Jenny Schlecht / Agweek Staff Writer
BISMARCK — Tanner Gue spends a lot of time with farmers in southeast North Dakota, helping them navigate conservation program options in his role as a biologist with Ducks Unlimited. In recent years, many producers with crops and cattle have expressed interest in grazing cattle on cover crops on their cropland. However, they typically have one concern: the financial risk of implementing a new practice.
BISMARCK — The Cover Crop and Livestock Integration pilot project is not the only agriculture-related project for which Ducks Unlimited has gone to the North Dakota Outdoor Heritage Fund for money. In fact, of five projects funded by the fund in which Ducks Unlimited plays a role, four have agricultural connections.
JAMESTOWN, N.D. — In 2012, Terry Griffin was flying into Jamestown, N.D., and was taken aback by the "potholes" in the fields in the Dakotas. "I didn't know what they were," he says. "I just never saw features like that in the field."
BISMARCK, N.D. — Students in Bismarck State College's farm and ranch management program mostly plan to return to family farms and ranches where they hope to someday take the reins on running the operations. But Tyler Schau, assistant professor of agriculture, technology and natural resources at BSC, says students' post-graduation plans don't always turn out that way.
I didn't grow up in the country. Yes, I grew up on a farm and ranch. But to say it's in the "country" would be misleading at best. From my parent's house, you can get to Walmart or McDonald's in about five minutes. Houses line the horizon and block out any views that could be considered majestic. So moving out into the actual country was a new experience for me.
FARGO, N.D. — The U.S. Chamber of Commerce released a list of the states most likely to be negatively impacted in the event the U.S. withdraws from NAFTA, placing North Dakota at third, behind only Michigan and Wisconsin. Rounding out the list were Texas, Missouri, Ohio, Iowa, Indiana, Arizona, Nebraska, Pennsylvania and North Carolina. North Dakota's position on the list sounds about right to officials in the North Dakota Trade Office.
TAPPEN, N.D. — The charter for the FFA chapter in Kidder County was signed in 1960. Pete Martin, who has been the chapter advisor for 17 years, says the names of his father and many local farmers are on the charter. Back then, it was the Tappen FFA. About 10 years ago, students from Steele, N.D., located about 14 miles from Tappen, joined the program, which became Kidder County FFA.
EMMONS COUNTY, N.D. — Across the country, farmers and ranchers get sick. They get hurt. They die. And in most cases, someone is there to help plant or harvest or get the cows fed. Someone brings a meal and someone brings support.
I was pushing calves into the crowding tub the other day when, above the clanging gates, the drone of the hydraulic chute and the symphony of bellering calves, I could hear two little voices screaming numbers. Really, we couldn't have found a better job for two 5-year-olds than hollering out eartag numbers to their grandpa, who would type the numbers into the computer on the scale. My daughter and my nephew have voices that can cut through just about any cacophony. And, more importantly, they know their numbers well enough to be trusted to yell out each calf's new identification.
MILES CITY, Mont. — Montana cattle producers haven't had an easy go of it in 2017. More than 1 million acres burned in wildfires statewide, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and much of that was pasture. And while drought conditions continue to ease, concerns about feed supplies and next year's pastures persist.