource Management Field Specialist.

"Winter feed is often one of the most expensive components of the cow-calf year. By reducing the amount of time spent feeding stored feeds, producers can realize significant savings in feed costs, labor and machinery costs," Doyle said.

Of course, grazing into and through the winter comes with many challenges. One of the simplest ways to start, Doyle said is by gradually extending the amount of time livestock graze in the fall.

"Extended grazing can help improve the long term economic and environmental sustainability of the ranch, but does not happen overnight," Doyle said.

Below, Doyle discusses strategy for tame and native pastures as well as management considerations.

"Grazing the shoulder season requires management and planning. It is not necessarily as simple as leaving the cows in the same pasture longer," he said.

Management strategies will differ depending on the plant communities and goals of the producer.

Tame pastures

Tame pastures can be an excellent option for fall grazing.

"Introduced cool season grasses will often green up and show some regrowth with the moisture and cooler temperatures of fall," Doyle said.

If pastures have received adequate rest since the last grazing period, these introduced grasses (especially smooth brome, Kentucky bluegrass, etc.) can handle fall grazing well - without impacting future productivity.

Hay fields

Hay fields, in particular sub-irrigated or meadow fields, can often regrow enough to provide a bit of late season grazing.

Fall can also be a good time, Doyle explained, to intentionally stress undesirable cool season grasses in a heavily invaded pasture to try to restore native species.

"When using this strategy, managers should take care to ensure they are limiting severe grazing to the appropriate areas and are not negatively impacting desirable plant communities," he said.  

Native range

Native range sites can produce excellent dormant season grazing, but can also be more sensitive to repeated grazing within the same year.

"Fall grazing on native range requires more planning to avoid negative impacts to the plant community," Doyle said.

He explained that a native pasture may not be suitable for fall grazing unless it has received a full growing season of deferment, was grazed lightly early in the season or ideal moisture conditions have provided excellent regrowth.

Drought management for late grazing native pastures and other management considerations

In dry years, Doyle said it is better to err on the side of caution and avoid grazing native sites twice during the growing season.

"One good strategy is to rest native pastures through the fall and use crop residue, cover crops or tame pastures until dormancy occurs on native range in winter," he said. "Many native grasses cure well and can be used as an excellent source of standing forage through the winter."

Regardless of the plant community, Doyle said the principles of sound grazing management still apply during autumn.

"One common mistake is to assume that plants can be grazed shorter during the fall because the bulk of the growing season is over," Doyle said. "However, the truth is, fall is an important time for plant and range health. It is important to leave adequate residual material to ensure plants have adequate root reserves for spring regrowth."

He added that residual material is especially important in drought years or for pastures that have been grazed recently.

"Adequate residual in fall and winter protects plant crowns and catches snow for moisture and to protect plants from extreme temperatures," he said.

Grazing too severely, except when addressing specific management goals, will only serve to cause a long term decline in pasture health and productivity.

"The season of use should be rotated among pastures to prevent dominance of one plant type and support diversity," Doyle said.

Doyle explained that the management changes when grazing forages late into the fall come with new challenges which producers should carefully consider when weighing the pros and cons of a new system.

"Challenges with grazing later in the year are primarily centered around bad weather," Doyle said.

He encouraged producers to consider the following questions:

  1. Is shelter readily accessible?
  2. Are the pastures accessible to deliver feed or bring livestock home?
  3. Are water sources reliable in cold temperatures?

"These obstacles can often be overcome, but require planning and forethought," he said.

Contact Doyle if you have any questions on fall grazing. He can be reached by e-mail.

Courtesy of iGrow. Grazing into and through the winter comes with many challenges. One of the simplest ways to start, is by gradually extending the amount of time livestock graze in the fall.

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Impact of Early Weaning on Replacement Heifers

Categorized: Livestock, Beef

BROOKINGS, S.D. - To manage through the drought, this year many producers have turned to early weaning their calves. How does this practice impact heifers meant for replacements?

"Research indicates that early weaning does not impact a heifer's opportunity to be retained as a replacement in the herd," said Robin Salverson, SDSU Extension Cow/Calf Field Specialist. "Early weaning can also improve the condition and reproduction of the dam and manage through drought conditions."

Salverson added that the data also indicates early weaned heifers have the similar or greater reproductive success than normal weaned heifers.

Salverson pointed to research conducted at the U.S. Department of Agriculture Livestock and Range Research Laboratory in Miles City, Montana.

In this study, heifers were either early weaned at 80 days or the typical 213 days of age.

Data was then analyzed to better understand weaning and its impact on heifer development phases.

Diet & Weight

The early weaned heifers were fed a 17.5 percent protein and 75 percent total digestible nutrients diet after weaning.

While the other group of heifers, the control group, remained on their dams for an additional 133 days.

By the time the control group was weaned, the early-weaned heifers, fed on a mixed ration, were heavier than the control group, weighing 526 pounds versus 493 pounds.

"This result indicates that early weaned heifers are able to successfully gain weight," Salverson said.

Feed quality essential

When early weaning onto pasture, Salverson said it is critical to have high-quality pasture along with a supplement to compete with a mixed ration.

Salverson referenced research conducted at the SDSU Antelope Range and Livestock Research Station in Northwestern South Dakota that confirms heifers can be early weaned on pasture with a supplement and have similar gains as their mates that stay on the cow.

She referenced another study conducted at the Range Research Laboratory in Miles City in which, during the heifer development phase, all heifers, early and normal weaned, were fed a 12.5 percent protein and 63 percent total digestible nutrient diet from the time after normal weaning to the end of the treatment in April.

Both groups of heifers received either a 72 or 82 percent rumen degradable protein.

"Regardless of the type of protein provided, the early weaned heifers remained heavier throughout the development period," Salverson said.

Reproductive Performance

Results from reproductive performance studies conducted at both SDSU Antelope Range and Livestock Research Station in Northwestern South Dakota and the U.S. Department of Agriculture Livestock and Range Research Laboratory in Miles City, Montana showed no difference between heat response, AI and overall pregnancy rates when looking at results from early weaned and control groups of heifers.

"These results indicate that early weaned heifers can be reproductively sound females that can stay in the herd as replacements," Salverson said. 

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2017 SD Master Lamb Producers Association Award Winners

Categorized: Livestock, Sheep, Community Development, Local Foods

BROOKINGS, S.D. - Brookings and Tabor are home to the 2017 South Dakota Master Lamb Producers honored at the 80th Annual South Dakota Sheep Growers Convention held in Brookings.
 
The 2017 South Dakota Master Lamb Producers include: 
Purebred Division - the Rob and Christy Zelinsky Family of Bar Zel Suffolks, Brookings;
Lamb to Finish Division - the Bon Homme Colony, Tabor.
 
To learn more about the South Dakota Master Lamb Producers Association contact Jeff Held, Exec. Secretary, South Dakota Master Lamb Producers Association and Professor & SDSU Extension Sheep Specialist by email

Courtesy of iGrow. Rob and Christy Zelinsky Family of Bar Zel Suffolks, Brookings were named the 2017 South Dakota Master Lamb Producers in the Purebred Producer division. They were honored during the 80th Annual South Dakota Sheep Growers Convention held in Brookings. (left to right): Jeff Held, Exec. Secretary, South Dakota Master Lamb Producers Association and Professor & SDSU Extension Sheep Specialist; Rhett Zelinsky, Riggen Zelinsky, Rasea Zelinsky, Christy and Rob Zelinsky.

Courtesy of iGrow. Bon Homme Colony of Tabor, was named the 2017 South Dakota Master Lamb Producers in the Lamb to Finish Producer division. They were honored during the 80th Annual South Dakota Sheep Growers Convention held in Brookings. (left to right): Jeff Held, Exec. Secretary, South Dakota Master Lamb Producers Association and Professor & SDSU Extension Sheep Specialist; Daryus Stahl and Thomas Stahl, Sheep Flock Manager. 

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Be Proactive Protecting Personal Information

Categorized: Healthy Families, Family & Personal Finance

BROOKINGS, S.D. - The Equifax data breach announced on September 7, 2017, affected thousands of South Dakotans.

To find out if your personal information was affected go to the Equifax website and click on 'Potential Impact.' Once you have entered the requested information, you will receive one of two messages:

  1. Personal information was not impacted; or
  2. Personal information may have been impacted.

Now that you know whether your information was impacted, what do you do?

You have a few options, explained Lorna Saboe-Wounded Head, SDSU Extension Family Resource Management Field Specialist including; credit monitoring, fraud alerts and a credit freeze.

"This data breach has reminded consumers that our personal information is not private. Consumers need to be diligent about monitoring and protecting personal information," said Saboe-Wounded Head.

"Equifax if offering free credit and identity theft monitoring for a year," said Saboe-Wounded Head. "Keep in mind the monitoring is for Equifax only, not for Experian or TransUnion, the other two credit reporting agencies. Also, the monitoring is for one year only. After the year is over, you will need to purchase the credit and identity theft monitoring in order to continue the service."

Free fraud alert

A free fraud alert can be placed on your credit report, which is good for 90 days.

"When you register for fraud alert with one credit report bureau, the other bureaus will be contacted to add the alert," said Saboe-Wounded Head. "Freezing your credit file is the most effective option."

She explained that this action will prevent anyone from using your credit, including you.

The downside to freezing your credit is if you need access to your credit you will need to unfreeze. There is a charge for setting up and removing the credit freeze. Also, you have to set up the credit freeze with each credit bureau separately.

More information

Saboe-Wounded Head has prepared resources to help consumers make better decisions about how to monitor their credit after the data breach.

The iGrow article "Equifax Breach: Was My Personal Information Impacted?" explains how to check if your information was impacted and provides information for monitoring your credit report and identifying signs of fraud.

The article "25 Ways to Be Vigilant after the Equifax Data Breach," written by Dr. Barbara O'Neill from Rutgers Cooperative Extension, also provides steps you can take to monitor your credit.

To view these articles, visit the iGrow Healthy Families community.

If you have never reviewed your credit report, read the article "Reading Your Credit Report" to learn about the information contained in the report.

"The information in your credit report affects your credit score," Saboe-Wounded Head explained.

To learn about how your score is calculated and how your credit score impacts your access to affordable credit, read "Understanding Your Credit Score."

Since a credit freeze is recommended as the best option, read Dr. Barbara O'Neill's article "Credit Freeze in the Wake of the Equifax Hack" to learn about the process.

All articles can be found on the SDSU Extension website.

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2018 Managing the Margin Workshops Sign Up

Categorized: Agronomy, Profit Tips

BROOKINGS, S.D. - SDSU Extension teams up with several financial institutions, USDA and North Central Extension Risk Management Education to host Managing the Margin Workshops beginning February 6, 2018.

"These hands-on workshops led by financial experts provide participants with marketing strategy and risk management information and tools to help them better manage their agriculture businesses," said Jack Davis, SDSU Extension Crops Business Management Field Specialist.

The workshops will be held in the First Dakota National Bank e-Trading Education Lab, on the campus of South Dakota State University in 139 Berg Agricultural Hall (1148 Medary Avenue) using Bloomberg Trading Terminals. Each session runs 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.

Registration deadline is January 16, 2018

Space is limited, register early to ensure your participation. To register, visit the iGrow events page. The cost of the sessions is being covered by the grant awarded by North Central Extension Risk Management Education Center, U.S. Department of Agriculture/National Institute of Food and Agriculture.

Session Details

This workshop series is developed as a complete series in order to foster continual knowledge building from session to session.

All sessions will be offered twice. Participants MUST sign up for one of each of session I-IV with sessions being taken in consecutive order.

Participants who attend all four individual topic sessions will receive a certificate of training completion.

Session I participants can attend this session either Feb. 6 or Feb. 13, 2018. Focus will be - Measuring and Monitoring Value at Risk (VaR).

Session II participants can attend this session either Feb. 8 or Feb. 15, 2018. Focus will be - Using Fundamental and Technical Market Information to Enhance Returns relative to Value at Risk (VaR).

Session III participants can attend this session either Feb. 20 or Feb. 27, 2018. Focus will be - Aligning market strategies with insurance products according to risk preferences.

Session IV participants can attend this session either Feb. 22 or March 1, 2018. Focus will be - Managing VaR without direct futures contract through cross-hedging.

SDSU Extension also collaborates with the following to host Managing the Margin Workshops: Farm Credit Services of America; First Dakota National Bank; Great Western Bank and Bryant State Bank.

To learn more, contact Jack Davis, SDSU Extension Crops Business Management Field Specialist by email.

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Shari Rossow New 4-H Youth Program Advisor

Categorized: 4-H & Youth, South Dakota 4-H

BROOKINGS, S.D. - A 4-H alumnus and 4-H club leader for more than two decades, Shari Rossow recently became the SDSU Extension 4-H Youth Program Advisor for Campbell and Walworth Counties.

"She has a lot of time and memories invested in SDSU Extension 4-H Youth Programming - not to mention experience," said Donna Bittiker, SDSU Extension State 4-H Program Director. "Shari will do a great job strengthening 4-H programming and supporting the volunteers and members involved."

Right now, Rossow's number one priority is increasing membership. "In 4-H there is something for everyone - whether you live in town or the country - 4-H has so much to offer youth," Rossow said. "It did when I was a member, it did when my own kids were involved and today it has even more to offer youth."

Along with encouraging youth and volunteers to get involved, in this role Rossow will work to train and support volunteers and increase programming opportunities throughout the two counties she serves.

More about Shari Rossow

Shari Rossow grew up in Brown County and became involved in 4-H after a classmate invited her to attend a club meeting when she was 8. A naturally shy child, she said 4-H helped bring her out of her shell and build her confidence.

"I was the type of kid that when we went somewhere and someone would come up to me and talk to me, I would try and hide behind my parent," Rossow explained. "In 4-H, our leader had everyone give talks - it was just what we did. Every meeting, someone gave a talk or demonstration or served lunch. Since I saw everyone else do it, I just did it too and didn't give it much thought."

In her new role, Rossow is eager to help provide similar opportunities to the youth of Campbell & Walworth Counties.

To learn how you can become involved in SDSU Extension 4-H Youth Programming as a member or volunteer, contact your local SDSU Extension 4-H Youth Program Advisor. A complete listing can be found at iGrow under the Field Staff listing.

More about South Dakota 4-H

SDSU Extension's 4-H Youth Development Program is a partnership of federal (USDA), state (Land Grant University), and county resources through youth outreach activities of SDSU Extension. Youth learn and experience Leadership, Health and Wellness, Science and Ag-Vocacy through a network of professional staff and volunteers reaching more than 9,000 enrolled members with yearly programming efforts to an additional 35,000 youth participants.

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Amber Erickson is new SDSU Extension 4-H Youth Development Field Operations Coordinator

Categorized: 4-H & Youth, South Dakota 4-H

BROOKINGS, S.D. - SDSU Extension announces Amber Erickson is the new SDSU Extension 4-H Youth Development Field Operations Coordinator.

"Amber has hands-on experience and understands the role of the staff she will be serving," explains Donna Bittiker, SDSU Extension State 4-H Program Director.

Prior to this new position, Erickson served as the SDSU Extension 4-H Youth Program Advisor for Davison and Hanson Counties. In her new role, Erickson will work closely with Bittiker to provide training and serve as a mentor to SDSU Extension 4-H Youth Program Advisors across the state.

She will also develop and lead professional development programs for South Dakota 4-H Professionals and will guide and engage the work of county-based 4-H Promotion and Expansion Committees. Erickson will work in collaboration with the State 4-H Program Director to engage communication and serve as a liaison to County Commissioners and other stakeholder groups.

"I am eager to provide support and training through this role to my SDSU Extension colleagues," Erickson said. "Having served in this role, I understand the work that they do and have tremendous respect for the staff who serve 4-H members, youth and families across our state. They are a generous and hard-working team of professionals."

More about Amber Erickson

Since 2014, Erickson has served as the SDSU Extension 4-H Youth Program Advisor for Davison and Hanson Counties. However, her connection to 4-H began a couple decades earlier.

Growing up on a cow/calf operation south of Albert Lea, Minnesota, Erickson began her 4-H career at age 8 showing beef cattle and then expanded her involvement to include photography, other static exhibits, camps and leadership positions.

"4-H is an organization that helped mold me into who I am today," Erickson said. "It is my hope that I can work with our team to help cultivate similar experiences for youth throughout our state. 4-H does a great job of helping youth discover their passions and empowers them to achieve their dreams and goals."

Erickson holds a bachelor of science in Animal Science from the University of Minnesota.

To learn more about how you can become involved in SDSU Extension 4-H Youth Programming as a member or volunteer, contact your local SDSU Extension 4-H Youth Program Advisor. A complete listing can be found at iGrow under the Field Staff listing icon.

More about South Dakota 4-H

SDSU Extension's 4-H Youth Development Program is a partnership of federal (USDA), state (Land Grant University), and county resources through youth outreach activities of SDSU Extension. Youth learn and experience Leadership, Health and Wellness, Science and Ag-Vocacy through a network of professional staff and volunteers reaching more than 9,000 enrolled members with yearly programming efforts to an additional 35,000 youth participants.

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Ag Lenders Conferences in October 2017

Categorized: Livestock, Profit Tips, Agronomy, Profit Tips

BROOKINGS, S.D. - Agriculture lenders are invited to attend one of three Ag Lender Conferences hosted by SDSU Extension throughout the month of October in Sioux Falls, Watertown and Rapid City.

"SDSU Extension understands the relationship agriculture producers have with their lender and its impact on the success of their operations," said Jack Davis, SDSU Extension Crops Business Management Field Specialist. "By providing lenders timely market, financial and production information, they are better able to assist agriculture producers."

Topics covered during the one-day conference include:

  1. South Dakota land values and cash rent trends;
  2. Calf backgrounding costs;
  3. Crop cost and grain market analysis and commodity market outlook,;
  4. Macroeconomic analysis;
  5. Livestock market outlook and analysis; and
  6. Production technology update.

"Production agriculture provides yearly challenges," Davis said. "Through these conferences, we are able to update lenders on the economic drivers impacting their clients. Through this effort we provide them with information and tools they can use to combat those challenges."

Event & registration details

Registration for all locations is $75 and due by October 16, 2017. After Oct. 16 registration increases to $100. To register, visit the iGrow Events page.

All conferences begin at 8:30 a.m. local time and run until 3 p.m. Lunch is provided.

Sioux Falls conference will be held October 23 at the SDSU Extension Regional Center (2001 E. Eighth St.)

Watertown conference will be held October 25 at the SDSU Extension Regional Center (1910 W. Kemp Ave.)

Rapid City conference will be held October 27 at the West River Ag Center (1905 Plaza Blvd.)

Agenda

8:30 - 9 a.m.           Registration

9 - 9:55 a.m.           SD Land Values & Crop costs led by Jack Davis, SDSU Extension Crops Business Management Field Specialist

9:55 -10:45 a.m.     Land Values and Rental Rates Panel

Break

11 -11:30 a.m.         Grain Market Outlook/Analysis led by Lisa Elliott, Assistant Professor & SDSU Extension Commodity Marketing Specialist

11:30 a.m. -12:15 p.m.     Macroeconomic Outlook led by Joe Santos

Lunch

1 -1:30 p.m.             Production Technology Update

1:30- 2:15 p.m.        Beef Budgets led by Heather Gessner, SDSU Extension Livestock Business Management Field Specialist

2:15 -3 p.m.             Livestock Market Analysis/Outlook led by Matt Diersen, Professor & SDSU Extension Risk/Business Management Specialist

For more information, contact Davis by email or 605.995.7378. 

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SDSU Local Foods Education Center Grand Opening Oct. 7

Categorized: Healthy Families, Foods & Nutrition, Food Safety

BROOKINGS, S.D. - The grand opening of the South Dakota State University Local Foods Education Center will take place on Saturday, Oct. 7, at 1 p.m.

The pumpkin rush from 1:00 p.m. to 3 p.m. will kick off the event, where children of all ages are invited to pick and take home the pumpkin of their choice. There are more than 400 pumpkins of all shapes, sizes and colors to choose from. Add a ZooMobile, face painting, bounce bug, SDSU ice cream, and much more and it is sure to be an eventful afternoon for all!  

The day wouldn’t be complete without some Jackrabbit football. At 6 p.m. the Jacks will be taking on Southern Illinois University for the SDSU Hall of Fame Football Game. A ticket is required for entrance to the game.

The Local Foods Education Center is a novel approach to addressing food security in South Dakota. The 1.2-acre outdoor classroom is fully dedicated to student and public teaching and learning, emphasizing hands-on field experience with small-scale food production and distribution practices.

“Most of the food harvested from this learning center has been donated to the Harvest Table of Brookings”, says David Wright, Head of the Department of Agronomy, Horticulture and Plant Science. “Our students produced and distributed more than 2,000 pounds of fresh produce to food insecure residents of this city.”    

The center is based on a foundation of student learning, ecosystem sustainability, and consumer access to a safe and stable food supply. There is growing consumer demand for locally produced, marketed and consumed food in the U.S., which is why local food production has become a core of the SDSU horticulture curriculum.

The SDSU Local Foods Education Center is located on Medary Avenue north of the Animal Science Arena. Parking is available north of the arena. In the event of rain, the ribbon cutting and pumpkin rush will be held in the Animal Science Arena.

For more information, contact David Wright by email, or call 605.688.5123.

Photo by: Sydney Sleep, SDSU College of Agriculture and Biological Sciences. SDSU students produced and distributed more than 2,000 pounds of fresh produce during the summer of 2017 for the Harvest Table of Brookings. 

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SDSU to host more than 140 employers at Ag-Bio Career Fair on Oct. 4

Categorized: Livestock, Beef, Dairy, Horse, Land, Water & Wildlife, Pork, Sheep, Agronomy, Corn, Other Crops, Land, Water & Wildlife, Profit Tips, Soybeans, Wheat, Healthy Families, Foods & Nutrition, Food Safety, Family & Personal Finance, Health & Wellness, Community Development, Communities, Local Foods, Gardens, Home & Garden Pests, Trees & Forests, Gardening

BROOKINGS, S.D. – South Dakota State University will welcome more than 140 employers to its annual fall Ag-Bio Career Fair on Wednesday, October 4. The event is hosted by the SDSU College of Agriculture & Biological Sciences and the Office of Career Development. The fair will take place in the University Student Union from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.

