~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Oklahoma's latest farm and ranch news
Your Update from Ron Hays of RON for Wednesday August 24, 2011A service of Johnston Enterprises, P & K Equipment/ P & K Wind Energy and American Farmers & Ranchers Mutual Insurance Company!
-- House Ag Chairman Frank Lucas Working on Budget Ideas on Agriculture for the Super Committee
-- Conservation Grant Awarded to Oklahoma Association of Conservation Districts to Protect Prairie Chicken
-- Avoid Nitrate Toxicity by Waiting to Cut Hay After Recent Rains
-- Lessons From the Oklahoma Wheat Review- There is a Cost to Grazing Cattle on Wheat Pasture
-- TSCRA Beefs Up Ranger Efforts to Battle Cattle Theft in Oklahoma
-- Southern Kentucky Market Hosts First Qualifying Contest for World Livestock Auctioneer Championship
-- Historic Oklahoma Angus Run Starts THIS Thursday in Stillwater
-- Coming Today- and Tomorrow Morning
-- Let's Check the Markets!
Here's your morning farm news headlines from the Director of Farm Programming for the Radio Oklahoma Network, Ron Hays. We are pleased to have American Farmers & Ranchers Mutual Insurance Company as a regular sponsor of our daily update- click here to go to their AFR web site to learn more about their efforts to serve rural America!
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House Ag Chairman Frank Lucas Working on Budget Ideas on Agriculture for the Super Committee
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~The Chairman of the House Ag Committee, Frank Lucas, is spending this week making multiple stops in his vast Third Congressional District as he holds Town Hall Meetings. The first of those meetings this week was held Tuesday morning in Clinton, Oklahoma, and Chairman Lucas spent a few minutes before the start of the Meeting with yours truly and we talked about the budget reductions that will be decided upon this fall by the Super Committee- and how they relate back to the 2012 farm bill.
Congressman Lucas told me that he was spending a good bit of his August communicating with Collin Peterson, the ranking minority member of the Committee, in an effort to develop a unified strategy in what might be proposed to the Super Committee when it comes to spending cuts to programs within the jurisdiction of the House Ag Committee. Lucas says that the Committee will be attempting to decide what to recommend to the Super Committee, if anything, by mid October.
Lucas says that if the Super Committee would decide to pick and choose programs and make the decision in their package to eliminate them, that would demand a response from the Committee- and it might mean that the House Ag Committee would have to expedite the writing of the 2012 Farm Bill in order to provide a different looking safety net if certain elements were eliminated by the dozen members of Congress that are a part of the Super Committee. For example, Lucas says that if the members decide they want to totally eliminate Direct Payments- that would throw off the balanced nature of the Safety Net as we currently know it- and would take away the only support available to some producers who need it in order to have the resources to keep farming.
Lucas says that if the Super Committee cannot come up with a proposal
that Congress and the President agree upon- sequestration would occur
starting in January of 2012. These would be across the board cuts, but not
all programs would be subject to those cuts. Lucas says the House Ag
Committee staff is studying which program cuts will fall under
sequestration- he mentioned that perhaps CRP payments would not while EQIP
funding would see cuts under this concept.
Conservation Grant Awarded to Oklahoma Association of Conservation Districts to Protect Prairie Chicken
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Farmers, Ranchers and other landowners in Northwest Oklahoma will soon have the option to receive stewardship payments for work done to protect and expand the habitat of the Lesser Prairie Chicken under a new program that will be partially funded by a USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) Conservation Innovation Grant that has been awarded to the Oklahoma Association of Conservation Districts (OACD). According to OACD Executive Director Clay Pope, this new initiative builds off of the success of the Oklahoma Carbon Credit Program and is designed to put dollars directly into the pockets of land owners who take action to protect this imperiled species.
"We are really excited about the opportunity this grant from NRCS provides to us in developing this new program to help landowners while protecting the Lesser Prairie Chicken," Pope said. "By undertaking a program that gives a direct financial incentive for agriculture producers and other landowners to protect this species, it changes the nature of the game from one that costs landowners dollars to one that actually provides a financial benefit to those folks who practice good stewardship on their land. This grant from NRCS will go a long way toward getting this program off the ground."
