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The Role of the Odor Footprint Tool in Livestock Nuisance Litigation

Latest Updates from beef.unl.edu - Fri, 04/23/2021 - 14:06
Saturday, May 1, 2021

The following is a summary of the webinar “The Role of the Odor Footprint Tool in Livestock Nuisance Litigation” given on Jan. 21, 2021, as part of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln’s Department of Agricultural Economics Extension Farm and Ranch Management team’s weekly webinar series. The webinar and accompanying podcast can be accessed here.


Net Return Distributions When Metaphylaxis Is Used to Control Bovine Respiratory Disease in High Health Risk Cattle

Latest Updates from beef.unl.edu - Fri, 04/23/2021 - 13:43
Saturday, May 1, 2021

Metaphylaxis (administration of FDA antimicrobial, generally via injection, to high-health risk cattle upon arrival) is used to help manage bovine respiratory disease (BRD). The use of metaphylaxis is known to decrease the mortality and morbidity of cattle in feedlots. Producers managing high-health risk cattle with metaphylaxis must choose the type of cattle to purchase in conjunction with the price paid and the antimicrobial to use.


Budget Templates Updated for Sheep and Goat Enterprises

Latest Updates from beef.unl.edu - Fri, 04/23/2021 - 11:58
Saturday, May 1, 2021

Enterprise budget templates were recently updated for producers’ use to estimate sheep and goat revenue and expenses and consider projected breakeven scenarios. Using a west central Nebraska representative sheep flock with 250 ewes and a 70 head meat goat herd, the budgets are prepared for producers to use as guides when entering their own information using an Excel spreadsheet format.  


Controlling Horn Flies on Pastured Cattle

Latest Updates from beef.unl.edu - Fri, 04/23/2021 - 11:00
Saturday, May 1, 2021

With temperatures starting to warm, fly season is not far away, and now is the time to evaluate your 2021 horn fly management plan. Was your fly management program successful last year? If the answer is no, what were possible factors that might have directed your program in the wrong direction. Understanding the horn fly’s habits, life cycle, impact control methods and products will help design an effective control program.  


The Role of Water Intake in Rumen Development of the Nursing Calf

Latest Updates from beef.unl.edu - Fri, 04/23/2021 - 09:55
Saturday, May 1, 2021

Calving season is wrapping up for some producers, in full swing for others, and just getting started for others. While the focus is definitely on making sure milk intake, particularly colostrum, is adequate for the young calves; it is also time to be thinking about water intake.


Feed, Ship or Sell – Three Options to Reduce Stocking Rates

Latest Updates from beef.unl.edu - Fri, 04/23/2021 - 09:33
Saturday, May 1, 2021

Current drought conditions across many parts of Nebraska are prompting cattle producers to consider options for reducing stocking rates on rangeland and pasture as we look forward to this spring and summer. There are three main options to reduce stocking rates: supplement/substitute feed, ship cattle to non-drought areas and sell cattle.


Management Strategies for Minimizing Early Pregnancy Loss

Latest Updates from beef.unl.edu - Fri, 04/23/2021 - 09:15
Saturday, May 1, 2021

As we approach the breeding season, cows and heifers are faced with a variety of stressors from the metabolic pressure of providing for a calf to changes in environment. Stress during early pregnancy is well documented to cause embryonic death and loss of pregnancy. However, making strategic management decisions during the fragile 2 months after breeding can help minimize those losses.


New awards program honors outstanding 4-H volunteers across Nebraska

Latest Updates from Statewide 4-H - Fri, 04/23/2021 - 08:01

Nebraska 4-H has selected 12 individuals, as well as one multigenerational family, as recipients of a new statewide awards program that honors outstanding contributions of 4-H volunteers.

The Nebraska 4-H Volunteer Recognition Awards program was developed in 2021 to honor adult and youth volunteers, as well as multi-generational families, who have provided meaningful contributions to Nebraska 4-H. One Outstanding Adult Volunteer Award winner was chosen for each of the state’s 11 Nebraska Extension Engagement zones. One statewide winner was selected in each of the youth volunteer and multi-generational family categories.

“All across the state, Nebraska 4-H volunteers do incredible work to provide opportunities for our youth,” said Jill Goedeken, 4-H Youth Development Extension educator. “These volunteers generously give their time, energy and creativity to help develop the next generation of leaders, and we are thrilled to be able to recognize their contributions.”