A total of 143 employers from 10 different states will represent a multitude of industries, including agronomy, business, dairy, equipment, finance, food, government, horticulture, livestock, manufacturing, medical, natural resources, poultry, swine, precision ag, research and technology. Employers will be recruiting for both internships and full-time positions. Fifty of the companies are registered to conduct interviews with potential candidates the day after the fair.

“The Ag-Bio Career Fair is open to all Ag-Bio students. It is a great opportunity for them to connect face-to-face with employers,” said Donald Marshall, interim dean of Agriculture & Biological Sciences. “The career fair gives our students the chance to learn about internship and career opportunities and to make an impression with recruiters.” More than 700 students typically attend the annual event.

For the second consecutive year, a mobile app will be used to help students and employers navigate the Ag-Bio Career Fair, which is the largest on-campus fair. “This year we are using Career Fair Plus,” said Matt Tollefson, career coach for the College of Agriculture & Biological Sciences. “The app allows students to view all of the employers at the fair and to filter by industry or major. Students also can add employers to a personalized list of favorites and much more. We will launch the app a few days before the event so that students can use it to pre-plan their time at the fair.” The app is free to download from either the Apple App Store or Google Play.

Premier sponsors for this year’s Ag-Bio Career Fair are: Agropur, Bayer, CHS, DuPont Pioneer, Farmward Cooperative, JBS, Syngenta and Wheat Growers.

About the College of Agriculture & Biological Sciences

The College of Agriculture & Biological Sciences is one of the eight colleges that make up South Dakota State University. Like the university, the college has a three-fold mission to teach, conduct research, and use extension programs to serve people in South Dakota, the nation, and the world. For more information, visit the College of Agriculture and Biological Sciences webpage.

About the Office of Career Development

The Office of Career Development is a centralized career center dedicated to helping students develop lifelong career management skills and serving as a bridge between students (talent) and employers (opportunity). For more information, visit the Office of Career Development webpage.

About South Dakota State University

Founded in 1881, South Dakota State University is the state’s Morrill Act land-grant institution as well as its largest, most comprehensive school of higher education. SDSU confers degrees from six different colleges representing nearly 200 majors, minors and specializations. The institution also offers 35 master’s degree programs, 15 Ph.D. and two professional programs. The work of the university is carried out on a residential campus in Brookings, at sites in Sioux Falls, Pierre and Rapid City, and through Extension offices and Agricultural Experiment Station research sites across the state. For more information, visit SDSU online

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SDSU Extension Fall Climate Outlook 2017

Categorized: Livestock, Beef, Land, Water & Wildlife, Pork, Sheep, Agronomy, Corn, Other Crops, Land, Water & Wildlife, Soybeans, Wheat

BROOKINGS, S.D. - Warmer temperatures and less precipitation are predicted through the end of October according to the most recent Climate Outlook from the National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Climate Prediction Center.

"Fortunately, the climate outlook for the remainder of the fall season may allow for crops and soils to dry out," said Laura Edwards, SDSU Extension State Climatologist.

Edwards said that moving into the first week in October 2017, temperatures are going to rebound, becoming warmer than average across the region. "Computer models have been indicating a warmer than average pattern change to occur starting next week," Edwards said.

Along with the warmer temperatures, October is also more likely to be drier than average in the east and central regions of South Dakota.

"This does not mean that the area will not receive any rain, but rather that it is more likely to be less than average for this time of year," she said. "If the Climate Prediction Center outlooks hold true, this would be good news for our eastern South Dakota farmers who need a little more time to complete fall activities."

Edwards added that there has not been a widespread hard frost yet this season. This week is about the average first frost date for the central, south and eastern regions.

"It appears that farmers can look towards a longer growing season again this year," she said. "It is unclear yet if we will have as late of a frost as last year, where some southern areas did not measure subfreezing temperatures until November."

Unfortunately, Edwards added, most of the recent rains have not fallen on the most severe drought areas in western South Dakota.

"This region needs some fall moisture for winter wheat, forages and pastures and rangeland. These plants will store up the moisture for use early next spring," Edwards said. "This area will be closely watched, as they are closing out an extreme drought year and moisture will be critical for recovery in the 2018 season."

A little behind schedule

Recent rainfall has slowed fall harvest in some areas of South Dakota.

"Recent rains have further slowed down fall harvest as the grain in the field and soils are now too wet for harvest activities," said Edwards, of the 1.5 to more than 4-inches which fell in areas from Gregory County northeast to Codington County.

Despite the slowdown in corn and soybean harvest, this moisture is welcome for the many winter wheat growers who have half of their acres planted as of September 25, 2017.

According to the National Agriculture Statistics Survey, as of September 25, 2017, 32 percent of corn was mature, compared to the five-year average of 57 percent. About 4 percent of soybeans were harvested, compared to the five-year average of 17 percent.

Edwards attributes slower maturity to two factors: 

  1. Fewer than average accumulated growing degree days and;
  2. Planting dates behind schedule due to excess spring moisture.

"These two factors make for a lot of variation across the region," she said.

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Thaler going to Vietnam as Fulbright Scholar

Categorized: Livestock, Pork

BROOKINGS, S.D. - Bob Thaler, SDSU professor and SDSU Extension Swine Specialist, has been chosen for the Fulbright U.S. Scholar Program and will work with at the Vietnam National University of Agriculture in Hanoi January through May 2018.

As a swine specialist for SDSU, Thaler has visited Vietnam several times with the US Soybean Export Council and the US Grains Council. This country ranks number six in the world in production of pork with 2,475 thousand metric tons raised in 2016.

Working under a combination of teaching and research fellowship, Thaler will work with the Vietnamese people to share his knowledge as the country moves from backyard production to sustainable commercial enterprises. He will be a guest lecturer as well as work with officials to extend the knowledge through the countryside. Thaler’s background as an Extension Swine specialist makes him uniquely suited to help extend the updated ideas to those who live away from the city. Thaler will work with those at the University to disseminate information to rural areas as a program such as the US Cooperative Extension Service doesn’t exist in the country.

“Vietnam is really a vibrant country,” Thaler said. “It has one of the youngest populations and the economy is growing rapidly. There is a lot of demand for meat and a better diet, and pork is their meat of choice. Historically, raising pigs was kind of a savings account for the family, and the pigs were fed whatever food was available, including scraps and forage. The demand for the meat is there and growing but it will take effort to change from backyard to commercial pork production. However, by doing that, the Vietnamese people will be able to produce more higher quality pork in a lot more efficient manner.

“In the U.S., we have the lowest corn and soybean prices in the world,” Thaler said. “That’s how we make our decision to feed our animals. As they import almost all soybean meal and most corn, their costs are double what we experience.”

If the country needs to import more feed, it could potentially turn to the United States to provide products. South Dakota soybeans, corn, and DDGS could be shipped on rail to the West Coast and then loaded on ships for Vietnam.

Thaler plans to write a blog about his experiences and share his work through presentations when he returns. As a member of the faculty at SDSU, Thaler said the trip will provide him an exceptional way to be immersed in the culture in a way that will benefit hi students, the University community and state when he returns.

Some of the work will look at being environmentally responsible with manure nutrient use. He’ll share his knowledge of the value of manure and how it can be applied to crops while considering water quality in the area.

Thaler’s wife Karen will accompany him, taking a sabbatical from the Brookings School District. She’ll take her seventh grade English class with her to Vietnam via the Internet. As she learns about the country, she plans on having a weekly video blog showing sites including the wet market, the war museum, Halong Bay and the Chu Chi tunnels.

Thaler is one of over 800 U.S. citizens who will work abroad for the 2017-2018 academic year through the Fulbright U.S. Scholar Program. Recipients of awards are selected on the basis of academic and professional achievement as well as record of service and demonstrated leadership in their respective fields.The Fulbright Program is the flagship international educational exchange program sponsored by the U.S. government and is designed to build lasting connections between the people of the United States and the people of other countries. The program is funded through an annual appropriation made by the U.S. Congress to the U.S. Department of State. It was established in 1946 under legislation introduced by the late U.S. Senator J. William Fulbright of Arkansas.

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SDSU Hosts Swine Day Oct. 11

Categorized: Livestock, Pork

BROOKINGS, S.D. - South Dakota State University Swine Day on October 11 will celebrate the first anniversary of the grand opening of the new SDSU Swine Education and Research Facility and Wean-to-Finish Research Barn in Brookings, SD. Officially dedicated in October of 2016, Department of Animal Science researchers continue to utilize the $7.4 million facility to investigate issues relevant to the swine industry. The event will be held on October 11, 2017 at the South Dakota State University Swine Education and Research Facility.

“The 2017 SDSU Swine Day is a wonderful opportunity for our researchers to share the groundbreaking research they are conducting in this world-class facility,” says Bill Gibbons, Interim Associate Dean for Research and Interim Director of the South Dakota Agricultural Experiment Station. “Even though we only opened the facility 12 months ago, SDSU researchers have quickly transitioned their on-going projects into the facility and have acquired additional funding to initiate new projects. These advancements would not have been possible without the generous support of the donors who made construction of this facility possible.”

The morning will begin with a poster session highlighting a number of the research projects from the past year. Attendees are invited to visit with the graduate student researchers before moving into the classroom at the facility.

“Drawing on experiences from his 27-year career at the University of Nebraska and as a swine industry consultant since 2006, Dr. Mike Brumm will deliver a keynote address on swine industry changes,” says Bob Thaler, SDSU professor and SDSU Extension Swine Specialist. “The modernization of the swine industry was the stimulus for the ‘Miracle on Medary’ when a group of dedicated individuals took our request for a new boar stud and turned it into these facilities which allow students and faculty to perform world-class research.”

After lunch, the day will continue as swine faculty highlight some of their recently completed and ongoing research. Tours of the facility will be available utilizing the facilities’ viewing windows which allow visitors to view modern hog production without having to shower into the facility.

SDSU Swine Day will be held in the South Dakota State University Swine Education and Research Facility located off of Medary Avenue north of the SDSU campus, with check-in and onsite registration beginning at 8:45 am and the poster session set to begin at 9 am. Lunch will be served, so registration is requested. The full schedule, sponsor list and registration information are available on the iGrow Events page.

For more information, contact Ryan Samuel, Assistant Professor and SDSU Extension Swine Specialist at 605.688.5431 or by email

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Managing Cucumber Beetles

Categorized: Gardens, Home & Garden Pests, Gardening

BROOKINGS, S.D. - In the last few weeks, SDSU Extension staff have received numerous reports of cucumber beetle infestations in areas of South Dakota.

"Cucumber beetles are common throughout the state during this time of year and can cause severe injury to cucurbits (i.e., squash, pumpkins, zucchini and gourds) if large populations are present," Patrick Wagner, SDSU Extension Entomology Field Specialist.

Two cucumber beetle species occur in South Dakota explained Wagner, the striped cucumber beetle (Figure 1) and the spotted cucumber beetle, which is also known as the southern corn rootworm (Figure 2).

"The striped cucumber beetle is most common and is the main threat to cucurbits," said Wagner.

He explained that the spotted cucumber beetle appears less frequently, especially in the western half of the state.

The adults of both cucumber beetle species are approximately a quarter of an inch long and have yellow elytra (hardened wing covers) with black markings. However, of the two, the spotted cucumber beetle tends to be larger.

Striped cucumber beetles have three distinct black stripes that run lengthwise on their backs, whereas spotted cucumber beetles have twelve black spots.

The larvae of both species are small and cream colored and live in the soil, where they feed on roots. The larvae are rarely observed unless the roots of the plants are dug up.

Behavior

Adult cucumber beetles overwinter in debris and become active in the spring and early summer, explained Adam Varenhorst, Assistant Professor & SDSU Extension Field Crop Entomologist.

"They search for cucurbits to feed on, mate and lay eggs," Varenhorst said.

Generally, Varenhorst explained, these beetles escape unnoticed until the first summer generation of adult beetles emerges and populations dramatically increase.

"Up to this point, the larvae developing in the soil have little to no impact on plant health. Upon emergence, the adult beetles begin feeding on the stems and foliage of cucurbits," Varenhorst said.

As the plants mature, the beetles will progress to feeding on the flowers and eventually the fruit. Cucumber beetle feeding can result in girdled stems, widespread defoliation, and spoiling of cucurbit fruit (Figure 3).

Cucumber beetles are also the vectors of bacterial wilt, said Amanda Bachmann,SDSU Extension Pesticide Education & Urban Entomology Field Specialist.

Bacterial wilt, Bachmann explained, is a disease that can quickly decimate many types of cucurbits.

"The bacteria that causes bacterial wilt plugs up the vascular tissue of cucurbits, causing the vines to wilt and die. There is no recovery for the plant once it is infected," Bachmann said.

Management

One of the main concerns with cucumber beetles is that they are a difficult pest to manage.

Several cultural practices can be applied to prevent infestations from becoming severe.

At planting time, Bachmann said it is a good idea to place mulch around cucurbits to deter cucumber beetle adults from laying eggs near the plants.

"Removing mulch and debris after harvest can reduce the number of overwintering sites for striped cucumber beetles in the fall," Bachmann said.

If you detect signs of bacterial wilt, be sure to remove the infected plants quickly so that cucumber beetles are unable to feed on them and spread the disease.

"Destroy the infected plants - do not put them in your compost pile, as they can remain a source of inoculum for the following season," Bachmann said.

Early detection is key

Wagner says that early detection is critical and that growers should regularly scout cucurbits throughout the season.

The threshold for managing cucumber beetles is when two or more beetles per plant are detected or when estimated defoliation of leaves reaches 25 percent.

"Once cucumber beetles reach threshold levels, management action should be taken to avoid extensive injury to the infested crop," Wagner added.

Organic options include products such as neem oil, spinosad, and pyrethrin. These products can reduce populations or at least deter feeding; however, they do not have long-lasting residuals.

Conventional products like carbaryl (Sevin), permethrin, and pyrethroids can also be effective.

When using any insecticide in the garden, be sure to time applications for when pollinators will be least active, and read and follow the label directions.

Courtesy of Whitney Cranshaw, Colorado State University, Bugwood.org. Figure 1. Striped cucumber beetle mating couple. Note the three black stripes on the back.

Courtesy of iGrow. Figure 2. Spotted cucumber beetle. Note the twelve black spots on the back.

Courtesy of Whitney Cranshaw, Colorado State University, Bugwood.org. Figure 3. Striped cucumber beetles feeding on a pumpkin.

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Grassland Management Do’s and Don’ts Part 1

Categorized: Livestock, Beef, Land, Water & Wildlife, Sheep

BROOKINGS, S.D. - As an SDSU Extension Range Field Specialist Pete Bauman receives a lot of questions from landowners.

To help answer the most common questions, he is launching a series of columns

This is the first column which is dedicated to answering questions which relate to establishing, re-establishing and maintaining grass-based plantings for grazing, hay, wildlife, and recreation

Column by Pete Bauman, SDSU Extension Range Field Specialist

It's our goal to help grassland managers understand key concepts of grassland management, and thus better prepare the reader to set specific goals and objectives to achieve desired results.

Of primary importance is to ask a few key questions: "what is it that I want my grassland to provide?", "what am I willing to invest?" and similarly, "what is the time frame that I expect results?"

What do I want my grassland to provide?

For starters, we will consider the first question, "What do I want my grassland to provide?"

There are major differences in what can be achieved in grassland projects based on the history of the land and its management.

Native (unbroken) sod in the form of grazing pastures or prairie areas has certain characteristics and potentials that planted or tame grasslands do not. However, there is great variability within the native sod category regarding historical use and management, which may include various grazing, haying, chemical, fire, or other management techniques.

Past Management Considerations

Past management often drives the direction of the plant community itself, impacting plant health and variety depending on the action.

Native Sod

What native sod can provide in relation to desired goals, such as annual production or plant diversity, can sometimes be achieved, sometimes not. Whether a desired goal is achieved is often dependent on whether the plant community has been 'simplified' through invasion of exotic species, past management or both.

In general, native sod that is not performing to its potential should be regarded as something to be healed through well-timed actions that focus on the plant community rather than something to be 'fixed' through mechanical soil manipulations.

Non-Native Sod

If the grassland is not native sod and is currently made up of tame species or 'go-back' grass that has revegetated on its own, one still must consider past management.

The potential of what the grassland can provide will be based largely on the species (native and non-native) that are now established. In these areas, there is often more opportunity to actively change the plant community through various manipulations than on native sod, though one must be realistic in expectations and timelines.

Croplands

If the area of concern is currently managed for row crops, cover crops, hay, CRP or some other cover, the opportunity to quickly establish or re-establish a desirable community is possible. However, past management in relation to soil conditions and residual chemicals can have a dramatic impact on establishment of new vegetation.

The Bottom Line

How much one should invest to change a grassland plant community can be a challenging question.

Input costs for soil preparation, seeding, and maintenance can be highly variable. One must first consider a strategy to ensure the soil is ready to receive the new plants. Profit potential can also be highly variable and is directly related to initial and ongoing input expenses.

This article just scratches the surface of considerations related to maintaining and establishing grasslands. We will continue to explore the vast variety of questions posed by landowners seeking to improve their grassland resources.

Grassland Management Workshops

SDSU Extension will be hosting Grassland Management Workshops in Pierre, Oct. 10; in Mitchell, Oct. 11 and in Watertown, Oct. 12.

All workshops run from 9 a.m. to 12:30 (CST). The workshops are offered at no cost and no registration is required.

The workshops will focus on answering landowners' questions which SDSU Extension staff have received throughout the year.

Workshop details

Pierre workshop will be held October 10, 2017 at the SDSU Extension Regional Center in Pierre (412 W. Missouri Ave.)

Mitchell workshop will be held Oct. 11, 2017 at the SDSU Extension Regional Center (1800 E. Spruce St.)

Watertown workshop will be held Oct. 12, 2017 at the SDSU Extension Regional Center (1910 W. Kemp Ave.)

Courtesy of iGrow. SDSU Extension Range Field Specialist Pete Bauman is launching a series of columns. This is the first column which is dedicated to answering questions which relate to establishing, re-establishing and maintaining grass-based plantings for grazing, hay, wildlife, and recreation.

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Fall Noxious Weed Control

Categorized: Livestock, Beef, Land, Water & Wildlife, Sheep, Agronomy, Corn, Other Crops, Land, Water & Wildlife, Soybeans, Wheat

BROOKINGS, S.D. - Fall can be the best time for weed control with a caveat, explained Paul O. Johnson, SDSU Extension Weed Science Coordinator.

"If noxious weeds were sprayed or clipped earlier this summer and there is good weed growth, fall would be a good time to spray these weeds to get a good kill. However, if the weeds were not controlled early and now are tall, very mature and do not have a lot of regrowth, weed control this fall will not do any good," Johnson said.

What about dried out weeds?

Where this advice is questionable area is in areas where weeds were clipped earlier, but the weed is no longer growing and regrowth is starting to dry up because of the drought conditions.

The key here, Johnson said, is to use a spray that has a residual effect so when the plant starts growing again after a rain, it will be killed then.

Spray before harvest

If conditions are right, Johnson encourages landowners and agriculture producers to spray now.

"Even though the state has not had a freeze yet, because it is fall, the perennials have started to prepare for winter by sending nutrients down to the roots to help the plant make it through the cold winter months. So now is a good time to spray for Leafy Spurge, Canada thistle, Sow Thistle, Wormwood Sage and Musk Thistle," Johnson said.

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Fall Lawn Spraying for Perennial Broadleaf Weed Control

Categorized: Gardens, Gardening

BROOKINGS, S.D. - Fall is the time to control tough perennial broadleaf lawn weeds.

"Fall works best for perennials as the herbicide moves better into the root," said Paul O. Johnson, SDSU Extension Weed Science Coordinator. "If your lawn is in an area of South Dakota fortunate to receive good moisture during the month of August, there is potential for a good fall growth of perennial weeds."

The target weeds in the fall are dandelion, ground ivy, creeping bell flower, field bindweed and white clover. Note: ground ivy is also known as creeping charlie and field bindweed is often referred to as creeping jenny.

Johnson explained that based on results from SDSU WEED project tests, fall timing has the best chance for excellent control of dandelion.

"Active new growth is important for good results. Let the grass grow up and delay mowing to get good growth," Johnson said.

Spraying can start now anytime in September.

"For the toughest weeds, like ground ivy and creeping bell flower, make a repeat application as soon as you product labels allows, ideally two weeks," he said.

If application is delayed until a light frost, Johnson said other plants in the yard are less sensitive to drift.

He reminds those applying chemical to apply with care, use low pressure and coarse droplets to reduce drift.

Do not make applications if it is windy.

Most broadleaf lawn products are a mixture of herbicide ingredients, they are available in several product brands. Check label guidelines in mixing and applying instructions.

"Treat now and see the results next spring," Johnson said.  

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SD 4-H Teams Up with Sinte Gleska University Equine Camps

Categorized: 4-H & Youth, South Dakota 4-H

BROOKINGS, S.D. - When Sinte Gleska University of Mission hosted six unique Tiwahe Glu Kini Pi "Bringing the Family Back to Life" Equine camps this summer, SDSU Extension 4-H Programming was there to help.

"Youth not only learned about the healing that comes with their spirit connection to horses but they also learned more about their language and culture and the Lakota's connection to the universe through the story telling of Duane Hollow Horn Bear and Fred Little Bald Eagle," said Ron Frederick, SDSU Extension 4-H Youth Program Advisor - Rosebud.

The 75 youth who attended Bringing the Family Back to Life Equine Camps were provided with positive cultural experiences and instruction in Lakota youth values. The six camps included; Horse Handler Training Camp, two Horse/STEM Camps, Male Survivors of Violence Horse Camp, Girls Horse Camp and Boys Horse Camp.