Authorized by the 2008 farm bill, the Conservation Innovation Grant program (CIG) is a voluntary program intended to stimulate the development and adoption of innovative conservation approaches and technologies for agriculture production. CIG promotes sharing of skills, knowledge, technologies, and facilities among communities, governments, and other institutions to ensure that scientific and technological developments are accessible to a wider range of users. Under CIG, Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) funds are used to award competitive grants to non-Federal governmental or non-governmental organizations, Tribes or individuals. OACD will receive over $412,000 to develop a credit program to help mitigate the loss of the habitat of the Lesser Prairie Chicken under a program similar to their successful Carbon Credit Program.
"We have made great strides in this kind of work to encourage carbon sequestration on private lands and we feel we can have the same kind of success when it comes to helping protect the Lesser Prairie Chicken," Pope said.
Avoid Nitrate Toxicity by Waiting to Cut Hay After Recent Rains
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~A few spotty rain showers have been welcome surprises in Northern Oklahoma over the last several days. They are not the kind to end a drought, but they momentarily cool the air, make the pastures and hay fields look a little greener, and improve farmer and rancher attitudes, according to Dr. Glenn Selk, Oklahoma State University Emeritus Extension Animal Scientist.
In the case of drought-stressed summer annuals such as forage sorghums, millets, and sudangrass hybrids, the rain-shower may be a wolf in sheep's clothing. Avoid cutting the summer annual hay immediately after a drought-easing rain. Often the highest concentrations of nitrate will be in the first 48 hours after the first rain after an extended heat and drought stress period.
Usually it takes the plants at least about a week to return to normal nitrate concentrations if the weather and moisture conditions remain favorable. The drought-stressed plant may again be taking up nitrates from the soil, but not have the enzymes present in great enough quantity to reduce the nitrate on to form amino acids.
Amino acids are the building blocks of plant proteins. With time and good moisture conditions the plant may return to normal metabolism and growth, which in turn will cause reduced nitrate concentrations
Lessons From the Oklahoma Wheat Review- There is a Cost to Grazing Cattle on Wheat Pasture
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~The Oklahoma Wheat Industry came together on Tuesday at historic Fort Reno and met in the Chapel to review the 2011 wheat crop- and discuss what the prospects are for the 2012 growing season. With the dry conditions gripping much of the Oklahoma wheat belt, several of those in attendance joked perhaps the industry needed to take advantage of being in the Chapel and have a prayer meeting, making a plea for widespread and substantial amounts of rain.
It struck me that in the pews of the chapel- you had Baptist Hymnals in the racks on the back of them- it could have been very easy for someone to have gotten up and had us all sing on the same page out of the same hymnal- and then Mike Schulte of the Oklahoma Wheat Commission- facing a significant shortfall in revenue because of the 38% smaller crop in 2011 versus 2011- could have had the Commissioners pass the offering plates(I'm sure there were some around somewhere). But, I digress.
Well, there were some familiar "hymns" being sung by several of the presenters on Tuesday afternoon- and one theme that we have heard OSU State Wheat Specialist Dr. Jeff Edwards "sing" over the last couple of years is the need to conserve moisture over the course of the growing season in order to maximize grain yield.
Dr. Edwards told us that the poster children for the moisture issue in 2011 were wheat fields that were grazed for pasture in the fall and early winter- then the cattle were removed and the available moisture had been depleted- no rain came to replenish the soil profile- and you ended up with greatly diminished wheat yields or many fields that were zeroed out when it came to grain production.
TSCRA Beefs Up Ranger Efforts to Battle Cattle Theft in Oklahoma
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~The Texas and Southwestern Cattle Raisers has increased its law enforcement presence in Oklahoma by adding an additional special ranger for the newly created District 5.
John Cummings will serve as the special ranger for District 5. Cummings is based in Claremore.
"TSCRA has a long history of providing quality services to all of its
members", said Cummings. "In a time when agriculture crime is on the rise,
the association's commitment to a new special ranger position in Oklahoma
will allow us to better serve our members in both states."
