From: Ron Hays [] on behalf of Ron Hays []
Sent: Tuesday, April 14, 2009 6:43 AM
Subject: Oklahoma's Farm News Update
Oklahoma's latest farm and ranch news
Your Update from Ron Hays of RON for Tuesday April 14, 2009
A service of Producers Cooperative Oil Mill, Midwest Farm Shows and KIS Futures!
-- Rest In Peace Dr. Joe
-- Wheat Freeze Damage Starting to Show
-- The Latest Oklahoma Crop Weather Update
-- The Plant Disease Guru Speaks
-- The DoLittle Project Checks on Nervous Cluckers and How High Pitched Those Clucks Get
-- From Our Twitter Files- Here's a Blog on One Animal Rights Crazy Being Called a Hypocrite by a Young Farmer
-- Speaking of Twitter- and other stuff
-- Let's Check the Markets!

Howdy Neighbors!

Here's your morning farm news headlines from the Director of Farm Programming for the Radio Oklahoma Network, Ron Hays. We are proud to have KIS Futures as a regular sponsor of our daily email update. KIS Futures provides Oklahoma Farmers & Ranchers with futures & options hedging services in the livestock and grain markets- Click here for the free market quote page they provide us for our website or call them at 1-800-256-2555.

We are also excited to have as one of our sponsors for the daily email Producers Cooperative Oil Mill, with 64 years of progress through producer ownership. Call Brandon Winters at 405-232-7555 for more information on the oilseed crops they handle, including sunflowers and canola- and remember they post closing market prices for canola and sunflowers on the PCOM website- go there by clicking here.
And we salute our longest running email sponsor- Midwest Farm Shows, producer of the April 2009 Southern Plains Farm Show in Oklahoma City. This year's show dates are April 23,24 and 25. Check out details of both the Southern Plains Show and the Tulsa Farm Show at the official website of Midwest Farm Shows by clicking here.

If you have received this by someone forwarding it to you, you are welcome to subscribe and get this weekday update sent to you directly by clicking here.

Rest In Peace Dr. Joe
After a long battle with cancer, former OSU Extension Youth Livestock Specialist Dr. Joe Hughes headed for Heaven at 6 AM on Monday morning. A celebration of his life will be held this coming Friday morning at 9 AM in Stillwater at the First Baptist Church, with burial to follow later that day at the Fort Sill Military Cemetary.

Hughes was the first Oklahoma Cooperative Extension Service 4-H livestock specialist, serving from 1971 to 1999."Joe Hughes made numerous innovative, outstanding contributions to animal science youth education programs, and was a tireless leader in strengthening ethics in livestock shows throughout the nation," said Rusty Gosz, current OSU Cooperative Extension 4-H livestock specialist. "He was been instrumental in almost every youth livestock judging event in this state, from the Oklahoma Youth Expo to the 'Big Three' OSU Beef, Sheep and Swine Field Days, a three-day event that has averaged more than 3,500 participants per year during the last decade," Gosz said.

For Wayne Shearhart, longtime OSU Cooperative Extension director for first Lincoln County and then Muskogee County, Hughes was the little man with the big voice. "We Extension agents affectionately called him 'Little Joe,' and I had his back; we all had his back because he earned it," the now-retired Shearhart said.

For Ron Kensinger, who left Penn State University to assume the position of head of OSU's department of animal science in 2008, Hughes was a positive presence who impacted the lives of OSU students and Oklahomans across the state. "I was on the job for three months before I realized that Joe was not on the job anymore," Kensinger joked. "Joe was so active in our alumni association that I would see him all the time in our hallways, rushing to do something for animal science students or programs even though he had officially retired from the department in 1999."

We have more on the life of Dr. Joe Hughes on our website this morning- including details on the endowed scholarship that is being established in his name. Click on the link below to jump to that story. AND, if you have a special Joe Hughes story- you are welcome to send it to me via the email at the bottom of the page- and we will share them with folks reading this email later in the week.

Click here for more on the life of Dr. Joe Hughes

Wheat Freeze Damage Starting to Show
The latest Oklahoma Crop Weather update shows a significant drop in the condition of the 2009 winter wheat crop- from 37% poor to very poor a week ago to 50% poor to very poor in the latest ratings as of Monday afternoon. The Crop weather update indicates "Reported freeze damage to small grain crops was mixed with mostly moderate to heavy damage reported in the West Central, Southwest, and South Central districts and light to moderate damage reported for the rest of the State."

We were in Woodward to speak to the Chamber of Commerce and their midday luncheon yesterday- and traveling back to Oklahoma City during the afternoon- we stopped at several wheat fields along the way- and we snapped a few pictures. We have some of those pictures from Canadian County and Kingfisher County to share with you on our website.

Click on the link below to jump to the page with those pictures found on our website. AND- if you have pictures of some of your wheat fields- email a couple of them to us at the email link at the bottom of this daily report. We would love to share them with our email and web family.

