10-18-16 USFWS: Partnerships, Innovation (and Peanut Butter) Give New Hope for America’s Most Endangered Mammal

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Pilot Jonas Marcinko prepares to launch the drone. Credit: WWF-US / Conservation Media

Pilot Jonas Marcinko prepares to launch the drone. Credit: WWF-US / Conservation Media

Partnerships, Innovation (and Peanut Butter) Give New Hope for America’s Most Endangered Mammal

LEWISTOWN, MT — An unlikely combination of peanut butter and drones has given researchers renewed hope for the future of North America’s rarest mammal, the endangered black-footed ferret. The project, which is a joint effort between the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, World Wildlife Fund, U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) National Wildlife Health Center, Model Avionics, and Support XXL, involves dropping vaccine-laced, peanut butter-flavored baits from drones in an effort to vaccinate the black-footed ferret’s primary prey: prairie dogs.

Both prairie dogs and black-footed ferrets are highly susceptible to sylvatic plague, a non-native disease against which the animals have little natural immunity. Once a prairie dog colony is infected with plague, the disease can quickly spread, devastating populations. Continue reading

10-18-16 Two CAWG Scholarships for Colorado High School Seniors

CAWG logo 2014Two CAWG Scholarships for Colorado High School Seniors

October 17, 2016, Fort Collins, Colo. – The Colorado Association of Wheat Growers (CAWG) will award two $1,000 scholarships to Colorado high school seniors.

The applicants’ parents, grandparents, or legal guardians must be current or new members of CAWG OR the applicant must be nominated by a current sponsor of CAWG.  For a list of sponsors, please contact the CAWG office at 970-449-6994. Continue reading

10-18-16 Submit Corn Pics for Chance to Win NCGA’s 2016 Fields-of-Corn Photo Contest

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Submit Corn Pics for Chance to Win NCGA’s 2016 Fields-of-Corn Photo Contest 

ncga-fields-of-corn-photo-contest-logoThe National Corn Growers Association invites amateur and professional photographers alike to help tell the story of farming field corn in America through the third annual Fields-of-Corn Photo Contest. Through this contest, NCGA captures high-resolution photos of corn growth from seed to harvest and the families that grow it. Even those who have already submitted can enter additional photos as participants will be able to submit multiple entries until November 30, 2016.
Please make sure to submit the highest resolution version of each entry possible. The best submissions are featured in NCGA’s major publications such as the Annual Report.
To see the most recent edition, click here. Continue reading

READ the NAFB’s National Ag News for Tuesday, October 18th…

CLICK HERE to listen to TODAY's BARN Morning Ag News with Brian Allmer...

CLICK HERE to listen to TODAY’s BARN Morning Ag News with Brian Allmer…

Sponsored by the American Farm Bureau Federation

Farm Groups Mixed on GIPSA Rule

Farm groups are offering mixed responses to the Department of Agriculture’s announcement it will move forward with its draft of changes to the Grain Inspection, Packers and Stockyards Administration Act, or GIPSA. USDA plans to publish an interim final rule and two proposed rules this year, amid years of debate regarding the Act. The U.S. Cattlemen’s Association commended the action saying changes within the USDA draft will protect U.S. ranchers and cattle feeders from anti-competitive buying practices and help to advance true price discovery in a competitive marketplace. The National Farmers Union called the move a “win” for farmers and ranchers, echoing the USCA comments. However, the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association called on USDA to withdraw the Draft. NCBA President Tracy Brunner says the USDA rule would “limit producer marketing options, compel buyers to offer lower bids across the board to avoid the appearance of preference and create an environment ripe for baseless legal challenge.”


EPA Postpones Glyphosate Review Meeting

The Environmental Protection Agency postponed this week’s Scientific Advisory Panel meeting regarding glyphosate because the agency says it needs more expertise in epidemiology. The EPA says the meeting will be rescheduled for later this year. EPA postponed the meeting due to a lack of “the availability of experts.” According to a statement, EPA says “ the Agency believes that additional expertise in epidemiology will benefit the panel and allow for a more robust review of the data.” Agri-Pulse reports that in a brief response, Monsanto cited a recent EPA document that said evidence strongly supports the conclusion that glyphosate is unlikely to cause cancer in humans. Monsanto says the conclusion is “based on the overwhelming weight of evidence.” The review comes after a division of the World Health Organization last year claimed glyphosate was probably carcinogenic to humans. However, many studies have since denied that claim.


Profit Outlook for 2016 Still Negative

A monthly report to the Farm Credit Administration shows an overall negative profit outlook for 2016. The Farm Credit board received a report on the 2016 profit outlook last week and finds the outlook is negative for corn and wheat and is near the break-even point for soybeans. The forecast was based on data from the U.S. Department of Agriculture and university estimates of production costs. Farm Credit says large supplies are pushing down farm prices for corn and wheat, while soybean prices are expected to be near last year’s average because of a less bearish global stock situation. For the farmer’s bottom line, a modest reduction in production costs is offsetting some of the price-depressing effects. Still, Farm Credit says many producers will need to make adjustments by controlling their input costs, selling crops when pricing opportunities arise and cutting household living expenses. That message falls in line with similar comments made throughout the year regarding the farm economy.

Beef, Pork Imports in China Growing

The U.S. Department of Agriculture office in China expects the nation will import 950,000 metric tons of beef in 2017, a gain of 19 percent from 2016. The U.S. could get some of that business now that China has lifted its long-standing ban on U.S. beef. But before such trade takes place, the countries must negotiate export protocol. Pro Farmer’s First Thing Today reports initial import numbers from the U.S. will likely be modest, “mainly due to the relatively higher prices of U.S. beef.” USDA also expects a rise in hog and pork prices to encourage a recovery in China’s hog herd, which should limit the country’s import needs in 2017. USDA forecasts pork imports at 2.2 million metric tons, up eight percent from 2016. However, the U.S. is not expected to get much of this business due to China’s restrictions on ractopamine as well as the strong dollar.


New Cuba Regulations Include Farm Equipment

New regulations regarding products from Cuba announced last week also ease restrictions on farm equipment. The Obama Administration Friday announced the new regulations that ease restrictions on products such as rum and cigars, but the new rules give Cuba more of an opportunity to be a part of supply chains. Politico says certain authorized goods exported to Cuba can be imported back into the U.S. This will allow items initially sent to Cuba to come back to the U.S. for repair or service. The amendments also make it possible for exporters to directly finance shipments of tractors, pesticides and other goods used in agriculture, avoiding cash in advance requirements that apply to transactions for agricultural commodities. The National Farmers Union applauded the regulations, saying the enhanced engagement with the people of Cuba could offer long-term advantages for agricultural trade.


Study Claims Proteins in Wheat Causes Inflammation

New research unveiled in Austria last week claims a family of proteins in wheat may be responsible for activating inflammation in chronic health conditions such as multiple sclerosis, asthma, and rheumatoid arthritis. Medical News Today reports the findings were announced at UEG Week 2016, a meeting organized by United European Gastroenterology. Most research regarding wheat has focused on gluten, but this latest study focused on a group of proteins known as ATI’s, which only make up about four percent of wheat. The research claims the ATI’s have been shown to trigger an immune response in the gut that can spread to other tissues in the body. Researchers are currently preparing studies to investigate further. A lead researcher in the study said “we are hoping that this research can lead us toward being able to recommend an ATI-free diet to help treat a variety of potentially serious immunological disorders.”


SOURCE: NAFB News Service