"John has a strong background in law enforcement and the cattle industry," said Larry Gray, TSCRA executive director of law enforcement. "His contacts throughout Oklahoma and his experience make him a great asset to the new Oklahoma district."
Southern Kentucky Market Hosts First Qualifying Contest for World Livestock Auctioneer Championship
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~The first stop on the road to the 2012 World Livestock Auctioneer Championship (WLAC) will be at the Farmers Livestock Market of Glasgow, Kentucky, on Sept. 19. The market here will be hosting 26 contestants, in the first of four qualifying contests for the 2012 WLAC, sponsored and conducted by Livestock Marketing Association (LMA).
Three winners will be named at each qualifying contest, held around the country. The top eight scorers from each contest move on to the June 16 WLAC, at the Turlock Livestock Auction Yard, Turlock, Calif. All the contests are actual sales, with livestock going through the ring and buyers on the seats. There's no charge to attend the contest and sale at the Glasgow market, located at 3031 New Bowling Green Road.
Market President Darrell Loy said the opening ceremonies will start at 2 p.m. (CT) with the sale and contest getting underway about 2:30 p.m. He said the contestants will be selling 2500-3500 head "of all classes of quality cattle."
A pair of Oklahomans who are very familiar with the contest will be attempting to qualify in Kentucky to get back to the National contest in California next June. Dustin Focht of Stillwater and Brian Little of Wann are entered in the Glasgow contest for next month. Both hope to be in the group of eight that will move on to the national level.
Historic Oklahoma Angus Run Starts THIS Thursday in Stillwater
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~We have been telling you about four of the five Angus sales that make up this annual run of Angus sales that happen each August. The first of those sales happens tomorrow. The Griswold Cattle Company's Family Traditions Annual Production Sale is scheduled for this Thursday, August 25 at 5 p.m. at Griswold Cattle Company in Stillwater, Oklahoma. The Griswold family have some outstanding Angus and Sim-Angus genetics that will be offered- click here for details as found on our Auction page at www.OklahomaFarmReport.Com
Express Ranches has a pair of sales connected to the Angus run this Friday and Saturday, including their annual "Big Event" sale on Saturday. On Friday, August 26 Express Ranches have joined with Superior to offer about 2,000 head of Express influenced commercial bred heifers and top end calves from some of our best commercial customers and friends. And then on Saturday, August 27 Express will be offering about 300 lots (500 head) of the best registered females and bull calves that we have produced. As usual, this offering will consist of donors, show prospects, bred heifers, and young cow-calf pairs. Click here for our auction page listing for these two sales for Express Ranches- which leads you over to their web page and also to their sale catalog for Saturday.
Finally, the home stretch of the Angus run takes you and I to Waukomis, Oklahoma- home of Pollard Farms. The 14th annual Pollard Farms Female Sale on Sunday will offer some outstanding genetics- 122 Head Sell as 92 Angus Lots and that includes: Donor Dam, Heifer Calf Pregnancies, Spring E.T. Heifer Calf Prospects, Fall E.T. Yearling Heifers Spring Bred Heifers, Spring Pairs and Fall Bred Cows & Heifers. Click here for our listing on the Pollard Sale which also has links on over to the sale catalog as well as their main website for Pollard Farms.
Coming Today- and Tomorrow Morning
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~As we write this- we are in Indianapolis for a special rollout of several new products that John Deere will be showing members of the agricultural media this afternoon and tomorrow- we will be tweeting from the demonstration fields this afternoon and will have a story on the day's activities tomorrow morning in the email.
We'll also have more from yesterday's Wheat Review in the Thursday email- and all the rest of the day's agricultural news.
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Let's Check the Markets!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~We've had requests to include Canola prices for your convenience here- and we will be doing so on a regular basis. Current cash price for Canola is $12.73 per bushel- as of the close of business yesterday, while the 2012 New Crop contracts for Canola are now available are $13.07 per bushel- delivered to local participating elevators that are working with PCOM.
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