Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Livestock Insurance Programs Available in the Pacific Northwest

Release No.: RMA-15-098
Jo Lynne Seufer (509) 228-6320

Livestock Insurance Programs Available in the Pacific Northwest
Livestock Producers Need to Make Coverage Decisions Starting July 1

SPOKANE, Wash., June 24, 2015 — The USDA Risk Management Agency’s (RMA) Spokane Regional Office reminds livestock producers in the Pacific Northwest of upcoming important dates for federal livestock risk management programs available in all counties in Idaho, Oregon, and Washington.

The Livestock Risk Protection (LRP) program for fed cattle, feeder cattle, and swine and the Livestock Gross Margin (LGM) program for swine begin sales for the 2016 crop year on July 1, 2015. Sales will continue through June 30, 2016, or until the maximum underwriting capacity is reached. Livestock producers are encouraged to review their insurance coverage and talk to their livestock insurance agents before renewing or buying a policy.

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Comment Period Extended to July 29
EPA Plans Public Webinar on its Proposal to Protect Bees from Acutely Toxic Pesticides

   The Environmental Protection Agency will hold a public webinar on June 23 at noon Pacific time to provide background information and additional details about its proposal to prohibit the use of all acutely toxic contact pesticides when crops are in bloom and bees are present under contract for pollination services.  

     The EPA has already held a webinar for states and tribes, which are encouraged to develop managed-pollinator protection plans and best management practices.

     And in response to requests from the Western IPM Center and others, EPA has also extended the deadline to submit comments about the plan for 30 days and will now accept comments until July 29.

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Photo Monitoring Workshops for Rancher in Lost River Valley June 23 and 24th

The University of Idaho Extension will be offering photo monitoring workshops in Leadore June 10th, Challis June 22nd, Mackay on June 23 and Arco on June 24th.  The workshops will be lead by Amanda Gearhart, the University of Idaho Extension Range Specialist.  The workshops include classroom and hands-on field components. Lunch is being sponsored by the Idaho Rangeland Resource Commission.  Those completing the workshop may take advantage of the memorandum of understanding between the Idaho Department of Agriculture and the Bureau of Land Management, to have photo monitoring of existing BLM monitoring sites performed by permittees and entered into the permit records for future use in official evaluation.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Agricultural AUV Demonstration in Idaho Falls May 21

click on image to enlarge an or go to Empire Unmanned
Drones or UAV's are the latest in agricultural technology.  New developments in batteries have made it possible to build small "drones" that can carry sophisticated technology, which can lead to indepth agricultural analysis.  Empire is the first businesses that is licensed to use UAV's for commercial purposes, which includes sophisticated software, that can provide maps in as little as 48 hours.  Learn more about this technology in Idaho Falls on May 21.  Email tcolesfarm@gmail.com.

Master Gardener 2015 Regional Convention June 25-26, 2015

The 2015 Master Gardener Convention will take place on the BYU-Idaho Campus at the Thomas E. Ricks Gardens at 525 South Center Street in Rexburg on June 25th and 26th.  The program is sponsored by the University of Idaho Extension.   The program is open to master gardeners, students and to the public. Pre-registration is requested.

Thursday, June 25th will kick off with a keynote presentation by Dr. Stephen Love, "Where Wildflowers and Roads Meet".  The presentation will be located in the Benson Building in Room #219 on th eBYU-Idaho Campus.  It will begin at 6 :00 PM.

The Convention Will continue on Friday, June 26th with classes and tours.  Registration and check in will be from 8:00 AM to 8:40 AM on the East side of the Benson Building.  Look for signs pointing the way.

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Strip Rust on the Move in - Protect Susceptible Varieties

PROTECT susceptible spring wheat with fungicides applied at herbicide timing. A fungicide efficacy chart is attached to this email at this link. Variety ratings of spring wheat to stripe rust in 2014 are available in the 2014 Small Grain Research Report (also on our website). This cool, wet weather will allow rapid spread and infection to occur.

Stripe rust is spreading in western Idaho. Stephens is widely grown in western Idaho and is susceptible to stripe rust. Fields are being sprayed with fungicides but are getting close to the cut-off point for spraying with specific fungicides. Be aware of the PHI (pre-harvest interval) associated with the fungicide being applied - in some cases the PHI restriction may not be when crop is 50% flowering, but before. Know the crop growth stage prior to application to avoid residue issues and off-label applications. 

Thursday, May 7, 2015

Manage N Applications to Cereal Hays to Avoid Livestock Nitrate Poisoning

By Chad Cheyney, Extension Educator
As we are facing a water-short year, I suspect that some ranchers are planning to plant some kind of cereal hay crop that might make pretty good tonnage with a limited amount of water.  Livestock operators that are planning a pea and oat or other cereal hay crop should be cognizant of the potential for livestock nitrate poisoning.  The Extension Offices in Butte and Custer Counties can help you minimize this risk with soil analysis and field nitrate testing of suspect forages.

Certain plants, including cereals and some weeds, including kochia, lambsquarter and pigweed, have a propensity to accumulate nitrogen under stress conditions.  This tendency in cereal hay crops can be increased to a dangerous level if operators attempt to increase production by heavy nitrogen fertilizer applications, especially if drought or lack of irrigation water does not permit the crop to mature fully.

In reality, animals are not poisoned by nitrate per se, but one of the intermediate products in the rumen is nitrite.  If the feed is high in nitrate, not all of the nitrite is converted to ammonia in the rumen and passes into the intestine and finally the blood stream.  In the blood, the nitrite combines with hemoglobin to form meth-hemoglobin which cannot transport oxygen.  The animals die of asphyxia.  Chocolate colored blood is an indicated of the condition.

Prevention of nitrate poisoning has five components:
·         Soil testing and split applications of N in challenging environments to prevent over fertilization
·         Control of weeds, especially kockia, lambsquarter and pigweed which are nitrate accumulators
·         Use cereals with higher water use efficiencies such as winter wheat or spring grains
·         Plant cool season forages that are likely to mature before stress sets in.
·         Qualitatively test forages in the field using the “quick test” method from the Extension Office and lab test all forages that show moderate or high nitrate levels by the “quick test”.

For more information on nitrate toxicity see MontGuide MT200205AG, which can be found by “googling” MontGuide MT200205AG, or stop by or call your local University of Idaho Extension Office.