Friday, May 29, 2015
Secretary Vilsack Announces Additional 800,000 Acres Dedicated to Conservation Reserve Program for Wildlife Habitat and Wetlands 05/29/2015 12:02 PM EDT
Release No. 0155.15 Secretary Vilsack Announces Additional 800,000 Acres Dedicated to Conservation Reserve Program for Wildlife Habitat and Wetlands Secretary Hails Program’s 30th Anniversary, Announces General Signup Period MILWAUKEE, May 29, 2015 – Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced today that an additional 800,000 acres of highly environmentally sensitive land may be enrolled in Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) under certain wetland and wildlife initiatives that provide multiple benefits on the same land. The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) will accept new offers to participate in CRP under a general signup to be held Dec. 1, 2015, through Feb. 26, 2016. Eligible existing program participants with contracts expiring Sept. 30, 2015, will be granted an option for one-year extensions. Farmers and ranchers interested in removing sensitive land from agricultural production and planting grasses or trees to reduce soil erosion, improve water quality and restore wildlife habitat are encouraged to enroll. Secretary Vilsack made the announcement during a speech delivered at the Ducks Unlimited National Convention in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. “For 30 years, the Conservation Reserve Program has supported farmers and ranchers as they continue to be good stewards of land and water. This initiative has helped farmers and ranchers prevent more than 8 billion tons of soil from eroding, reduce nitrogen and phosphorous runoff relative to cropland by 95 and 85 percent respectively, and even sequester 43 million tons of greenhouse gases annually, equal to taking 8 million cars off the road,” said Vilsack. “This has been one of most successful conservation programs in the history of the country, and today’s announcement keeps that momentum moving forward.” The voluntary Conservation Reserve Program allows USDA to contract with agricultural producers so that environmentally sensitive land is conserved. Participants establish long-term, resource-conserving plant species to control soil erosion, improve water quality and develop wildlife habitat. In return, USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) provides participants with rental payments and cost-share assistance. Contract duration is between 10 and 15 years. “CRP protects water quality and restores significant habitat for ducks, pheasants, turkey, quail, deer and other important wildlife. That spurs economic development like hunting and fishing, outdoor recreation and tourism all over rural America,” said Vilsack. “Today we’re allowing an additional 800,000 acres for duck nesting habitat and other wetland and wildlife habitat initiatives to be enrolled in the program.” In addition to Ducks Unlimited’s partnership with the Conservation Reserve Program, other longtime partners include Pheasants Forever, Quail Forever, Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies, National Association of State Foresters, National Wild Turkey Federation, Audubon Society, National Bobwhite Technical Committee, Quality Deer Management Association, National Rural Water Association, Playa Lakes Joint Venture, Longleaf Alliance, state soil and water conservation districts, and state forestry, agriculture and natural resource agencies. “I encourage all farmers and ranchers to consider the various CRP continuous sign-up initiatives that may help target specific resource concerns,” said Vilsack. “Financial assistance is offered for many practices including conservation buffers and pollinator habitat plantings, and initiatives such as the highly erodible lands, bottomland hardwood tree and longleaf pine, all of which are extremely important.” Farmers and ranchers may visit their FSA county office for additional information. The 2014 Farm Bill authorized the enrollment of grasslands in CRP and information on grasslands enrollment will be available after the regulation is published later this summer. The Conservation Reserve Program was re-authorized by the 2014 Farm Bill, which builds on historic economic gains in rural America over the past six years, while achieving meaningful reform and billions of dollars in savings for taxpayers. Since enactment, USDA has made significant progress to implement each provision of this critical legislation, including providing disaster relief to farmers and ranchers; strengthening risk management tools; expanding access to rural credit; funding critical research; establishing innovative public-private conservation partnerships; developing new markets for rural-made products; and investing in infrastructure, housing, and community facilities to help improve quality of life in rural America. For more information, visit www.usda.gov/farmbill. For more information about CRP, visit www.fsa.usda.gov/conservation, or contact your local USDA Farm Service Agency office. To find your local FSA office, visit http://offices.usda.gov. USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer. To file a complaint of discrimination, write: USDA, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights, Office of Adjudication, 1400 Independence Ave., SW, Washington, DC 20250-9410 or call (866) 632-9992 (Toll-free Customer Service), (800) 877-8339 (Local or Federal relay), (866) 377-8642 (Relay voice users).
An informal workshop to discuss projects for the ISC regional water plan will be held a the Artesia Agricultural Science Center 67 four Dinkus Rd at 10:00 am on Friday the 5th of June 2015. All interested parties are invited.for more information e-mail Woods Houghton at firstname.lastname@example.org
Embassy Suits and conference center Frisco Texas July 12-15 For more information go to http:/www.eply.com/TexasPecanGrowers2015 Provided they are not underwater.
Secretary Vilsack Announces Additional 800,000 Acres Dedicated to Conservation Reserve Program for Wildlife Habitat and Wetlands
Secretary Hails Program's 30th Anniversary, Announces General Signup Period MILWAUKEE, May 29, 2015 – Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced today that an additional 800,000 acres of highly environmentally sensitive land may be enrolled in Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) under certain wetland and wildlife initiatives that provide multiple benefits on the same land. The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) will accept new offers to participate in CRP under a general signup to be held Dec. 1, 2015, through Feb. 26, 2016. Eligible existing program participants with contracts expiring Sept. 30, 2015, will be granted an option for one-year extensions. Farmers and ranchers interested in removing sensitive land from agricultural production and planting grasses or trees to reduce soil erosion, improve water quality and restore wildlife habitat are encouraged to enroll. Secretary Vilsack made the announcement during a speech delivered at the Ducks Unlimited National Convention in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. "For 30 years, the Conservation Reserve Program has supported farmers and ranchers as they continue to be good stewards of land and water. This initiative has helped farmers and ranchers prevent more than 8 billion tons of soil from eroding, reduce nitrogen and phosphorous runoff relative to cropland by 95 and 85 percent respectively, and even sequester 43 million tons of greenhouse gases annually, equal to taking 8 million cars off the road," said Vilsack. "This has been one of most successful conservation programs in the history of the country, and today's announcement keeps that momentum moving forward." The voluntary Conservation Reserve Program allows USDA to contract with agricultural producers so that environmentally sensitive land is conserved. Participants establish long-term, resource-conserving plant species to control soil erosion, improve water quality and develop wildlife habitat. In return, USDA's Farm Service Agency (FSA) provides participants with rental payments and cost-share assistance. Contract duration is between 10 and 15 years. "CRP protects water quality and restores significant habitat for ducks, pheasants, turkey, quail, deer and other important wildlife. That spurs economic development like hunting and fishing, outdoor recreation and tourism all over rural America," said Vilsack. "Today we're allowing an additional 800,000 acres for duck nesting habitat and other wetland and wildlife habitat initiatives to be enrolled in the program." In addition to Ducks Unlimited's partnership with the Conservation Reserve Program, other longtime partners include Pheasants Forever, Quail Forever, Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies, National Association of State Foresters, National Wild Turkey Federation, Audubon Society, National Bobwhite Technical Committee, Quality Deer Management Association, National Rural Water Association, Playa Lakes Joint Venture, Longleaf Alliance, state soil and water conservation districts, and state forestry, agriculture and natural resource agencies. "I encourage all farmers and ranchers to consider the various CRP continuous sign-up initiatives that may help target specific resource concerns," said Vilsack. "Financial assistance is offered for many practices including conservation buffers and pollinator habitat plantings, and initiatives such as the highly erodible lands, bottomland hardwood tree and longleaf pine, all of which are extremely important." Farmers and ranchers may visit their FSA county office for additional information. The 2014 Farm Bill authorized the enrollment of grasslands in CRP and information on grasslands enrollment will be available after the regulation is published later this summer. The Conservation Reserve Program was re-authorized by the 2014 Farm Bill, which builds on historic economic gains in rural America over the past six years, while achieving meaningful reform and billions of dollars in savings for taxpayers. Since enactment, USDA has made significant progress to implement each provision of this critical legislation, including providing disaster relief to farmers and ranchers; strengthening risk management tools; expanding access to rural credit; funding critical research; establishing innovative public-private conservation partnerships; developing new markets for rural-made products; and investing in infrastructure, housing, and community facilities to help improve quality of life in rural America. For more information, visit www.usda.gov/farmbill. For more information about CRP, visit www.fsa.usda.gov/conservation, or contact your local USDA Farm Service Agency office. To find your local FSA office, visit http://offices.usda.gov. #
Guide B-222, "Cattle Vaccination and Immunity,” revised by John Wenzel http://aces.nmsu.edu/pubs/_b/B222.pdf Guide B-223, "Calf Vaccination Guidelines,” revised by John Wenzel http://aces.nmsu.edu/pubs/_b/B223.pdf Guide B-224, "Cow Herd Vaccination Guidelines,” revised by John Wenzel http://aces.nmsu.edu/pubs/_b/B224.pdf
Wednesday, May 27, 2015
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE, APRIL 29, 2015: Public meetings scheduled for bear and cougar hunting rules SANTA FE - The New Mexico Department of Game and Fish is conducting statewide public meetings about proposed changes to bear and cougar hunting rules. The department reviews rules for hunting bears and cougars every four years and encourages public involvement as the State Game Commission considers new regulations. The meetings: • Las Cruces: 6 p.m. May 4, New Mexico Department of Game and Fish, Southwest Area Office, 2715 Northrise Drive, Las Cruces. • Albuquerque: 6 p.m. May 5, New Mexico Department of Game and Fish, Northwest Area Office, 3841 Midway Place NE, Albuquerque. • Ruidoso: 6 p.m. May 27, U.S. Forest Service Fire Control Bldg., 901 Mechem Drive, Ruidoso. • Silver City: 6.p.m. May 28, Grant County Administration Center, County Commissioner Meeting Room, 1400 Highway 180 East, Silver City. • Raton: 6 p.m. June 1, New Mexico Department of Game and Fish, Northeast Area Office, 215 York Canyon Road, Raton. Proposed changes to the rules are available for public review and comment. The State Game Commission, when finalizing the rules later this year, will consider all public comments, harvest and survey data, biological information about population sustainability, and management goals. For more information about rule-change proposals or to submit a comment, please visit the department website, www.wildlife.state.nm.us.