Nebraska 4-H will recognize these outstanding youth and adult volunteers during the Week of the Volunteer on April 23rd virtually and through statewide media outlets. An in-person recognition ceremony will take place at the 2021 Nebraska State Fair. Inaugural award winners are:

Outstanding Youth Volunteer Award

Brandon Mellick, Dixon County

Brandon Mellick has taken several leadership roles in Dixon County over the past years. He was actively involved in the Ag Innovator program, teaching youth audiences about agriculture topics to more than 250 youth. He served as a 4-H Ambassador in Dixon County for two years. He was a member of the Dixon County 4-H First LEGO League team and assisted with promotional events to educate and recruit new members with robotics. In addition, he was also a member of the Dixon County 4-H Teen Leaders program. He is an example of an active 4-H member in the Nebraska 4-H program.

Multi-Generational Family Volunteer Award

Ron and Barb Suing family, Lancaster County

Ron and Barb Suing have been involved in nearly every aspect of 4-H in Lancaster County since Ron was in 4-H himself in the 1950s. Over the years, various family members have worked as superintendents, judges, behind-the-scenes volunteers and mentors to hundreds of youth. First generation: Ron and Barb Suing; second generation: Marlo Yakel and Nikki Casburn; third generation: Marlo’s children, Kylee Schirmer, Taylor Yakel and Ryan Yakel; and Nikki’s children: Andrew Casburn, Daniel Casburn and Thomas Casburn.

Outstanding Adult Volunteer Awards

Zone 1: Carrie Child, Sheridan County

Carrie Child has served in almost every volunteer role possible. Over the years she has served as a board member, workshop volunteer, after-school teacher, club leader, fair event superintendent, and robotics coach. Through her continued support, the Sheridan County program has become stronger and more diverse, and she has had a positive impact on almost every aspect of Sheridan County 4-H.

Zone 2: Kathaleen Mead, Garfield County

Throughout her long career as a 4-H volunteer, Kathaleen has held many roles, beginning as an organizational leader when her own children, Paige and Kay, joined Garfield County 4-H. Eventually, she would also serve as project leader, state fair judge and financial supporter. She has been especially involved in the Garfield-Loup-Wheeler 4-H quilting program, which offers programming every week from the end of school until the start of county fair and has impacted generations of 4-H youth.

Zone 3: Sharla Willard, Lincoln County

Sharla Willard has been instrumental in many aspects of Lincoln County 4-H, including leading project areas, serving on the 4-H council and serving as a fair superintendent. When COVID-19 changed fair protocols in 2020, she helped with the check-in and placement of static exhibit items and worked to ensure that proper protocol was followed for the 4-H dog show. This past spring, she was an integral part of making the Lincoln County 4-H Council Garage Sale Fundraiser a success.

Zone 4: Kevin Oberg, Hitchcock County

Kevin Oberg has been instrumental in keeping a successful 4-H shooting sports program in Hitchcock and Hayes County for the last 17 years. He began as a 4-H shooting sports leader in the archery and today helps with all shooting sport disciplines. For the past several years, Kevin has led the Hitchcock and Hayes team of shooting sports leaders in preparing for practices and contests, caring for shooting sports equipment, gathering donations for the program, and making sure the youth have a safe and fun experience.

Zone 5: Kim Spence, Stanton County

Kim Spence is a positive force in Stanton County 4-H. She has served as 4-H council member and president; county extension board member; program leader and much more. She serves as a bridge between the Stanton County 4-H program and the fair board. She has the ability to motivate both youth and adults, and she prioritizes making time for 4-H, even as a mother of five who works full time.

Zone 6: Beth Sonderup, Nance County

Beth Sonderup is the club leader of the Trailblazers 4-H Club in Nance County, a club she started four years ago to encourage youth of all ages, especially the Clover Kids age group. The club has participated in several community service projects in its four years, including creating Valentine’s Day placemats for the food trays at Children’s Hospital; making goodie bags for patients at the Boone County Hospital; and playing bingo with residents of the Valley View Assisted Living Facility in Fullerton. She has also led many 4-H workshops focused on sewing, which is one of her passions.

Zone 7: Barb Mentink, Polk County

Barb Mentink has volunteered with the Polk County 4-H horse program for more than 30 years. During this time has served as superintendent, 4-H Council member, club leader and horse advancement level examiner. She pushes her many members to get the most out of their 4-H experience, not just through her club, but also by getting involved in district and state events. Barb is knowledgeable, provides great programing and most importantly, the kids have fun and enjoy being around her.