Click here for a vidual freeze update from Central Oklahoma.

The Latest Oklahoma Crop Weather Update
Oklahoma received steady rainfall throughout much of the State late Saturday and Sunday. The rains helped control and put out wildfires that caused major damage earlier in the week. The State averaged 1.35 inches of rainfall last week, however all but the Southeast and Northeast districts have been below normal precipitation since March 1st. Additional moisture is needed to revive the small grain crop. Western and central Oklahoma experienced a hard freeze Monday night and early Tuesday morning with temperatures reaching below 26 degrees for more than a few hours in some locations. Reported freeze damage to small grain crops was mixed with mostly moderate to heavy damage reported in the West Central, Southwest, and South Central districts and light to moderate damage reported for the rest of the State. At least six tornadoes were reported in eastern Oklahoma last week causing minor injuries and some damage to residential areas. Topsoil and subsoil moisture conditions improved from last week with topsoil rated mostly in the adequate range while subsoil was rated in the adequate to short range.

Small Grain frost damage was present throughout the State last week. Moisture received late in the week helped limit the decline of small grain conditions. Winter wheat, rye, and oats were all rated mostly in the fair to poor range. Crop insect activities increased from the previous week but remained mostly in the light to moderate range. Winter wheat jointing increased six points from the previous week to reach 90 percent complete, two points ahead of normal.

Preparing seedbeds for planting was the primary activity on row crops last week although some additional corn acreage was planted. Work was somewhat delayed due to the cold weather and precipitation. Corn seedbed prepared increased 11 percentage points from the previous week to reach 82 percent, four points ahead of last year, and two points ahead of normal. Corn planted was at 26 percent, up 10 points from the previous week, but seven points behind the five-year average. Sorghum seedbed prepared was up seven points to 35 percent. Soybeans seedbed prepared was at 43 percent, equal to the five-year average. Seedbed preparation for peanuts was at 60 percent, 14 points ahead of normal. Cotton seedbed prepared was up one point from the previous week to reach 71 percent, three points ahead of last year and nine points ahead of normal.

We have the full report from our state statistician and his team linked below- click to take a look.

Click here for the latest Crop Weather update for the state of Oklahoma

The Plant Disease Guru Speaks
Dr. Bob Hunger- Extension Wheat Pathologist in the Department of Entomology & Plant Pathology at Oklahoma State University offers these observations on disease development in our 2009 wheat crop. "Most concern and efforts are focused on assessing damage from the freeze of last week; however, the weather over the last 7-10 days has been more conducive to foliar disease development. So, although foliar diseases currently are at a low incidence in Oklahoma, their prevalence may start to increase over the next couple of weeks. On 10-Apr in plots around Stillwater, I saw mostly only powdery mildew on lower leaves of susceptible varieties. Some leaf rust pustules also were observed on lower leaves of susceptible varieties Jagalene and Jagger, but I did not find pustules on any other varieties. The most prevalent disease was barley yellow dwarf, which was fairly common in the early-planted variety demo as well as in other wheat plots that were planted in September or early October."

He adds that "From other locations in Oklahoma, Jen Olson (Plant Disease Diagnostician) has had samples come into the lab that have tested positive for barley yellow dwarf virus (panhandle and southwestern OK), high plains virus (panhandle), wheat streak mosaic virus (central OK), and Triticum mosaic virus (southwestern OK)."

As far as specific regional reports are concerned-
Panhandle (Rick Kochenower, Area Res & Extn Agron Spec): Foliar diseases are still minimal; did get just over an inch of rain this past weekend; some insect activity including Russian wheat aphid and brown wheat mite.
Northwest/northcentral OK (Roger Gribble, NW District Area Extn Agron Spec): Light powdery mildew is all that has been observed.
Southwestern OK (Mark Gregory, Area Extn Agron Spec): Foliar diseases are at a low level.
Northeast/east OK (George Driever, Area Pest Management Spec): Powdery mildew is present, but still no or little rust. Wet weather may change that.

The DoLittle Project Checks on Nervous Cluckers and How High Pitched Those Clucks Get
Presently, the only way to measure stress levels in poultry flocks is to measure cortisol and adrenaline in blood samples. That is not practical or efficient. So researchers, participating in a study called the Dolittle Project, hope they can better understand stress in laying hens by applying speech-processing algorithms to animal vocalizations.
According to researchers at the University of Connecticut, understanding the vocal patterns of laying hens may reveal how stress affects meat yields and egg production and ultimately could help producers boost output.

Dr. Michael Dare, an animal science professor at the University, says - alleviating stress in commercial flocks of laying hens and broilers is important - not only because it improves the overall welfare of the birds, but also because stress is a known enemy of production efficiencies. Darre says, so far, - vocalization patterns have been found to be different for stress due to handling and stress due to overcrowding.