Feds seek to tweak Endangered Species Act Federal biologists say they want to freshen up the Endangered Species Act to “reflect advances in conservation biology and genetics, as well as recent court decisions interpreting the Act’s provisions.” According to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, many of the country’s endangered species regulations date back to the 1980s, and need an overhaul. According to U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service director Dan Ashe, the changes will address states’ concerns and boost voluntary conservation efforts, and add transparency to the listing process. The proposal to revamp parts of the law comes against a backdrop of blistering attacks by anti-environmental Republicans in Congress who see endangered species regulations as hurdles to the exploitation of natural resources and have tried to undercut the bedrock law by preventing funding for environmental protection, and even going as far as trying to prevent federal agencies from making science-based listing decisions. “The proposed policies would result in a more nimble, transparent and ultimately more effective Endangered Species Act,” Ashe said. “By improving and streamlining our processes, we are ensuring the limited resources of state and federal agencies are best spent actually protecting and restoring imperiled species.” For more information on the proposed ESA petition regulations, go to http://www.fws.gov/home/feature/2015/proposed-revised-petition-regulations.pdf. Public comments on the proposed rule will be accepted on or before 60 days following its publication in the Federal Register...more
By Timothy Cama - 05/27/15 10:05 AM EDT The Obama administration asserted its authority Wednesday over the nation's streams, wetlands and other smaller waterways, moving forward with one of the most controversial environmental regulations in recent years. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Army Corps of Engineers said they are making final their proposed waters of the United States rule, which Republicans and many businesses have long panned as a massive federal overreach that would put the EPA in charge of ditches, puddles and wet areas. “We’re finalizing a clean water rule to protect the streams and the wetlands that one in three Americans rely on for drinking water. And we’re doing that without creating any new permitting requirements and maintaining all previous exemptions and exclusions,” EPA head Gina McCarthy told reporters Wednesday. McCarthy and other Obama officials sought to emphasize that the rule is about increasing clarity for businesses and helping make it easier to determine which waterways are subject to the pollution rules of the Clean Water Act. “This rule is about clarification, and in fact, we’re adding exclusions for features like artificial lakes and ponds, water-filled depressions from constructions and grass swales,” she said “This rule will make it easier to identify protected waters and will make those protections consistent with the law as well as the latest peer-reviewed science. This rule is based on science,” she continued. With the Wednesday action, the Obama administration is doubling down on an effort that has sustained repeated attacks from congressional Republicans hoping to overturn the regulations. In doing so, the administration is fulfilling what it sees as a responsibility to protect the wetlands, headwaters and small water bodies that can carry pollution to the larger waterways that are more clearly protected by the Clean Water Act, like bays and rivers. Officials said the rule is necessary after a pair of Supreme Court decisions in the last decade called into question Clean Water Act protections for some small tributaries, streams and wetlands that were previously covered. Brian Deese, Obama’s top environmental adviser, said the rule is “is an important win for public health and for our economy,” and sought to paint its opponents as fighting clean water. “The only people with reason to oppose the rule are polluters who want to threaten our clean water,” he said. McCarthy said the regulation will result in a modest increase in the federal government’s jurisdiction, amounting to less than a 3 percent growth. Responding to criticisms from farmers, ranchers, developers, manufacturers and others, she took time to list what is not covered by the waters of the United States rule. “It does not interfere with private property rights or address land use,” she said. “It does not regulate any ditches unless they function as tributaries. It does not apply to groundwater or shallow subsurface water, copper tile drains or change policy on irrigation or water transfer.” She said the rule specifically does not interfere with agriculture, nor roll back any of the existing exemptions for farmers, ranchers or foresters. Those have been some of the most vocal opponents of the rule since it was proposed in March 2014, saying that the EPA wants to insert itself into their businesses. While critics are unlikely to be pleased by the new rule, the EPA’s supports applauded it. “The Obama administration listened to all perspectives and developed a final rule that will help guarantee safe drinking water supplies for American families and businesses and restore much-needed certainty, consistency, and effectiveness to the Clean Water Act,” Sen. Barbara Boxer (Calif.), top Democrat on the Environment and Public Works Committee, said in a statement. Environment America said the rule is an important step toward protecting drinking water for the one in three Americans whose drinking water was not sufficiently protected before. “Our rivers, lakes, and drinking water can only be clean if the streams that flow into them are protected,” Margie Alt, executive director of Environment America, said in a statement. “That’s why today’s action is the biggest victory for clean water in a decade.” The House has voted multiple times to overturn the rule in its draft form. Senate Republicans have taken a different strategy, with a bill to overturn the rule and give the EPA specific instructions and a deadline to re-write it. This story was updated at 10:24 a.m.
Reasons We Need the Clean Water Rule By EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy and Assistant Secretary of the Army for Civil Works Jo-Ellen Darcy Today, EPA and the Army are finalizing a Clean Water Rule to protect the streams and wetlands we rely on for our health, our economy, and our way of life. As summer kicks off, many of us plan to be outside with our friends and families fishing, paddling, surfing, and swimming. And for the lakes and rivers we love to be clean, the streams and wetlands that feed them have to be clean, too. That’s just one of many reasons why this rule is so important. Here are several more: Clean water is vital to our health. One in three Americans get drinking water from streams that lacked clear protection from pollution without the Clean Water Rule. Finalizing the rule helps protect 117 million Americans’ health. Our economy depends on clean water. Major economic sectors—from manufacturing and energy production to agriculture, food service, tourism, and recreation—depend on clean water to function and flourish. Without clean water, business grinds to a halt—a reality too many local small business owners faced in Toledo last year when drinking water became contaminated for several days. Clean water helps farms thrive, and the rule preserves commonsense agriculture exemptions. Farms across America depend on clean and reliable water for livestock, crops, and irrigation. Activities like planting, harvesting, and moving livestock across streams have long been exempt from Clean Water Act regulation; the Clean Water Rule doesn’t change that. The final rule doesn’t create any new permitting requirements for agriculture, maintains all previous exemptions and exclusions, and even adds exclusions for features like artificial lakes and ponds, water-filled depressions from construction, and grass swales—all to make clear our goal is to stay out of agriculture’s way. Just like before, a Clean Water Act permit is only needed if a water is going to be polluted or destroyed—and all exemptions for agriculture stay in place. Climate change makes protection of water resources even more essential. Impacts from climate change like more intense droughts, storms, fires, and floods—not to mention warmer temperatures and sea level rise—threaten our water supplies. But healthy streams and wetlands can protect communities by trapping floodwaters, retaining moisture during droughts, recharging groundwater supplies, filtering pollution, and providing habitat for fish and wildlife. With states like California in the midst of historic drought, it’s more important than ever that we protect the clean water we’ve got. Clear protections mean cleaner water. The Clean Water Act has protected our health for more than 40 years—and helped our nation clean up hundreds of thousands of miles of polluted waterways. But Supreme Court decisions in 2001 and 2006 threw protections into question for 60 percent of our nation’s streams and millions of acres of wetlands. Using the latest science, this rule clears up the confusion, providing greater certainty for the first time in more than a decade about which waters are important to protect. Science shows us the most important waters to protect. In developing the Clean Water Rule, the Agencies used the latest science, including a report summarizing more than 1,200 peer-reviewed, published scientific studies—which showed small streams and wetlands play an important role in the health of larger downstream waterways like rivers and lakes. You asked for greater clarity. Members of Congress, state and local officials, industry, agriculture, environmental groups, scientists, and the public called on EPA and the Army to clarify which waters are protected under the Clean Water Act. With this rule, the agencies are responding to those requests and addressing the Supreme Court decisions. EPA and the Army held hundreds of meetings with stakeholders across the country, reviewed over a million public comments, and listened carefully to perspectives from all sides. All of this input shaped and improved the final rule we’re announcing today. Just as importantly, there are lots of things the rule doesn’t do. The rule only protects waters historically covered under the Clean Water Act. It doesn’t interfere with private property rights, and it only covers water—not land use. It also doesn’t regulate most ditches, doesn’t regulate groundwater or shallow subsurface flows, and doesn’t change policy on irrigation or water transfers. These are just a few of the many reasons why clean water and this rule are important—learn more here http://www2.epa.gov/cleanwaterrule and share yours with #CleanWaterRules. R123
CONTACT: Robert Daguillard email@example.com (202) 564-6618 Moira Kelley Moira.firstname.lastname@example.org 703-614-3992 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE May 27, 2015 Clean Water Rule Protects Streams and Wetlands Critical to Public Health, Communities, and Economy Does not create any new permitting requirements and maintains all previous exemptions and exclusions Washington – In an historic step for the protection of clean water, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Army finalized the Clean Water Rule today to clearly protect from pollution and degredation the streams and wetlands that form the foundation of the nation’s water resources. The rule ensures that waters protected under the Clean Water Act are more precisely defined and predictably determined, making permitting less costly, easier, and faster for businesses and industry. The rule is grounded in law and the latest science, and is shaped by public input. The rule does not create any new permitting requirements for agriculture and maintains all previous exemptions and exclusions. “For the water in the rivers and lakes in our communities that flow to our drinking water to be clean, the streams and wetlands that feed them need to be clean too,” said EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy. “Protecting our water sources is a critical component of adapting to climate change impacts like drought, sea level rise, stronger storms, and warmer temperatures – which is why EPA and the Army have finalized the Clean Water Rule to protect these important waters, so we can strengthen our economy and provide certainty to American businesses.” “Today's rule marks the beginning of a new era in the history of the Clean Water Act,” said Assistant Secretary for the Army (Civil Works) Jo-Ellen Darcy. “This is a generational rule and completes another chapter in history of the Clean Water Act. This rule responds to the public's demand for greater clarity, consistency, and predictability when making jurisdictional determinations. The result will be better public service nationwide." People need clean water for their health: About 117 million Americans – one in three people – get drinking water from streams that lacked clear protection before the Clean Water Rule. America’s cherished way of life depends on clean water, as healthy ecosystems provide wildlife habitat and places to fish, paddle, surf, and swim. Clean and reliable water is an economic driver, including for manufacturing, farming, tourism, recreation, and energy production. The health of our rivers, lakes, bays, and coastal waters are impacted by the streams and wetlands where they begin. Protection for many of the nation’s streams and wetlands has been confusing, complex, and time-consuming as the result of Supreme Court decisions in 2001 and 2006. EPA and the Army are taking this action today to provide clarity on protections under the Clean Water Act after receiving requests for over a decade from members of Congress, state and local officials, industry, agriculture, environmental groups, scientists, and the public for a rulemaking. In developing the rule, the agencies held more than 400 meetings with stakeholders across the country, reviewed over one million public comments, and listened carefully to perspectives from all sides. EPA and the Army also utilized the latest science, including a report summarizing more than 1,200 peer-reviewed, published scientific studies which showed that small streams and wetlands play an integral role in the health of larger downstream water bodies. Climate change makes protection of water resources even more essential. Streams and wetlands provide many benefits to communities by trapping floodwaters, recharging groundwater supplies, filtering pollution, and providing habitat for fish and wildlife. Impacts from climate change like drought, sea level rise, stronger storms, and warmer temperatures threaten the quantity and quality of America’s water. Protecting streams and wetlands will improve our