"The horse is a crucial part of Native American culture, dating back to the early 1700s. They are also an animal who youth can feel a connection with because they actually pick the youth they want to connect with - like a spirit connection," explained Frederick. "A horse is a living thing that gives them unconditional love and acceptance. They provide a great teaching tool and opportunity to instruct youth on Lakota values like respect, wisdom, humility, generosity, healthy relationships and family relations which were promoted through programming."

Along with Hollow Horn Bear and Little Bald Eagle other instructors included: Sam High Crane, Greg Grey Cloud and Aldo 'Bear" Seoana, Camp Coordinators; Dave Valandra, Sinte Gleska University Ranch Manager and Marlies White Hat Sinte Gleska University/Tiwahe Glu Kini Pi Program Director. Therapists Kelsey Soles, Tonya Boyd and Cory Lemmert and Sinte Gleska University STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) instructors Dana Gehring, Mikel Bordeaux, and Vanessa Wandersee. White Buffalo Calf Woman Society Advocates also provided transportation and "Expect Respect" sessions.

Camp details

With a focus on instilling strong values, healing and equine education, campers received a variety of hands-on opportunities. Newly trained Horse Handlers were given an opportunity for part-time employment to assist Tiwahe Glu Kini Pi therapists with Equine Assisted Mental Health and also with Tiwahe Glu Kini Pi Sunkawakan (Horse) Youth Camps over the summer.

Horse Handlers were given an opportunity to engage with equine healthcare professionals assisting a volunteer veterinarian and farrier as they cared for camp horses.

Campers also received training from Frederick and Genna Buettner, a Rosebud-Todd County 4-H Leader and Volunteer in horse safety, nutrition, anatomy, horse health, first aid and proper use of tack.

Campers learned about Mitakuye Oyasin and the healing gifts and special relationship of the Sunkawakan Oyate (Horse Nation) with the Lakota from Sam High Crane. Greg Grey Cloud provided campers with instruction on values as he guided youth through the set-up of the Tipestola.

Each week-long camp concluded with a trail ride to Turtle Creek and a cookout where youth had the opportunity to share what they learned with their family and to showcase their newly acquired riding skills.

STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering & Math)

Sinte Gleska University Tiwahe Glu Kini Pi Ranch Youth Equine Camps partnered with the Sinte Gleska University Science Department to provide sessions focused on STEM topics and research.

"Horses are a unique and fun way to connect youth to science, technology, engineering and math concepts," Frederick said.

He added that youth also took part in Native American art projects focused on making ribbon skirts, painting their stories on wood carved horse effigies and whittling and painting arrows and making hoops for a traditional game.

For more information about the Sinte Gleska University Tiwahe Glu Kini Pi Bringing the Family Back to Life Equine camps, contact Marlies White Hat at 605.856.8203 or by email.

Sinte Gleska University Tiwahe Glu Kini Pi is a Children' Mental Health Center that offers Equine Assisted Mental Health Groups during the school year. Summer camps were open to any youth to share and restore the healing gifts of the Sunkawakan Oyate with the community.

Tiwahe Glu Kini Pi is grateful to the RST Tribal Land Enterprise for funding Horse camp expenses.

Courtesy photos. This summer more than 75 attended one of six Bringing the Family Back to Life Equine Camps hosted by Sinte Gleska University of Mission. SDSU Extension 4-H Programming helped out with equine and STEM activities. Campers are pictured with instructors Duane Hollow Horn Bear, Fred Little Bald Eagle, Aldo "Bear" Seoana, and Ron Frederick,

Courtesy photos. This summer more than 75 attended one of six Bringing the Family Back to Life Equine Camps hosted by Sinte Gleska University of Mission. SDSU Extension 4-H Programming helped out with equine and STEM activities. These girls participated in the Girls Horse Camp. They are pictured here in ribbon skirts they made during camp.

Courtesy photos. During Bringing the Family Back to Life Equine Camps hosted by Sinte Gleska University of Mission campers. Horses with painted symbols representing the campers individual spirit connection to the horse.

Courtesy photos. This summer more than 75 attended one of six Bringing the Family Back to Life Equine Camps hosted by Sinte Gleska University of Mission. SDSU Extension 4-H Programming helped out with equine and STEM activities. These campers participated in the Boys Horse Camp.

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Understanding Terms Helps Understand Research Results

Categorized: Agronomy, Corn, Other Crops, Profit Tips, Soybeans, Wheat

BROOKINGS, S.D. - A survey of more than 1,000 farmers showed that a large majority did not understand how to interpret research results and, according to Sara Berg, SDSU Extension Agronomy Field Specialist, the language used in reporting may be to blame.

"Terms commonly used and understood in the research world can be confusing, unless you understand their true meaning," Berg explained.

Berg is part of a multi-state team of Extension personnel working together to clear up confusion among producers when it comes to research. Together they are publishing a series of articles which delve into four research topics including: the best practices for side-by-side comparison trials, how to set up on-farm research and the topic of this article, what common research terms mean. The fourth and final article, not yet released, will focus on helping producers see legitimate research from biased information produced to sell inputs.

To view past articles, visit iGrow and search by Sara Berg's name.

In addition to Berg, the team includes: Lizabeth Stahl, University of Minnesota; Josh Coltrain, Kansas State University; John Thomas, University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

Lizabeth Stahl, Extension Educator with University of Minnesota, is the author of this article.

Not significantly different

"When a producer sees two numbers that are clearly not the same labeled as "not significantly different," it can be confusing," Stahl said.

In agriculture research, Stahl explained, just because there may be a five bushel per acre difference, one may not be able to say with any confidence that the treatments actually differ based upon how the study was set up and/or the amount of error found within the study.

"We encourage producers to consider the purpose of the research," Stahl said. "Research is typically conducted so that we can use the results to help make the best decisions possible in the future."

Least significant difference

Another phrase, the least significant difference (LSD), is used to describe a measure of value when the difference is considered statistically significant.

"In a hybrid variety trial, for example, the LSD describes the minimum bushels-per-acre that two hybrids must differ by before we would consider them to be "significantly different,'" she explains.

There is no way to calculate the LSD if a researcher simply splits a field in half and puts one treatment on one side of the field and a different treatment on another side of a field.

"In this scenario there is no way to sort out if a difference in observed yields was due to underlying factors such as soil type, planting population, drainage, compaction, disease, insect pressure, harvest issues, topography, etc., or the treatment," she said.

Stahl further explained that when the LSD is calculated at the .05 significance level, this means researchers can be 95 percent certain that the treatments (or hybrids, etc.) really did differ in yield if the difference between them was equal to or greater than the LSD.

"A significance level of .05 or .10 is most commonly used in agricultural research," she said.

No significant difference

What does it mean when data is labeled as having "no significant difference?"

Stahl explained the answer this way. "This can occur when there is so much variability in the results due to other factors that researchers can't make a conclusion with confidence, or when the treatments or hybrids in the study simply don't differ in yield," she said.

For example, results from a University of Minnesota tillage trial demonstrates the importance of statistical analysis in helping determine if a yield difference is likely "real."

Three long-term tillage systems were evaluated at multiple locations over three years across southern Minnesota. Tillage treatments were randomized and replicated four times at each location.

At one site in 2011, average corn yield for strip tillage was 10 bushels per acre greater than in moldboard plow. Yet, yield was not statistically significant.

Based on results, researchers could not determine that one tillage system produced significantly higher yields than another.

"Although average yields were numerically different, statistical analysis determined researchers could not say with any confidence that the tillage systems resulted in different yields," Stahl said. "If yields are not statistically different, don't treat them differently.  Resist the temptation to put economics to average yields if they are not significantly different. Doing so could lead to poor and costly decisions in the future."

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2017 Eastern SD Water Conference November 8

Categorized: Livestock, Drought, Profit Tips, Agronomy, Corn, Other Crops, Drought, Profit Tips, Soybeans, Wheat

BROOKINGS, S.D. - Registration is now open for the 2017 Eastern South Dakota Water Conference to be held November 8 in the Student Union's Volstorff Ballroom on the campus of South Dakota State University. This year's conference focus is "South Dakota's Water Resources: Where Are We Headed and How Will We Get There?"

"The framework will be unlike past meetings as the South Dakota Water Resources Institute at SDSU will host its first stakeholder working conference," explained David Kringen, SDSU Extension Water Resources Field Specialist.

Conference details

The morning session will begin at 8:30 a.m. and consist of a comprehensive review of the current state of water quality in eastern South Dakota.

This session will include information on what is assessed and monitored, how the data is gathered, how it is reported and any long term trends that may be evident.

Both surface and groundwater resources will be discussed.

Attendees will learn about the South Dakota Integrated Report for Surface Water Quality Assessment, the National Rivers & Streams Assessment, the National Water Quality Initiative, the South Dakota Statewide Ground Water Quality Monitoring Network and more.

A poster presentation session will also be held during the morning break. Lunch is provided.

The afternoon session will consist of moderated roundtable discussions designed to engage attendees impacted by the information presented during the morning session.

Topics will include satisfaction with current monitoring strategies employed in South Dakota, future priorities and specific actions that may be taken as a result of the discussions.

It is the intent of the South Dakota Water Resources Institute at SDSU to compose a white paper summarizing the conference and the roundtable discussions.

Feedback from attendees will be used to help draft an action plan.

"This action plan will help guide the direction of future research opportunities as well as actions that can be taken as a group to sustain and improve our water resources in South Dakota," Kringen said.

The South Dakota Water Resources Institute at SDSU encourages all stakeholders concerned with water quality in eastern South Dakota to attend the 2017 conference.

If you would like your voice to be heard concerning the future of South Dakota's water resources, register online.

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Celebrate National 4-H Week October 1 - 7, 2017

Categorized: 4-H & Youth, South Dakota 4-H

BROOKINGS, S.D. - South Dakota's more than 9,400 4-H members and thousands of alumni and volunteers will join with millions across the U.S. in celebrating the 75th consecutive National 4-H Week October 1-7, 2017.

"South Dakota 4-H joins in the celebration recognizing the positive youth development experiences that the 4-H program offers youth across the state," said Donna Bittiker, SDSU Extension State 4-H Program Director.

Youth Science Day

One of the most anticipated events of National 4-H Week every year is 4-H National Youth Science Day, October 4. The theme of this year's Science Day is Incredible Wearables. During the month of October, youth across South Dakota will join 4-H members nationwide in using the engineering design process to build a prototype wearable technology that will gather data to help solve a real-world problem.

SDSU Extension's 4-H Youth Development Program is a partnership of federal (USDA), state (Land Grant University), and county resources through youth outreach activities of SDSU Extension. Youth learn and experience Leadership, Health and Wellness, Science and Ag-Vocacy through a network of professional staff and volunteers reaching more than 9,400 enrolled members with yearly programming efforts to an additional 35,000 youth participants.

To learn more about 4-H and how you or someone you know can become involved in 4-H, contact your local SDSU Extension 4-H Youth Program Advisor. A complete list can be found  at the Our Experts page.

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Deadline for Calf Value Discovery Program is October 1

Categorized: Livestock, Beef

BROOKINGS, S.D. - The SDSU Calf Value Discovery program allows cow/calf operators to gain valuable feedback to help them improve management decisions that impact the financial bottom-line.

The registration deadline is October 1, 2017.

"Post-weaning performance influences the price received when calves are marketed at or near weaning," Julie Walker, Professor & SDSU Extension Beef Specialist. "Obtaining post-weaning animal and carcass performance data through the SDSU Calf Value Discovery Program provides producers with additional information to make the best financial and management decisions for their operations."

What is the SDSU Calf Value Discovery Program

The SDSU Calf Value Discovery program is designed to allow producers to consign a minimum of five steer calves (500 to 800 pounds).

New this year, cattle will be fed in an accelerated finishing program at two locations this year. These locations are the South Dakota State University Southeast Research Station, Beresford and Vander Wal Yards, Bruce.

SDSU and SDSU Extension personnel will weigh cattle periodically and cattle owners will be sent performance updates. Cattle will be sold in truckload lots beginning approximately May 15, 2018.

All cattle will be sold on a grid price system.

For specific details on the program, visit the SDSU Calf Value Discovery Program.

Registration deadline is Oct. 1, 2017

Calves will be received at South Dakota State University Southeast Research Station, Beresford October 17 and 18, 2017.

Delivery dates for Vander Wal Yards, Bruce are November 7 and 8, 2017.

To assist western South Dakota producers, calves can be delivered to the South Dakota State University Cottonwood Range and Livestock Field Station November 6, 2017.

For additional information regarding the program please contact Julie Walker, Professor & SDSU Extension Beef Specialist at 605.688.5458 or Warren Rusche, SDSU Extension Beef Feedlot Management Associate at 605.688.5452.

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Grassland Management Workshops Coming in October

Categorized: Livestock, Beef, Sheep, Agronomy, Corn, Other Crops, Land, Water & Wildlife, Soybeans, Wheat

BROOKINGS, S.D. - The South Dakota Grassland Coalition, SDSU Extension and partner organizations are cooperating to improve landowner understanding of grassland establishment and maintenance through a series of October workshops.

"As one of the team members working on this project, I'm excited about the willingness of the agency staff to share what they have learned over the years in relation to putting grass on the ground," said Pete Bauman, SDSU Extension Range Field Specialist, of the group that also plans to offer a Grassland Management School for July of 2018.

Organizations and agencies working alongside SDSU Extension and the South Dakota Grassland Coalition include: the Nature Conservancy, Game, Fish, and Parks, Pheasants Forever, NRCS, US Fish and Wildlife Service, SD Soil Health Coalition and Audubon Dakota.

Initial workshops will focus on grassland establishment and management in eastern South Dakota. "There is definitely a statewide need," said Bauman. "But the eastern counties have many recent and new projects that landowners are seeking advice on."

Workshops will begin with a short presentation on critical issues, and will quickly move toward more of an open discussion format between agency staff and landowner attendees. The intent of this format, explained Bauman, is to allow for individuals to ask specific questions related to their projects so that all can hear the answers.

"There is no doubt, that if one person has a question or concern about a grassland project, several others in the room will have the same issue with the same question," Bauman explained.  

In addition to providing advice on projects, the group wants to get feedback from producers on the critical issues they are facing to better serve their needs.

"We are also hoping that those landowners who have experimented with tools and techniques can share what they have learned with others.

From this information, the team will develop curriculum and offer future schools that will focus on the needs of producers in various locations across the state.

October Grassland Management Workshops

There is no cost to attend the workshops. All workshops will begin at 9:30 a.m. and run until 12:30 p.m. There is no registration.

Oct. 10 Workshop will be held in Pierre at the SDSU Extension Regional Center (412 W. Missouri Ave)

Oct. 11 Workshop will be held in Mitchell at the  SDSU Extension Regional Center (1800 E. Spruce St)

Oct. 12 Workshop will be held in  Watertown at the SDSU Extension Regional Center (1910 W. Kemp Ave.)

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2017 CashCourse Financial Educator of the Year Honorable Mention

Categorized: Healthy Families, Family & Personal Finance

BROOKINGS, S.D. - CashCourse, a financial education resource for college students funded by the National Endowment for Financial Education, recognized SDSU Extension Family Resource Management Field Specialist, Lorna Saboe-Wounded Head with the 2017 CashCourse Financial Educator of the Year honorable mention.

In her work with SDSU Extension, Saboe-Wounded Head works with consumers to improve their resource management knowledge and skills.

"I am passionate about teaching financial literacy and have learned that one size does not fit all concerning the best approach to managing finances," she said. "Through teaching and programming, I work to help consumers become financially capable and financially secure no matter their income level or net worth."

Her work focuses on managing financial resources. In 2016 Saboe-Wounded Head developed a financial wellness program called WorkWi$e at the Worksite. This program focuses on basic financial management concepts that can help employees reduce financial stress and increase workplace productivity. She also conducts financial wellness sessions at South Dakota State University.

"I have often heard college students say that information taught is a class is never going to be used in real life," she said. "I actually had a student who took my course contact me two years later to share how the financial wellness course he took from me helped him accumulate a savings account in a short amount of time and taking advantage of employer-sponsored retirement plans."

Prior to working with SDSU Extension, Saboe-Wounded Head worked as an assistant professor in the Consumer Affairs program at SDSU. She also taught Family and Consumer Sciences to middle and high school students for 10 years.

Her research interests are family resource management, financial well-being, financial literacy and capability, and food security.

Lorna earned a Doctorate in Family and Consumer Sciences Education from Iowa State University, a Master's in Adult Education from the University of Minnesota and a Bachelor's in Family and Consumer Sciences Education from South Dakota State University.

She is an Accredited Financial Counselor (AFC©), and a Certified in Family and Consumer Sciences (CFCS) and Certified Personal and Family Financial Educator (CPFFE) through the American Association of Family and Consumer Sciences.

Read more about her work at the SDSU Extension at the iGrow Healthy Families community.

Courtesy of iGrow. Lorna Saboe-Wounded Head, SDSU Extension Family Resource Management Field Specialist, was recently recognized by the National Endowment for Financial Education with the 2017 CashCourse Financial Educator of the Year honorable mention.

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Apply to be an SDSU Extension AmeriCorps VISTA Member TODAY!

Categorized: Healthy Families, Health & Wellness

BROOKINGS, S.D. - SDSU Extension is currently recruiting AmeriCorps members to serve full-time in: Aberdeen, Lemmon, Mitchell, Sioux Falls, Watertown and other South Dakota communities.

"AmeriCorps VISTA service members will work with SDSU Extension staff to increase knowledge of and access to physical and financial health and wellness techniques in effort to bring economically disadvantaged South Dakotans out of poverty," said Aimee House Ladonski, SDSU Extension Volunteer Development Field Specialist.

What do AmeriCorps members do?

AmeriCorps members will have the opportunity to do the following:

  • Serve your country full-time for 1 year to bring SD citizens out of poverty;
  • Earn a monthly living stipend;
  • Receive an education award to be used for tuition and/or student loans;
  • Build your resume with program design, development and implementation;
  • Receive preferential hiring post-service with federal agencies and hundreds of employers of national service across the country;
  • Experience top-notch professional development training;
  • Engage in national networking opportunities;
  • Be a preferred hire for federal and private employment. 

Position Openings
Applicants must be 18 years old or older to apply. Some college is preferred for most position openings. Applications are due September 21st for a start date of November 6th.
 
A variety of positions are available to meet a diversity of professional interests and skills including:

For position descriptions and application information, click the position links above. If you have any questions, contact Aimee Ladonski, SDSU Extension Volunteer Development Field Specialist at 605.782.3290.

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Fifteen Leaders Join the S. D. Change Network Cohort

Categorized: Community Development, Communities

BROOKINGS, S.D. -Fifteen emerging leaders from across South Dakota have been selected to participate in the first cohort of the South Dakota Change Network, a program created by the Bush Foundation and executed through a partnership of National Arts Strategies, SDSU Extension Community Vitality and Vision Maker Media, the Change Network Cohort, will provide a supportive environment to assist participants in leading change in a more equitable and inclusive manner.

"The cohort experience will offer forward-thinking South Dakotans an opportunity to build their self-awareness, leadership abilities, and systems-change skill sets," said Kari O'Neill, SDSU Extension Community Vitality Field Specialist.  

Individuals selected, their locations and their career and interest fields include: Jill Baker, Sioux Falls, human services with a focus on veterans; Stacey Berry, Madison, English professor at Dakota State University with interests in student equality; Amy Hofer, Doland, finance manager interested in rural community involvement and volunteerism; Jared Hybertson, Centerville, economic developer focused on rural community inclusion; Kelsea Kenzy Sutton, Burke, attorney with interests in food security and public health; Patti Martinson, Rapid City, focusing on social change through the arts; Billy Mawhiney, Sioux Falls, youth director working on nonprofit connections; Carla Miller, Sioux Falls, serving families and individuals with disabilities and chronic health issues; Alli Moran, Eagle Butte, interested in secondary education for tribal youth; Andrea Powers, Hot Springs, economic developer focused on bringing young people to rural areas; Traci Smith, Sioux Falls, interests in changes in the judicial system as a public defender; Adam Strenge, Sioux Falls, Southeast Technical Institute work on increasing student success in post-secondary education; Peter Strong, Rapid City, gallery owner with interests in the arts and Native American culture; Viola Waln, Parmelee, journalist interested in affecting people through writing; and Ernest Weston, Porcupine, assisting first-year Native American students in colleges.

All Change Network participants will have access to a $5000 grant to implement an action plan they develop during the one-year program.

Want to learn more?

To learn more about the members of the South Dakota Change Network, visit the National Art Strategies website. Applications for the upcoming South Dakota Change Network will open April 2018.

To learn more about the South Dakota Change Network contact Kari O'Neill, SDSU Extension at 605.685.6972 or by email.

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Wait to Treat Ash Trees for Emerald Ash Borer

Categorized: Gardens, Home & Garden Pests, Trees & Forests

BROOKINGS, S.D. - It's too early for South Dakotans to begin treating their ash trees for emerald ash borer said John Ball, Professor & SDSU Extension Forestry Specialist.

"Our recommendation, consistent with other states, is not to begin treatments until the insect has been confirmed within 15 miles of your trees" Ball said. "There are companies already going around communities in eastern South Dakota telling people to start treatments now, but this is premature."

The reason? Ball explained that emerald ash borer was recently confirmed near Welcome, Minnesota and this confirmation, along with the confirmation in Alta, Iowa  earlier this summer, mean the insect is still 100 miles from South Dakota.

The emerald ash borer was accidentally introduced from Asia into Michigan in the late 1990s. It is responsible for the loss of more than 50 million ash trees in this country. None of our native ash species; black, blue, green or white; have shown resistance to this insect.

"Treatments are now so effective that you can even save trees that have been infested for a few years so there is no need start pesticide treatments now," Ball said.

Ball recommends waiting until emerald ash borer is found in your area and then decide based on cost which ash to treat.

The average cost of treatment is around $80 to $120 a tree. Treatments are done every other year.

"These treatments do work," Ball said. "Today, the only ash trees left in more eastern communities impacted by emerald ash borer epidemics are those that have been treated." 

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Six Individuals Inducted into the 4-H Hall of Fame

Categorized: 4-H & Youth, South Dakota 4-H

BROOKINGS, S.D. - Six individuals were inducted into the 4-H Volunteer Hall of Fame September 3, 2017 during the South Dakota State Fair.

