February 7, 2014

Good evening,

Well it’s late and I’m working on this email newsletter. Today I was out of the office at the Ohio Department of Agriculture taking Certified Crop Adviser exams.  It’s been a very busy week with several meetings and I also had the opportunity to judge a FFA Sub District Public Speaking contest at Ridgemont High School.  I always enjoy hearing the speeches and challenging the students with questions. My audiences were a lot kinder to me this past week as we held classes for the Hardin County Master Gardeners and pesticide recertification for private applicators in Union County. Since I mentioned the Master Gardeners, have you had a chance to check out the new Hardin County Master Gardener Facebook Page?  It can be found at https://www.facebook.com/HardinCountyOSUExtensionMasterGardeners.  Give it a LIKE and you can get horticulture information on your newsfeed and even ask our Master Gardeners questions.

Monday evening at 7:00 pm will be our second Sheep and Goat webinar at the Hardin County Extension Office focusing on “Successfully Producing Small Ruminants in a Forage Based System.”  Jeff McCutcheon and Rory Lewandowski from OSU Extension will present this February 10 program.  The following evening on Tuesday, February 11 will be the second Corn, Soybeans and Wheat Connection webinar, featuring ‘Everything But the Kitchen Sink: High Input Soybean Production.’ It will be taught by Dr. Laura Lindsey, State Specialist Soybean & Small Grains Production, Ohio State University Extension. ‘Updates on Fungicides and Resistance, Soybean Cyst Nematode and Seed Treatments’ will be taught by Dr. Anne Dorrance, State Specialist Plant Pathologist Soybeans, Ohio State University Extension. This webinar will also be hosted at the Extension office located at 1021 W. Lima Street in Kenton.  Individuals interested in attending these programs are asked to call the office to pre-register.  There is no cost to attend these webinar programs.

Tuesday, February 11 will be a full day, as Dr. Matt Roberts, OSU Department of Agricultural, Environmental, and Development Economics will be the guest speaker at the Conservation Tillage Club breakfast meeting at the Plaza Inn in Mt. Victory. He will present a program on the grain marketing outlook for 2014 at the Plaza Inn in Mt. Victory. Topics that will be addressed are uncertain times as the agricultural industry moves into 2014 with the Farm Bill being debated, land and rental rates that are over-priced, grain prices are dropping, while inputs are still relatively high. This program will begin at 7:30 am with a breakfast buffet.  I have also attached a news release about our upcoming agronomy programs.

Agronomy Program News Release

If you are planning to attend the Dairy Banquet on February 15, make sure you contact a Dairy Service Unit Director or call the Extension office at 419-674-2297 by the first of the week to get your ticket.  The Hardin County Sheep Improvement Associaton has made available its Lamb & Wool Queen and scholarship applications.  These forms and their accompanying news release are attached to this email and are due February 21.  Also, if you are a member of the Farm Bureau you may be interested in knowing that this year’s summer picnic will combine with the Farm Bureau annual meeting.  Contact any board member or our new organization director Jennifer Wilson for details.  Below are some articles that you may be interested in reading.

Sheep Improvement Association Scholarship Application

Lamb & Wool Queen and Scholarship News Release

Lamb & Wool Queen Application


QR Codes Showcase We Care Videos – Pork Check-off

Consumers are more interested than ever in knowing where their food comes from. To bring the farm to consumers, the Pork Checkoff is creating new connections through quick-response (QR) codes printed on pork labels. QR codes are small boxes containing an array of black or white squares. When scanned with a smartphone or computer tablet, QR codes direct the mobile device to display a video, text or other information. In this case, the QR codes on pork labels in participating grocery stores are highlighting the pork industry’s We CareSM principles.  For more information, go to http://www.pork.org/News/1171/LatestPorkLeaderNewsletter.aspx#quickfacts.

Conservation Tillage Conference Buzzing with Activity – March 4-5 – Ohio Northern University – Ada

Do you agree with the idea that “The only good insect is a dead insect?”  Of course not. All good farmers know that there are beneficial insects in crop fields, both above and below ground. But you may not realize how many species of various biological life forms exist and how valuable they are to your crops.  To continue reading this article by Randall Reader which will appear in the Ohio No-Till News, see the attached file called ‘No-Till page.

No-Till page

Understanding the “Small Farms Rider” and OSHA Inspection Authority on Farms – Sam Custer – OSU Extension Darke County

The federal Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) generated controversy recently when several of its enforcement actions against farms with grain bin storage hit the news headlines.   The enforcement actions are contrary to a general understanding in the agricultural community that OSHA does not have authority to enforce its regulations against farms with ten or fewer employees, referred to as the “small farms rider.”  While claiming that it does not intend to enforce beyond its authority, OSHA justifies its actions in an internal agency memorandum that interprets the small farms rider.  See the attached news release from Darke County Extension for more information.

Darke County Extension News Release

INJURY PREVENTION – Working in Extreme Cold Weather – Kent McGuire – OSU Agricultural Safety and Health Program Coordinator

Winter is upon us!  Since the beginning of the year, we have seen several days with below zero temperatures and bitterly cold wind chills.  No matter what the conditions are outside, there is still work to be done around the farm such as feeding livestock, breaking ice in the water trough, cutting wood or loading stored grain.  Even though it may be tempting to “tough it out” or “work through it”, prolonged exposure to cold, wet, and windy conditions, can be dangerous, even at temperatures above freezing. When working in cold weather, precautions should be taken to minimize the risk injuries like frostbite or hypothermia.

Clothing should be your first consideration when working in cold weather. Clothing should be selected to suit the temperature, weather conditions (e.g., wind speed, rain), the level and duration of activity. The following are recommendations for working in cold environments:

– Wear several layers of clothing. Trapped air between layers form a protective insulation.

– Wear warm gloves, and keep an extra pair handy in case the first pair becomes wet.

– Wear a suitable hat that provides protection for your head, ears, and even your face in extreme conditions.  Approximately 40% of a person’s body heat can be lost when the head is left exposed.

– Use the hoods of jackets or sweatshirts for added protection for your neck, head, face and ears.

– Wear appropriate footwear with warm socks. Footwear should not fit too tightly which could reduce blood flow to the feet and increase the risk of a cold injury.

– Wear synthetic, wool, or silk clothing next to the skin to wick away moisture. Cotton clothing can lose insulating properties when it becomes damp or wet.

Additional safety precautions while working in cold weather should include:

 – Avoid getting wet. According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), body heat can be lost 24 times faster when clothing is wet.

– Take short frequent breaks in areas sheltered from the elements, to allow the body to warm up.

– Avoid exhaustion and fatigue because energy is needed to keep muscles warm.

– Consume warm, high calorie food such as pasta to maintain energy reserves.

– Drink warm sweet beverages to avoid dehydration, avoiding alcohol and caffeine

– Work in pairs (buddy system), especially in remote areas, to keep an eye on each other and watch for signs of cold stress.

– Have a cell phone handy, to call for help in the event of an emergency.

– Shielding work areas from the elements can reduce wind chill or the chances of getting wet.
– Utilize insulating material on equipment handles, especially metal handles, when temperatures drop below 30° F.

For more information, please contact Kent McGuire, OSU Agricultural Safety & Health, at mcguire.225@osu.edu or 614-292-0588.

Mark A. Badertscher

Agriculture and Natural Resources Educator

OSU Extension Hardin County

1021 W. Lima Street, Suite 103, Kenton, OH 43326

419-674-2297 Office


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