nation’s resilience to climate change. Specifically, the Clean Water Rule: • Clearly defines and protects tributaries that impact the health of downstream waters. The Clean Water Act protects navigable waterways and their tributaries. The rule says that a tributary must show physical features of flowing water – a bed, bank, and ordinary high water mark – to warrant protection. The rule provides protection for headwaters that have these features and science shows can have a significant connection to downstream waters. • Provides certainty in how far safeguards extend to nearby waters. The rule protects waters that are next to rivers and lakes and their tributaries because science shows that they impact downstream waters. The rule sets boundaries on covering nearby waters for the first time that are physical and measurable. • Protects the nation’s regional water treasures. Science shows that specific water features can function like a system and impact the health of downstream waters. The rule protects prairie potholes, Carolina and Delmarva bays, pocosins, western vernal pools in California, and Texas coastal prairie wetlands when they impact downstream waters. • Focuses on streams, not ditches. The rule limits protection to ditches that are constructed out of streams or function like streams and can carry pollution downstream. So ditches that are not constructed in streams and that flow only when it rains are not covered. • Maintains the status of waters within Municipal Separate Storm Sewer Systems. The rule does not change how those waters are treated and encourages the use of green infrastructure. • Reduces the use of case-specific analysis of waters. Previously, almost any water could be put through a lengthy case-specific analysis, even if it would not be subject to the Clean Water Act. The rule significantly limits the use of case-specific analysis by creating clarity and certainty on protected waters and limiting the number of similarly situated water features. A Clean Water Act permit is only needed if a water is going to be polluted or destroyed. The Clean Water Rule only protects the types of waters that have historically been covered under the Clean Water Act. It does not regulate most ditches and does not regulate groundwater, shallow subsurface flows, or tile drains. It does not make changes to current policies on irrigation or water transfers or apply to erosion in a field. The Clean Water Rule addresses the pollution and destruction of waterways – not land use or private property rights. The rule protects clean water necessary for farming, ranching, and forestry and provides greater clarity and certainty to farmers about coverage of the Clean Water Act. Farms across America depend on clean and reliable water for livestock, crops, and irrigation. The final rule specifically recognizes the vital role that U.S. agriculture serves in providing food, fuel, and fiber at home and around the world. The rule does not create any new permitting requirements for America’s farmers. Activities like planting, harvesting, and moving livestock have long been exempt from Clean Water Act regulation, and the Clean Water Rule preserves those exemptions. The Clean Water Rule will be effective 60 days after publication in the Federal Register. More information: www.epa.gov/cleanwaterrule and http://www.army.mil/asacw
WASHINGTON, May 27, 2015 – Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced today that the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Blueprint for Stronger Service initiative has created $1.4 billion in savings, efficiencies, and cost avoidances, while the agriculture sector continues to experience its most productive period in history. Secretary Vilsack launched the initiative in 2012, directing USDA agencies to take steps to cut costs and modernize operations in order to become a stronger and more effective department. "To produce better results for the farmers, ranchers, small businesses and families we serve, and to stay ahead of the year over year reductions to USDA's operating budget made by Congress, today's USDA must operate much differently than we did in years past," said Vilsack. "Through our Blueprint for Stronger Service strategy, we took a hard look at our programs and practices and made proactive, cost-saving changes that are innovative and commonsense. The result is $1.4 billion in savings without sacrificing service to the American public—a clear victory for our customers, the taxpayer and our Department's future. This strategic approach will help USDA continue to support a vibrant and growing agricultural and rural economy for generations to come." Since 2010, Congress has reduced USDA's budget 10 percent while creating additional responsibilities and more complex programming. Since the Blueprint for Stronger Service initiative was launched, USDA has carried out workforce reductions, closed offices and laboratories, implemented modern cloud computing efforts to cut costs, and much more. Some of the specific actions taken include: • Several different USDA agencies consolidated and right-sized offices, including within Washington, D.C., achieving more than $25.2 million in efficiencies. • Ending planned or on-going construction projects, and getting rid of property that's underutilized or no longer necessary, has saved $268 million. • Implementing energy savings practices and working with utility companies to reduce expenditures has saved $6.5 million. • Purchasing goods and services at the Department level, instead of through individual agencies, and centralizing contracts has saved USDA $169 million. USDA has achieved another $135 million in efficiencies by updating agreements for IT support and services, centralizing data servers, consolidating cell phone services and ensuring only the IT equipment necessary to get the job done is purchased. • Increasing the use of online publications, reducing the number of publication subscriptions, and centralizing printing activities has reduced costs by more than $24.43 million. • Putting an end to unnecessary promotional items has saved taxpayers more than $1.8 million per year. • USDA continues to restructure its workforce through targeted use of Early Retirement and Voluntary Separation authorities. Through these efforts, USDA achieved more than $142.8 million in savings. • Through the increase of telework, the Department has also realized $18 million of cost avoidance in transit subsidies to employees. Telework helps USDA recognize increased productivity, greater operating efficiencies and cost reductions. • Cutting back on travel, in addition to improving the processes for booking travel when necessary, has provided more than $400.3 million in efficiencies. And by turning to USDA's agencies and directing them to find efficiencies related to the unique work they do, USDA has improved management processes and established more than $57 million in savings. These efforts have included eliminating redundant functions, establishing hiring hubs, and implementing Lean Six Sigma and other management improvement techniques to streamline agency processes. Individual agencies' cost-saving success stories are being featured this month on the USDA Blog. In the months ahead, USDA will make further improvements as part of the Blueprint for Stronger Service, including strengthening the Department's strategic sourcing of goods and services, and streamlining property management and lease acquisition. USDA partners with communities across the country to create greater economic impact for rural Americans, ensure access to safe and nutritious foods for all, and preserve our nation's waters and lands. To learn more about a more diverse, modern and efficient USDA, visit www.usda.gov/strongerservice. #
Washington, D.C. May 27, 2015 – Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced that farmers, ranchers and private forest landowners can now do business with U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) through a new online portal. With today's launch of Conservation Client Gateway, producers will have the ability to work with conservation planners online to access Farm Bill programs, request assistance and track payments for their conservation activities. "What used to require a trip to a USDA service center can now be done from a home computer through Conservation Client Gateway," Vilsack said. "USDA is committed to providing effective, efficient assistance to its clients, and Conservation Client Gateway is one way to improve customer service." Conservation Client Gateway enables farmers, ranchers and private landowners to securely: • Request NRCS technical and financial assistance; • Review and sign conservation plans and practice schedules; • Complete and sign an application for a conservation program; • Review, sign and submit contracts and appendices for conservation programs; • Document completed practices and request certification of completed practices; • Request and track payments for conservation programs; and • Store and retrieve technical and financial files, including documents and photographs. Conservation Client Gateway is entirely voluntary, giving producers a choice between conducting business online or traveling to a USDA service center. "Our goal is to make it easy and convenient for farmers and ranchers to work with USDA," Vilsack said. "Customers can log in 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, to electronically sign documents, apply for conservation programs, access conservation plans, report practice completion or track the status of conservation payments. Through Conservation Client Gateway, producers have their conservation information at their fingertips and they can save time and gas money by reducing the number of trips to USDA service centers." Conservation Client Gateway is available to individual landowners and will soon be extended to business entities, such as Limited Liability Corporations. It is part of the agency's ongoing Conservation Delivery Streamlining Initiative, which will feature additional capabilities in the future. For more information about Conservation Client Gateway, visit: www.nrcs.usda.gov/clientgateway. Fact Sheet FAQ page #
Tuesday, May 26, 2015
Pecan Nut Case bearer Spray Time Is Latter than the past years Carlsbad, NM,— It is that time of the year again to be thinking about spraying for Pecan Nut Case bearer (PNC). Population projections are not real reliable this year because of the strange weather. We have had a drop in minimum daily temperature since bud break in Pecans. I estimated bud break to be March 30 this year but it varies up and down the valley. Some reported as early as March 26 and other as late as 10 April. Using a Heat unit model developed by Texas A & M Cooperative Extension Service, the Eddy County Cooperative Extension Service predicts the Pecan Nut Case bearer would be later this year. Based on this model crop protection chemicals should be applied May 30 to June 14th. However this may be revised based on reported moth counts in pheromone traps. Computer predictions are best used to decide when to set out pheromone traps, look for eggs and to plan insecticide application but should not be used as the only source of information to make application decisions. This year may prove this. Orchard scouting for eggs should begin two weeks before the predicted spray date as unusual weather conditions near the spray date, can either accelerate or delay egg-laying activity. I am getting reports of third generation larva in the shoots of new growth; these are from crop years 2014 and have managed to over winter to this spring. This is usual for this valley. Most Case bearer eggs are found at the tip of the nut let, either on the top or hidden just under the tiny leaves at the tip of the nut let. A good hand lens is necessary to determine their development, (hatched, white, or pink). Also, look for bud feeding just below the nut cluster to detect the presence of newly hatched larvae. You should examine 10 nut clusters per tree. A cluster is considered infested if it has a Case bearer egg or nut entry. If two or more clusters are infested, insecticide applications may be necessary. Application should be two days after the eggs hatch. When no infested clusters are found you should check again two days later. Keep checking until June 20, which then if an infestation is not found insecticide application should not be required, for the first generation. Scouting for the seconded generation should start July 4th as currently predicted by the heat unit model. With the frost damage nut formation may be delayed. Insecticide selection for backyard trees should be done with caution because of the great potential for spray drift onto nearby garden, pets, and living areas. Only products containing Carbaryl, and Malathion, are labeled and packaged for homeowner for control of pecan nut Case bearer in urban areas. Refer to label instructions for mixing and application rates and precautions. It is in violation of federal law to apply any chemical in any manner except what is on the label. Commercial orchards may use the above products or Interpid, Chlorpyrifos (Lordsban) (Cobalt), Confirm 2F, Pyrethroid or Spintor insecticide. Intrepid is an insecticide, which is labeled for Pecans. This product has a very good residual and is very effective and much safer then Oregano Phosphates and is the current product of choice. It does not harm predatory insects. This product is very safe for use around people. The fact it is not labeled for home owner is a disappointment, because it is safer than some product which is labeled for non-restricted use. Pecan nut Case bearer is one of the most important nut infesting insect pests of pecans. It is found in most the pecan growing areas from the east coast to Eddy County New Mexico. The Case bearer larva tunnels into nut lets shortly after pollination, often destroying all of the nut lets in the cluster. The most effective and reliable method of control is a well-timed insecticide application(s) made in the spring to kill hatching larvae before they tunnel into the nut lets. However, insecticides should only be applied if an infestations and nut load justify treatment. New Mexico State University is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer and educator. All programs are available to everyone regardless of race, color, religion, sex, age, handicap, or national origin. New Mexico State University, U.S. Department of Agriculture, and the Eddy County Government Cooperating. Eddy County Extension Service, New Mexico State University is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer and educator. All programs are available to everyone regardless of race, color, religion, sex, age, handicap, or national origin. New Mexico State University, U.S. Department of Agriculture, and the Eddy County Government Cooperating.