Dare points out that - chronic stress has been shown to reduce egg production, reduce growth and meat yields, and lower immune system function. The goal of the project is to develop a device that can be placed in chicken houses that allows farmers to remotely monitor the birds and notify them when it detects stress vocalizations.

Here's a link to the Press Release on this research effort from the Poultry Science Association.

From Our Twitter Files- Here's a Blog on One Animal Rights Crazy Being Called a Hypocrite by a Young Farmer
We have a constant flow of information flowing on a program that is called TweetDeck- which is the program that I use to watch my Twitter account as well as certain search words that i designate. I primarily watch "FARM" and it is amazing how much stuff flows through from around the world. Some of it is as simple as one farmer putting pictures up of planting tomatoes- and then there are lots of links to various news stories, commentaries and blogs about food and farming and more.

One such blog that was pointed to this morning on Twitter is from the FarmBureau Blog that primarily is made up of entries from various young farmers and ranchers who live all across the US. This blog entry says that an Undercover Animal Rights Investigator is a Hypocrite- James Schultz is the author and he was upset after reding an article in Time Magazine about one of the HSUS informants looking for dirt on an animal agriculture facility he was working in.

Schultz writes "I am outraged. I can't believe that someone would say that they are so pro-animal rights, yet be so hypocritical. The individual in the piece, "Pete," admits that he has crossed the line and actually abused animals himself during the course of employment at some farms. He also expects us to feel sorry for him, because his chosen this line of work that causes him to be a habitual liar. He says he moves frequently and doesn't have a social life. Boo hoo."

"As an employee of a poultry farm, I know that our employees go to great lengths to care for our animals. Every individual who works at the farm is advised of our animal care procedures during orientation and is required to sign guidelines on animal care that we call our "pledge of excellence." Each cage is checked on a daily basis to make sure the chickens have everything that they need. The chickens are our livelihood. If they are not happy, healthy, and well-fed, they will not produce."

We have the rest of this blog- just click here.

Speaking of Twitter- and other stuff
You can follow us on Twitter- just click on the link below to take you to our stream of stuff- we put up random postings- will Tweet several times usually when we are covering an event- and will also Tweet when a story is posted on our website.

We have added a couple of new links on our MARKETS page of our website to help those needing hog prices here in the US as well as sheep and goat market information. These links will get you right to some of the best information on those markets available from USDA. Of course, we have several audio reports there on an ongoing basis that get updated daily as well as important links for the cattle and wholesale beef markets.

We continue to look for a few horses for the upcoming Southern Plains Farm Show- if you have already called and left me a mesage- don't worry, we will be getting back to you. However, if you have not let us know about a horse that you have that could use a session with Scott Daily during the show later this month- drop me an email or give us a call at 405-841-3675.

Click here for Ron on RON as found on Twitter

Our thanks to Midwest Farm Shows, Producers Cooperative Oil Mill and KIS Futures for their support of our daily Farm News Update. For your convenience, we have our sponsors' websites linked at the top of the email- check them out and let these folks know you appreciate the support of this daily email, as their sponsorship helps us keep this arriving in your inbox on a regular basis!

We also invite you to check out our website at the link below to check out an archive of these daily emails, audio reports and top farm news story links from around the globe.

Click here to check out WWW.OklahomaFarmReport.Com

Let's Check the Markets!
A total of 6,200 cattle were reported at the Oklahoma National Stockyards on Monday and the our market reporter writes of the Monday action "Feeder steers and heifers 1.00-3.00 higher. Steer and heifer calves lightly tested and steady. Demand moderate to good. Steady rains Sunday curtailed receipts some." The five to six hundred pound steers brought from $109 to $117, while the seven hundred to eight hundred pound steers cleared from $96.75 to $103.25. Click here for the full Oklahoma City cattle market report from Monday.

Here are some links we will leave in place on an ongoing basis- Click on the name of the report to go to that link:
Our Daily Market Wrapup from the Radio Oklahoma Network with Ed Richards and Tom Leffler- analyzing the Futures Markets from the previous Day-
Ron on RON Markets as heard on K101 mornings with cash and futures reviewed- includes where the Cash Cattle market stands, the latest Feeder Cattle Markets Etc.
Previous Day's Wheat Market Recap- Two Pager From The Kansas City Board of Trade looks at all three US Wheat Futures Exchanges with extra info on Hard Red Winter Wheat and the why of that day's market.
Daily Oklahoma Cash Grain Prices- As Reported by the Oklahoma Dept. of Agriculture. <
The National Daily Feeder & Stocker Cattle Summary- as prepared by USDA.
The National Daily Slaughter Cattle Summary- as prepared by USDA.
Finally, Here is the Daily Volume and Price Summary from the Texas Cattle Feeders Association.

God Bless! You can reach us at the following:
phone: 405-473-6144

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