These six individuals have all put in at least 25-plus years of service to the 4-H youth of South Dakota.

"It was an honor to inductee these people into the hall of fame. All the inductees are all still actively involved in their county 4-H programs and are great supporters of South Dakota 4-H," said Audrey Rider, SDSU Extension Volunteer Development Field Specialist.

The six inductees include; Marsha Howard, Hand County; Elaine Kanable, Campbell County; Gerald (Jerry) and Carmen Grace, Minnehaha County; Dianne Thyen, Hamlin County and Dale Curtis, Edmunds County (posthumously.)

More about the inductees

Marsha Howard has been actively volunteering in Hand County 4-H for the past 46 years.

Howard started as a 4-H club leader in 1971 when she reinstated the Hand-E-Hands 4-H Club with an 8-year-old club president and several new members.

She has been the club's leader for the past 46 years and is very proud of all the community service projects, judging, demonstrations, fashion revue and all of the completed 4-H record books her club has been involved in.

The Hand-E-Hands 4-H Club has excelled over the past four decades.

Not only is Howard a club leader, but she is active in the Hand County 4-H Leaders Association, helping organize the County Achievement Days, the Special Foods Contests and the Fashion Revue judging and style show.

Howard has also held many officer positions within the Leaders Association. She has served as a judge for 4-H youth exhibits in other counties and at the State Fair. She has judged Special Foods and static exhibits in Faulk, Hand, Hyde, Spink Counties and Foods and Nutrition posters at the State Fair.

Howard and her family had a large garden for many years and sold some of the produce to the local community. This spurred the inspiration for Howard to help coordinate the start of the Miller Community Farmers Market held Friday afternoons throughout summer as one location where local producers and vendors can sell goods to the local community.

Howard is a farm wife and mother. She has been married to her husband, Terry, for 47 years. They have three children, Lorelle, Rachelle and Chris.

Howard is active in the Master Gardeners Club and the Miller United Methodist Church.

Elaine Kanable is a very active Campbell County 4-H volunteer.

She and her husband, Jim, raised five children who were also very involved with 4-H. Kanable was a club leader and involved with the Leader's Association.

Even after her children graduated, she remained dedicated to 4-H. She helped organize Achievement Days, was involved in the set up/take down and helped and supply lunch.

She volunteered to take county exhibits to the State Fair and to set up the booth to display the exhibits.

Kanable has helped judge locally as well as served as a judge in other counties. She is still involved.

Kanable is the current treasurer for the Leaders Association and workers with the Extension homemakers to make pillow case dresses for Haiti children.  

"Elaine is a huge advocate of 4-H. She has attended many county commission meetings championing 4-H and its importance to the youth of South Dakota. Elaine is the backbone of our Campbell County 4-H. Without her, 4-H would not have survived in our community," said one Campbell County 4-H supporter.

When asked to share a special 4-H memory, Kanable said, "All the 4-Hers and their families are the special memories."

Gerald (Jerry) and Carmen Grace have been an instrumental help in the 4-H program of Minnehaha County over the last several decades. Sharing both their time and talents, the Minnehaha County 4-H program has depended on them as a cornerstone in many areas.

Jerry and Carmen have always been willing to volunteer to ensure that the 4-H program in the county is always running with its best foot forward.

Jerry grew up in the county and was involved in the 4-H program. Over the years he transitioned from being a member to serving as a club leader. For many decades, Jerry has assisted with running events in the county; from serving as a livestock superintendent, to announcing shows, servings on various committees and volunteering for various activities.  

The couple have served as Club Leaders to the Minnehaha Hot Rods 4-H Club since the club was established.

Carmen also has been instrumental in the success of the 4-H program in Minnehaha County. She has served as the Roping Event Coordinator in the county.

Under her watchful eye, the roping event has become one that is very well run and a highlight to all youth involved.

"Jerry and Carmen have been a wonderful part of our 4-H program," said Amanda Healy, a Minnehaha County 4-H volunteer and parent. "When I was younger, Jerry helped out with the cattle show and over the years, he has gotten more involved."

Jerry broadened his commitment to the program by also helping with rodeo events. He is a positive influence for the youth involved.

Currently, the couple shows no signs of slowing down. They continue to assist with 4-H programming and plan to continue as their 13 grandchildren are involved in 4-H as well.

Dianne Thyen has been a 4-H Leader in Hamlin County for 29 years. Before that, she helped her husband, Ronald, with the Oxford Korner 4-H Club as a volunteer for eight years.

Thyen has served as a judge at many County 4-H Achievement Days and at the State Fair.

Thyen is willing to put on workshops for posters, foods and other project areas in Hamlin County and in surrounding Counties.

Their 4-H Club has made bibs for veterans at the Veterans Hospital along with other community service projects.

Thyen volunteered as the lunch stand manager in 2016 and helped plan Achievement Day meals in Hamlin County.

She has volunteered at many 4-H barbecues and chaperoned dances at the State Fair. She has served as President of the Hamlin County 4-H Leaders Association and has also served as the South Dakota 4-H Leaders Association President.

Thyen has helped judge 4-H record books on the County and State level for many years. She is a strong advocate for 4-H not only in Hamlin County, but for the whole State of South Dakota.

A special 4-H memory Thyen shared includes chaperoning 90 4-H members in two bus loads to and around Washington D.C. for the Citizen Washington Focus trip.

Dale Curtis started his career in SDSU Extension in 1977.

His first week of work was spent at North Central 4-H Camp leading young 4-H members.

After his retirement in 2006, Curtis continued to support and lead 4-H members until he lost his hard fought battle with cancer in 2011.

Curtis was a one-of-a kind man who helped start many programs within 4-H such as the State Sport Fishing program. Within Edmunds County, Curtis along with his wife Carole, started the County Shooting Sports Program which has grown to over 50 members.

He was also very involved in photography judging and livestock judging with oral reasons. He was the coordinator for state livestock and horse judging.

In the community, he was very active in the Development Corporation. He also taught the hunter safety course for many years. Curtis was a behind-the-scenes man who was willing to help anyone or do anything that was needed without recognition.  

4-H members remember Curtis as a person of love and devotion. He supported every 4-H member and wanted them to have endless opportunities. He made every child feel special in any project area they chose.  

"My children had a first-hand experience with his generosity," said Scott Kilber, a 4-H parent and leader. "When we moved back home to Ipswich my two girls wanted to join 4-H and show sheep. They had mentioned this to Dale and soon after, Dale was overjoyed to offer his farm space to them to raise their 4-H livestock."

Curtis' wife, Carole Curtis received the award in his honor.

More about South Dakota 4-H

SDSU Extension's 4-H Youth Development Program is  a partnership of federal (USDA), state (Land Grant University), and county resources through youth outreach activities of SDSU Extension. Youth learn and experience Leadership, Health and Wellness, Science and Ag-Vocacy through a network of professional staff and volunteers reaching more than 9,000 enrolled members with yearly programming efforts to an additional 35,000 youth participants.

Courtesy of iGrow. Dale Curtis, Edmunds County was one of six South Dakotans inducted into the South Dakota 4-H Volunteer Hall of Fame during the South Dakota State Fair (posthumously.) His family, pictured here, accepted the honor.

Courtesy of iGrow. Dianne Thyen, Hamlin County was one of six South Dakotans inducted into the South Dakota 4-H Volunteer Hall of Fame during the South Dakota State Fair. She is pictured with her family.

Courtesy of iGrow. Elaine Kanable, Campbell County, was one of six South Dakotans inducted into the South Dakota 4-H Volunteer Hall of Fame during the South Dakota State Fair. She is pictured with her family.

Courtesy of iGrow. Gerald (Jerry) and Carmen Grace, Minnehaha County, were two of six South Dakotans inducted into the South Dakota 4-H Volunteer Hall of Fame during the South Dakota State Fair. They are pictured with their family.

Courtesy of iGrow. Marsha Howard, Hand County, was one of six South Dakotans inducted into the South Dakota 4-H Volunteer Hall of Fame during the South Dakota State Fair. She is pictured with her family.

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4-H Special Needs Rodeo Shares Fun & Inspires Spirit of Service

Categorized: 4-H & Youth, South Dakota 4-H

by Lura Roti, for SDSU Extension & iGrow

Typically, when Mason Moody is in the arena, his focus is on winning. But, during this year's South Dakota 4-H Finals Rodeo, the 14-year-old junior bull rider took a break from the competition and turned his attention to Jordan and making sure that the young man with disabilities had fun during the South Dakota 4-H Finals Rodeo first Special Needs Rodeo.

"When I saw his face light up and could see that he was having fun - that made me feel good on the inside," explains Mason, who helped Jordan enjoy a number of modified rodeo activities like stick-horse barrel racing, goat tail untying and roping.

Held in conjunction with the South Dakota 4-H Finals Rodeo hosted in Ft. Pierre August 18-20, 2017, the Special Needs Rodeo was designed by 4-H volunteers as a way to serve the special needs community of Pierre and Ft. Pierre.

"Service to others is a large focus of 4-H. "Hands for Larger Service," is right there in our pledge,'" explains Hilary Risner, SDSU Extension Regional 4-H Youth Program Advisor. "This was a fun activity for participants, but I think it had even more value for the volunteers. Helping with this service project gave 4-H rodeo athletes an opportunity to see firsthand what it's like to live with disabilities. This event helped us remember not to take our abilities for granted."

Mason's mom, Tracy Moody would agree. A 4-H alumnus, Tracy was first introduced to a special needs rodeo through her daughter, Bailey, who volunteered during the National High School Finals Rodeo held in Rock Springs, Wyoming when she was a high school freshman.

"Helping people with disabilities during that rodeo made such a large impact on her life. Bailey is in college now and is going into special education," Tracy explained. "This activity is good for kids. It opens their eyes to things in life that they may not always be exposed to."

Along with service to others, John Keimig, SDSU Extension 4-H Associate, said 4-H Rodeo instills perseverance in youth and creates an environment where healthy competition thrives. "Rodeo is a sport where strong friendships are formed. It's a sport where it's not just about the athlete and how well the athlete did in a specific event but it's about how well other athletes do," Keimig said. "There have been many cases when if a horse is injured and cannot compete, a 4-H member will actually share their horse with their competitor."

For Tracy and her family, rodeo also provides an opportunity to spend time together. "We practice together and on the weekends, we travel to rodeos together," she said.

And, like the special needs rodeo service opportunity, 4-H rodeo is an activity that also teaches her children life lessons.

"We live in an era where kids are given so much. Rodeo teaches them that they need to work for things. It teaches them responsibility. They learn that they will lose sometimes," Tracy said.

To learn more about 4-H and how you or someone you know can become involved, contact your local SDSU Extension 4-H Youth Program Advisor. A complete list can be found at iGrow under Field Staff Listing.

More about South Dakota 4-H

SDSU Extension's 4-H Youth Development Program is  a partnership of federal (USDA), state (Land Grant University), and county resources through youth outreach activities of SDSU Extension. Youth learn and experience Leadership, Health and Wellness, Science and Ag-Vocacy through a network of professional staff and volunteers reaching more than 9,000 enrolled members with yearly programming efforts to an additional 35,000 youth participants.

Courtesy of iGrow. 4-H rodeo athlete, Mason Moody (left) was one of several volunteers helping host the South Dakota 4-H Finals Rodeo Special Needs Rodeo.

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SDSU Extension Staff Recognized with National Award

Categorized: Agronomy, Corn, Other Crops, Land, Water & Wildlife, Profit Tips, Soybeans, Wheat

BROOKINGS, S.D. - Two SDSU Extension staff were recognized by the National Association of County Agriculture Agents (NACAA) during the organization's national conference held in Utah, July 9-13, 2017.

Anthony Bly, SDSU Extension Soils Field Specialist received the 2017 Achievement Award and Connie L Strunk, SDSU Extension Plant Pathology Field Specialist received the 2017 Distinguished Service Award.

"The SDSU Extension team works every day to serve South Dakotans and fulfill the Land Grant mission. I am proud of Anthony and Connie for the national recognition they have received," said Alvaro Garcia, SDSU Extension Agriculture and Natural Resources Program Director & Professor.

Learn more about SDSU Extension award winners

The 2017 Achievement Award, which was presented to Anthony Bly, SDSU Extension Soils Field Specialist, recently received, is given to Agents with 10 years or less of service in Cooperative Extension. It is awarded to those who have exhibited excellence in the field of Extension Education.

This award is only presented to 2 percent of the SDSU Extension staff in South Dakota each year.

Bly has served four years as an SDSU Extension Soils Field Specialist. He previously served three years as an SDSU Extension Soils Associate.

His programming areas include soil health and cover crops as well as soil fertility and crop nutrition.

Bly is a native of South Dakota. He currently lives on his family's century farm near Garretson giving him a special connection to managing and improving agriculture's most important natural resource, the soil.

The 2017 Distinguished Service Award, which was presented to Connie L. Strunk, SDSU Extension Plant Pathology Field Specialist, is given to Agents with more than 10 years of service in Cooperative Extension. It recognizes those who have exhibited excellence in the field of Extension Education.

This award is only presented to 2 percent of the SDSU Extension staff in South Dakota each year.

As an SDSU Extension Plant Pathology Field Specialist, Strunk focuses on plant disease identification and management.

Strunk's programming highlights include; the SDSU Integrated Pest Management Field School for Agronomy Professionals, Private & Commercial Applicator Trainings and Certifications/Recertification, SDSU Wheat Walks, hands-on scouting schools, row crop clinics, trainings and workshops for adults and youth.

Strunk has also lead an introduction to agriculture program for elementary students called Field-to-Table and actively promotes women in science.

Strunk has been an active member of the South Dakota Association of Agricultural Professionals since 2006.

She has also served as the NACAA National Committee Chair for the Teaching and Educational Technologies Committee. She currently is serving as the NACAA North Central Region District Director.

Photo courtesy of iGrow. The 2017 Achievement Award, which was presented to Anthony Bly, SDSU Extension Soils Field Specialist, recently received, is given to Agents with 10 years or less of service in Cooperative Extension. It is awarded to those who have exhibited excellence in the field of Extension Education.

Photo courtesy of iGrow. The 2017 Distinguished Service Award, which was presented to Connie L. Strunk, SDSU Extension Plant Pathology Field Specialist, is given to Agents with more than 10 years of service in Cooperative Extension. It recognizes those who have exhibited excellence in the field of Extension Education.

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John McMaine New Assistant Professor & SDSU Extension Water Management Engineer

Categorized: Livestock, Beef, Horse, Land, Water & Wildlife, Sheep, Agronomy, Corn, Other Crops, Land, Water & Wildlife, Soybeans, Wheat

BROOKINGS, S.D. - Promoting management practices that improve South Dakota's water quality and are economically sustainable is a focus for John McMaine who was recently hired to serve as a South Dakota State University Assistant Professor and SDSU Extension Water Management Engineer.

"Growing up on a farm in rural Kentucky, I understand the realities of the modern American farmer and am cognizant of what it takes to succeed," McMaine said. "When it comes to water quality, the solutions I present need to be not only environmentally sustainable but economically sustainable."

In his role with SDSU Extension, McMaine will develop educational and research programming and activities which address minimizing environmental impacts of agricultural production systems. To accomplish this, McMaine will work closely with SDSU faculty and researchers, SDSU Extension staff, municipalities, producers and numerous other stakeholders throughout South Dakota.

McMaine will also spend time developing research to address water quality challenges faced by South Dakota's citizens and municipalities.

"John brings with him extensive knowledge he has gained from research and education as well as on-farm water management experience," said Alvaro Garcia, SDSU Extension Agriculture and Natural Resources Program Director & Professor.

More about John McMaine

As a youth, John McMaine developed an interest in water management. His family raises vegetables on a farmland bordering a small river. His dad also works off the farm as a civil engineer designing water treatment facilities.

"It seemed like every vacation we took growing up involved a tour of a water treatment plant," said McMaine, who has a PhD in Biosystems Agricultural Engineering from Oklahoma State University - Stillwater.

He said that because he had hands-on experience with irrigation and the several natural streams that run through his family's farm, he was able to make applicable connections from what he learned in textbooks and the classroom to his family's operation.

Most of his graduate and doctoral research focused on developing and evaluating tools that address water quality and water quantity issues in agricultural and urban settings.

"I'm looking forward to working with agriculture producers to help them develop management practices that will help them prevent erosion, improve stream bank stability and improve overall water quality," McMaine said.

He added that he also looks forward to teaming up with South Dakota's communities to improve urban water quality. To contact McMaine,he can be e-mailed.

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Megan Kludt 4-H Youth Program Advisor Lincoln County

Categorized: 4-H & Youth, South Dakota 4-H

BROOKINGS, S.D. - Megan Kludt recently joined SDSU Extension to serve along with Katherine Linnemanstons Jaeger as one of two SDSU Extension 4-H Youth Program Advisors for Lincoln County.

"As a 4-H alumnus, Megan brings hands-on experience as well as enthusiasm to work with the SDSU Extension 4-H team to enhance 4-H programming for youth, volunteers, and families throughout Lincoln County," said Donna Bittiker, SDSU Extension State 4-H Program Director.

In her role, Kludt will manage local 4-H operational elements, develop and deliver educational programs, establish working relationships and coalitions with other youth-serving groups and provide leadership for volunteers.

"I had a really good 4-H Program Advisor when I was growing up. She was a great role model to me and helped bring me out of my shell. I was really shy when I was little," Kludt said. "I look forward to working with volunteers and serving as a role model to Lincoln County youth."

More about Megan Kludt

Megan Kludt grew up near Pipestone, Minnesota on her family's more than a century-old dairy farm. She says that her dad, Steve Viland, encouraged her to show dairy cattle in 4-H and her passion for agriculture grew from there.

"My passion for agriculture began when I started showing dairy cows in 4-H. I really enjoyed working with the cows and gained confidence through showing them," explained Kludt, who went on to receive a Bachelor of Science in Dairy Production and Agricultural Education from South Dakota State University.

"I have always enjoyed working with agriculture and kids - my degree says it all - I am excited about this position because I will be able to give back to the agriculture community and 4-H by helping kids go out and discover their best selves."

To learn more about how you can become involved in South Dakota 4-H, contact your local SDSU Extension 4-H Youth Program Advisor. A complete listing can be found under the Field Staff Listing icon.

South Dakota 4-H

SDSU Extension's 4-H Youth Development Program is  a partnership of federal (USDA), state (Land Grant University), and county resources through youth outreach activities of SDSU Extension. Youth learn and experience Leadership, Health and Wellness, Science and Ag-Vocacy through a network of professional staff and volunteers reaching more than 9,000 enrolled members with yearly programming efforts to an additional 35,000 youth participants.

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Annie’s Project in McIntosh Beginning Oct. 16, 2017

Categorized: Livestock, Beef

BROOKINGS, S.D. - If you're a woman involved in the agriculture industry, then Annie's Project may be the program for you.

Have you ever asked a farm/ranch management question and not understood the answer? Have you ever signed papers at the bank or FSA and not really understood what they were for? Have you been thinking about if you have enough insurance or an estate plan? Have you wished you knew more about marketing your cattle or crops?

If you answered "yes" to any one of these questions then you are a perfect candidate for Annie's Project.

Hosted by SDSU Extension, Annie's Project is designed to empower women by providing detailed farm/ranch management information and build networks between women.

Over a six-week period women will learn how to develop financial records, learn key communication skills, ask questions about retirement and estate planning, expand marketing knowledge - all while having fun in a supportive learning environment.

Registration deadline is Oct. 10, 2017

Classes meet once a week beginning October 16, 2017 at the McIntosh City Hall. The classes continue October 23, 30, November 6, 13, and 20. Each session will run from 5:30 to 8:45 p.m.

The cost is $130 per person and meals will be served at each session.

For more information contact, Robin Salverson, SDSU Extension Cow/Calf Field Specialist at the SDSU Extension Regional Center in Lemmon, 605.374.4177. Pre-registration is due by October 10. Registration is on-line at the iGrow Events page, select McIntosh Annie's Project. Class space is limited.  

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2017 Range Beef Cow Symposium Nov. 28-30

Categorized: Livestock, Beef

BROOKINGS, S.D. - The Range Beef Cow Symposium will be held Nov. 28-30, 2017 at the Little America Resort and Convention Center in Cheyenne, Wyoming.

More than 25 speakers will address beef production topics such as nutrition, marketing, health, reproduction, consumer demand and current industry issues.

"The Range Beef Cow Symposium is a great opportunity to learn from nationally recognized beef experts on a wide variety of topics," said Julie Walker, Associate Professor & SDSU Extension Beef Specialist and a member of the planning committee for this year's event.

Launched in 1969 in Chadron, Nebraska and held every other year, the Range Beef Cow Symposium is organized by the animal science departments of South Dakota State University, Colorado State University, the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and University of Wyoming. SDSU Extension staff also help with planning and facilitating this event.

The event rotates between Colorado, western Nebraska, western South Dakota and Wyoming. The event focuses on beef production issues in the western states.

The Range Beef Cow Symposium regularly attracts attendees from across the region and more than 80 agribusiness booth vendors for the three-day event.

Nightly Bull Pen Sessions are one of the most popular aspects of the event. Speakers from the day's sessions are brought back as panelists and are made available for informal question-and-answer sessions.

The symposium begins at 9 a.m. Nov. 28 and concludes Nov. 30 with a half-day cattle-handling workshop.

For a complete agenda and to register visit, the Range Beef Cow Symposium website.

For more information, contact Steve Paisley, University of Wyoming Extension beef cattle specialist, at 307.837.2000 at the James C. Hageman Sustainable Agriculture Research and Extension Center near Lingle or by email. Contacts within South Dakota are: Ken Olson, Professor & SDSU Extension Beef Specialist, 605.394.2236 or by email or Julie Walker, 605.688.5458 or by email.

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Visit iGrow for 2017 State Fair Results

Categorized: 4-H & Youth, South Dakota 4-H

BROOKINGS, S.D. - It's almost time for the South Dakota State Fair!