Thursday, May 21, 2015
A new strain of rabies has been discovered in southern New Mexico, federal and state health officials confirmed Tuesday. While it doesn't present any more of a public health threat than the known strains of the potentially fatal disease, the discovery is generating curiosity in scientific circles because it's the first new strain to be found in the United States in several years. "It's exciting. It's related to another bat strain. It's similar but unique, so the question is what's the reservoir for this strain," state public health veterinarian Paul Ettestad said. When scientists talk about the reservoir, they are referring to animals known to host the virus. In many cases, that can be bats, skunks or raccoons. Those animals usually aren't tested because it's assumed they have regular strains of rabies. Tests are done when it shows up in other animals, including dogs, cats, horses and foxes, Ettestad said. That was the case when a 78-year-old Lincoln County woman was bitten by a rabid fox in April. Genetic testing at a U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention lab in Atlanta confirmed the strain was one that never before had been identified. State officials suspect the rabid fox came in contact with an infected bat that was carrying the strain. "It has probably been out there for some time. We just haven't looked that hard for it and by chance we found it," Ettestad said of the new strain. New Mexico health and wildlife officials have been tracking rabies in the fox population since 2007, when a separate strain found in Arizona gray foxes crossed into New Mexico.
Western Ranchers Sustain Big Grazing Victory at Appeals Court Two ranching organizations, an Arizona ranch, and an Arizona rancher today won a major victory at the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit when a three-judge panel affirmed a ruling by an Arizona federal district court that granted them summary judgment over a demand by environmental groups that grazing permits be revoked and then subjected to lengthy federal environmental review. The groups claimed the U.S. Forest Service violated federal law when it reauthorized permits that allow ranchers to graze their livestock on nearby federal lands as they have done for generations by not issuing full environmental impact statements (EISs) pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) prior to reissuing the permits. The Arizona Cattle Growers’ Association, the Public Lands Council, Orme Ranch, Inc., and Bert Teskey, all represented by Mountain States Legal Foundation (MSLF), maintained that Congress made clear that no EISs are required. After the two groups dropped challenges to seven Forest Service decisions, the matter was briefed and argued. The district court upheld the agency’s ruling as to seven of the eight decisions. “That the panel ruled without oral argument shows how one-sided was the ruling in our clients’ favor,” said William Perry Pendley, MSLF president. In fiscal years 2005 through 2007, the Forest Service, without conducting environmental reviews pursuant to NEPA, reauthorized several grazing permits on lands managed by the Forest Service. On August 15, 2011, the Western Watersheds Project and the Center For Biological Diversity filed a lawsuit alleging that 17 of the reauthorizations—seven in the Coconino National Forest in Arizona, three in the Kaibab National Forest in Arizona, six in the Prescott National Forest in Arizona, and one in the Coronado National Forest in New Mexico—violated NEPA. The lawsuit was filed despite the clear intent of Congress that the Forest Service is not required to do the reviews. Beginning in 1995, Congress enacted legislation to address its concern that the inability of the Forest Service to complete NEPA analyses on expiring term grazing permits would delay renewal of the permits to the detriment of the western ranchers involved. Specifically, Congress sought to reduce the amount of documentation and expense required to conduct NEPA. In 2003, Congress strengthened these protections of ongoing livestock grazing by directing that term grazing permits shall remain in effect pending compliance with NEPA. Then, in 2005, Congress directed that reauthorization of grazing permits is “categorically excluded” from documentation under NEPA if the Forest Service makes certain determinations. The total number of allotments reauthorized under the provision may not exceed 900. link
USDA Reminds Farmers to Certify Conservation Compliance by June 1 Deadline 05/21/2015 01:24 PM EDT Release 0144.15 USDA Reminds Farmers to Certify Conservation Compliance by June 1 Deadline Producers May Need to Take Action to Remain Eligible for Crop Insurance Premium Support WASHINGTON, May 21, 2015 – The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) reminds farmers to file a Highly Erodible Land Conservation and Wetland Conservation Certification form (AD-1026) with their local USDA Service Center by June 1, 2015. The 2014 Farm Bill requires producers to have the form on file in order to remain eligible, or to become eligible for crop insurance premium support. Many farmers already have a certification form on file since it’s required for participation in most USDA programs including marketing assistance loans, farm storage facility loans and disaster assistance. However, farmers who only participate in the federal crop insurance program must now file a certification form to receive crop insurance premium support. These producers might include specialty crop farmers who may not participate in other USDA programs. “USDA is making every effort possible to get the word out about this new Farm Bill provision,” said Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack. “We’ve deployed a variety of informational documents and online resources including fact sheets, frequently asked questions and brochures to help farmers understand what they need to do. We’ve also conducted informational meetings and training sessions for nearly 6,000 stakeholders across the country. We want to make sure that those who are required to act do so by the June 1 deadline. We want all eligible producers to be able to maintain their ability to protect their operations with affordable crop insurance.” USDA has conducted extensive outreach over the past year, especially to producers who only participate in the federal crop insurance program and may be subject to conservation compliance for the first time. Along with the outreach done by crop insurance agents and companies, USDA efforts have included letters, postcards, phone calls, producer meetings and interaction with stakeholder groups to help them reach their members. While there are procedures in place to correct good faith errors and omissions on certification forms, the deadline cannot be waived or extended and a form must be filed by June 1. The Highly Erodible Land Conservation and Wetland Conservation Certification form AD-1026 is available at local USDA Service Centers or online at www.fsa.usda.gov/AD1026form.When a farmer completes this form, USDA’s Farm Service Agency and Natural Resources Conservation Service staff will identify any additional actions that may be required for compliance with highly erodible land and wetland provisions. USDA’s Risk Management Agency, through the Federal Crop Insurance Corporation, manages the federal crop insurance program. Today's announcement was made possible by the 2014 Farm Bill, which builds on historic economic gains in rural America over the past six years, while achieving meaningful reform and billions of dollars in savings for the taxpayer. Since enactment, USDA has implemented many provisions of this critical legislation, providing disaster relief to farmers and ranchers; strengthening risk management tools; expanding access to rural credit; funding critical research; establishing innovative public-private conservation partnerships; developing new markets for rural-made products; and investing in infrastructure, housing and community facilities to help improve quality of life in rural America. For more information, visit www.usda.gov/farmbill. USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer. To file a complaint of discrimination, write: USDA, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights, Office of Adjudication, 1400 Independence Ave., SW, Washington, DC 20250-9410 or call (866) 632-9992 (Toll-free Customer Service), (800) 877-8339 (Local or Federal relay), (866) 377-8642 (Relay voice users).
