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Angus Journal

The Angus Journal Daily, formerly the Angus e-List, is a compilation of Angus industry news; information about hot topics in the beef industry; and updates about upcoming shows, sales and events. Click here to subscribe.

News Update

November 21, 2013

Angus Heritage Foundation
Welcomes New Inductees

The Angus business is centered on the individuals and their families who continue to dedicate their lives to the Angus legacy. To honor leaders involved with the Association’s history and shaping it’s future, each year the Association inducts members into the Angus Heritage Foundation. Four new additions were recognized Nov. 18 during the Association’s Annual Awards Banquet in Louisville, Ky.

The 2013 inductees are James Rentz, Coldwater, Ohio; John L. Schurr, Farnam, Neb.; Brian Halverson, Baker, Minn.; and the late Woodrow Wilson King, Rock Falls Ill.

Each inductee or a family representative received a framed Angus Heritage Foundation certificate and their names will be engraved on the Heritage Foundation plaque displayed in the library of the Association headquarters in Saint Joseph, Mo.

Photos and biographies will be included in the next edition of the Angus Heritage Foundation booklet.

For more information on the inductees, please view the full release here.

New White House Rural Council Report Highlights the
Economic Importance of Passing a Food, Farm and Jobs Bill

In June of 2010, the Obama administration began providing input to Congress regarding the prospective features and policy of contents for a reauthorized farm bill. Over a period of more than three years, the administration has supported reauthorization efforts aimed to help build a better safety net for farmers and families and to build a better farm, food, and energy policy for the nation.

However, 43 months later and despite the best efforts of many in Congress, work on reauthorization on the Farm Bill remains incomplete. While some programs have been simply extended, others remain either unfunded, unauthorized or without enactment of needed reforms.

The administration has made clear that passing a comprehensive farm bill is a priority, and of importance for every American. The White House is releasing a new report, which explains what is at stake in this debate.

The report highlights the economic benefits — for the domestic agriculture sector, its workforce, rural American communities, and families and businesses across the country — that would result from these changes, and the imperative to passing a comprehensive food, farm, and jobs bill as soon as possible.

The U.S. agriculture sector is a key engine of economic growth. Not only does it put food on the table of American families at affordable prices and provide raw material for a range of vital purposes — it also supports millions of jobs and is a key economic driver in many rural communities.

In recent years, the agriculture sector has seen strong growth, with farm income and agriculture exports both reaching historical highs not witnessed in decades.

For more information, please view the full release here.

Henning Receives National Extension Chairmanship

Jimmy Henning, director of the University of Kentucky (UK) Cooperative Extension Service, recently became the chair of the Extension Committee on Organization and Policy. This committee represents all land-grant universities and is the governing and policy body for the national Cooperative Extension system.

“Henning’s extension leadership at the national level is a real asset for Kentucky. Not just because of the recognition and credibility it brings, but because our voice is heard across the country,” said Scott Smith, dean of the UK College of Agriculture, Food and Environment.

The Association of Southern Region Extension Directors nominated Henning to the committee. Each region takes turns having one of their committee representatives serve as chair.

As chair, Henning will speak on behalf of Cooperative Extension on a variety of national issues at many venues, and he will work closely with the USDA and its agencies. In 2014, Henning will represent extension at many celebrations of the 100th anniversary of the Smith-Lever Act, which established the Cooperative Extension Service.

In addition, he will work to advance the goals and core themes of the organization, which include building partnerships and acquiring resources, increasing strategic marketing and communications, enhancing leadership and professional development and strengthening organizational functioning.

“There are significant funding challenges at the local, state and national levels,” Henning said. “So one of my goals is making sure all the institutions understand we are all better together than we are separately, because there are significant benefits that come with being united.”

For more information, please view the full release here.

Beef Genetic Prediction Workshop
To Be in Kansas City Dec. 12-13

As animal scientists and farmers learn more about beef cattle genetics, this knowledge will be used to make predictions and select breeding stock.

A genetic prediction workshop will be hosted in Kansas City Dec. 12-13, to share the latest information and experiences.

“We’re at a stage where beef breeders, especially seedstock producers, can learn and add to the discussion,” says Jared Decker, University of Missouri Extension geneticist, Columbia.

The conference brings together academic, beef industry, breed association and cattle producer leaders.

“Ways to use genomics in cattle selection will be a major focus,” Decker said.

The conference is hosted by the Beef Improvement Federation.

The speakers will share their progress. An aim will be to work on ways to use the genome to enhance expected progeny differences (EPDs). Commercial cattle producers can use those EPDs to select breeding stock.

The meeting will include plans for making across-breed EPDs. Research on that project is underway at the U.S. Meat Animal Research Center, Clay Center, Neb. A USDA working group, NCERA, is pursuing that development.

The conference will be at the Holiday Inn KCI, 11728 NW Ambassador Drive, Kansas City, Mo. The registration fee covers meals during the conference.

Program and registration details are available at under “Upcoming Beef Events.” Preregistration closes Dec. 1. Lodging accommodations are at a special rate.

For more information, please view the Angus Journal’s Virtual Library calendar of upcoming events here.

Bird Collisions with Wind Turbines Reviewed

As wind energy continues to emerge as a green energy alternative to fossil fuels, bird mortality from collisions with the turbines also is on the rise. Previous research suggests anywhere between 10,000 and nearly 600,000 fatal bird collisions occur in the lower 48 states of the United States each year.

Most of these previous estimates are based on extrapolation of data from a small number of U.S. wind facilities to all U.S. wind turbines. However, researchers in Oklahoma State University’s Department of Natural Resource Ecology and Management (NREM) recently shed a little more light on the subject, by reviewing studies and industry reports from 59 different wind power facilities across the United States. Their findings were published in Biological Conservation, an international leading journal in the discipline.

“We estimate between 140,000 and 328,000 (mean = 234,000) birds are killed annually by collisions with monopole turbines in the contiguous U.S.,” said Scott Loss, NREM assistant professor. “We found support for an increase in mortality with increasing turbine height and support for differing mortality rates among regions, with per turbine mortality lowest in the Great Plains.”

This study evaluates only the newer monopole-style turbines and discounts the older lattice-style turbines, which are largely decommissioned in the United States. It is often argued that the more modern turbines kill relatively few birds compared to the decommissioned turbines; however, this study suggests bird collision mortality rates at new generation monopole turbines can still be considerable. The team found, across the United States, anywhere from roughly 2.9 to nearly 8 birds are killed per turbine each year.

“Turbine height was a strong predictor of mortality rate,” he said. “We did see some regional differences, as well.”

For more information, please view the full release here.


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