Keep up with 4-H'ers from your county and across the state during the 2017 South Dakota State Fair at iGrow.org where results and photos will be posted daily.

This year more than 3,000+ 4-H members from across South Dakota are expected to enter more than 17,000+ exhibits during the fair held Aug. 31-Sept. 4, 2017 in Huron.

"State Fair showcases the best of what our 4-H youth have gained in the form of project-based learning, leadership skills and public speaking," said Peter Nielson, SDSU Extension Director of Youth Development Operations. "Youth are our future. I encourage the public to visit the Nordby Exhibit Hall to meet the best and brightest and show their support for them, their parents and the volunteers who make up South Dakota's 4-H family."

New in 2016, the expansive Nordby Exhibit Hall will feature much more than static exhibits. It will host several 4-H events like Special Foods demonstrations, public speaking presentations, Fashion Review and Performing Arts.

"4-H is as diverse as the youth we serve," explained Donna Bittiker, SDSU Extension State 4-H Program Director. "4-H has a long history of evolving with the needs of its members. If you haven't checked out 4-H livestock shows or visited member exhibits in a while, you'll be amazed at all the new opportunities4-H offers its members."

Bittiker added that State Fair is an excellent place to see 4-Hers, as young as 8,  polishing their public speaking skills.

"Through judging, demonstrations and presentations 4-H members are developing public speaking and communication skills they will use well into their adult lives and future careers," Bittiker said.

To view photos, results and to learn more, visit the iGrow 4-H & Youth Community page.

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Oct. 15 Deadline for Riparian Buffer Classification Program

Categorized: Agronomy, Corn, Other Crops, Profit Tips, Soybeans, Wheat

BROOKINGS, S.D. - To participate in the buffer strip incentive program signed into law during the 2017 South Dakota Legislative Session, landowners need to submit applications by October 15, 2017.

"South Dakota Senate Bill 66 provides an incentive for landowners to plant perennial vegetation on land adjoining qualified lakes, rivers or streams via a property tax adjustment in order to improve water quality," explained David Kringen, SDSU Extension Water Resources Field Specialist.

Riparian Buffer Classification Program Land Criteria

Under South Dakota Senate Bill 66, a separate land classification was created for eligible land consisting of existing or newly-planted perennial vegetation and will be assessed at 60 percent of the land's agricultural income value.

The vegetative buffer must be a minimum of 50 feet in width up to a maximum of 120 feet. Enrolled vegetative acres cannot be harvested or mowed before July 10. A 4-inch minimum must be maintained at all times.

Grazing is prohibited from May 1 through September 30.

Application deadline is Oct. 15, 2017

Applications for the Riparian Buffer Strip Classification Program are to be submitted to the Director of Equalization in the county where the property is located, and must be must be filed with the Director on or before October 15, 2017 for consideration for the 2018 assessment.

The link below provides an explanation of the law by the South Dakota Department of Revenue. Maps of all the qualified lakes and streams for every county, an application form and director contact information for each county.

In order to qualify for the tax reassessment each year, landowners must apply annually on or before October 15 to verify that the program criteria have been met.

Contact your county Director of Equalization for more information.

For more information and program details, visit the South Dakota Buffer Strip website.

Photo courtesy of iGrow. To participate in the buffer strip incentive program signed into law during the 2017 South Dakota Legislative Session, landowners need to submit applications by October 15, 2017.

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Estate Planning & Farm Transition Conference Sept. 14

Categorized: Livestock, Profit Tips, Agronomy, Profit Tips, Healthy Families, Family & Personal Finance

BROOKINGS, S.D. - SDSU Extension will host Sustaining the Legacy Conference Sept. 14, 2017. This estate planning and farm transition conference will be held in Sioux Falls, at the SDSU Extension Sioux Falls Regional Center (2001 E. Eighth St., Sioux Falls, SD 57103).

The conference begins at 8 a.m. with registration and breakfast and runs until 5 p.m.

The 2017 Sustaining the Legacy conference will cover a variety of topics specialized for agricultural producers in three categories:

  1. Those with children/heirs returning to the operation;
  2. Those with no heirs returning to the operation; and
  3. Those that do not know if they will have heirs returning.

"There are a lot of tools available to the agriculture community to accomplish their estate planning goals," said Heather Gessner, SDSU Extension Livestock Business Management Field Specialist. "The goals you have for your operation will direct which tools you use and how they are implemented."

Registration deadline is Sept. 7, 2017

The conference includes two general sessions and four breakout sessions. Contact Heather Gessner or the SDSU Extension Sioux Falls Regional Center (605.782.3290) for registration information.

To cover expenses registration is $50 per family, up to five family members. Registration includes breakfast.

Seating is limited and late registration of $100 will be charged after September 7, 2017.

"There are many components to estate planning that all family members need to be aware of, however, there are differences between the tools that might be used if you know an heir is returning compared to those that know they will not have an heir taking over the operation. The breakout sessions are designed to address those differences," Gessner said.

Breakout topics will include:

  1. Land rental rates and fair rent determination;
  2. Trusts, business structures (LLC, Corporations, etc.);
  3. Taxes;
  4. Powers of attorney, funeral planning, life insurance considerations, long term care insurance;
  5. Retirement planning with and without heir returning;
  6. Wills and probate; and
  7. Titling property.

All family members are encouraged to attend as there are multiple breakout sessions and information for all involved with the family business.

Sponsor booths will also be available for attendees to talk to industry professionals that can help develop the estate plan or provide the tools needed.

Consider this opportunity as an low-cost opportunity to consult with attorneys, life insurance and long term care insurance providers, financial planning agents and others.

For questions regarding the Sustaining the Legacy conference, contact Heather Gessner, 605.782.3290 or email.

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Jodi Thompson 4-H Youth Program Advisor

Categorized: 4-H & Youth, South Dakota 4-H, Youth Development

BROOKINGS, S.D. - Jodi Thompson recently joined SDSU Extension to serve as the SDSU Extension 4-H Youth Program Advisor for Bon Homme and Douglas Counties.

"We are excited to welcome Jodi to the team of 4-H Youth Program Advisors who serve South Dakota's youth and communities," said Donna Bittiker, SDSU Extension State 4-H Program Director.

In her role, Thompson will manage local 4-H operational elements, develop and deliver educational programs, establish working relationships and coalitions with other youth-serving groups and provide leadership for volunteers.

A 4-H alumnus, Thompson understands the impact 4-H's project-based learning can have on youth.

"I am the third-generation in my family to show horses. Before qualifying for our 4-H horse show, our 4-H leader would ask me to give a speech or public presentation that would help younger club members prepare for the show. These talks really developed my public speaking skills," Thompson explained. "Talking about something you're passionate about makes it easier to be comfortable speaking in front of people."

More about Jodi Thompson

Thompson grew up in Renner. When she turned 8 her grandpa, Gene Carr, who was a retired 4-H leader, encouraged her to turn her interest in horses into a 4-H project.

As she gained experience and became more involved in 4-H, Thompson began helping out, mentoring younger members. Even after she graduated high school, Thompson would return home to help out her 4-H club.

"Because of my 4-H experience, I always knew I wanted to help others in my future career," says the South Dakota State University graduate trained horses throughout her college career.

In 2013 Thompson received a Bachelor of Science majoring in Political Science and Sociology with a Specialization in Human Resources and in 2016 she received her Master of Science in School Counseling.

Prior to joining the SDSU Extension team, Thompson worked for Human Services Center as a youth counselor. She is eager to put her education and experience to work serving youth and families in Bon Homme and Douglas Counties.

"I am looking forward to working with the youth, families and communities within Douglas and Bon Homme Counties, so that together, we can build a 4-H program which provides youth with experiences and opportunities that prepare them for a more successful future," Thompson said.

To learn more about South Dakota 4-H, contact your local SDSU Extension 4-H Youth Program Advisor. A complete listing can be found online at iGrow.org under the Field Staff icon.

Photo courtesy of iGrow. Jodi Thompson recently joined SDSU Extension to serve as the SDSU Extension 4-H Youth Program Advisor for Bon Homme and Douglas Counties.

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4-H Recognizes Volunteers during 2017 State Fair

Categorized: 4-H & Youth, South Dakota 4-H

BROOKINGS, S.D. - Five South Dakotans will be inducted into the 4-H Hall of Fame Sept. 3 during the 2017 South Dakota State Fair held in Huron.

The 2017 4-H Hall of Fame inductees include: Elaine Kanable, Mound City; Dianne Thyen, Hayti; Jerry and Carmen Grace, Hartford; Dale Curtis, Ipswich and Marsha Howard, Miller.

The ceremony will be held in the Nordby Exhibit Hall (1060 3rd St. SW, Huron, SD 57350) on the State Fair Grounds in Huron at 6 p.m. Everyone is welcome to attend the ceremony.

"The South Dakota State Fair is the perfect event to honor and recognize 4-H volunteers who have put in years of service to the 4-H members and families in South Dakota," said Audrey Rider, SDSU Extension Volunteer Development Field Specialist.

The 4-H Hall of Fame commemorates the 4-H Centennial, which occurred in 2002. Each summer individuals who have made significant contributions to county or state 4-H Programming are honored through the 4-H Hall of Fame.

"The 4-H Volunteer Hall of Fame is intended to honor the many volunteers who contribute to the 4-H Program," said Donna Bittiker, SDSU Extension State 4-H Program Director. "The individuals honored have given unselfish service through their talent, time and leadership to the 4-H program. They have been an advocate on behalf of 4-H. These volunteers are an outstanding example of the impact a caring adult can have in the lives of children."

The 2017 4-H Hall of Fame inductees have volunteered anywhere from 35 to 50 years.

More about South Dakota 4-H

SDSU Extension's 4-H Youth Development Program is  a partnership of federal (USDA), state (Land Grant University) and county resources through youth outreach activities of SDSU Extension. Youth learn and experience Leadership, Health and Wellness, Science and Ag-Vocacy through a network of professional staff and volunteers reaching more than 9,000 enrolled members with yearly programming efforts to an additional 35,000 youth participants.

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How will Soybeans with Dicamba Drift or Contamination Impact Yields

Categorized: Agronomy, Soybeans

BROOKINGS, S.D. - During 2017 Dakotafest, the most frequently asked question Paul O. Johnson, SDSU Extension Weed Science Coordinator received from growers was: "How will soybean fields affected by dicamba drift or sprayer contamination yield?"

"It would be nice if there was a formula that could be used to determine that answer but unfortunately, that is wishful thinking," Johnson said. "Trying to predict soybean yield response to observed short-term plant injury symptoms caused by dicamba injury is nearly impossible."

However, Johnson added there are some things growers should consider which may be useful in answering the question.

First, examine the growing point of the soybean plant.

"Continued development of new leaves is a positive sign," he said. "Historically, when dicamba injury was noted on soybean before June 15, and if the growing point remained healthy, it was very likely no yield reduction would be noted."

If the growing point was damaged, Johnson said, based on historical data, a yield reduction was likely.

"Throughout most of the fields I have scouted this year, the growing point is still intact," he said. "However, many dicamba applications occurred this year after June 15. And, no credible information exists on the potential yield reduction to soybean when dicamba injury happens after June 15."

Dicamba injury can also delay soybean maturity, which can place the crop at risk if there is an early frost.

Past research conducted at SDSU, in the late 1970s, by Auch looked at the yield impact of dicamba injury to soybean.

"In many cases, soybean yield was decreased. In other situations, a yield increase was recorded from dicamba-damaged soybean," Johnson said. "However, soybean response to dicamba injury was highly rate-specific and environmentally dependent."

At harvest, Johnson encourages soybean growers to consider documenting areas of the field that appear to have low, medium, and high foliar injury symptoms.

"Today's yield monitor technology will show a possible answer to the question of yield impact," he said. 

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You Need a Financial Counselor or Coach, Here’s How to Choose One

Categorized: Healthy Families, Family & Personal Finance

BROOKINGS, S.D. - No matter where you are in your financial life, chances are you could benefit from financial education and support.

"Even in today's environment of instant access to information, people often have trouble knowing what information to trust and who to turn to for financial advice," said Lorna Saboe-Wounded Head, SDSU Extension Family Resource Management Field Specialist.

For individuals and families who don't know where to begin, Saboe-Wounded Head encouraged them to look for a professional accredited with the Association for Financial Counseling and Planning Education® (AFCPE®).

"AFCPE® is one of the most respected organizations offering certifications in the field of financial counseling, coaching, and education," Saboe-Wounded Head said.

She explained that AFCPE® is unique because it works to ensure that individuals and families can navigate the "alphabet soup" and have access to the highest standard of financial advice, at any stage of life.

Either Accredited Financial Counselors® or Financial Fitness Coaches™ are great resources. "Both types of professionals can help you get your financial bearings, tackle an immediate financial crisis, overcome debt, grow your savings, manage student loans, build a sound financial foundation and even refer you to a different type of trusted financial professional when your needs change," she said.

She added. "By becoming an informed consumer, you can choose a financial counselor or coach who is the best possible fit for your financial situation and your life."

Whether it be an Accredited Financial Counselor® (AFC®), a Financial Fitness Coach™ (FFC™) or another reputable certified financial professional, asking questions is a necessary first step to making the best choice to meet your needs and goals.

Before selecting a financial professional, here are some important questions to ask:

  • What experience do you have? Ask for a brief description of financial professionals' work experience and how it relates to their current practice. Do they have strong experience helping people in a situation that is similar to your own?
  • Is there an oversight body requiring ongoing education and ethics? Ask about the credentials your professional holds and learn how he or she stays up to date with current changes and developments in the personal finance field.
  • What services do you offer? Credentials, Licenses, and areas of expertise are all factors that determine the services a financial professional can offer. Financial counselors and coaches do not sell insurance or securities products, such as mutual funds or stocks. They also do not typically offer investment advice unless registered with state or federal authorities.
  • What is your approach? Make sure the professional's philosophy and approach align with your needs and values. You also may consider your financial professional's personality and communication style. Standard wisdom on seeking the advice of financial professionals often overlooks the importance of personal compatibility. 
  • What types of clients do you typically work with? Some financial professionals prefer to work with clients whose assets fall within a particular range, so it's important to make sure that the counselor or coach is a good fit for your individual financial situation.
  • How much do you charge? The financial counselor or coach should be able to provide you with an estimate of possible costs based on the work to be performed.
  • How will I pay for your services? Financial professionals can be paid in several ways. As part of your written agreement, your financial counselor should make it clear how they will be paid for the services to be provided.
  • Do others stand to gain from the financial advice you give me? Ask the professional to provide you with a description of any conflicts of interest in writing.
  • Ask for more background. Consider requesting a referral. Also, consider asking whether the professional has ever been disciplined for any unlawful or unethical actions.

For more information or questions, contact Saboe-Wounded Head by email.

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Now is the time to Scout for Palmer Amaranth

Categorized: Agronomy, Corn, Other Crops, Soybeans, Wheat

BROOKINGS, S.D. - SDSU Extension staff encourages farmers, ranchers and other landowners to scout for Palmer Amaranth, a weed that has been rapidly spreading north in the U.S. and is likely to be Glyphosate resistant.

"Now is the time to scout for Palmer Amaranth," said Paul O. Johnson, SDSU Extension Weed Science Coordinator. "In most cases, Palmer Amaranth should be about fully grown which is when it is easiest to Identify."

It's been about three years since the first Palmer Amaranth (Amaranthus palmen) was found in South Dakota since that time, the weed has been confirmed in 12 sites throughout the state.

Palmer Amaranth is in the pigweed family. Johnson said the weed has a lot of close relatives in the pigweed family which can easily be confused for Palmer Amaranth.

"Common waterhemp is the pigweed cousin most commonly confused with Palmer Amarant," he said, adding that spiny pigweed, tumble pigweed, smooth pigweed and redroot pigweed can also be confused with Palmer Amaranth.

What to look for when scouting

When scouting for Palmer Amaranth, Johnson says the key indicators that a weed is Palmer Amaranth are as follows:

  • Some of the petioles (the short stem from the main stem to the leaf) will be a lot longer than the leaf length;
  • The area where the stem connects to the petioles will have spines on it;
  • On Palmer Amaranth, the leaf is more cordate (heart shaped) than waterhemp which is more elliptic (oblong); and
  • The Palmer Amaranth head will be long and if it is female, the plant will also be spiny.

"There is no one thing to look for that is a sure sign in all cases the plant is Palmer Amaranth," Johnson said. "It seems like we are more likely to find it in areas that have stress periods."

So far, the weed has been found in the central South Dakota. Usually found in sunflower or soybean fields.

If you suspect to have Palmer Amaranth, Johnson urges you to take photos of the entire plant, the leaf and petiole area, the stem and petiole area, as well as a picture of the seed head.

E-mail photos to Johnson by email. Send them in high resolution. Please include your best contact information so that identification results can be shared as well as more questions asked if necessary. For more information, feel free to also call Johnson at 605.688.4591.

Photo courtesy of iGrow. Palmer Amaranth, pictured here, have a longer petiole than leaf. Waterhemp is just the opposite.

Photo courtesy of iGrow. Palmer has this spiny growth between stem and petiole. Waterhemp does not. 

Photo courtesy of iGrow. Small Palmer plant in sunflower field.

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Attend Oct. 7, 2017 SDSU Football Game & Support S.D. 4-H

Categorized: 4-H & Youth, South Dakota 4-H

BROOKINGS, S.D. - South Dakota State University is hosting South Dakota 4-H night Saturday, October 7, 2017 as the Jackrabbit football team hosts Southern Illinois.

All 4-H members, volunteers, family and friends are invited to take part in this fundraising opportunity by attending the SDSU Football game.

With your purchase of a ticket, SDSU Extension's South Dakota 4-H program will receive $10 per ticket. Funds will help grow the organization as a whole.

Ticket deadline is 5 p.m. Oct. 5, 2017.

Details:

The football game will begin at 6 p.m. Saturday, October 7, 2017 in the Dana J. Dykhouse Stadium on the campus of South Dakota State University.

To reserve tickets call 605.688.5422. Mention 4-H Night and $10 will go to support South Dakota 4-H. To reserve your tickets on-line following the directions below:

  • Log on to the Jackrabbit ticket office page;
  • Click on the Jackrabbit Football tab and then "Purchase Jackrabbit Single Event Tickets" tab;
  •  Select the game "FB1703 -Football v Southern Illinois";
  • Click on "Specials and Students" tab; and;
  • Enter the promo code "4H" on that page.

This offer is not available the day of the game. Tickets are available for friends and family - there is no ticket limit.

Any questions regarding 4-H Night can be directed to the Jackrabbit ticket office at 605.688.5422.

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Understanding the Acronyms of Financial Professionals

Categorized: Healthy Families, Family & Personal Finance

BROOKINGS, S.D. - If you've ever looked for a financial professional, you've probably encountered unfamiliar acronyms, also known as designations or credentials, following the candidates' names.

"CPA, CFP®, CFA®, ChFC®: What do these letters mean and why are they important?" asks Lorna Saboe-Wounded Head, SDSU Extension Family Resource Management Field Specialist. "Anyone can call themselves a financial counselor, coach, advisor or planner, but a credential often demonstrates a higher level of education, specialty or commitment."

She explained that in many cases, the credentialing process is like going to school for a specialized program.

"That said, all credentials are not created equal," Saboe-Wounded Head said.

A reputable certification program requires rigorous education and examination, field experience, an ongoing commitment to continuing education and abidance by a high code of ethics.

"Some programs raise this standard by demonstrating compliance with an accrediting body," she said.

For instance, in the field of financial counseling, coaching, and education, the Association for Financial Counseling and Planning Education® (AFCPE®) is one of the most respected organizations offering certifications. Association for Financial Counseling and Planning Education®also connects financial professionals across the continuum to ensure that individuals and families, like yours, can navigate the "alphabet soup" and have access to the highest standard of financial advice,at any stage of life.

There are many financial designations, but the following are some of the most common and cover a range of services to meet the needs of most Americans:

  • AFC®-An Accredited Financial Counselor® has expertise across the client's entire financial life-cycle, so they are able to counsel clients at any point in their lives. An AFC® can help individuals and families successfully navigate a financial crisis, overcome debt, modify ineffective money management behaviors, build an effective spending plan and provide a strong financial education foundation to meet both short-term needs and long-term goals. 
  • CFA® - A Chartered Financial Analyst® provides advanced investment analysis and portfolio management. Their studies include the mastery of investment tools and analytical methods in a variety of applications for effective portfolio management and wealth planning.
  • CFP® - The Certified Financial PlannerTM certification indicates that someone has in-depth theoretical and practical knowledge of personal financial planning, tax planning, employee benefits and retirement planning, estate planning, investment management, and insurance and risk management. The CFP® requires field experience and successful completion of a comprehensive exam and is regulated by an oversight body, the CFP Board.
  • ChFC® - A Chartered Financial Consultant® covers the fundamentals of financial planning like a CFP®, but a ChFC is an advanced planning designation that also covers real-world, practical planning applications for special circumstances, including in-depth coverage of planning for business owners, single-parent and blended families, LGBT families and special-needs situations.
  • CPA - A Certified Public Accountant (CPA) is an accounting professional who has passed the Uniform CPA examination, administered by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, and also has met additional state certification and experience requirements. CPAs can work in any area of finance, including tax preparation, consulting, and of course, general accounting.
  • FFC™ - A Financial Fitness Coach™ has a strong financial knowledge base, coupled with the coaching skills and techniques that allow their client to be an active participant in creating solutions and a personalized financial plan. This certification may stand alone or be acquired as an enhanced skillset to a financial counseling or planning certification.
  • RICP® - A Retirement Income Certified Professional®offers focused expertise in retirement income planning, including structuring effective retirement income plans, mitigating risk to the plan and creating a sustainable stream of income to last throughout your retirement years.

If you come across an unfamiliar designation, you can search its meaning and requirements through the look-up tool offered by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA).

"When working with financial representatives, don't be afraid to ask questions about their credentials, including who issued them, what training and continuing education was required and how to verify their standing through an accrediting organization," Saboe-Wounded Head said. "A trustworthy financial professional will be glad to share more about his or her credentials."