Monday, May 18, 2015
USDA to Expand Investment in Water Conservation, Resilience across Drought-Stricken States Targeted drought funding builds on substantial drought relief efforts WASHINGTON, May 18, 2015 - Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced that the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) will invest approximately $21 million in additional Farm Bill dollars to help farmers and ranchers apply science-based solutions to mitigate the short and long term effects of drought. These investments will focus financial and technical assistance in the most severely drought-stricken areas in eight states to help crop and livestock producers apply conservation practices that increase irrigation efficiency, improve soil health and productivity, and ensure reliable water sources for livestock operations. "Since the historic drought of 2012, dry conditions have persisted in many parts of the country, particularly in the West," Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said. "Every day, NRCS conservationists work side-by-side with agricultural producers and help them conserve water and increase resilience in their operations. Today's investment will provide additional resources in drought-stricken areas to help farmers and ranchers implement solutions to mitigate the impacts of sustained drought." Today's announcement expands on the substantial efforts already underway to help producers conserve water, improve soil health and build long term agricultural resilience into their operations. Already this year, NRCS state offices have targeted significant portions of their fiscal year Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) allocations to address water conservation, soil health, and resilience. In California, for example, more than $27 million of fiscal year 2015 EQIP funding is directed towards beneficial drought management practices. With today's announcement, NRCS will provide an additional $21 million in technical and financial assistance through EQIP to target areas that are experiencing either exceptional or extreme drought conditions as of the May 5, 2015 U.S. Drought Monitor, which includes parts of California, Kansas, Idaho, Nevada, Oklahoma, Oregon, Texas, and Utah. The EQIP funding will allow NRCS to help producers apply selected conservation practices to better deal with the effects of drought in their operations, including prescribed grazing, livestock watering facilities, cover crops, nutrient management, irrigation systems, and other water conservation practices. On average, farmers and ranchers contribute half the cost of implementing conservation practices. Between 2012 and 2014, NRCS invested more than $1.5 billion in financial and technical assistance to help producers implement conservation practices that improve water use efficiency and build long term health of working crop, pasture, and range lands. These practices include building soil health by using cover crops and no-till, which allow the soil to hold water longer and buffer roots from higher temperatures; improving the efficiency of irrigation systems; and implementing prescribed grazing to relieve pressure on stressed vegetation. NRCS is also leveraging partner investments through the new Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP) to put further resources toward projects that foster water conservation and resilience. In the first round of RCPP funding last year, NRCS committed more than $84 million in 35 projects that address water conservation and soil health. These funds will be matched dollar-for-dollar by our partners, resulting in a total investment of nearly $190 million in water conservation and resilience across the country. In May, Vilsack announced a second round of RCPP funding availability that will make up to $235 million available for targeted conservation, highlighting drought and water conservation as a resource concern for potential projects. Earlier this month, NRCS announced $6.5 million in additional drought-related funding through the Ogallala Aquifer Initiative. This investment will support targeted, local efforts to protect the quality and extend the availability of water from the Ogallala Aquifer, which underlies about 225,000 square miles of the Great Plains and supports nearly one-fifth of the wheat, corn, cotton and cattle produced in the United States. Through the creation of the National Drought Resilience Partnership, launched as part of the President's Climate Action Plan, federal agencies are working closely with states, tribes and local governments to develop a coordinated response to drought. For information on USDA's drought efforts, visit USDA Disaster and Drought Information. And to learn more about how NRCS is helping private landowners deal with drought, visit the NRCS' drought resources. View information by state. Producers and landowners are encouraged to visit the NRCS website or stop by their local NRCS office to find out if they are eligible for this new funding. Learn more about and EQIP and other NRCS programs. Today's announcement was made possible by the 2014 Farm Bill. The 2014 Farm Bill builds on historic economic gains in rural America over the past five years, while achieving meaningful reform and billions of dollars in savings for taxpayers. Since enactment, USDA has made significant progress to implement each provision of this critical legislation, including providing disaster relief to farmers and ranchers; strengthening risk management tools; expanding access to rural credit; funding critical research; establishing innovative public-private conservation partnerships; developing new markets for rural-made products; and investing in infrastructure, housing and community facilities to help improve quality of life. #
Friday, May 15, 2015
NMSU’s Chile Pepper Institute set to ignite with Holy Jolokia spice rub DATE: 05/15/2015 WRITER: Justin Bannister, 575-646-5981, email@example.com CONTACT: Adan Delval, 575-646-3028, firstname.lastname@example.org As the weather warms up and grills begin to fire up, New Mexico State University’s Chile Pepper Institute wants to make sure backyard chefs are equipped to bring the heat. That’s why they are partnering with CaJohns Fiery Foods to unveil the newest in the Holy Jolokia collection, a spice rub specially designed for barbecue. “The Holy Jolokia rub goes great with ribs,” said Adan Delval, a program specialist with the Chile Pepper Institute. “It is spicy but also sweet, giving meat a sweet and hot flavor. The best part is it is sodium free.” Since 2009, the Chile Pepper Institute has worked with CaJohns to produce and sell thousands of bottles of Holy Jolokia hot sauce, salsa, barbecue sauce, taco sauce and wing sauce, each made with Bhut Jolokia chile peppers – also known as the “Ghost Pepper,” one of the hottest peppers on the planet. In addition to Bhut Jolokia peppers, Holy Jolokia rub also contains a mix of other peppers and spices. “We hear all the time from people who can’t get enough of these Holy Jolokia products,” says Danise Coon, an NMSU agricultural research scientist who works with the Chile Pepper Institute. “This one is exciting because it’s the first dry rub in the Holy Jolokia line.” Bottles of Holy Jolokia rub cost $10. All proceeds from the sale of all Holy Jolokia products go toward an endowed chair for chile pepper research at NMSU. Holy Jolokia products are available at the Chile Pepper Institute, Gerald Thomas Hall Room 265 on the NMSU campus or online at www.chilepepperinstitute.org. The Chile Pepper Institute was established in 1992 and is part of NMSU’s College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences. It’s the only international nonprofit organization devoted to chile pepper education and research.
House votes to de-list lesser prairie chicken as threatened By Chris Casteel | May 15, 2015 The U.S. House voted 229 to 190 on Friday morning to de-list the lesser prairie chicken as a threatened species. The vote came on an amendment by Oklahoma Republican Rep. Frank Lucas and the other four Oklahoma members in the House. The vote was mostly along partisan lines. The amendment was made to the national defense bill. Lucas, whose district includes much of western Oklahoma, part of the bird’s range, said Friday, “Despite strong conservation efforts in Oklahoma and other range states, the Lesser Prairie Chicken remains on the Endangered Species List. “Its listing has not only created yet another layer of costs and bureaucracy for farmers and ranchers, but it could also force American military bases to tip toe around a set of dubious regulations. This amendment ensures our military may continue to operate on its own schedule, rather than waiting on approval from an agency bureaucrat." Oklahoma has two Air Force bases in western Oklahoma: Vance Air Force Base, near Enid, and Altus Air Force Base. Both are in Lucas’ district. The Obama administration listed the lesser prairie chicken as a threatened species in March. The listing of threatened -- a step below endangered -- followed years of review. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service listed the lesser prairie chicken -- a species of prairie grouse -- as threatened, but it also allowed economic activity to continue under the multi-state conservation plan. In its announcement, the service said the bird would be listed under a rule that would "limit regulatory impacts on landowners and businesses from this listing." Lucas’ amendment still has a long journey through the legislative process to become law. The amendment would also remove the American Burying Beetle from threatened or endangered list.
: New Mexico VS Update_May 15, 2015 Good afternoon, May 15, 2015 New Mexico VS Update In compliance with the 2015 VSV Field Procedures, livestock on a Grant Co premises are under quarantine following private practitioner notification to Animal Health Officials of the finding of one (1) horse with lesions compatible with Vesicular Stomatitis. There has been no movement of livestock to or from this premises in the past three weeks. Appropriate biosecurity measures are in place at this time. Producer and private practitioner vigilance for evidence of vesicular lesions in livestock and immediate reporting of such findings to state and/or federal animal health officials is essential for prompt diagnosis and control of disease spread and initiation of biosecurity measures to protect other livestock. Kind regards, Ellen Mary Wilson, D.V.M. State Veterinarian New Mexico Livestock Board
Thursday, May 14, 2015
After calving season comes to an end, it won’t be long before breeding season begins. To ensure a successful breeding season, it is critical to monitor nutritional status of the cows by evaluating body condition score. If cows were thin at calving, it is going to be extremely difficult to get them to re-breed within 80 days of calving. Rebreeding within 80 days is necessary to be sure that they will calve on a 365 day interval so that they don’t become late-calving cows. Breeding is a challenging time for cows because many key processes are taking place, including lactation, repair of the reproductive tract, restarting heat cycles, conceiving, and retaining the pregnancy. This period of time from calving to breeding equates to the highest nutrient requirements throughout the production cycle. It is important to remember that nutrient use is prioritized to maintenance first, growth second, lactation third and finally reproduction. Therefore, if the cow’s nutrient requirements are not being met, the first thing to be compromised or delayed is reproduction. Nutrition & Body Condition Steps can be taken to help ensure that cows are on a positive plane of nutrition, giving them the greatest opportunity to re-breed so that they have a calf every 365 days. First, they need to be in a positive energy balance or a body condition score of 5 for mature cows or 6 for first calf heifers at calving. If they are in this condition at calving, a 1200 lb cow that has a peak milk production of 20 lbs per day needs a diet that contains 58.7% TDN (total digestible nutrients). This can be achieved with a good quality grass hay or green pasture. This cow would also need a diet that contains 10.2% crude protein, which could also be achieved with a good quality grass/alfalfa mix hay or a good quality spring pasture. The challenge is if cows are in poor body condition at calving and they need to gain weight. Because nutrients will tend to be diverted toward milk production, providing enough nutrition to meet requirements for both lactation and weight gain will be difficult. This will likely require the inclusion of high energy concentrate feeds, which takes more time, management and likely cost. It is easier to have them in the proper condition at calving and work to maintain that condition from calving to the breeding season. Influence of Key Minerals What about minerals? The key minerals that play roles in reproduction are phosphorus (P), copper (Cu), iodine (I), and manganese (Mn). A P deficiency will result in impaired reproduction. Phosphorus requirements change based on the size, stage of production and milk production of the cows, and is addressed in relation to calcium. For the 1200 lb cow, the P requirement is 0.2% of diet dry matter, while the calcium requirement is 0.3% of diet dry matter. Forage is a highly variable supply of P, therefore it is important to have the feeds tested to determine the level of P available to ensure the mineral supplement provided has an adequate amount to overcome any deficiencies. When considering mineral supplements, P is very important not only from the animal side, but also the economic side, as P is usually the most expensive ingredient in a mineral supplement. Copper is a challenging mineral due to antagonisms with other minerals tying Cu up. For example, sulfur and molybdenum will combine with Cu to form thiomolybdate compounds, which renders the Cu unavailable to the animal. In order to overcome this interaction, additional Cu, above the 10 ppm requirement has to be fed. A Cu deficiency can result in delayed or depressed estrus. Iodine is deficient in many locations, which is why it is critical to provide iodized salt to cattle. The requirement is only 0.5 ppm, but if this is not met, the result can be irregular estrus cycles and poor conception rates. Manganese is a micromineral that plays a key role in reproduction. Cows have a requirement of 40 ppm and if this is not met can result in depressed or irregular estrus, low conception rate, abortion, still births and low birth weights. Most of the mineral concerns outlined above can be alleviated with a good mineral program or the inclusion of a trace mineralized salt into the supplement program. Work with a nutritionist or SDSU Extension Specialist to determine your breeding season nutritional needs.
