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Agri-Line - Le Mars Agricultural Connection

Heat Wave May Be Stressful To Cattle

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Iowa farmers are being urged to watch their cattle for signs of stress as the heat builds across the Midwest.
     The Iowa Cattlemen's Association says cattle could be at risk with temperatures around 100 degrees on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. CEO Matte Deppe says cattle rely on respiration more than sweating to cool down, which means producers must also consider other means to keep them comfortable.
     Some suggestions from Iowa State University Extension include clean fresh water, shade and using a higher percentage of feed in the afternoon.
     If necessary, farmers should begin sprinkling cattle with water if there are signs of heat stress. Officials say producers who use fans or water on their cattle should continue to use the process
until the heat wave breaks.


Corn Needs Moisture

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Topsoil in more than half of Iowa's fields still needs more rain to reach adequate levels.
     The U.S. Department of Agriculture says in Monday's weekly report that topsoil in 54 percent of Iowa's field rated very short or short of adequate moisture. The east-central part of the state
was the driest, with 78 percent of the topsoil moisture rated short to very short.  Roger Elmore, Iowa State University Corn Specialist, says now is the critical time when the corn needs additional moisture.  He says it is likely farmers will see reduced yields if rainfall amounts continue to produce only a tenth of an inch or less.
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Elmore says corn can absorb up to a half an inch of moisture per day during the reproduction stage. 
     The USDA says 68 percent of the corn crop, which is silking in most parts of the state, is in good or excellent condition.
     The soybean crop is rated 63 percent good to excellent.
     The USDA report says 98 percent of the state's oat crop has headed, which is nearly three weeks ahead of normal progression.


Fair Entries Are Due

(Le Mars) -- 4-H and FFA members intending to exhibit at the 2012 Plymouth County Fair are reminded of the upcoming entry deadline of Friday, July 13.  Members planning to enter exhibits in sheep, swine, market and breeding beef, cow-calf projects, feeder calf, horses, poultry, rabbits, dog, pet, cat and dairy, including dairy goats, are required to complete and submit an entry form.

Fair entries are also due July 13 in the communications division which includes Educational Presentations, Working Exhibits, Extemporaneous Speaking, and Share-The-Fun.

Entries should be completed by the 4-H or FFA member and then submitted to the Plymouth County Extension Office by the local club leader or FFA advisor.  The Plymouth County Extension Office is located at 251 12th Street SE in Le Mars.  The office hours are Monday-Friday, 8:00 a.m. - 12:00 noon and then from 12:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.  For more information on this or any other 4-H program contact the Extension Office at (712) -546-7835 or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it


State Fair Entries Due By July 3rd

(Des Moines) -- The 2012 Iowa State Fair is only a few months away.  This year's event, "Nothing Compares" will run from August 9 - 19 in Des Moines, Iowa.  Hundreds of 4-Hers that choose to exhibit their livestock projects at the Iowa State Fair must make an official entry.  Plymouth County 4-Hers will need to complete the necessary entry on-line within the member's 4-H Online records at by July 2, 2012.  Registration fees must be mailed or taken to the Plymouth County Extension Office no later than July 3, 2012.  The Extension Office is open Monday - Friday, 8:00 a.m. til noon, and 12:30 p.m. - 4:30 p.m.  No late entries will be accepted.  For more information contact the Plymouth County Extension Office at (712) 546-7835 or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it



Dry Conditions Persist Across Iowa

Weekly Crop Conditions Decline 

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Iowa has received some much-needed rain but the state is still dry.
     The U.S. Department of Agriculture says in Monday's weekly report that Iowa received an average of 1.5 inches of rain last week. That's above the normal of about 1.2 inches. Even so, more than half the topsoil and subsoil remains dry.
     The USDA says 67 percent of the corn crop, which is beginning to silk, is in good or excellent condition. That's the same as last week.
     Soybeans, which are starting to bloom, are rated 61 percent good to excellent. That's down from 62 percent a week ago.
     More than half the state's pastures and range land are in poor or fair condition. However, stress on livestock is minimal with no issues reported.


June 30th Deadline For Reporting Acres

(Des Moines) -- Iowa Farm Service Agency (FSA) State Executive Director, John Whitaker reminds farmers and ranchers that filing an accurate acreage report for all crops and land uses, including failed acreage and prevented planting acreage, can prevent the loss of benefits for a variety of  programs.  

Acreage reports are required for many Farm Service Agency programs.  For crops enrolled in programs other than NAP (Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program) acreage reports are to be certified by the June 30, 2012 deadline on all crops.  Acreage reports on crops covered by NAP are due in the county office by the earlier of June 30, 2012, or 15 calendar days before the onset of harvest or grazing of the specific crop acreage being reported. 

Crop reports also include planting dates for each crop by field.  Failed acreage must be reported before disposition of the crop.  Prevented planting must be reported no later than 15 days after the final planting date.

Reporting forage crops and pastures is also required.  All crops on the farm, including forage crops and pasture are used to determine overall eligibility for some programs such as SURE and LFP, so accurately reporting these crops is important.  Since the make up of a forage crop's stand changes over time, the legumes and/or grass mixture may be needed or the age of the stand in order to file an accurate report.  The Iowa FSA office issued guidance regarding the percent of alfalfa or other legume/grass that is present in the stand for producers to accurately report their crops.  Another change: for 2013, perennial forage, fall wheat, and other fall seeded small grains will have a December 15th reporting date.


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