Zone 8: Linda Bisanz, Burt County

Linda Bisanz has been involved with the Flying Needles 4-H Club for over 26 years, in a wide variety of roles. She was the 4-H kitchen manager for many years, then became the homemade pie making coordinator. Each year for more than 20 years, her group of 4-H volunteers has made approximately 200 fruit pies to be sold in the 4-H kitchen during the fair. She is a big advocate of the 4-H speech and presentation contest and is always among the first to volunteer for clothing judging day and during the fair. She even puts on heavy coveralls to help at a winter 4-H fund-raiser concession stand. For many years she has been a source of endless help who has made a difference.

Zone 9: Rebecca Dunn, Douglas County

Rebecca Dunn has created a new 4-H club, engaged new 4-H families and worked with local 4-H staff to provide enriching, educational opportunities to club members. She has worked with the Ralston Public Schools district to have her education students lead as peer mentors in the Health Rocks 4-H Mentoring program. She also led the way forming a partnership with a Ralston elementary school where the 12 high school mentors would meet with their 30 mentees in grades 3-6. Rebecca is a stellar 4-H volunteer and has made a big impact on the families and future teachers.

Zone 10: Heather Mohling, Adams County

Heather Mohling has been a 4-H leader of the Blue Valley Blazers 4-H Club for over 20 years, and a leader in the Adams County 4-H Horse program providing instruction in horse knowledge and hands-on care of horses, along with horse showmanship and riding. She has helped prepare youth throughout the county for State Horse Quiz Bowl as well as county, district and state horse shows. Heather has been instrumental in implementing the therapeutic riding program within the Blue Valley Blazers 4-H Club including organizing and providing horses, volunteers, equipment, training, and an unlimited amount of patience teaching and working with youth that may not otherwise have the opportunity to ride and bond with horses.

Zone 11: Renee Thakur, Cass County

Renee Thakur has been a dedicated volunteer in Cass County and the surrounding area for many years. She has helped school enrichment and 4-H workshops in Cass County and has assisted with sewing workshops in Johnson and in Pawnee counties. In recent years she has helped with First Lego League competitions in Otoe County. She is enthusiastic, consistent and willing to help wherever needed.

Soybean Fertility Study in Western Nebraska: What is Limiting High Yield and Protein?

Latest Updates from cropwatch.unl.edu - Thu, 04/22/2021 - 15:44
Farmers examining different fertility treatments during 2019 August Field Day near Grant, Nebraska.

Rising Fuel and Input Prices: Adjusting Enterprise Budgets and Tracking Cost of Production

Latest Updates from cropwatch.unl.edu - Thu, 04/22/2021 - 14:55
Brandon Schirmer sprays defoliant on one of the fields at his father's multi-crop 1,014-acre farm, in Batesville, Texas, on Aug. 12, 2020. (Lance Cheung/USDA)

FarmBits Podcast: Planting with Precision

Latest Updates from cropwatch.unl.edu - Thu, 04/22/2021 - 11:50
Hosted by Samantha Teten and Jackson Stansell — graduate students in UNL's Department of Biological Systems Engineering and Nebraska Extension Digital Agriculture team members — FarmBits Podcast is a weekly series highlighting new innovations and trends in digital agriculture through interviews with academic experts, farmers and industry specialists.

Sample Testing Underway at Plant and Pest Diagnostic Clinic

Latest Updates from cropwatch.unl.edu - Thu, 04/22/2021 - 11:17
To better identify weeds, insects and plant diseases, samples can be dropped off for analysis at the Plant Science Hall on UNL's East Campus via a cooler located near the east, first floor door.

Evaluating the Performance of Kernza® Perennial Grain in Eastern Nebraska

Latest Updates from cropwatch.unl.edu - Tue, 04/20/2021 - 14:58
Figure 1. Kernza® research fields in July 2019 at the Land Institute in Salina, Kansas. All Images are covered by a Creative Commons license (CC-BY-NC-ND). Photos copyright The Land Institute (landinstitute.org).

#NField Observations for April 2021

Latest Updates from cropwatch.unl.edu - Tue, 04/20/2021 - 11:22
This week, Extension Educator Ben Beckman discusses the benefits of no-till planting your alfalfa fields this year.

UNL Dry Bean Breeding Program Announces Public Release of Two New Dry Edible Bean Varieties

Latest Updates from cropwatch.unl.edu - Mon, 04/19/2021 - 16:11
Plots of new varieties of dry edible beans being released by the Nebraska Dry Bean Breeding Program: White Pearl (left) and Wildcat (right). Two new dry edible bean varieties will be available to producers in the near future — a great northern bean suitable for direct harvest and the other, a slow-darkening pinto bean variety with longer shelf life.