Good afternoon, The following CES publications have been revised and are now available online in PDF format. Guide B-222, "Cattle Vaccination and Immunity,” revised by John Wenzel http://aces.nmsu.edu/pubs/_b/B222.pdf Guide B-223, "Calf Vaccination Guidelines,” revised by John Wenzel http://aces.nmsu.edu/pubs/_b/B223.pdf Guide B-224, "Cow Herd Vaccination Guidelines,” revised by John Wenzel http://aces.nmsu.edu/pubs/_b/B224.pdf
Cattle thief sentenced to 15 years in prison Special to the Courier Coleman, Texas - A Rockwood man was arrested and charged with second degree theft of livestock and sentenced to 15 years in prison on Feb. 2 after stealing $3,000 worth of cattle from a rancher located in Coleman, Texas. Texas and Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association Special Ranger Joe Roberts and Coleman County Sheriff's Deputy Archie Lancaster led the investigation. Roberts received a phone call on March 6, 2014 from a ranch hand who stated that three head of cattle from were stolen from his boss's ranch in Coleman, Texas. The foreman told Roberts that he found four wires cut on the victim's fence and a gate going into the neighbor's property had been moved. The suspect, Don Ernest Estes, 40, of Rockwood, owns the land neighboring the victim's property where the fence and gate had been tampered with. Roberts determined that Estes had stolen the cattle from the victim, whose land shared a fence line. The victim stated that the cattle missing would have weighed about 650 pounds and were either black or red heifers or steers with no brands. Roberts contacted the owner and bookkeeper of the Coleman Livestock Auction and the owner of the auction told Roberts that Estes sold a red 615 pound steer at the auction on Feb. 5. Roberts identified the steer because it had a blue ear tag in the left ear that said "Estes." Later that week, Lancaster and the ranch owners found and confirmed the identity of the other two head of cattle on another piece of land, which was being leased by Estes. The cattle contained fresh brands on them with the letter "E." Estes was arrested and charged with third degree cattle theft; however, the charge was later enhanced by Coleman County District Attorney Heath Hemphill to a second degree felony due to prior convictions. Estes pled guilty and was sentenced to 15 years in the state penitentiary for cattle theft and prior criminal mischief. "It is crucial for ranchers to always brand and keep an accurate count on their cattle," said Roberts. "Taking these precautions serve as the first line of defense against cattle theft. Additionally, it is important for ranchers to report suspicious activity to their local law enforcement as quickly as possible. "In this case, we worked with the victim and local law enforcement to investigate the crime and arrest another cattle thief. We will always work to seek justice for ranchers when necessary."
State Game Commission The New Mexico State Game Commission is the governing body of the New Mexico Department of Game and Fish. Commissioners are appointed by the Governor with the collective goal of overseeing the rules and regulations established to achieve the NMDGF mission of "conserve, regulate, propagate and protect the wildlife and fish within the state of New Mexico using a flexible management system that ensures sustainable use for public food supply, recreation and safety; and to provide for off-highway motor vehicle recreation that recognizes cultural, historic, and resource values while ensuring public safety." The Commission meets six to eight times a year during which they make management, financial, and recreational decisions that effects resident and non-resident hunters and anglers. All meetings are open to the public and are held in various, rotating locations across the state. The New Mexico Council of Outfitters and Guides attends every State Game Commission meeting and provides testimony on behalf of the industry. 2015 Game Commission Meeting Schedule Commissioner Biographies May 7, 2015 - Commission Meeting Re-cap The State Game Commission held their 3rd meeting of 2015 on Thursday May 7th at the Civic Center in Farmington. The meeting was exceptionally long and covered a number of items. Topics of particular interest to the Outfitting Industry included the preliminary proposals of the Bear and Cougar Rule Development, Multiple Tagging of Illegal Game with One License, and the Permit Renewal for Captive Mexican Wolves. Bear Rule Development Bear and Cougar biologist Elise Goldstein provided a presentation on the Department's proposed changes to the current Bear Rule. The presentation provided insight into the statistical averages of Bear harvests over the past 3 years. The presentation also provided a "to-date" list of public comments regarding the Bear Rule Development. Although the Dept. admitted that they have received numerous public comments requesting a Spring Bear Hunt this recommendation was suspiciously absent from the presentation. Recommendations made by the department are as follows: 1. Increase in harvest limits in specific Bear Management Zones (BMZs) based on research the Department is conducting in cooperation with New Mexico State University. The study will provide updated population estimates in the Sangre de Cristo, Sacramento, and Sandia mountains. Additionally, the Department has updated the bear habitat model using the latest land cover information which would also result in increased bear harvest potential in certain zones. 2. Move Game Management Unit (GMU) 48 from BMZ 3 to BMZ 4 to group similar habitat types in the same BMZ. 3. Add GMUs 39 and 40 to BMZ 6. GMUs 39 and 40 are currently closed to bear hunting, but the new habitat model and ground observations suggest there are sufficient habitat and bears to provide additional harvest opportunity. 4. Modify the season structure and restrict proportions of total harvest limits to specific hunt time frames. Possibly split seasons by the amount of bears so that ample hunting can be allowed early as well as later in the season. Possibly start season Sept. 1st rather than in August. 5. Change pelt tag process to allow for only a law enforcement official to tag pelts rather than any NMDGF designee as is the current regulation. NMCOG provided public comment to make a formal request for the department to consider establishing a spring bear hunt. We also encouraged the Department to change the season structure to address the problems of the bear quota closing over 80% of the BMZ prior to mid-season . The Bear Rule is currently open for public comment. Please email DGF-Bear-Cougar-Rules@state.nm.us with your thoughts and suggestions. Cougar Rule Development Ms. Goldstein also gave a presentation regarding the cougar rule development. The Department estimates that a reasonable harvest number of cougars would be around 700 per season however at this point less than 300 are harvested. The Department is under pressure to find ways to make the cougar harvest more successful. To do this they are proposing the following changes to the cougar rule: 1. Allow use of traps and snares to harvest cougars. Only 30% of the cougar harvest limit is reached each year, in spite of a year round season and an increased bag limit of 2 cougars. Traps and snares would be allowed in Cougar Management Zones (CMZs) in which harvest limits are not being met. To prevent hunters from being in violation of the federal Endangered Species Act, CMZ L would be excluded to prevent the unlikely accidental capture of a jaguar. 2. Prohibit use of hounds during deer and elk archery seasons; this is similar to the current restrictions on hound use for hunting bears. 3. Move Game Management Unit (GMU) 18 from Cougar Management Zone (CMZ) I to CMZ H to put similar habitat types in the same zone. 4. Allow licensed deer and elk hunters on the Sargent, Humphries, Rio Chama, Urraca, Colin Neblett, E.S. Barker, and Marquez Wildlife Management Areas who also possess a cougar license to hunt cougars with the same weapon type as their license during the period of their hunt. Dogs would not be allowed. 5. Change pelt tag process to allow for only a law enforcement official to tag pelts rather than any NMDGF designee as is the current regulation. When the Department released these primary proposals in print, roughly 2 weeks ago, NMCOG sought input from our Cougar Outfitters regarding their thoughts on the use of traps and snares. Overwhelmingly cougar hunters who use dogs are against traps and snares. Cougar traps are significantly larger than the current fur bearer traps being used on the public lands and hounds-man fear the potential risk of injury to their hunting dogs. NMCOG along with a number of Outfitters, experienced lion trappers, the NM Hounds-men Association, and the NMWF provided public comment in opposition to the Department proposal to allow cougar traps and snares on public lands. You can watch the full Bear and Cougar Department presentation along with the public comments at http://www.governor.state.nm.us/Webcast.aspx (fast forward to 2:52 minutes). The Cougar Rule is also currently open for public comment. Multiple Tagging of Illegal Game With One License Colonel Robert Griego provided a presentation to the Commission regarding the issue of individuals using the ability to print multiple licenses as a means to harvest illegal game. It recently came to the attention of the Department that this illegal activity is taking place and in an effort to combat this issue the Department is considering creating an "app" to assist law enforcement officers by providing real time information regarding big game harvests. The Department is also currently accepting public comment regarding this issue to determine the most effective response. Email your suggestions to Robert.email@example.com. Permit Renewal For Captive Mexican Wolves After a short presentation by Mike Phillips, Executive Director of the Turner Endangered Species Fund, and a very long Q&A session with US Fish and Wildlife representatives, the Commission denied Turner Enterprises request to renew their permit to posses and breed captive Mexican Wolves (something they have been doing since 1998). The Commission praised all of the work that the TESF has done with all of their various endangered species over the past 20 years and described that their reasons for denying the permit sat squarely with the USFWS dismal lack of management plan with respect to the Mexican Wolf recovery. Of course the USFWS will continue to breed captive Mexican Wolves at their other facilities but NMCOG was happy to see the Commission attempt to hold USFWS feet to the fire as it relates to a formal Mexican Wolf Recovery Plan. NMCOG was additionally glad to hear Mr. Phillips say that the TESF would hold no grudge against the Department for not renewing the permit. Mr. Phillips eloquently stated that Turner Enterprises does not hold the Mexican Wolves at a higher level than any of their other endangered species and that they will continue to maintain a strong working relationship with the Department. Odds and Ends The Department additionally covered a number of other agenda topics. The Commission heard presentations regarding updates to the harvest report requirements for trappers, the establishment of a new shooting range, an update on the success of ongoing efforts to eradicate aquatic invasive species, as well as the Department's plans to better utilize and reimburse volunteers. At the tail end of the meeting, during open public comment segment, the NMWF made a formal push for the Commission to open the E-plus Rule and make some substantial changes to the landowner elk permit system. NMCOG will be following this closely and will pass along additional information as it becomes available. The next meeting will be held on Saturday June 13, 2015 in Taos, NM.