Understand the "menu." By familiarizing yourself with the "alphabet soup" of designations, you can find the perfect advocate to help you achieve your financial goals.

If you have questions, contact Saboe-Wounded Head by email.

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South Dakota Soybean On-Farm Research Program is Research at Your Fingertips

Categorized: Agronomy, Soybeans

BROOKINGS, S.D. - Today, hundreds of South Dakota soybean growers double as citizen scientists, testing various products and farming practices in their own fields with the intent to increase yields, ward off pests and disease and improve overall profits.

Now, thanks to the South Dakota Soybean On-Farm Research Program website, farmers can easily share on-farm research data and navigate local test results. The website is supported by a collaborative effort between SDSU Extension, the South Dakota Soybean Research and Promotion Council (SDSRPC) and the South Dakota Agricultural Experiment Station at SDSU.

"The South Dakota soybean checkoff is excited to launch the On-Farm Research Program tool," said Matt Bainbridge, an Ethan farmer and SDSRPC Chairman. "We have a lot of innovative farmers across the state completing a number of interesting research trials on their farms. This website brings the results to all South Dakota farmers and will help us identify trends and strategies to increase soybean yields."

Farmer-driven research

For more than a century, SDSU faculty, researchers and SDSU Extension staff have worked with South Dakota farmers to conduct on-farm research. What sets this program apart is the easy access to results and the farmer-driven nature of the research.

"Essentially, farmers get to choose what treatment or practice they want to test and our team will work with them to set up the protocol, collect the data, analyze the data and share the results on the website," explained David Clay, SDSU Professor of Plant Science.

Once results are available, they will be posted anonymously for all to see on the website. The website is designed for easy navigating. Soybean growers can search by research trial and location.

"Farmers are inundated with product information that will allegedly boost yields. The best way to know if it will work on their farm is to test it there. Or, visit this website, where they can see if a test has already been conducted on a field near them and review results," Clay said.

This collaborative project is funded by SDSRPC, the South Dakota soybean checkoff organization.

"This project fits perfectly within the research and outreach mission of our land grant university," said David Wright, Department Head of the Department of Agronomy, Horticulture and Plant Science. "Our team is eager to work with South Dakota's soybean farmers to expand knowledge and improve on-farm profits."

To learn more or begin your own on-farm field test, visit the On The Farm Research page or contact David Clay by email or Graig Reicks by email.

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WorkWise at the Worksite

Categorized: Healthy Families, Family & Personal Finance

BROOKINGS, S.D. - WorkWise at the Worksite is an employee financial wellness program developed by SDSU Extension that can be tailored to fit the needs of your employees.

"Even though a steady income is a measure of financial security, many employees may still experience financial stress," said Lorna Saboe-Wounded Head, SDSU Extension Family Resource Management Field Specialist.

She cites the 2016 Financial industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) Investor Education Foundation's National Financial Capability Study which found that 21 percent of Americans - more than one in five - have unpaid medical debt, almost one-third or 29 percent of 18 to 34-year-olds have been late with a mortgage payment and half of study respondents reported not having an emergency fund that could cover expenses for three months.

"These statistics provide insight into personal stresses that employees may bring to the workplace, which could affect their productivity," Saboe-Wounded Head said. "Research has shown that providing financial educating in the workplace improved employees' financial well-being."

WorkWise at the Worksite

Saboe-Wounded Head developed the WorkWise at the Worksite financial wellness program for the workplace. A 2017 pilot of this program was put on in two South Dakota organizations.

"Because of the program, employees reported an increase in financial knowledge and intention to develop or revise an existing budget, start an emergency savings account, and make a plan for their tax refund," said Saboe-Wounded Head, quoting survey results.

The program includes online webinars presented to employees which covered the following topics:

  • Budgeting
  • Planning for irregular expenses
  • Tax planning
  • Predatory lending
  • Credit reports and scores.

WorkWise at the Worksite programs can be presented online or face-to-face. SDSU Extension will work with worksites to ensure employees can attend a scheduled session or view recordings on their own.

The cost of the program will be determined by the number of sessions, method of programming and number of participants.

To learn more, contact Lorna Saboe-Wounded Head by email.

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Ribbon Cutting Aug. 31 for SDSU Plant Science Research Support Facility

Categorized: Agronomy, Corn, Other Crops, Profit Tips, Soybeans, Wheat

BROOKINGS, S.D. - The South Dakota State University Plant Science Research Support Facility grand opening will be held on Aug. 31, 2017.  The program and ribbon cutting will begin at 2 p.m. at the site west of the motor pool near 1601 Stadium Road in Brookings. South Dakota Gov. Dennis Daugaard is scheduled to speak at the event as well as South Dakota State University President Barry Dunn.

Due to an expansion in the Agronomy, Horticulture and Plant Science Department at South Dakota State University, SDSU officials recognized a significant need for more modern seed processing and storage facilities. Keeping the vision of SDSU President Barry Dunn in mind, this facility will allow for an increase in research and hands-on learning opportunities for students at South Dakota State University.

“This building provides modern space for our wheat, oat and forage breeders, to enhance their ability to release competitive varieties, targeted for South Dakota farmers,” said Dr. David Wright, head of the Department of Agronomy, Horticulture and Plant Science. “SDSU wheat and oat varieties are grown and tested globally. Those programs access new germplasm from around the world and this germplasm is used to strengthen the agronomic and yield performance that producers enjoy.”

Wright said the original seed house was built in 1947. The design of the new building encompasses modern work and office space, keeping employee safety top of mind.  It provides much-needed expanded space for plant breeding research, which coupled with current research labs, will allow the release of novel crop varieties for production in the region. 

The 17,000 sq.-foot facility includes refrigerated units for long-term storage of germplasm and pure seed stock; project workrooms for processing, handling, sorting, and storage of seed stock to be used for research projects; grinding areas for separation of the seed from chaff; drying rooms, and a drive-through unloading alley which can accommodate small combines unloading grain and research material in a secure environment.  

About the SDSU Agronomy, Horticulture and Plant Science Department

The SDSU Agronomy, Horticulture and Plant Science Department is a multidisciplinary department with the size and breadth to address today’s complex teaching, research and outreach needs in agriculture and horticulture. The department offers educational opportunities through B.S. degrees in agronomy, horticulture, and precision agriculture that span a range of careers in the plant sciences such as agronomy, crop production, entomology, genetics, genomics, horticulture, plant breeding, plant pathology, soil science, and weed science.

For more information about the SDSU Agronomy, Horticulture and Plant Science Department please contact Dr. David L. Wright, Department Head and Professor, SDSU Department of Agronomy, Horticulture and Plant Science, SAG 244, Box 2107A, Berg Agricultural Hall, South Dakota State University, Brookings, SD 57007, Telephone: 605.688.5123 or by email

“This building provides modern space for our wheat, oat and forage breeders, to enhance their ability to release competitive varieties, targeted for South Dakota farmers,” said Dr. David Wright, head of the Department of Agronomy, Horticulture and Plant Science.

The 17,000 sq.-foot facility includes refrigerated units for long-term storage of germplasm and pure seed stock; project workrooms for processing, handling, sorting, and storage of seed stock to be used for research projects; grinding areas for separation of the seed from chaff; drying rooms, and a drive-through unloading alley which can accommodate small combines unloading grain and research material in a secure environment.

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West Nile in South Dakota: Expect Cases Into the Early Fall

Categorized: Healthy Families, Aging, Families, Health & Wellness, Community Development, Communities, Gardens, Home & Garden Pests

BROOKINGS, S.D. - As a mosquito-transmitted virus, West Nile Virus is usually thought of as a summertime problem. However, data shows that a significant number  of human cases occur after August 31.

"This fall, South Dakotans should not relax their protection efforts," said Russ Daly, Professor, SDSU Extension Veterinarian, State Public Health Veterinarian. "While it's true that in South Dakota, most West Nile Virus cases occur during August, in most years, new human infections are detected well into September," Daly said.

Daly quotes a retrospective of South Dakota West Nile Virus epidemiology which revealed 17 percent of cases from 2001-2011 occurred after August 31. In recent years, cases have even been observed in October.

"West Nile Virus is a fact of life during South Dakota summers. However, realizing the threat also persists into the early fall will mean people can take steps to prevent these later infections," Daly said.

Human cases of West Nile Virus have been detected in all 66 counties in South Dakota, over all age groups and ethnicities.

Seasonal Pattern

The seasonal pattern of West Nile Virus infection in South Dakota reflects the presence and activity of its carrier, the Culex tarsalis mosquito species.

This mosquito species, Daly explained, is prevalent throughout South Dakota, preferring to feed on birds and people.

"As the summer progresses, their feeding preference shifts more towards people, making late-summer barbecues and football games a prime focus for them," Daly said.

Symptoms

Most people exposed to West Nile Virus show no signs of illness, as evidenced by serologic studies that find people have developed antibody responses in the absence of sickness. However, one in five people infected develop West Nile Fever, and one in 100 go on to a more severe neuroinvasive disease - of those cases 10 percent are fatal.

Symptoms of illness occur two to 15 days after a bite from an infected mosquito.

"This makes it possible for people to develop symptoms even after mosquito activity has stopped in the fall," Daly said.

West Nile Fever is characterized by fever, body aches, headache, rashes and swollen glands - symptoms that could be caused by a number of illnesses. People with those symptoms should see their healthcare provider.

While there are no specific cures for West Nile Virus infections, supportive care may be necessary in some cases.

Prevention

More importantly, people should still be vigilant against mosquitoes right up until the first killing frost.

Perhaps the best line of prevention is to use insect repellents when it's necessary to be out at night, in addition to wearing long pants and long sleeved-shirts.

While many communities have mosquito-spraying programs in place through the summer and early fall, property owners can do their part to reduce mosquito habitat by getting rid of sources of standing water.

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Managing Through the Drought

Categorized: Livestock, Beef, Drought, Profit Tips

Column by Adele Harty, SDSU Extension Cow/Calf Field Specialist

As drought conditions continue to expand and worsen through the Dakotas and Montana, ranchers are faced with the stress and challenges of making the best decisions for their operations.

There are multiple factors that play into the decision-making process, with some being more challenging than others.

One of the factors that makes this process more difficult at times, is being able to separate the emotion from the business.

Oftentimes we see the ranch as more than a business but focusing on the basics of making decisions on what is best for the business will help persevere through tough times.

Tools & Resources

To make the best management decisions, it is important to utilize your resources and contacts to gather information and make the most informed decisions.

There are multiple people who can help provide information, including fellow ranchers, ag lenders, veterinarians, and extension professionals, to name and few.

SDSU Extension offers multiple tools and resources to provide information. Below is a listing of just a few that can be used in making the best drought management decisions for your operation.

Drought Management Publication

Drought Management Tips for Ranchers is an SDSU Extension publication that compiles multiple resources on management decisions focusing on supply management, including: feed resources, rotational grazing, water quantity and quality.

This publication also addresses demand management and decisions that can affect or decrease the demand for feed resources, such as early weaning, shortening the breeding season to only keep the most fertile females, and culling practices.

Be willing to think outside the box to determine what will work best for your ranch and have a plan in place before drought happens again, so that you are ready and prepared to make those hard decisions.

Decision-Making Tools

On the SDSU Economics website, there are multiple spreadsheets available for download that can assist in decision making. These include a Haul the Cattle Worksheet that allows livestock producers to compare hauling the cattle to feed versus hauling the feed to the cattle.

Additionally, there is a Feed Nutrient Comparison Calculator that allows users to put the price, distance for trucking and feed analysis information in for various feeds and determine which is the cheapest option while meeting nutrient needs.

There are also Livestock Budget templates to assist in determining what you can afford to pay for the other items in the spreadsheets.

Feed Testing Laboratories

During drought years, it is vitally important to send forage samples to a lab for analysis. Many livestock producers may be using different feeds than normal and being able to determine what additional feed or supplement needs to be added to the mix will be key for meeting nutrient requirements as well as making the smartest economic decisions.

The iGrow publication, Feed Testing Laboratories contains information about where samples can be sent for analysis.

SDSU Extension Experts

As you are working through these decisions, don't hesitate to contact one of the SDSU Extension Cow/Calf Field Specialists, State Beef Specialists, Livestock Business Management Field Specialists or Beef Feedlot Management Associate.

Our experts would be happy to visit about your situation and help work through any problems you are having.

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A Look at Cover Crops: Winter Rye

Categorized: Agronomy, Corn, Other Crops, Profit Tips, Soybeans, Wheat

BROOKINGS, S.D. - Winter rye is a cover crop that is consistently performing in South Dakota fields hosting corn-soybean rotations.

"Growers with strict corn-soybean rotations are limited in their options for cover crop species, since there is not enough growing degree days left for cover crops to grow after primary grain crop has been harvested," said David Karki, SDSU Extension Agronomy Field Specialist.

Karki explained that when cover crops are integrated into small grain crop rotations there are many more options because the earlier harvest allows for an adequate seasonal window for a variety of cover crops to establish.

Benefits of winter rye

Winter rye is known for its winter hardiness, allowing late fall planting and rapid growth the following spring.

"Furthermore, adding a cool season small grain component into a corn-soybean rotation not only adds diversity to the cropping system but also helps break pest pressures in the field," Karki said.

Winter rye is also known for its inherent ability to suppress weeds because of its allelopathic characteristics. "Basically, winter rye produces biochemical compounds that inhibits germination, growth and reproduction of other plants," Karki explained.

Over the long term, incorporating cover crops also improves soil health and provides supplemental forage.

Fitting winter rye into the rotation

Considering growing habits of all three crops is essential when determining the order of winter rye within the cropping sequence.

"Planting rye after corn and ahead of soybeans, seems to be a better fit than to grow rye before corn," Karki said.

He explained that by planting the cover crop before soybeans, the corn residue provides protection to rye seedlings. "In addition, soybeans can tolerate later planting in the spring better than corn which allows rye to accumulate more spring growth."

Rye biomass in the spring can be terminated as cover or utilized as forage depending on the grower's need.

Research conducted in various Southeast South Dakota in recent years has shown no negative impact on soybean yields when grown on rye cover crop residue.

On the other hand, Karki said corn yield tends to suffer following a rye cover crop.

"This could be due to allelopathic effects of growing rye cover crop or the micro climate created by the rye residue on the soil surface at the time of corn seeding," he said.

It is suggested to terminate rye two to three weeks prior to corn planting to avoid any negative impact on corn plant health and grain yield.

Planting suggestions
 

  • Seeding rate is about 40 pounds-per-acre as a cover crop, however, it can be increased to 75 pounds-per-acre if weed suppression is the primary objective.
  • Aerial seeding can be done during mid to late corn seed-filling stage (early September). Research results show that aerial seeded (or broadcast method) rye produces about 80 percent of the spring biomass of drill-seeded following grain harvest.

Potential risk

  • Producers of small grains, such as wheat, oat, barley, etc. are suggested not to use winter rye as a cover crop because it may act as significant contaminant or weed in small grain crops.
  • As winter rye accumulate rapid growth in the spring, it is a good practice to look out for short or medium term spring weather so that rye can be terminated early when conditions are drier than usual.

To learn more about implementing cover crops into your rotation, contact David Karki.


Figure 1. Rye cover crop growth in spring in field near Sioux Falls, SD.
Courtesy: iGrow

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SDSU Extension and American Indian Tribes Join Forces to Help Buffalo

Categorized: Livestock, Beef, Land, Water & Wildlife, Community Development, Communities

Column by Alvaro Garcia, SDSU Extension Agriculture & Natural Resources Program Director

An adequate balance between healthy grasslands and well managed agricultural cropland is critical for the long-term sustainability of the Great Plains. This vast area was once the habitat of 50 to 75 million head of buffalo, which roamed freely resulting in yearly cycles of partial plant defoliation and fertilization that helped maintain a stable and healthy ecosystem.

SDSU Extension recently brought together a group of interested individuals to meet at South Dakota State University to discuss the future of the American Bison. The group included delegates from the Inter-Tribal Buffalo Council, National Bison Association, University of Saskatchewan, Canadian Bison Association, SDSU Faculty, SDSU Extension staff and allied industry representatives.

During this meeting, Jimmy Doyle, SDSU Extension Natural Resource Management Field Specialist, along with myself and faculty members from the SDSU Natural Resource Management Department discussed how we are working with South Dakota Tribes to raise buffalo.

SDSU Extension continues to support American Indian tribes in their effort to bring back the buffalo to their natural grassland habitat. The buffalo has not only been revered by the American Indians since ancient times, but it also constitutes an important source of beef and revenue for tribal members.

Read on to learn more about two specific projects.

Sinte Gleska University

Faculty from SDSU and SDSU Extension staff are currently working with Sinte Gleska University to transition what was previously a 22,000-acre Todd County cattle ranch to raise buffalo.

Sinte Gleska is a four-year, private, American Indian tribal college, located in Mission, South Dakota, on the Rosebud Indian Reservation. This is a Brulé Lakota Indian Reservation home to the Sicangu.

Plans are also underway for SDSU Extension to help with the ranch inventory and range management plan.

At the present time pastures are being identified and fences and wells repaired with the goal to introduce 150-200 buffalo in the fall.

Yankton Sioux Tribe

SDSU Extension is also working to help the Yankton Sioux Tribe.

In August 2017 Sandy Smart, Professor & SDSU Extension Rangeland Management Specialist, Doyle and I visited the tribe's buffalo herd which is located south of Marty.

We met with tribal members Perry Little, Herd Manager and Sonny Hill, Yankton Sioux Tribe Economic Development Director. Together we evaluated pasture conditions, the buffalo herd and facilities.

We then put together a report to address the constraints to future development of the herd and how to overcome them.

The overall objective is to improve pasture utilization and ultimately expand the herd, which is a local food source for the Yankton Sioux Tribe.

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2017 SDSU Southeast Farm Fall Field Day Sept. 7

Categorized: Agronomy, Other Crops, Profit Tips, Wheat

BROOKINGS, S.D. - SDSU's Southeast Research Farm will host its annual Fall Field Day on September 7, 2017 at the farm (29974 University Road, Beresford).

The farm is located six miles west of Beresford on Highway 46 and 2.75 south on University Road. Alternate routes are available due to road construction on University Road.

The Fall Field Day will have a field tour and presentations from SDSU Extension Personnel including; Tying It All Together: No-Till - Cover Crops - Grazing; Managing Forage under Drought; Calf Value Discovery at Beresford and Volga; Grain Market Overview; and Nitrogen Management in Oats.

Fall Field Day is free of charge and open to the public. No pre-registration is necessary.

Tentative Agenda

9:30 a.m. Registration and Coffee

10 a.m. Tying It All Together: No-Till - Cover Crops - Grazing: Peter Sexton, SDSU Southeast Farm Supervisor, Brad Rops, SDSU Southeast Farm Operations Manager and Jack Davis, SDSU Extension Crops Business Management Field Specialist;

10:40 a.m. Plot Tour - Cover Crops & Grazing: Peter Sexton, SDSU Southeast Farm Supervisor and Brad Rops, Southeast Farm Operations Manager;

11:45 a.m. Lunch provided by Southeast South Dakota  Experiment Farm Corporation

12:45 p.m. Grain Market Overview: Jack Davis, SDSU Extension Crops Business Management Field Specialist;

1:15 p.m. Managing Feed and Forage under Drought Conditions: Warren Rusche, SDSU Extension Beef Feedlot Management Associate;

1:45 p.m. Calf Value Discovery at Beresford and Volga: Julie Walker, Associate Professor & SDSU Extension Beef Specialist;

2:15 p.m. Nitrogen Management in Oats: First year results; David Karki, SDSU Extension Agronomy Field Specialist  and Peter Sexton, SDSU Southeast Farm Supervisor;

2:40 p.m. Program concludes

The tour is presented collaboratively by the South Dakota Agricultural Experiment Station at SDSU, SDSU Extension, College of Agricultural & Biological Sciences and the SESD Experiment Farm Corporation.

For more information on the Fall Field Day please call 605.563.2989 or email Ruth or Peter.

Due to road construction on University Road please use alternate routes to reach the farm:

From East: I-29 Beresford exit 2.5 miles west on Highway 46; turn south (left) on Greenfield Road go three miles south, turn west (right) go three miles on 300th and turn north (right)  on University Road 0.25 mile.

From west: Corner of Highway 46 and 19 turn south and go three miles to 300th Street; turn east (left) and go three miles; turn north (left) on University Road 0.25 mile.

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Sheep & Wool Activities during Annual Convention

Categorized: 4-H & Youth, South Dakota 4-H, Livestock, Sheep

BROOKINGS, S.D. - The 80th Annual South Dakota Sheep Growers Association (SDSGA) Convention will be held in Brookings September 29 through October 1, 2017.

The convention will be held at the Days Inn & Convention Center (2500 6th St., Brookings). Pre-registration is strongly encouraged for planning purposes, but on-site registration is available. Registration forms indicating event costs, convention information, along with special event details can all be found at the SD Sheepgrowers Association website.

"This convention brings together our state's producers, industry experts and friends of the sheep industry," says Jeff Held, Professor & SDSU Extension Sheep Specialist, of the event that is organized by a committee of SDSGA members and SDSU Extension sheep specialists. The event is sponsored in part by a grant from the South Dakota State University College of Agriculture and Biological Sciences.

The convention agenda includes:

Friday, September 29

6:30 a.m. Registration & bus tour check-in - Tour of Faribault Woolen Mill in Minnesota
5:30 p.m. Night at the Museum & Lamb Social - Held at the S.D. Agricultural Heritage Museum (977 11th St.)

