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Waterfowl hunting underway in Ohio

By Dan Armitage, host of Buckeye Sportsman, Ohio’s longest running outdoor radio show

Ohio’s waterfowl hunting seasons are underway, or will be by month’s end, statewide. According to a study last spring, the duck population across North America declined, but most species remain above long-term averages, according to the 2019 Waterfowl Population Status Report released late last month, so biologists are calling for numbers that hunters are likely to see to be similar to the past few seasons across Ohio.

The annual survey, conducted jointly by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and Canadian Wildlife Service since 1955, puts the breeding duck population at 38.90 million, a 6% decrease from last year’s population of 41.19 million, but still 10% above the long-term average. The 2019 survey marks the first time since 2008 that the estimated breeding duck population has fallen below 40 million.

There is good news to be found in the survey, however: Ohio waterfowl hunters’ most popular targets — mallards — increased 2% to 9.42 million, 19% above the long-term average.

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Bearish corn, bullish soybeans

By Doug Tenney, Leist Mercantile

Today’s USDA WASDE report will be closely watched to see what direction grains will take. A surprise from USDA could easily be in the numbers today. Many are expecting a friendly report, especially since the grain stocks report September 30 was bullish for both corn and soybeans. Acres for corn and soybeans could also be changed.

Today’s USDA report had corn production at 13.779 billion bushels, yield of 168.4, and ending stocks at 1.929 billion bushels. Soybean production was 3.550 billion bushels, yield was 46.9, and ending stocks of 180 million bushels.

Corn production lowered, yield up .2 bushels, ethanol lowered 50 million bushels, exports down 150 million bushels, and ending stocks down 261 million bushels. Soybean production lowered, yield down 1 bushel, crush up 5 million bushels, ending stocks down 180 million bushels. Corn acres lowered 100,000 acres, soybean acres down 200,000.

Shortly after the report release, corn was down 9 cents, soybeans were up 8 cents, and wheat was down 2 cents.

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Long fall needed to maximize soybean yields

By Matt Reese

The extended wet conditions through much of the state this spring resulted in soybean planting dates ranging from timely to double-crop. The wide variation in planting dates has resulted in an Ohio soybean crop heading into fall all across the board in terms of development and yield potential.

“The record-breaking rains of spring delayed planting across the Eastern Corn Belt to mark the slowest planting progress on record,” said Roy Ulrich, a technical agronomist for DEKALB Asgrow. “This delayed spring shortened our growing season and has delayed some of our normal management decisions later into the summer.”

Compounding the potential problems this year were challenges with insects in some fields.

“Stink bugs pierce through the pod wall to feed causing the bean inside to not develop or become shriveled and malformed reducing the number of beans per pod,” Ulrich said. “Bean leaf beetles are the other major insect of concern when it comes to pod feeding.

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Space age crop production on planet Earth

By Peter Ling and Mary Wicks

Growing crops in a completely controlled environment would appear to address many of the challenges farmers face from variability in temperature and rainfall to infestations of insects and weeds. However, replicating the “bioregenerative support system” that is Earth, is not easy. As engineers and scientists work to create such a system that would allow for long-term space travel or living, they are developing technologies that are being used to increase crop production at home.

 

What is needed for a bioregenerative support system?

This artificial ecosystem needs to provide everything required by humans to sustain life. Plants are the crucial component. They produce the oxygen we breathe, assimilate the carbon dioxide we exhale, transpire the water that can be collected for drinking and other uses, and process wastewater and absorb nutrients through their rootzone. Finally, as a result of all these functions, plants produce the food and fiber we need.

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Corn re-ownership strategies

By Jon Scheve, Superior Feed Ingredients, LLC

Last March the corn market lost 30 cents after the USDA surprisingly increased stock levels. Last week the USDA surprised again but with a big drop in corn stock levels, resulting in a 20-cent market rally. The reason for the adjustment isn’t clear. Some think it was because last year’s yield was lower while others say more animals were on feed. Regardless, it’s keeping prices from going lower until yields are determined, which won’t be for a month or two.

Corn re-ownership strategies
I’ve described how to choose which crop should be stored at home during harvest and if farmers should pay for commercial storage. When making those storage decisions I explained that futures shouldn’t be included in the evaluation because farmers can reown grain using futures or an option strategy. While there are countless ways for farmers to re-own grain, the following shows two strategies most often used and the pros and cons of each.

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Happy Porktober! Celebrate with great pork recipes

By Shelly Detwiler, berry farmer and dietician

This little piggy went to market. Traditionally, pigs went to market this time of year. October became National Pork Month. Today every month is pork month with pigs going to market continually throughout the year. We take time in October to thank pork producers as well as sit at the table to talk about the safe, healthy, delicious products with consumers being produced on Ohio farms today.

There is more to Ohio’s pork industry than bacon alone! Ohio ranks eighth in pork production. Stats say there are almost 3 million pigs in the state, producing over $580 million in revenue. Pigs are big pig business! Animal emissions get a lot of PR these days. No problem, pigs are earth friendly! The National Pork Checkoff states that pigs are only responsible for .33% of U.S. emissions. Manure goes back to the dirt to turn it into rich soil for crop production.