Release No. 0137.15 Contact: Office of Communications (202)720-4623 USDA Invests $6.5 Million to Help Conserve Water, Improve Water Quality in Ogallala Aquifer Region WASHINGTON, May 14, 2015 – Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced today that the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is investing $6.5 million in the Ogallala Aquifer region this year to help farmers and ranchers conserve billions of gallons of water and improve water quality. Funding will be targeted to seven priority areas to support their primary water source and strengthen rural economies. "This funding assists conservationists and agricultural producers in planning and implementing conservation practices that conserve water and improve water quality," said Vilsack. "This work not only expands the viability of the Ogallala Aquifer but also helps producers across the Great Plains strengthen their agricultural operations." Underlying the Great Plains in eight states, the Ogallala supports nearly one-fifth of the wheat, corn, cotton and cattle produced in the United States. It has long been the main water supply for the High Plains' population and is being depleted at an unsustainable rate. The reservoir was created more than a million years ago through geologic action and covers about 174,000 square miles; mainly in Nebraska, Kansas, Oklahoma, and Texas (also known as the High Plains). The aquifer also covers part of South Dakota, Wyoming, Colorado, and New Mexico. Through the Ogallala Aquifer Initiative (OAI), USDA's Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) is directing funding in fiscal 2015 to support targeted, local efforts to improve the quality and availability of this vital water supply. This year's work is planned in seven priority areas in five states and will continue for up to four years. It will conserve billions of gallons of water per year, extending the viability of the aquifer for multiple uses. This conservation investment builds on $66 million that NRCS has invested through OAI since 2011, which helped farmers and ranchers conserve water on more than 325,000 acres. The Secretary noted that much of the funding invested by USDA has been matched or supplemented by individual producers. The fiscal 2015 priority areas include: • Northern High Plains ground water basin in Colorado: NRCS will focus on helping producers install new technologies on irrigated operations to more efficiently use water. These technologies include weather stations, sensors and telemetry for soil moisture and nutrients and advanced irrigation systems. Water and conservation districts are also developing incentive programs for producers. This conservation work will conserve 2.1 billion gallons of water over four years. • Priority areas in Kansas: NRCS will work with producers to reconvert irrigated cropland to dryland farming in high priority areas. The state identified these areas in the Kansas Water Plan as Priority Ground Water Decline and Quick Response Areas, meaning they are the ones most in need and where conservation can have the biggest impact on recharging the aquifer. The conservation work will conserve 1.8 billion gallons of water over four years. • Priority areas in eastern New Mexico: NRCS will work with producers to convert irrigated cropland to dryland cropping systems and restore grasslands. NRCS will work with producers to reduce pumping on 1,190 acres each year over four years. This conservation work will conserve 1.56 billion gallons of water over four years, helping ensure water for agricultural lands, cities like Clovis and Portales, N.M. and Cannon Air Force Base. See full list of priority areas. "Water is a precious resource, and the Ogallala Aquifer Initiative helps our farmers and ranchers use it wisely," NRCS Chief Jason Weller. "This is especially important in a place like the Ogallala, where drought conditions have prevailed in recent years. We know we can't change the weather, but we can help producers be ready for it." Many western states were affected by a historic drought earlier in the decade, and that drought continues in areas including California and the southwest. NRCS works with producers to provide innovative, field-based conservation technologies and approaches, leading to improvements like enhancing soil's ability to hold water, evaluating irrigation water use and installing grazing systems that are more tolerant to drought. For more on technical and financial assistance available through conservation programs, visit www.nrcs.usda.gov/GetStarted or a local USDA service center. #
Experts will discuss sheep, goat reproduction at NMSU’s Corona Research Center DATE: 05/14/2015 WRITER: Darrell J. Pehr, 575-646-3223, firstname.lastname@example.org CONTACT: Shad Cox, 575-849-1015, email@example.com CORONA, N.M. – Sheep and goat reproductive technologies will be the topic of a seminar May 27 at New Mexico State University’s Southwest Center for Rangeland Sustainability in Corona. “Producers interested in learning the latest technologies when it comes to sheep and goat reproduction will have an opportunity to hear directly from the experts at this seminar,” said Shad Cox, superintendent of NMSU’s Corona Range and Livestock Research Center. “Technologies will be outlined for all sheep and goat producers to rapidly improve the genetic quality of their herds.” The seminar was developed to introduce available technologies and thoroughly discuss opportunities for implementation with New Mexico producers. “Utilization of these techniques could aid producers in introducing quality genetics or propagating quality livestock more rapidly,” Cox said. “Join us for this informative seminar.” The program will begin at 10 a.m. with an introduction to sheep and goat reproduction by Adam Summers, NMSU reproductive physiologist. At 10:30 a.m., he will discuss estrus synchronization. Dennis Hallford, Regents professor, interim department head of Animal and Range Sciences and reproductive physiologist at NMSU, will discuss reproductive diseases at 11:30 a.m. Lunch will be provided at noon. At 1 p.m., Mark Summers, veterinarian at the Muleshoe Animal Clinic, will outline regulatory issues. At 1:45 p.m., Summers will discuss artificial insemination. The seminar will continue at 2:30 p.m. with a presentation by Summers on embryo flushing and transfer. The final event will be a roundtable discussion. Registration is free but limited to the first 45 participants. Register online at www.corona.nmsu.edu. For more information, contact Shad Cox at 575-849-1015 or firstname.lastname@example.org. For directions to the center, visit the Corona Range and Livestock Research Center’s website at www.coronasc.nmsu.edu
Monday, May 11, 2015
Extension Home Economist 1500041F New Mexico State University Cooperative Extension Service 310550-Admin and Prm Unit Eddy Cnty 04/24/2015 •Conduct Home Economic programming in the areas of nutrition, family and health. •Collaborate with community organizations and agencies to help further Extension home economic programs. •Recruit, train and support volunteer adult and youth leaders. •Team with other Extension Agents to plan and implement total Extension programs. •Maintain a favorable public image and gain acceptance for sel… Apply at https://jobs.nmsu.edu/postings/21830
DATE: 05/11/2015 WRITER: Tiffany Acosta, 575-646-3929, email@example.com CONTACT: Robin Rollins, 915-525-1728, firstname.lastname@example.org Living 2,000 miles from home after being honorably discharged from the U.S. Army, Robin Rollins didn’t have anywhere to go. The Army and Navy veteran was homeless and spending nights living in her car and then a local shelter in El Paso. Looking for a connection to her Pennsylvania home, Rollins found that feeling on a campus visit to New Mexico State University. She began her studies at NMSU in 2004 and earned two degrees – a bachelor’s in family and consumer science in 2006 and master’s in social work in 2008. A Lititz, Pennsylvania, native, Rollins’ 15 years of military service started when she enlisted in the Army in 1987. “I graduated high school in 1985 from Warwick High School and I was struggling to decide what path to take because I knew that college wasn’t somewhere I wanted to enter right now and I was still trying to discover what I wanted,” she said. While in the Army, Rollins worked in a medical clinic for many years. Following a reduction of force, Rollins wanted to stay on active status and enlisted in the Navy in 1990. She returned to the Army for a second stint, which included a deployment to Saudi Arabia where she worked in a combat hospital. Rollins returned from deployment and started developing health problems while stationed at Ft. Bliss that led to an honorable discharge in 2002. “It totally took me by surprise – no planning whatsoever,” she said. “They discharged me with an honorable discharge, but I had nowhere to go because I didn’t want to go back to my family and have to bear the rejection. I did not receive any type of separation pay. I had no savings put aside since my life plans were to serve until I could receive my 20-year retirement income.” Growing up in a conservative German, Mennonite-Brethren family in Pennsylvania, who are opposed to the military, Rollins hid her military service. For Rollins, life after the military included pursuing a degree. She attended NMSU while living at the Opportunity Center shelter in El Paso. After living at the Opportunity Center, she interviewed and was accepted to live at the Veterans Transitional Living Center and then the YWCA Transitional Living Center. “I kept it secret from them and I ended up being homeless, because I had nowhere to go and had to start my life all over,” Rollins said. “I came to New Mexico State and it felt like Penn State back home. I connected with the agriculture aspect of the school.” While on campus one day, Rollins stopped at a student support services booth for first generation students. Rollins joined the program that included a mentor along with tutoring and additional student services. Former homeless veteran earns two NMSU degrees, pays it forward “Being that I was going through this homeless period in my life, which I did not disclose to anybody during that time, this was great to feel like I was connected outside of that homeless world that I was living in,” Rollins said. “I did that for two years and I applied to become a mentor for the undergraduates as a graduate student. It was really nice that I was able to give back.” After four years at NMSU and two degrees, Rollins said the commencement experience was a surreal moment. “I still struggle with that – that I had the privilege to wear a gown,” she said. “I never thought I would have that because I had received an associate degree, but it was while I was on active duty and they mailed the paper to me. To be able to hear that ‘Pomp and Circumstance,’ it was pretty exciting.” Three years after graduation, Rollins began working with the VA in El Paso, where she shared her personal experiences with local veterans. In a VA outreach position, Rollins visited the camps and shelters in Las Cruces and El Paso to try to help local veterans. Rollins began a new position in December 2014 as a VA community employment coordinator. “I’m trying to locate employers that want to participate, ‘buy in,’ by in employing veterans,” Rollins said. “There’s lot of great experiences and characteristics that veterans have and bring to the table. Some veterans are faced with some challenges, and I am able to help veterans navigate through their adjustment period. Since I have firsthand experience of going through a homeless journey, I can offer unconditional support.” >From her work with homeless veterans to advocating for the hiring of veterans, the VA is preparing to share Rollins’ veteran success story. A film crew traveled to the borderland in late April to feature her story, which will air at a later date. Rollins said she was honored the VA selected her story and hopes it inspires others to overcome adversity and follow their dreams. - 30 -