Saturday, September 30

8 a.m. Registration open
9 a.m. - 5 p.m. Fleece to Shawl contest
10 a.m. - 2 p.m. Kid's hands-on activities with the fiber guilds
9 a.m. Welcome & opening remarks
9:15 a.m. SDSU sheep research & SDSU Extension updates - led by Jeff Held, Professor & SDSU Extension Sheep Specialist & Dave Ollila, SDSU Extension Sheep Field Specialist
9:30 a.m. American Sheep Industry Association & American Lamb Board updates - led by Peter Orwick, American Sheep Industry Association & Dale Thorne, American Lamb Board
10:30 a.m. History, importance, effect of the ethnic market on the sheep industry - Benny Cox, Vice President of the American Sheep Industry Board of Directors
11:15 a.m. Direct marketing lamb products - From farm to table - led by Lisa Webster, North Star Sheep Farm
Noon S.D. Master Lamb Producer Luncheon
1:30 p.m. Integrating RFID (radio frequency identification) into your flock management - led by Dan Persons, Shearwell Data Ltd.
2:15 p.m. Build your legacy - Estate & transition planning - led by Danci Baker, First Dakota National Bank
3:15 p.m. Annual SDSGA business meeting
5 p.m. Social hour
6 p.m. SDSGA auction
7 p.m. Make It With Wool & SDSGA awards banquet featuring Fresh American Lamb

Saturday Off-site Activities

6  6:45 a.m. Final registration for Shepherd's Shuffle - held at the SDSU Research Park (2301 Research Park Way)
7 a.m. Shepherd's Shuffle start
9 a.m. Make It With Wool State Contest judging - held at the First Lutheran Church & Mission Coffeehouse (337 8th St.)
Noon Make It With Wool Luncheon - held at the First Lutheran Church & Mission Coffeehouse (337 8th St.)
1 p.m. Designer Joi Mahon workshop - held at the First Lutheran Church & Mission Coffeehouse (337 8th St.)

Sunday, October 1

8:30 a.m. Shearwell Data system demonstration held at Larry & Susan Holler's farm - (47387 201st St, White, SD) (transportation on your own)

New this year

The Shepherd's Shuffle has something for all levels of athletes from walkers to avid runners; choose from a 1 mile fun run/walk, 3 mile relay or a 5K.

The course goes through beautiful McCrory Gardens arboretum with all proceeds benefiting "The Shepherd's Gift: GM1 for HD" Huntington's disease research.

Check out the All Sport Central website to register for the events. Shepherd Shuffle participants will all receive wool running socks complementary of Farm to Feet and a t-shirt. First place male and female in the 5K event will each receive a sock drawer make-over valued at over $200.

A special afternoon event with Designer Joi Mahon "Wool ~ A Touch of Style" will be held at the Mission Coffeehouse at First Lutheran Church (Main Ave at 8th St) in Brookings.

This event is open to the public, but will be limited to the first 50 participants.

Activities include Designer Joi's own trunk show, tips on working with wool fabric and a hands-on workshop with pattern fitting. Registration for the event also includes lunch and a bag with goodies. One lucky participant will have the opportunity to go home with a door prize valued over $400.

"We look forward to seeing South Dakota sheep producers, industry affiliates, 4-H'ers, and community members at the convention events," said Rufus DeZeeuw, SDSGA President.

This year's convention has even more exciting events and activities, so please go to the SDSGA website to verify all the details for events of interest to you. For more information regarding the convention, please contact Patty DeZeeuw or Mary Held, convention co-chairs by email.

Speaker highlights

Benny Cox from San Angelo, Texas, is the ASI Board of Directors Vice President. Cox will be highlighting the U.S. trends of changing demographics and the effect on the American lamb and wool industry. As the Sheep and Goat Sales Manager at Producer's Livestock Company, Cox will provide South Dakota producers with insight on the challenges and opportunities within the industry.

Lisa Webster, owner of North Star Sheep Farm in Maine, will talk about promotion of sheep from farm to table in their operation. Come hear what has worked in their business plan and see what tips you can take home to your farm or ranch.

Dan Persons, U.S. Sales and Support Representative with Shearwell Data Ltd., will introduce the Shearwell Data system for improving individual animal records. The Shearwell Data system includes visual and electronic tags approved for federal disease reporting and allows producers improved decision-making opportunity through electronic data management. Persons will also be demonstrating the functionality of the Shearwell Data system at the Holler's farm on Sunday morning.

Danci Baker, Legacy Consultant with First Dakota National Bank, will share the tools available to determine your estate and transition plan. Baker welcomes the opportunity to challenge producers with thought-provoking questions to start the conversation with their family.

Jeff Held, Professor and SDSU Extension Sheep Specialist, and Dave Ollila, SDSU Extension Sheep Field Specialist, will be recapping the year's research and extension activities. Come hear what activities and projects have been going on in your state and learn what opportunities are coming next year.

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WEED Project at the South Dakota State Fair

Categorized: Livestock, Beef, Sheep, Agronomy, Corn, Other Crops, Soybeans, Wheat, Gardens, Home & Garden Pests

BROOKINGS, S.D. - The SDSU Extension WEED (Weed Evaluation Extension Demonstration) Project will be at the 2017 South Dakota State Fair held in Huron Aug. 31-Sept. 4.

"This project is designed to answer South Dakota grower's questions," explained Paul O. Johnson, SDSU Extension Weed Science Coordinator.

The SDSU Extension WEED Project is South Dakota's source for unbiased information for weed control practices, controls and concern's. During the State Fair the SDSU Extension WEED Project will focus on weed control in soybeans.

"There is a lot of concern on control of weeds in soybeans. Farmers want to know what worked and what did not," Johnson said. "Waterhemp, related pigweed species and kochia are of major concern to a lot of our farmers around the state we will be there to talk about them and help to look at control options."

The research-based information shared with growers and gardeners through SDSU Extension WEED Project comes from data gleaned from the WEED Project's 100-plus test plots as well as data from other Upper Midwest Agricultural Universities like South Dakota State University.

"This is your one stop location to get your questions answered by the experts," Johnson said.

The SDSU Extension WEED Project display at the State Fair will answer questions on crop and pasture weeds along with lawn and garden weeds.

The display will again have several publications that fairgoers can take home to learn more. The new iGrow South Dakota Weeds 2017 publication will also be available at no cost. Most of the information included in this guide can be at iGrow.

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SD ADRDL Groundbreaking August 31, 2017

Categorized: Livestock, Beef, Dairy, Horse, Land, Water & Wildlife, Pork, Profit Tips, Sheep, Reports to Partners, Healthy Families, Health & Wellness

Groundbreaking ceremonies for the new South Dakota Animal Disease Research and Diagnostic Laboratory (ADRDL) in Brookings will be at 4:30 p.m. on Aug. 31, 2017. Officials say the facility will both serve as the front line of defense in protecting South Dakota’s $7.3 billion livestock industry against diseases and provide important diagnostic information for the state’s wildlife and companion animals. 

“I’m very excited to see this project moving forward,” South Dakota State Veterinarian Dustin Oedekoven said. “The expansion and renovation of the Animal Disease Research and Diagnostic Laboratory is critical to animal health, public health, and food safety.  This facility will protect the dedicated and talented people who work in the laboratory, and will give them the tools to do the best work possible.  Expert veterinary laboratory diagnostic and research capacity is important for the timely identification of emerging and zoonotic diseases, and for the continuity of business when animal health events occur.”

The groundbreaking ceremony will take place on the south lawn of the South Dakota State University Veterinary and Biomedical Sciences/SD ADRDL Building. The new facility will include an attached addition to the north of the current building along with renovation on the existing building on the SDSU campus.

Dr. Jane Christopher-Hennings, the head of the SDSU Department of Veterinary and Biomedical Sciences and director of the South Dakota ADRDL explains the importance of the lab to the people of South Dakota and the country.

”The ADRDL is a key component in protecting both human and animal health in South Dakota,” Christopher-Hennings said. “The lab promotes human health in dealing with food safety issues and zoonotic diseases; and animal health, by detecting diseases and finding methods to control them.”

The renovation of the new building is important for continuing operations since many of the mechanical systems of the current building need to be replaced or updated to current standards (e.g., plumbing, HVAC, electrical). A drive up window for dropping off samples will provide easy access to the lab  which is located off of Medary Avenue in close proximity to the U.S. Highway 14 bypass.  A small Biosecurity Level 3 (BSL3) laboratory will be included for isolation of infectious agents.

Christopher-Hennings said the current lab has seen an increase in “same day” testing of samples. The new lab allows for better worker safety, biosecurity and biocontainment.  In the new building, staff and faculty will be able to perform additional diagnostics and research needed to help control animal health issues.

The plan to upgrade and expand the ADRDL is supported by commodity and farm organizations represented through South Dakota’s Ag Unity (SDAC), the state veterinarian, the SD Animal Industry Board, SD Veterinary Medical Association (SDVMA), legislative leaders and the governor’s office to develop a funding package for the $58 million project. The South Dakota Legislature approved the project in 2017.

Final construction plans are in progress, with some ground work expected to start this fall, followed by the majority of the building beginning in the spring of 2018.  The proposed completion date is in 2020.

The current ADRDL was built in 1967 with an addition in 1993.

For more information please contact Dr. Jane Christopher-Hennings at 605/688-5171, or email Jane.Hennings@sdstate.edu.

Dr. Jane Christopher-Hennings, head of the SDSU Department of Veterinary and Biomedical Sciences and director of the South Dakota ADRDL 

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SDSU Extension Fall Beef Field Day is August 22 in Mitchell

Categorized: Livestock, Beef, Profit Tips

BROOKINGS, S.D. - Innovation and planning for the future are the themes of the 2017 SDSU Extension Fall Beef Field Day held August 22, in Mitchell beginning at the Stillwater Cattle Company (25969 436th Ave, Bridgewater, SD). The event begins at 9 a.m.

To help cover lunch costs, registration for the event is $5 at the door. Preregistration is not required.

"With the current drought and tough economic situation, producers need to look for alternative management strategies which may increase income and save valuable feedstuffs on the operation," Taylor Grussing, SDSU Extension Cow/Calf Field Specialist.

Grussing and the SDSU Extension team designed the Fall Beef Field Day with drought and economics in mind. The field day includes a tour of two different beef systems.

"We have received many questions on cattle performance in these new facilities," Grussing said.

By touring Stillwater Cattle Company cattle producers have an opportunity to see firsthand how drylot and hoop systems work.

With silage harvest just around the corner, the one-day Field Day will also cover the importance of harvesting and storing high quality silage.

Following the morning tour, lunch will be served at the Davison County Fairgrounds (3200 W. Havens Ave. Mitchell, SD).

Presentations will be held after lunch.

The presentation lineup includes the following:

Prepping Calves at Weaning: Warren Rusche, SDSU Extension Beef Feedlot Management Associate will discuss the importance of prepping calves for weaning. "Not only does the health of calves at weaning directly impact your profitability, but it also pays to get calves off to a good start because whoever is buying your calves needs them to be profitable too," Rusche said.

Feedlot Manager Panel Discussion: A panel of feedlot managers will discuss what they are looking for when buying weaned calves and how the cow/calf producer can work with the feedlot on how to best prepare these weaned calves.

Market Outlook & Marketing Options Available for Weaned Calves: Presented by from Heather Gessner, SDSU Extension Livestock Business Management Field Specialist, this talk will focus on what marketing options are available for weaned calves. She will also provide a market outlook.

"It's always a good idea to have a plan when marketing calves every year. However, with dry conditions prompting early weaning and potentially extra culling this fall, marketing plans may need to be different this year than in the past to breakeven."

Pregnancy Diagnosis: Taylor Grussing, SDSU Extension Cow/Calf Field Specialist will present on the importance of early pregnancy diagnosis. She will lead a discussion on ways producers can identify pregnant versus open cows earlier so they can begin making culling decisions. She will also discuss fall management of herd replacement females.

"Grass is getting short in supply; therefore, it should be saved for the cows that become bred early in the year and will return a calf come spring," said Grussing. "Early pregnancy diagnosis can be done in variety of ways and at a relatively low cost compared to feeding an open cow through the winter."

Questions about the event can be directed Heather Gessner, SDSU Extension Livestock Business Management Field Specialist, 605.782.3290; Taylor Grussing, 605.995.7378; or Warren Rusche, SDSU Extension Beef Feedlot Management Associate, 605.688.5452.

Sponsors for the field day include: South Dakota Cattlemen's Association, Zoetis, Dakotaland Feeds, LLC., Cattle Business Weekly, MultiMin USA, Creekside Veterinary Clinic, Hoop Beef and Farmers State Bank.

Driving directions

Driving directions to Stillwater Cattle Company: From Interstate 90 take Exit 357. Go 3 miles south to 260th street. Head east on 260th St for 1 mile to a dead end. Turn north on 436th Avenue and go ¼ mile. Stillwater Cattle Co will be located on the west side of the road. Please park by the barn. 

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Extension Staff Attend National Ag Finance Conference

Categorized: Livestock, Beef, Pork, Sheep, Agronomy, Corn, Other Crops, Soybeans, Wheat

BROOKINGS, S.D. - SDSU Extension staff recently attended the National Conference of the Farm Financial Standards Council which was held recently in Syracuse, New York.

"This conference provided us with an opportunity to meet professional colleagues from across the country and representing every type of agriculture you can imagine. We will use the industry contacts and information gathered to help us serve South Dakotans," said Jack Davis, SDSU Extension Crops Business Management Field Specialist.

Davis was joined by SDSU Extension Livestock Business Management Field Specialists Heather Gessner and Shannon Sand. All three serve as members of the Farm Financial Standards Council.

Topics covered during the convention included; assisting in farm and ranch generational transition planning and tax issues involved with farm or ranch transitions.

During the conference, SDSU Extension staff and other attendees were involved in the adoption of a new implementation guide titled: Financial Guidelines for Agriculture.

"As members of the Farm Financial Standards Council, we provide the tools necessary for farmers, ranchers, their lenders and their financial and tax advisors to be able to make sound production and management decisions based on solid financial records," Davis explained.

The Farm Financial Standards Council has two products, the Financial Guidelines for Agriculture and the Management Accounting Guidelines for Agriculture.

To learn more about transitioning your farm or ranch operation, contact Davis by email.

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Science & Traditional Camping Activities Engage Campers

Categorized: 4-H & Youth, South Dakota 4-H

BROOKINGS, S.D. - More than 200 youth from 23 South Dakota Counties attended the 2017 4-H Camp hosted by the South Dakota 4-H Program held at Camp Bob Marshall in Custer.

"Camping programs offered through South Dakota 4-H provide youth the opportunity to gain valuable life skills in a safe environment," said Donna Bittiker, SDSU Extension State 4-H Program Director. "The youth choose to attend camp because they want to have fun, which they do, but typically camp attendees don't realize until they are much older the lifelong value of their youth camping experience."

This camp was open to both 4-H members and non-members ages 8-12.

The theme, Imagination Station, encouraged youth to explore several activities including areas of science. Activities included: solar ovens, electrical circuits, tie dying, soap carving, a nature hike, drone discovery and much more.

"4-H exposes youth to a multitude of topic areas, which allows them a hands-on approach to career exploration," said Hilary Risner, Regional 4-H Youth Program Advisor.

Youth also had the opportunity to partake in recreational activities in Bismark Lake, such as canoeing, swimming and fishing.

"Camp gives youth an opportunity to broaden their horizons," Bittiker said. "Youth learn valuable skills, such as making new friends, sharing personal space with others, managing personal items and exploring new adventures that may be outside of their comfort zone."

Following camp, youth were surveyed. Campers indicated that through 4-H Camp, they had a high ability to make new friends, a willingness to try new things and an ability to share their ideas respectfully.

"These are three components of personal development that 4-H strives to accomplish with youth through hands-on experiences such as camp," Risner said.

For more information on how you or your child can get involved with 4-H or attend 4-H Camp, contact the South Dakota 4-H State Office at 605.688.4167. Visit the 4-H & Youth Community to learn about more 4-H opportunities.

Courtesy of iGrow. More than 200 youth from 23 South Dakota Counties attended the 2017 4-H Camp hosted by the South Dakota 4-H Program held at Camp Bob Marshall in Custer.

Courtesy of iGrow. More than 200 youth from 23 South Dakota Counties attended the 2017 4-H Camp hosted by the South Dakota 4-H Program held at Camp Bob Marshall in Custer.

Courtesy of iGrow. More than 200 youth from 23 South Dakota Counties attended the 2017 4-H Camp hosted by the South Dakota 4-H Program held at Camp Bob Marshall in Custer.

Link to high resolution copy of this image here.

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Prizes for Dakotafest first 100 Attendees Who Register on iGrow.org

Categorized: 4-H & Youth, South Dakota 4-H, Livestock, Beef, Dairy, Horse, Land, Water & Wildlife, Pork, Profit Tips, Sheep, Agronomy, Corn, Other Crops, Land, Water & Wildlife, Profit Tips, Soybeans, Wheat, Healthy Families, Aging, Food Safety, Family & Personal Finance, Health & Wellness, Community Development, Communities, Local Foods, Gardens, Home & Garden Pests, Trees & Forests, Gardening, Master Gardeners

BROOKINGS, S.D. - SDSU Extension will be giving away 100 BBQ spatulas to the first 100 individuals who register on iGrow.org/events.

To win, simply fill out the online entry form and bring your printed ticket to Dakotafest with you. Be one of the first 100 to show your ticket when you stop by the SDSU Extension booth #600 and go home with a BBQ spatula.

The SDSU Extension booth will have staff on hand to help answer your agronomy or livestock questions, informational booths to visit and SDSU ice cream at noon.

There are also 20 minute presentations on a variety of topics throughout the day. Visit the iGrow Events page for more information.

Water & forage testing available

For livestock safety, attendees are encouraged to bring water and/or standing forages such as corn, millet, sudangrass and sorghum for testing (exceptions to the forage nitrate quick test include: baled forages, such as, grass and alfalfa. These forages should be sampled via bale core method and sent directly to a lab for best results.)

Bring full plants and water samples to the test for initial testing.

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2017 Eminent Farmers/Ranchers & Homemakers

Categorized: 4-H & Youth, Livestock, Agronomy, Healthy Families, Community Development, Gardens

BROOKINGS, S.D. - The South Dakota State University Colleges of Agriculture and Biological Sciences and Education and Human Sciences will recognize four individuals with the Eminent Famer/Rancher and Eminent Homemaker Honor during a banquet September 15, 2017 at the McCrory Gardens Education and Visitor Center, Brookings.

Banquet reservations are $25 and are available from the Office of the Dean of Agriculture and Biological Sciences, Berg Agricultural Hall 131, SDSU Brookings, S.D., 57007 or by calling 605-688-4148 by September 1. The celebration begins at 5:30 p.m. with social hour, followed by the banquet at 6:30 p.m.

The 2017 Eminent Farmers/Ranchers honored are John Moes of Florence and Tom Varilek of Geddes. The 2017 Eminent Homemakers honored are June L. James of Hazel and Gwenn Vallery of Nisland.

Established in 1927, the Eminent Farmer/Rancher and Eminent Homemaker awards recognize individuals for their contributions of leadership and service to the community on the local, state and national level.

Each year SDSU selects four individuals to honor based on confidential nominations from across the state. The nominations are reviewed by a committee of SDSU faculty members, administrators and SDSU Extension personnel and are approved by the Deans of the Colleges of Agriculture and Biological Sciences and Education and Human Sciences.

The honorees photos join the more than 300 portraits of Eminent Farmers/Ranchers and Homemakers which are displayed in the "Hall of Fame" portrait gallery located in Berg Agricultural Hall on the campus of South Dakota State University.

To learn more about each of the honorees, please read their profiles below.

John Moes is 2017 Eminent Farmer/Rancher, Codington County

South Dakota State University, John Moes, is the 2017 Eminent Farmer/Rancher honoree, Codington County.

By Lura Roti for SDSU Colleges of Agriculture & Biological Sciences and Education & Human Sciences

In his father's day, the harder you worked, the better off you were. John Moes learned quickly that this mantra did not ring true for him.

"In the late '70s those of us getting our start farming realized that you had to work smarter, not necessarily harder, to make it," explains the Codington County cattle and crop producer and 2017 Eminent Farmer/Rancher.

A self-described "micro-manager," Moes keeps meticulous production records on his Angus herd; beyond the basics, he documents the number of illnesses, ability to achieve and maintain pregnancy and carcass data from their offspring. In the feedlot, Moes tracks every head with an electronic identification (EID) tag and pays for carcass data.

"If we work by the details then we can see what is working and profitable and what is not," he says.

Moes implements an intensive synchronization program where he AIs (artificially inseminates) his entire herd of cows and heifers within 48 hours - resulting in a 10-day calving season.

"Uniformity pays," Moes says. "We have this technology available to us that allows us to do this. When it comes to technology I say, 'use it or lose it.'"

He explains, "If they are all born within 10 days instead of 21 days, you have 20 days of gain - that's about 40 pounds per calf - that adds up quickly. Sixty animals - that's 2,400 more pounds to sell."

To keep up with new research and technology, Moes is always educating himself. An avid reader, he consumes industry magazines and attends workshops put on by South Dakota State University and others. In 2003, he volunteered to participate in a synchronization study led by George Perry, Professor and SDSU Extension Beef Reproductive Management Specialist.

"It's not what I know, it's what I learn," Moes explains.

His willingness to learn and try new things has served him well. Today, Moes, 60, together with his son, Bryan, and nephew, Lee Tol, operate a 300-head cow/calf herd; a 1999-head Concentrated Animal Operation, which primarily feeds and finishes Holstein steer calves; and farm 1,000-acres of grain and forage crops near Watertown.

However, when he started out, he only had a twelfth-grade education and work experience from growing up on his family's dairy farm.

Moes slowly began building his cow/calf herd while working for an area farmer. When he and his wife, Donita, purchased a small farm in 1987, he began working in town full-time until the cattle herd expanded to the point it needed his full-time attention. He says land prices kept him focused on expanding his cattle operation and the local ethanol industry helped with feed supplies.

"We feed 50-ton of modified distillers grain each week. It's a consistent feed and protein source," he says.

Looking at his operation today, it's obvious that Moes practices what he learns. And, he's not afraid to share his knowledge.

Each year, the farm hosts tours for SDSU and Lake Area Technical Institute students, as well as producers from across the nation and world. Moes continues to participate in research projects. And, each year, he employs at least one intern.

His advocacy for the beef industry extends outside the industry as well. Throughout the year he invites grade-school children and area business owners to learn about life on the farm.

"We open our farm up because people today are so removed from what we do here," he says.

Much of his public education focuses on the investment he makes to raise healthy and comfortable animals while improving natural resources at the same time.