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Ohio Ag Net Podcast | Ep. 123 | Cover Crops & Agritourism

Matt is out this week at the county fair so the podcast duties are left to the broadcast team. Bart, Dale, Dusty, and Kolt have the honors this week all thanks to AgriGold. We get an update on crops from different part of the state and talk about National 4-H Week, and farmers supporting farmers.

Featured on the podcast this week, Matt sent back a few interviews. One is with Nathan Brause from Crawford County talking about his cover crops and no-till as well as Cody Beacom with Bird Agronomics talking about cover crops. We also get an update from Peggy Hall on Ohio’s agritourism laws. All of that and more on the podcast!

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Creamer Farm Drainage cab cam 2019

2019 Cab Cam Series presented by Homan Incorporated finds Bart Johnson in the cab with Steve Creamer of Creamer Farm Drainage. Steve is working on waterways with a Wolverine “ditching” tool. Steve says this is one of the most impressive and efficient tools he has operated in his excavation business.
Time savings and precision

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Warm weather provides soybean harvest opportunity

Warmer than normal weather early in the week helped push crop maturity, according to Cheryl Turner, State Statistician, USDA NASS, Ohio Field Office. There were 5.7 days suitable for fieldwork during the week ending October 6. Most locales saw temperatures in the high 80s or low 90s which was much warmer than normal. This warmth was welcomed given the lack of crop maturity. Farmers kept an eye on the forecast and hoped for a later than normal killing frost as late planted corn and soybeans was still immature relative to normal. Some growers harvested their earliest planted corn and soybeans. Moisture levels were reported to be high. Corn silage was also harvested. The winter wheat crop was being planted much more quickly than normal due in large part to fields being available because they were not planted to other commodities this year. Pasture conditions were highly variable across the State. In the northern and central parts of the State, adequate rainfall was beneficial, while lack of rainfall in the southern part of the State was negatively affecting pastures and hay regrowth.

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After a late start, harvest is underway throughout the state

Nathan Brown

We are a little better than 50% harvested on our soybeans. Now we are waiting on some more soybeans to ripen. We are hoping to get some wheat sowed today and do some fall burndown. We flew on some more cover crops yesterday into some standing corn, so it has been a busy few days.

We are extremely dry. The beans coming out of the field are around 10% moisture and we haven’t had any measurable rain for quite some time. The pastures and creeks are really starting to dry up on us now. With the cover crops we flew on a couple of weeks ago, we have a couple of fields where they germinated and came up. They aren’t really thick. We are hoping for a good rain over the weekend to get the rest of those cover crops up and germinated pretty quickly.

I am going to say we are probably 15 bushels off of our average with what we’ve cut so far.

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Great staff is like a second family

By Matt Reese

I love our staff. I am so fortunate to have the chance to work with so many talented, kind caring folks. From the late Ed Johnson to the current Dale Minyo I have had the opportunity to work with (and learn from) some of the very best. What an honor and privilege!

With so many summer events to attend around the state, we are very rarely all in the same place at once. And, with some staff changes this year, I thought the recent Farm Science Review would be a great chance to highlight our current fantastic staff and what they do for the team to keep you up to date.

 

Bart and Sheryl Johnson

We are like a family and they are kind of like the parents (or in Bart’s case sometimes an ornery big brother). Bart is the son of Ed Johnson who started the company.

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Potential frost impacts for Ohio’s late planted crops

By Alexandra Knight, Pioneer Field Agronomist, Lewis Center, Ohio

The cool, wet spring of 2019 got many farmers off to a slow start in Ohio. The challenging weather conditions carried over from last Fall and continued through May and well into June. The question remains, “Will crops have enough time to will finish out?” Early September was not excessively warm, but the majority of Ohio continues to track 4 to 5 days ahead of the long-term average for heat unit accumulation. This is true of whether your plant date was May 30, June 30 or anywhere in between.

Each day corn planting is delayed past May 1 a decrease of 6.8 GDUs will be required to reach maturity. This means a May 30 planted corn would require approximately 204 GDUs less than it would on April 30. With this in mind, 105-day corn is anticipated to be at blacklayer mid-September when planted May 30, late September when planted June 15 and late October when planted June 30.

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Manure separation shows promise for better nutrient management

By Dusty Sonnenberg, Ohio Field Leader

For every 1,000 gallons of manure produced on Dwayne Stateler’s Hancock County hog operation, there are 50 pounds of nitrogen, 28 pounds of potassium, 20 pounds of phosphorus, and 5 pounds of sulfur available to benefit crops produced on the farm.

Duane and Anthony Stateler grow corn, soybeans and wheat on approximately 600 acres in Hancock County and also operate a 7,200-head wean to finish swine operation. The Stateler farm is one of three operations in the Blanchard River Demonstration Farms Network — a joint partnership between U.S. Department of Agriculture Natural Resources Conservation Services and the Ohio Farm Bureau Federation. The Blanchard River Demonstration Farms Network is a Great Lakes Restoration Initiative project designed to showcase and demonstrate leading edge conservation practices to improve Great Lakes water quality. The Statelers have committed 243 acres to the Blanchard River Demonstration Farms Network and they are always looking to improve the efficiency of nutrient management in their operation.