We are kicking off the American Farm Bureau Photo Contest later this week! The contest is open to all state and county Farm Bureau members and staff over the age of 18 at the time of entry, including professional photographers. The Contest begins at 12:00 a.m. Eastern Time (ET) on May 15, 2015, and ends at 11:59 p.m. ET on March 31, 2016. Late entries will not be accepted. The winners will be notified via email on April 15, 2016, and a list of winners will be posted at http://photocontest.fb.org at that time. We are holding this contest to obtain usable and appropriate photos that accurately portray today’s agriculture and safe practices of farmers and ranchers for future publications and promotions. All photos submitted must exemplify safe practices on the farm or ranch. Photos are being accepted in the following categories: Technology Farm Families Farm Labor Consumer Outreach For more specific guidelines on categories refer to the attached PDF. PRIZES: Three photos will be selected from each of the four categories. The winners will receive a cash prize and be featured on our websites and social media. 1st place: $150 2nd place: $100 3rd place: $75 We will also award three Best in Show prizes for the most dynamic photos submitted across all categories. Prizes will be awarded at the following amounts: Best in Show: $400 First runner-up: $300 Second runner-up: $200 All winning photos will be featured on our websites and social media. Please visit http://photocontest.fb.org to see the full rules and learn how to enter the contest. For your convenience, a copy of the guidelines is attached to this message. If you have any questions, please email them to email@example.com. Attachment
Release No. 0135.15 Contact: Amanda M. Hils (202) 720-3359 One of the Best Fields for New College Graduates? Agriculture. Nearly 60,000 High-Skilled Agriculture Job Openings Expected Annually in U.S., Yet Only 35,000 Graduates Available to Fill Them WASHINGTON, May 11, 2015 – Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced a new report showing tremendous demand for recent college graduates with a degree in agricultural programs with an estimated 57,900 high-skilled job openings annually in the food, agriculture, renewable natural resources, and environment fields in the United States. According to an employment outlook report released today by USDA's National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) and Purdue University, there is an average of 35,400 new U.S. graduates with a bachelor's degree or higher in agriculture related fields, 22,500 short of the jobs available annually. "There is incredible opportunity for highly-skilled jobs in agriculture," said Secretary Vilsack. "Those receiving degrees in agricultural fields can expect to have ample career opportunities. Not only will those who study agriculture be likely to get well-paying jobs upon graduation, they will also have the satisfaction of working in a field that addresses some of the world's most pressing challenges. These jobs will only become more important as we continue to develop solutions to feed more than 9 billion people by 2050." The report projects almost half of the job opportunities will be in management and business. Another 27 percent will be in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) areas. Jobs in food and biomaterials production will make up 15 percent, and 12 percent of the openings will be in education, communication, and governmental services. The report also shows that women make up more than half of the food, agriculture, renewable natural resources, and environment higher education graduates in the United States. Other highlights of the report include: • While most employers prefer to hire graduates of food, agriculture, renewable natural resources, and environment programs, graduates from these programs only fill about 60 percent of the expected annual openings. Even as enrollments in these programs increase and the job market becomes somewhat more competitive, good employment opportunities for the next five years are expected. • Growth in job opportunities will be uneven. Employers in some areas will struggle to find enough graduates to fill jobs. In a few areas, employers will find an oversupply of job seekers. • Expect to see a strong employment market for e-commerce managers and marketing agents, ecosystem managers, agricultural science and business educators, crop advisors, and pest control specialists. • Job opportunities in STEM areas are expected to grow. Expect the strongest job market for plant scientists, food scientists, sustainable biomaterials specialists, water resources scientists and engineers, precision agriculture specialists, and veterinarians. The report, Employment Opportunities for College Graduates in Food, Agriculture, Renewable Natural Resources, and the Environment, United States, 2015–2020 , is the eighth in a series of five-year projections initiated by USDA in 1980. The report was produced by Purdue University with grant support from NIFA. #
The Newsletter From the Oklahoma Cooperative Extension Service May 11, 2015 In this Issue: North American cattle trade impacts U.S. cattle supplies Derrell S. Peel, Oklahoma State University Extension Livestock Marketing Specialist Look back at the spring calving season and start to make improvements now Glenn Selk, Oklahoma State University Emeritus Extension Animal Scientist North American cattle trade impacts U.S. cattle supplies Derrell S. Peel, Oklahoma State University Extension Livestock Marketing Specialist Canada and Mexico have been a source of feeder and slaughter cattle for many years. This is in addition to bilateral trade in beef, with both countries among the major markets for U.S. beef exports as well as major sources of beef imports. In 2014, U.S. imports of Canadian slaughter steers and heifers represented 1.7 percent of total U.S. steer and heifer slaughter. These yearling slaughter cattle imports were up 13.9 percent from 2013 and included a 24 percent increase in slaughter heifers compared to a 7.4 percent year over year increase in slaughter steer imports. With the latest trade data for March, year to date slaughter steer and heifer imports from Canada are down 40.6 percent from last year based on a 49.5 percent decrease in slaughter steer imports and a 27.4 percent decrease in slaughter heifer imports. Total feeder cattle imports from Mexico and Canada in 2014 amounted to 4.8 percent of the total 2014 U.S. calf crop. This was the largest relative contribution of Canadian and Mexican feeder cattle to U.S. feeder supplies in data back to 1992. U.S. imports of feeder cattle from Canada are up 11.7 percent year over year from January to March. This follows a 37.8 percent year over year increase in Canadian feeder cattle imports in 2014. Canadian feeder imports in 2014 consisted of a 60 percent increase in feeder heifers from the previous year. However, year to date imports of Canadian feeder heifers are down 10 percent compared to the January to March period one year ago. In contrast, feeder steer imports are up 57.1 percent so far this year. The weight of Canadian feeder cattle imports is also quite different this year compared to last. For the year to date, imports of Canadian feeder cattle over 700 pounds are up 58.0 percent from last year while imports of Canadian feeder cattle less than 700 pounds are down 10.6 percent. Virtually all U.S. imports of Mexican cattle are feeder cattle. Imports of Mexican feeder cattle are up 7.5 percent in the first three months of 2015 compared to last year. This follows a 12.8 percent annual increase in Mexican feeder imports in 2014. Similar to Canada, 2014 Mexican feeder imports included more heifers, up 23.3 percent year over year compared to a 10.4 percent increase in Mexican feeder steer imports. However, year to date in 2015, imports of Mexican feeder heifers are down 17.3 percent while steer imports are up 13.1 percent. Mexican feeder cattle are generally lighter in weight than Canadian feeder cattle with most Mexican feeders split between the 450 to 700 pound category and those under 450 pounds. Few Mexican feeder cattle imports weigh more than 700 pounds. Compared to last year, year to date imports of Mexican feeder cattle between 450 and 700 pounds are up 30.7 percent while imports of feeder cattle under 450 pounds are down 20.3 percent. Several implications are indicated from these trade flows. First, fewer heifers are being imported from Canada and Mexico suggesting that domestic herd expansion may be beginning in 2015 in both countries. Second, fewer heifers and generally tight cattle inventories in both Mexico and Canada may limit total cattle imports additionally later in the year. Feeder cattle imports may total close to year ago levels and could end up smaller if monthly imports drop sharply later this year. Finally, imports so far this year from both Canada and Mexico have included fewer lightweight animals than is typical in each market. This suggests that imports are somewhat “front-loaded” with respect to weight, which will have some implications for total U.S feeder supplies later in the year. Look back at the spring calving season and start to make improvements now Glenn Selk, Oklahoma State University Emeritus Extension Animal Scientist Only 1 to 2 months ago the spring calving cows were calving, the temperature was cold and some of the calving pastures were muddy. Experience would say that you do not want to ask cow calf operators how “calving” is then, because the response would be less than objective, reflecting bone-chilling cold and not enough sleep. However if you wait too long, perhaps until this fall, time will have mellowed most of the events and one soon has difficulty matching a calving season with particular problems. Now is perhaps the best time to make a few notes on what to change for next year. The first step is to list the dead calves. Hopefully, your cattle are in a record system that will provide that information. If not, grab a piece of paper and pencil and list the calves. Your calving notebook should have the dead calves checked off and a brief notation on what happened to each. Until all the calves are listed, the shock of lost opportunities has not had its full impact. Can you identify a pattern of problems? Was most of the death loss right at delivery and involved two-year old heifers? This could indicate that sire selection needs to be done more carefully, with attention being paid to low birth weight EPD sires for heifers. Perhaps the heifers were underdeveloped. This could contribute to more calving difficulty than necessary. Do you provide assistance to heifers after they have been in stage II of labor for one hour? Longer deliveries result in stress on both calf and cow. Was the death loss more prevalent after the calves had reached 10 days to 2 weeks of age? This of course often means that calf diarrhea (or scours) is a major concern. Calf scours will be more likely to occur to calves from first calf heifers. Calves that receive inadequate amounts of colostrum within the first 6 hours of life are 5 to 6 times more likely to die from calf scours. Calves that are born to thin heifers are weakened at birth and receive less colostrum which compounds their likelihood of scours. Often, these same calves were born via a difficult delivery and adds to the chances of getting sick and dying. All of this means that we need to reassess the bred heifer growing program to assure that the heifers were in a body condition score of 6 (moderate flesh) at calving time. Did you introduce a baby calf from another herd during the calving season? A calf may have been purchased from a neighbor or at a livestock market. Perhaps the new calf was brought home to foster on to a cow that lost her calf. This has been shown to introduce new pathogens into a herd even though the purchased calf appeared healthy. Placing the new calf and foster mother in a separate pen for at least 30 days should greatly reduce the risk of introduction of new diseases into the rest of the calves. Do you use the same trap or pasture each year for calving? There may be a buildup of bacteria or viruses that contribute to calf diarrhea in that pasture. This particular calving pasture may need a rest for the upcoming calving season. Plus it is always a good idea to get new calves and their mothers out of the calving pasture as soon as they can be moved comfortably to a new pasture to get them away from other potential calf scour organisms. A complicated, but effective method of curtailing calf diarrhea outbreaks in larger herds is the “Nebraska Sandhill Calving System”. Read more about this at the following website: https://beef.unl.edu/beefreports/symp-2007-17-xx.shtml Pre-calving scours vaccines (to the cows) may be recommended by your veterinarian for next winter and spring. This should be considered an important short-term plan to reduce the incidence of calf diarrhea. The above suggestions are more long-term solutions to the problem. Oklahoma State University, in compliance with Title VI and VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Executive Order 11246 as amended, Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, and other federal laws and regulations, does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, age, religion, disability, or status as a veteran in any of its policies, practices or procedures. This includes but is not limited to admissions, employment, financial aid, and educational services. References within this publication to any specific commercial product, process, or service by trade name, trademark, service mark, manufacturer, or otherwise does not constitute or imply endorsement by Oklahoma Cooperative Extension Service.