"To do this and do it well, you gotta have passion for cattle. And I do."

Gwenn Vallery, 2017 Eminent Homemaker, Butte County

South Dakota State University, Gwenn Vallery, is the 2017 Eminent Homemaker, Butte County.

By Lura Roti for SDSU Colleges of Agriculture & Biological Sciences and Education & Human Sciences

Gwenn "Earles" Vallery began her teaching career in a rural, one-room schoolhouse. She wanted to end her teaching career in one too.

"I felt like I still had something to give to the children," says Vallery, 88, of her last teaching assignment in Alzada, Montana.

She was 80.

"I like adventures," Vallery explains.

At 88, the 2017 Eminent Homemaker has had quite a few - most motivated by her passion to educate and belief in lifelong learning.

Vallery was 19 when the opportunity to leave her hometown of Mitchell, South Dakota and teach led her to a remote, mountain logging community in Northern California. For two years she taught all eight grades in a one-room school.

"The first day of school the boys came (into the school yard) riding their bikes with their shoes in the baskets of their bikes. I thought, 'What have I gotten myself into?'" recalls Vallery. "They did put their shoes on before coming into the school."

She had earned her teaching certificate in one year and was young when she began teaching the first time, but Vallery said it went well. "I had the kids' respect and even though I was young, they looked up to me," she says of the experience, which launched her teaching career.

Her career spanned 40-plus years. Many of those years were spent teaching in the Newell School District. Vallery also spent a year teaching on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation and has helped many GED students achieve their dreams.

"I love working with children and seeing the light bulb go on when they finally get something they have been struggling with," Vallery explains.

Vallery moved to the western South Dakota ranching community when she married Thornton in 1950 (now deceased). Thornton was a fourth-generation Butte County farmer/rancher. Even though Vallery grew up in town, ranch life agreed with her. She continues to reside on the ranch today where her son, Randy, and daughter-in-law, Rhonda, grow crops, raise cattle and operate a hunting preserve.

Vallery met Thornton while she was pursuing her teaching certificate at Dakota Wesleyan University. She left California to marry him.

A people-person from the beginning, Vallery became involved in the Nisland community. Upon the urging of the County Extension Agent, she helped start Tot-n-Twenty Extension Club.

"We were all in our 20s and there were a lot of tots," Vallery says. "Extension night was the girls' night out and our guys took care of the kids."

Sixty years later, the club continues to meet monthly and enter projects in the Butte/Lawrence County Fair.

Extension Club introduced Vallery to 4-H. When her children were young she started the Eager Beaver 4-H Club and became an active volunteer at the Butte/Lawrence County Fair.

In 2016, SDSU Extension recognized Vallery for her years of service with the Spirit of Community and Family Extension Leaders award.

Vallery took a brief break from teaching to raise her three children: Rick, Randy and Rene. A life-long student, she completed her bachelor's and Master's in Elementary Education by taking summer-school classes through Black Hills State University. She is also a Master Gardener.

"It took perseverance," she says. "There was an incident when my older sister said, 'Just quit.' I said, 'No. Daddy told us, if we start a job we finish it.'"

Even in retirement, Vallery is not one to sit idle. She has traveled to 49 of the 50 states. Through involvement with Butte County Historical Society, she helped preserve the historic one-room Hillside Schoolhouse and move it to Belle Fourche where it serves as a museum.

Today, she enjoys teaching her 3-year-old, great-granddaughter, Kimber.

"I still feel like I have something to give. I tell people, 'There better be a little red schoolhouse in Heaven, because I'm not through teaching yet.'"

Tom Varilek is 2017 Eminent Farmer/Rancher, Charles Mix County

South Dakota State University, Tom Varilek is the 2017 Eminent Farmer/Rancher, Charles Mix County.

By Lura Roti for SDSU Colleges of Agriculture & Biological Sciences and Education & Human Sciences

Tom Varilek's passion for raising purebred Black Angus is innate.

"It's in my blood," explains the third-generation Geddes cattleman. "Every day, I get up and get to go look at cows. If I'm away, I miss chores. I always want to get back home to my cows."

At 68, only a few life experiences - college and Vietnam - kept the 2017 Eminent Farmer/Rancher from cattle chores.

"Like they say, 'If you enjoy what you do, you never work a day in your life.' Even after all these years, bringing new life into the world at calving still gives me a warm feeling."

Upon his dad, Elvern's urging, Varilek began building his own cattle herd at a young age.

"In seventh grade, Dad said, 'If you will be showing 4-H calves, then you need to buy some of your own.' I went to the bank, borrowed the money and bought some."

4-H was also the motivation behind his decision to pursue an Animal Science degree at South Dakota State University. "During my 4-H days I used to go up to SDSU for judging and 4-H events. I liked SDSU and really saw no other reason to go anywhere else."

College life was a good fit for Varilek. "I am one of these guys who always wants to learn more. I want to know why."

He judged on collegiate livestock and meats teams and in 1971, shortly before he was drafted into the service, he was elected to serve as Little International Manager for the annual agricultural exposition put on entirely by students. "I like working with people," he says.

"Back in my day, there were 110 staff."

Throughout his career, Varilek has continued to put his leadership skills to good use serving South Dakota's agriculture industry. He has served on many boards and is current chairman of the Council on Agricultural Research, Extension and Teaching. "If you reap the benefits of an organization or industry, you need to be involved."

Varilek planned to go on to veterinary school after graduation. Two schools had accepted him. But neither were willing to hold his slot when he was drafted into the Army.

So, instead of vet school, when he was discharged, Varilek returned to Geddes and together with his first wife, Carol Meurer (now deceased), partnered with his brother, Mick and dad, to raise registered Black Angus cattle and irrigated wheat, row crops and dryland hay. "Cattle are our main interest. Most of the crops we raise are sold through our cattle."

In 1985, Varilek and his brother decided to go independent. "I couldn't imagine a better life. There were days we put in long hours, but our kids were with us all the time. There was no daycare; we did everything together as a family."

From the beginning, Varilek CT Angus continued the family legacy to raise bulls who would work well for commercial cattle producers. Unlike many registered operations, Varilek CT Angus does not sell any bull younger than two years of age. The bulls are raised on the open range - conditioned to perform.

"Waiting until they are 2 increases their longevity. I feel sorry for a young bull that gets pushed so hard it falls apart. If you let them grow up naturally, they seem to do well for us."

The result is happy customers. About 90 percent of buyers are repeat.

Today, Varilek's daughter, Tess, and her husband, Duke Starr, farm and ranch with Varilek and his wife, Bev. "I have always been one of these guys that on this operation it's we or us, there is no "I" in what we do here. Just like a coach, I hope they do better than I have done."

June L. James, 2017 Eminent Homemaker, Hamlin County

South Dakota State University, June L. James is the 2017 Eminent Homemaker, Hamlin County

By Lura Roti for SDSU Colleges of Agriculture & Biological Sciences and Education & Human Sciences

Not long after her second daughter was born, June L. "Holzwarth" James needed to find a job. Times were tough on the family's Hazel farm and they needed a second income.

"Some were critical of my decision to work outside the home; 'How could I take a job and leave my babies,'" recalls James of the decision she made to work as a Hamlin County Extension Agent when the farm couldn't support the young family of four.

It was the early 1960s and most mothers did not work outside the home.

To make it in her new role as a working mom, James says it took a strong support group made up of her parents, a babysitter and her husband, Keith. "I worked very hard to balance - to be a good wife and mom and be good at my job. I had to build a support team."

Throughout her 30-year career serving as an Extension Educator, the 2017 Eminent Homemaker would share this valuable advice with many mothers she mentored through the Farm Crisis of the 1980s. "I had many young farm mothers ask me, 'I have to go back to work. How do you do it?' I think it helped that I could relate," says James, who spent most of her Extension career serving as the Codington County Extension Educator.

James' belief in team building extended to her professional life. "You don't do this job alone. Let me tell you. I worked to recognize the talents and skills of community members and volunteers and asked them to help out," she says.

Whether it was asking someone to serve as a 4-H leader, help her develop leadership programming for the Watertown Farm Show, or start a Senior Citizen Club - James enjoyed mentoring and encouraging. Recognized for her strength as a leader, late in her career, James was elected to serve as President of the National Extension Association of Family and Consumer Sciences Extension Educators. In 2007, she was recognized with the Spirit of Dakota Award.

"It's just amazing to have those around me who are willing to do things that I didn't know how to do or things that were not part of my skillset."

When James initially applied for the Extension Educator position in Hamlin County, she was in the midst of becoming certified to teach in South Dakota. She began her career in the classroom teaching home economics to high school students -- first in rural Montana, then in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

After growing up on a farm near Hazel, James enjoyed city life and had no intention of returning to her rural roots...that is, until she met Keith James.

"I was home on summer vacation and my brother, worried that I'd become an Old Maid, set me up on a blind date with a new farmer who recently moved to town. We clicked," she says.

Although she never dreamed of returning to Hazel, she did consider a career as an Extension Agent to be her dream job. "I was a 4-H member and had seen what my County Agent did and how she worked with us kids. I always thought 'wouldn't it be great to have a job like that.'"

James retired in 1995. She continues to volunteer as an Achievement Days judge and  remains an active community volunteer and columnist, writing for The Best of Times and Cattle Business Weekly. She continues to live and work on the farm where she and Keith raised their daughters, Linda and Robin. Today, her nephew farms the land.

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Incorporating Corn Into Rations Can Save Forage

Categorized: Livestock, Beef, Agronomy, Corn

BROOKINGS, S.D. - Drought-induced forage shortages across some areas of South Dakota has livestock producers looking for different ways meet forage needs left when pastures and hay ground are no longer an option. Corn is one such option, said Julie Walker, Associate Professor & SDSU Extension Beef Specialist.

"Research has shown that a variety of feedstuffs can be utilized to meet the cows' nutrient requirements with similar performance to a forage based diet. "At current feed prices, substituting corn for forage is a viable option to feed beef cows," Walker said. "Corn or corn-based by-products can be used to substitute for forages and save on daily feed costs. For operations with the right facilities and management ability, replacing forage with corn can stretch forage supplies and potentially reduce feed costs."

Meeting Nutritional Needs

Research at The Ohio State University reported pregnant beef cows can be fed as little as 3 pounds of hay plus corn and supplements to meet nutrient requirements.

Purdue University research has also shown that late gestation cows could be successfully fed diets where hay was limited to 0.5 or 1.0 percent of bodyweight (dry matter basis).

"Rations were balanced to meet nutrient requirements, and performance (weight gain) was equal or greater compared to cows receiving hay at 2 percent of body weight," Walker said.

In both of these research projects, corn plus a protein supplement were used to balance the ration.

Table 1 shows a couple of examples of rations that meet the nutritional needs for a 1,300 pound dry cows. Limit feeding corn reduces forage requirements by 50 percent compared to a full-feed hay diet. In the two examples using corn, cows are allocated 0.5 percent of their body weight in forage dry matter (1,300 x 0.005 = 6.5 pounds DM; 6.5/.88 (88 percent DM of forage = 7.4 pounds as-fed).

Based on the prices used, incorporation of high amounts of corn reduced the feed cost/day and stretched the forage supply. It is very important to note that although nutritional requirements of these cows are met, her appetite is not.

Management Considerations

Switching from a forage-based system to a concentrate-based ration creates some management considerations.

  • Facilities must provide enough bunk space for all the cows to eat at once to prevent dominant animals from overeating. When limit feeding, cows should have at least 30 inches per head of bunk space.
  • Strong fences are a must. Because the cattle's appetite won't be satisfied, they will put pressure on the fence seeking additional forage.
  • Pens should provide at least 500 square feet per head. If cattle are fed in a pasture setting, cattle will continue to graze (overgraze) because their nutrient requirements are met before dry matter intake hits 100 percent.
  • Proper bunk management is critical to avoid digestive upsets, especially when high-starch feedstuffs are fed.
  • Conducting feed tests on forages and drought harvested feeds allows purchasing of the right supplements to meet the animal's requirements.
  • Minerals and vitamins may be consumed in excess if offered free choice when animals are limit fed. These can be included in the mixed ration or consumption can be controlled by using white salt in the mineral-vitamin supplement.

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2017 Draper Winter Wheat Meeting Aug. 24

Categorized: Agronomy, Profit Tips, Wheat

BROOKINGS, S.D. - The Jones County Crop Improvement Association and SDSU Extension will host the 29th Annual Winter Wheat meeting at Draper, August 24, 2017.

The event will be held in the Draper City Auditorium and will begin at 6 p.m. (CDT).

Registration is not required. A meal is served prior to the program and is sponsored by numerous area businesses.

"This meeting is a long standing tradition among winter wheat producers," said Ruth Beck, SDSU Extension Agronomy Field Specialist of the meeting which provides producers with the most recent wheat variety trial results and information on winter wheat production in South Dakota.

Speakers for the 2017 event include; Chris Graham, SDSU Extension Agronomist from Rapid City, who will discuss the 2017 SDSU Winter Wheat Variety Trial results and other ongoing wheat research in South Dakota.

Stan Boltz, Soil Health Specialist with the NRCS in Huron, who will share tips on how to best manage saline affected areas.

The South Dakota Wheat Commission and S.D. Wheat Inc. will also be represented at this event.

For more information call the SDSU Extension Regional Center in Pierre at 605.773.8120 or email Beck.

Courtesy of iGrow. The Jones County Crop Improvement Association and SDSU Extension will host the 29th Annual Winter Wheat meeting at Draper, August 24, 2017. The event will be held in the Draper City Auditorium and will begin at 6 p.m. (CDT).

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SDSU Extension Drought Meeting in Wall Aug. 23

Categorized: Livestock, Beef, Horse, Land, Water & Wildlife, Profit Tips, Sheep, Agronomy, Corn, Other Crops, Land, Water & Wildlife, Profit Tips, Soybeans, Wheat

BROOKINGS, S.D. - SDSU Extension will hold the seventh drought meeting in Wall August 23, 2017 at the Wall Community Center (501 Main St.).

The meeting will run from 6 p.m to 9 p.m. This meeting is free and there is no registration is necessary.

For livestock safety, attendees are encouraged to bring water and/or standing forages such as corn, millet, sudangrass and sorghum for testing (exceptions to the forage nitrate quick test include: baled forages, such as, grass and alfalfa. These forages should be sampled via bale core method and sent directly to a lab for best results).

Presenters include: Laura Edwards, SDSU Extension State Climatologist; Heather Gessner, SDSU Extension Livestock Business Management Field Specialist; Dave Ollila, SDSU Extension Sheep Field Specialist; Adele Harty, SDSU Extension Cow/Calf Field Specialist and Chris Graham, SDSU Extension Agronomist.

SDSU Extension Cow/Calf Field Specialist, Robin Salverson will be available for quick nitrate testing for forages/feed and livestock suitability water testing.

U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Farm Service Agency (FSA) staff will also be available to discuss drought disaster programs.

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Testing of Dial Pressure Canner Gauges

Categorized: Healthy Families, Food Safety

BROOKINGS, S.D. - With canning season just around the corner, for accuracy before use, SDSU Extension recommends that dial pressure canner gauges get tested each year.

"Dial gauge pressure canners use dial gauges to indicate if the correct pressure is being maintained. Gauges that read high cause under-processing and may result in unsafe food. Low readings cause under-processing," said  Curtis Braun, SDSU Extension Food Safety Specialist.

Braun explained that pressure adjustments can be made if the gauge reads up to 2 pounds high or low. Replace gauges that differ by more than 2 pounds.

Owners of pressure canners can have the gauges checked by mailing them in to be checked or by taking them into a Nyberg's Ace Hardware location in Sioux Falls. Nyberg's Ace Hardware, 330 W 41st St., Sioux Falls, SD 57105, Phone: 605-336-6467. Nyber's Ace will test free of charge.

Not all gauges need to be tested

Two types of pressure canners exist, weighted gauge pressure canners and dial gauge pressure canners. Weighted gauges do not require testing.

"Weighted gauge canners will either keep rocking gently or make a frequent jiggling noise to indicate if the correct pressure is being maintained," Braun said.

To know how a particular weighted gauge should rock or jiggle, Braun encourages owners to read the manufacturer's instructions.

Dial gauges do require annual testing.

Presto, a manufacturer of dial gauge pressure canners, will test gauges at no charge. The manufacturer will only test gauges from these brands:

  • Magic Seal
  • National
  • Maid of Honor
  • Kook-Kwick
  • Presto

For specifics on other models of pressure canner gauges, please check with the manufacturer. All American for example, has been selling their pressure canners with both a dial and weighted gauge for each unit. Weighted gauges do not need to be tested.

Steps to send in your pressure gauge:

  1. Carefully remove dial gauge from canner and package in foam, bubble wrap or newspaper to avoid shipping damage.
  2. Ship gauge only. If you cannot remove the gauge from the canner lid, send canner lid with the gauge attached.
  3. Gauges are checked within three working days of receipt and shipped for return.

Send to:
National Presto Industries Inc
3925 North Hastings Way
Eau Claire, Wisconsin 54703-3703

For more information, phone Presto Customer Service: 1.715.839.2121 or 1.800.877.0441. For more information visit the Presto website.

NOTE: Replacement gauges and other parts (e.g. gasket, safety plugs) for canners are often found at stores that sell food preservation equipment or from canner manufacturers. When ordering parts, be sure to provide your canner model number and describe the parts you need. Here are additional resources where you can find replacement gauges and other parts:

  1. Prestocanner Outlet
  2. Mirro Replacement Parts

For other canning related questions, contact AnswerLine at 1.888.393.6336, or contact your local SDSU Extension Regional Center. A complete listing can be found at iGrow, under the Field Staff Listing tab.

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Bring Forage and Water for Testing at 2017 Dakotafest

Categorized: Livestock, Beef, Agronomy, Corn

BROOKINGS, S.D. - SDSU Extension will be offering on-site nitrate and water testing in booth #600 during Dakotafest 2017 held Aug. 15-17 in Mitchell at the Schlaffman Farm (2300 Spruce Street, Mitchell, SD 57301).

"Due to the ongoing drought across the state, checking the quality and safety of forages and water before allowing livestock to consume them is an essential step to prevent health or general productivity issues in the cowherd," said Taylor Grussing, SDSU Extension Cow/Calf Field Specialist.

Drought mitigation services will be available each day of Dakotafest from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. in booth #600.

Grussing, along with Robin Salverson, SDSU Extension Cow/Calf Field Specialist will be on site to conduct nitrate testing on forages, as well as test livestock water for total dissolved salts.

Nitrate Testing

A Nitrate Quick Test will be available to be performed on standing forages such as corn, millet, sudangrass and sorghum.

Exceptions include: baled forages, such as, grass and alfalfa. These forages should be sampled via bale core method and sent directly to a lab for best results.

"Nitrates accumulate in the lower portion of the plant and continue to increase in the upper portions of the plant as drought conditions worsen," Grussing explained.

To test standing forages for nitrates, producers are encouraged to bring a representative sample of the field (10 to 15 samples from multiple locations). Cut the sample at ground level, making sure the lowest node is available.

The Nitrate Quick Test can be accomplished in a matter of minutes to establish if nitrates are present or not present in the plant.

Water Testing

Livestock water from dugouts, wells, artesian water and other water sources can also be brought in for quality testing (Booth #600).

A quick test will be performed with an electro-conductivity (EC) meter to provide an estimate of total dissolved salts in the sample.

Water samples can be taken to booth #600 in a clean plastic or glass container such as water or pop bottles or pint canning jars.

Based on the EC meter reading, recommendations will be made suggesting water safety for livestock consumption.

Results

Based on individual results, SDSU Extension Specialists will be on hand to consult with producers to determine if further laboratory testing is necessary. Instructional materials on further testing will be available.

"By offering these Nitrate Quick Test and Water suitability tests, SDSU Extension hopes to minimize the risk of feeding drought stressed feedstuffs to livestock and overall maintain a safe, and productive livestock system," Grussing said.

For additional information on forage nitrate testing or livestock water quality contact Grussing at 605.995.7378 or Salverson at 605.374.4177.

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Worksite Wellness Grant Applications Due August 21

Categorized: Healthy Families, Health & Wellness

BROOKINGS, S.D. - Grant opportunities are available to all South Dakota worksites interested in creating healthier work environments.

Steps to Wellness Workplace Physical Activity and Healthier Vending and Snack Bar grants are offered through the South Dakota Department of Health's Office of Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion.

"The Steps to Wellness grants are designed to assist worksites in implementing physical activity policy and environmental changes," said Nikki Prosch, SDSU Extension Health & Physical Activity Field Specialist.

"These grant funds will be used to enhance sustainable physical activity policy change and provide additional opportunities for physical activity within the workplace," she said of the funds.

"The Healthier Vending and Snack Bar Policy grants assist worksites in providing and promoting healthier food options in worksite vending machines and/or snack bars," said Megan Hlavacek, Healthy Foods Coordinator for the SD Department of Health.

The project uses a traffic light system to identify foods to choose often (green), foods to choose occasionally (yellow) and foods to avoid (red).

More information about Munch Code Health Vending can be found on their website.

Grant deadline is August 21, 2017

The deadline to apply for both grant opportunities is August 21, 2017.

The Steps to Wellness grant will award up to $2,000 to 10 eligible worksites, and 10 worksites will receive up to $1,000 for the Healthier Vending and Snack Bar grant.

"Funding for both grant opportunities will be awarded to applicants that strategically address environmental and policy change related to promotion of worksite wellness," Hlavacek said.

Example projects for the Steps to Wellness grant opportunity include dedicating an open office or unused space for engagement in physical activity, installing bike racks on worksite property, developing policy to allow stairwell use during work hours and creating an aesthetically pleasing environment in stairwells.

Worksites selected for the Healthier Vending and Snack Bar grant will receive one-on-one training, healthy vending and snack bar toolkits, professionally formatted promotional signage and technical assistance.

Project ideas include purchasing a refrigerated cooler for healthier vending machine options or displays like racks and stands to showcase healthy items in snack bars and cafeterias.

Visit the Healthy SD website to access the grant applications. To learn more, contact Prosch by email.

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