Jump, Roll, Slide at the Playground

Latest Updates from child.unl.edu - Mon, 04/19/2021 - 15:49
Image source: Linda Reddish

My son loves to jump.  He is exceptional at finding launching surfaces that provide him the opportunity to challenge gravity’s hold on his feet.  I remember the day when he decided to test out jumping from the third step on the playground.  The ground beneath covered with mulch but, he looked so small to be making such a big jump.  As he lifted his arms to the sky and his knees bent, I took deep breath watching him get ready to fly.   My spouse on the other hand was a second away from saying, “that’s not safe, get down.”

Before the words could be uttered, our son jumped, landed on both feet, and then began spinning around.   Another child directly behind him yelled out, “That was awesome!  Five points for both feet.” Suddenly, the two of them were setting rules for how to earn points while jumping.  5 points for both feet, 1 point if your hand touched the ground, a hundred points if they both did it together at the same time and stuck the landing.  His parents and I made eye contact, smiled, gave a shrug of the shoulders, and continued to watch.  My spouse, again, on the other hand, was now looking at the sky and letting out a deep sigh of relief.

As the children continued to play, I asked my spouse about the warning cry he was about to utter.  He expressed his concern about him falling and that the steps seemed too high.  I shared with him that generally, you can check the “critical height” of play equipment outdoors and I showed him the sticker on the side of the equipment.  The space he was jumping from was well mulched and for our son’s height had more than enough protection because of mulch.  This made me realize something, I knew about this and could show my spouse were to find this but, I wondered how many other caregivers knew where to find this information. If you are curious about playground safety and platform guidelines click here for the Public Playground Safety Handbook from the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission .

Image source: Linda Reddish

This additional piece of information helped, but my spouse still told me after I showed him the equipment safety suggestions that watching our son jump felt like a lifetime.  In reality, the exchange was only about 5-10 minutes.  Eventually, the game stopped and the children choose to go over to slope on the other side of the playground and began rolling down it.  Sometimes they bumped into each other, but their faces were smiling and laughing as they rolled. We have continued to talk about this feeling of hesitation or being uncomfortable watching our child engage in this rough and tumble play.  This feeling is not unusual among adults.  Author, Frances Carlson addresses adult’s uneasiness with this type of play in her book Big Body Play; Why boisterous, vigorous, and very physical play is essential to children’s development and learning.

She shares that adults and educators are typically motivated to reduce or hinder this type of play out of fear for the following reasons:

Image source: Linda Reddish

1. Fighting

2. Escalation

3. Agitation

4. Injury

All reasonable and understandable fears.  I, as a parent, that day, felt all of those fears too.  Perhaps not as strongly as my spouse did, but when I reflect on my teaching days, I likely responded more like my spouse did.  Ensuring children’s safety and well-being was paramount.  However, I’ve grown in my understanding of how to support children’s exploration into big body play.  I went back and re-read the chapter on how to support this type of play while balancing the safety concerns. The readings confirmed while some risk of injury is possible any time when children engage in physical play or explore outdoor spaces like playgrounds, the risk is minimal. Adults can set safe limits by setting clear expectations and ground rules, supervising or joining in on the play, and helping young children recognize their limits.  Following the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission’s playground, public safety and fall height recommendations are another strategy to prevent life-threatening falls or injuries in both outdoor and indoor spaces.

Carlson further addresses adult’s reservations by providing concrete ideas and examples such as encourage children to:

Image source: Linda Reddish

1. Run

2. Skip

3. Hop

4. Roll

5. Climb on structures

6. Wrestle

7. Broad jump

8. Jump from heights

Again, this type of boisterous play and physical activity has its benefits.  Children who are physically active reduce their risk of becoming overweight or obese.  That is because early childhood is an ideal time to establish children’s healthy attitude towards the adoption of health and wellness.

We continue to watch our son test out his jumping skills while he is at the playground.  Now he has moved on to running, hopping, and skipping around the loop of the playground.  He still likes to test out that third step.  Before we leave the playground, he still asks, “Can I jump off that step one more time?”

If you are interested in learning more about Big Body Play, you can check out this webinar.


Accelerating Progress to Reduce Childhood Obesity. (2021, March 24). Retrieved April 01, 2021, from https://www.nccor.org/

Carlson, Frances M.  (2011).  Big Body Play: Why Boisterous, Vigorous, and Very Physical Play Is Essential to Children’s Development and Learning, by Frances M. Carlson.  National Association for the Education of Young Children.

Young Children: Journal of the National Association for the Education of Young Children, 69:5 (Nov 2014), pp. 36-42.


Peer Reviewed by Jaci Foged and Lynn DeVries Extension Educators, The Learning Child

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