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Weather extremes continue into harvest season

By Doug Tenney, Leist Mercantile

Ohio can certainly lay claim to wide extremes of weather for 2019. The wettest spring in 125 years unfortunately provided for great extremes in planting corn and soybeans this spring. While northwest Ohio had a huge amount of prevented planted acres, the rest of the state struggled to complete the planting process. Many acres were not planted until late May and into the first two weeks of June. The dilemma became the need for a long growing season without an early frost or freeze taking place. Fast forward to the end of September. To date, early frosts and freezes have not yet taken place across the Midwest. Weather forecasts into October 15 indicate zero cold weather concerns. The northern Plains will be seeing cooling temperatures but no freezes. In addition, late September rains of 1 to 4 inches moved through Missouri and Wisconsin, along with parts of Iowa, Illinois, and Kansas.

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Commercial storage considerations

By Jon Scheve, Superior Feed Ingredients, LLC

On Monday the USDA will release the stocks report and tell us how much grain is still in the bins. In 7 of the last 14 years the stocks for corn were higher than estimates. The good news is that it has only happened 1 out of the last 4 years. The problem is that when the stocks are higher for corn than the estimates they tend to be pretty far off. When the stocks report is smaller than estimates the difference is usually quite small.

The bean stocks report has been erratic and hard to predict. However, with the already large carryout any change up or down is probably not as important as what the yields start to look like as harvest begins this upcoming week.

There is snow in Montana and it could work its way east. There are forecasts for cool weather working into the Dakota’s and western Minnesota over the next several days.

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Weed answers for 2020 start this fall

By Harold Watters, CCA, Ohio State University Extension

So this year I am getting even more calls and comments on run away marestail.

“Last year I killed it, this year not so much” is often the remark I hear. And following is my response regarding Horseweed (Conyza canadensis), or Marestail as it is known in Ohio. This may be a new weed to you but the western side of the Ohio and particularly the southwest corner have been fighting it since about 2002. It takes a comprehensive effort, but it can be well managed.

Depending on severity and tillage in your system:

For no till soybeans and RoundupReady technology alone, it doesn’t work anymore.

  1. Spray a combination of 2,4-D and glyphosate in the fall after corn harvest or you can spray a combination of 2,4-D and dicamba in the fall.
  2. In the spring spray a second burndown (this may be the glyphosate & 2,4-D as above or glyphosate plus Sharpen) add your residual soybean herbicide – e.g.
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Majority of crops not yet ready for harvest

Portions of the northwest and southeast corners of the State received just over an inch of rain while the rest of the State saw less than normal amounts of rainfall, according to Cheryl Turner, State Statistician, USDA NASS, Ohio Field Office. There were 6.3 days suitable for fieldwork during the week ending September 29. Temperatures averaging about 8 degrees above normal coupled with dry conditions helped to mature corn and soybeans, although they were still well behind the 5- year average development. The percent of corn and soybeans rated in good to excellent condition increased 1 percentage point over last week but remained 30 percentage points below the 5-year average for soybeans and 29 percentage points below the 5-year average for corn. Winter wheat planting progress leapt ahead of last year and the 5-year average as planters rolled quickly through dry fields. Pasture conditions decreased slightly as growth was stunted, down 2 percentage points from last week and 21 percentage below the 5-year average.

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Corn and soybeans bullish, wheat negative in stocks report

By Doug Tenney, Leist Mercantile

The USDA report today had September 1st corn stocks at 2.114 billion bushels, soybeans 913 million bushels, and wheat 2.385 billion bushels. Both corn and soybean numbers were below the low end of trader estimates. Shortly after the report corn was up 10 cents, soybeans up 18 cents, and wheat down 1 cent. Just before the noon release corn was up 2 cents, soybeans up 13 cents, and wheat down 3 cents.

Today is the quarterly grain stocks report on US grain as of September 1st. This report will provide both off farm and on farm bushels. Most likely the report will get some attention from traders as it details another report from USDA. Harvest activity is close to a fever pitch this week in Ohio and the rest of the Midwest. With that note, producers may not have this report on their radar. A takeaway for today – If corn and soybean stocks are drastically different from expectations, it hints 2018 corn and soybean yields could be revised in upcoming monthly WASDE reports.

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Lingering issues from 2019 — some thoughts for 2020

By Harold Watters, CCA, Ohio State University Extension

I’m not sure what we could have done for the crop this year. I read again today how we planted one day in April, one day in May and finally in early June we had a window only to be hit again with big rains — and then we had to replant in late June. We know that crop production is about collecting sunshine and putting that together with a crop to make sugars — C6H12O6 — that the plant converts to starches, oils and protein. But when we do that with a late June planting, we have cut off 45 to 60 days of potential. Water in mid- to late-season can help overcome the delay, but only a bit.

For soybean variety selection, I comb the data. I often make a seed payment early, and sometimes commit to a particular variety, but I prefer to wait for university results to get a comparison across company offerings.

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