~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Oklahoma's latest farm and ranch news
Your Update from Ron Hays of RON for Thursday January 25, 2007!A service of Midwest Farm Shows
-- Little Dixie remains a mess!
-- Veteran Farm Group Lobbyist believes Water Issues Top the Priority List
-- North Central Oklahoma Farm Survival Meeting Set.
-- Calling All Beef Cattle Producers- Your comments needed!
-- Stocker Cattle Management Workshop today in Enid!
-- Pork Producers worry about the Ethanol Goals of the President- but are happy he realizes that it may create livestock industry headaches.
-- Should the Watermelon be celebrated as a Veggie? (and how about that Dutch Oven!!!)
Here's your morning farm news headlines from the Director of Farm Programming for the Radio Oklahoma Network, Ron Hays. Our email this morning is a service of Midwest Farm Shows, featuring the Southern Plains Farm Show in Oklahoma City April 19-21, 2007, as well as the Tulsa Farm Show held each December. Check out details of both of these exciting shows at the official website of Midwest Farm Shows by clicking here.
If you have received this by someone forwarding it to you, you are welcome to subscribe and get this weekday update sent to you directly by clicking here.
Little Dixie remains a mess!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~It continues to be a real battle in eastern Oklahoma where the ice storm hit hardest two weeks ago. We talked with Mark Sherrill of the McAlester Union Stockyards and he tells us that he and many of his neighbors have yet to get power back at their ranches. There are a lot of crews working, but progress has been tough. Power is mostly back on in the towns- but it's the rural folks who are still in the dark.
Mark Sherrill says that this is the first time he can ever remember having to shut their livestock auction down for two weeks because of bad weather, and he and his family have owned the auction since 1974. There has been death loss of some cattle in the region- he tells us that he and others have lost some calves and stockers as they have gotten sore feet from dealing with the ice, don’t want to move around, get down and die. In addition, for those who have been trying to calve here in January, there have been losses on those ranches as well. Lots of trees have lost limbs or have come down totally- and that means fence damage on many ranches.
The longer term problem is the lack of hay in that part of the state. The ranchers that had some hay have mostly fed it, trying to survive these past two weeks. We have already had many ranches that have liquidated parts of their cow herds because of the drought- and now they may be faced with further liquidations with no roughage to carry them until we get some early spring vegetation. If this situation tugs on you- and you have some resources and want to help- I would suggest touching base with the Oklahoma Cattlemen's Association- there is going to be a continuing need for hay in this part of the state for several weeks at least- and if you have hay, can help with transporting hay that has been located or want to write a check, call OCA at 405-235-4391.
Veteran Farm Group Lobbyist believes Water Issues Top the Priority List
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~We are just a few days away from the first official day of the 2007 State Legislative Session- and Mason Mungle, Lobbyist for the Oklahoma Farmers Union, tells us that there are a multitude of bills having to do with water and water rights that have been filed by State Lawmakers.
There is also legislation that ag groups are interested in that would up the tonnage limits on trucks and trailers that have farm tags. In addition, there are companion bills in the Senate and House that would define manure as NOT being a hazardous waste- and Mungle believes there is a very good chance that this issue will be able to get favorable consideration in both the House and Senate this year- as opposed to 2006, when the House gave a thumbs up to such language, while the Democratically controlled Senate put the measure in moth balls, effectively killing it.
We have linked below our full conversation with Mason about the legislation to be watching- how the balanced Senate will handle the 50-50 split, and the timeframe to be watching early in the session for the weeding out process that will reduce the number of bills that will actually be heard by both bodies.
North Central Oklahoma Farm Survival Meeting Set.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~USDA agencies, Conservation Districts and OSU Extension offices in Kay, Noble and Osage Counties have set a February 6th seminar entitled "Farm Survival with Alternative Crops and Tillage" at the Pioneer Technology Center in Ponca City.
Value added crops, no-tillage strategies and water retention concepts will be featured at this evening meeting. Tomorrow is the deadline the agencies have set for RSVPing for the free meeting, and you can do so by calling either Jeff Lockett in Ponca City at 580- 718-4240 or Melanie Oliver with the Osage Tribal Resources Group in Pawhuska at 918-287-5384.
Calling All Beef Cattle Producers- Your comments needed!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~This coming week in Nashville, the Cattlemen's Beef Board will hold their winter meetings during the Cattle Industry Convention and Trade Show. They will be considering how the dollar per head beef checkoff will be spent as they ponder the three areas where the checkoff is invested on behalf of cattle producers around the country- namely promotion, research and education.
Oklahoma has a total of five members on the CBB and they
If you have a question or comment about the beef checkoff for these producers who represent you on the CBB, email me with that comment or question, and we will make sure that all five of the Oklahoma representatives get those thoughts that you have about how the beef checkoff dollars should be spent. Our email link is right at the bottom of this email update.
Stocker Cattle Management Workshop today in Enid!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~We hope to see several of you this morning in Enid at the Workshop on stocker cattle management that Greg Highfill has put together. It appears to be a really good program, featuring Oklahoma State and Kansas State beef specialists to help discuss health, feed and marketing issues.
The speaker from Nebraska may well be worth the cost of admission, as Dr. Tom Noffsinger is one of the leading cattle behavior experts in the country- and he will talk about low stress cattle handling techniques for stocker cattle producers.
The OSU Extension folks say they have more than 80 producers registered from four different states, all starting at about 8:30 this morning.
Pork Producers worry about the Ethanol Goals of the President- but are happy he realizes that it may create livestock industry headaches.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Promoting the energy plan he announced last night in his State of the Union address, President Bush in a speech today recognized the challenges facing hog and poultry farmers from the rapid rise in ethanol production. The National Pork Producers Council praised the president’s perception of pork producers’ plight.
Talking to workers at a DuPont plant in Delaware, the president noted that ethanol produced today comes from corn, “and we’ve got hog growers and chicken growers that need corn to feed their animals. And therefore, it’ going to be kind of a strain, at some point in time, on the capacity for us to have enough ethanol to be able to make us less dependent on oil.”
“We very much appreciate the president’s sensitivity to our industry’s issues with ethanol,” said NPPC President Joy Philippi, a pork producer from Bruning, Neb., “and we look forward to working with the president and his secretaries of agriculture and energy on his energy proposals and on mitigating their impact on the pork industry.”
Should the Watermelon be celebrated as a Veggie? (and how about that Dutch Oven!!!)
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Two bills that have come to our attention that are a part of the more than 1600 bills that have been introduced by House members of the Oklahoma Legislature raise some interesting questions this Thursday morning.
House bill 1669 has been dropped into the hopper by Representative Dorman and would declare that the watermelon would be "the official vegetable of the State of Oklahoma." Only problem I see is that a lot of experts believe that the Watermelon is actually a fruit. Something to ponder.
House Bill 1428 comes from Wes Hilliard and would designate the Dutch Oven as the "official Cooking Pot of the State of Oklahoma." If this is the case, what other household items deserve to be called "official" in the hearts and minds of Oklahomans- wherever they may be?
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