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November-December 2019

New extension agent passionate about agriculture By PennyLynn Webb Palestine Herald-Press

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mily Husmann, the newest member of the Anderson County Extension Agency, brings a lot of passion to her job. “I’m so over the moon and thankful I’m getting to do what I’m passionate about,” Husmann said. “I just pinch myself every day.” Husmann was hired as an assistant county extension agent for ag and natural resources, working under Truman Lamb, the county coordinator and agent for ag and natural resources. Husmann, 22, graduated from Oklahoma State University in May with a degree in animal science. She grew up in Katy Texas, graduating from James E. Taylor High School. Husmann said she had a great Future Farmers of America teacher and many great professors in college. She even considered a career in teaching. “I’m passionate about the ag industry,” Husmann said. “I wanted to find a career where I

could work with animals, or at least in the arena of agriculture.” Not finding a job in the Houston area, she started looking in East Texas and came across the Anderson County position. “I took a chance and drove to Overton for the interview,” Husmann said. “They seemed to like me. It all kind of fell into place after that. I even found the perfect little place to live.” Husmann is learning the ropes, dividing her time between agriculture and consumer sciences and the local 4H program. “I really like horticulture,” Husmann said. “Truman Lamb and I have gone out to several different homes to work with people on their trees, their landscapes, or their grasses. I’ve really enjoyed that and working with the Master Gardener program.” She has also worked with Extension Agent Preston Sturdivant and Holly Black in the Family and Community Health/ Consumer Science program. Husmann has already helped conduct a couple of ag science seminars. She looks forward to

the upcoming Hay Show. “As extension agents, we wear a lot of hats,” Husmann said. Husmann has experience in showing livestock projects and hopes to work with the 4-H. Beyond her job, Husmann said she enjoys watching movies, music, and exploring her new home town. “I’m really liking it here,” Husmann said. “I like the pace of things. It’s comfortable.”

Emily Husmann has embraced life in Palestine and looks forward to working with the community through the Anderson County Extension Agency. Above, Husmann during her Senior year of college after helping her assigned sow farrow.

Corsicana Bass Club competes Trout stocking season arrives Prince earns 28th place By Kevin Prince

Special to the Corsicana Daily Sun

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he Corsicana Tiger Bass Club traveled to Lake Fork Reservoir Nov. 9 near Emory to compete in their third tournament of the Central Division season. Holden Prince fished solo due to his partner, Peyton Brown, being unable to attend the contest. Prince managed to boat a five fish limit with a total weight of 4.61 pounds to attain a 28th place finish in a field of 183 teams. First cast of the tourney was at 6:30 a.m., and at 6:45 a.m. the first keeper was in the live-well. The tally quickly went to three keepers by 7:15 a.m. The baitfish were moving in and out of the two points where the fishing efforts had been focused, and finally at 10:30 a.m. the fourth keeper was located. A lull settled in and the decision was made to go search for new water to fish. After a few long-distance runs, Prince decide to key in on some docks with brush piles. After several unsuccessful docks the time was 1 p.m. “I’m not feeling these docks, let’s go back to where I started and see what might happen,” Prince said. Upon arriving back to the starting location, there were several other anglers leaving the area, but it was decided to go ahead and give them a try. With a couple small groups of baitfish located, Prince managed to boat the fifth keeper fish for the day and quickly followed with another but the final fish wasn’t quite large enough to improve the creel. Finishing 28th in the Lake Fork contest moved the Prince/Brown team into 30th place overall in the “Angler of the Year” points standings of a field of nearly 200 teams. The team of Rudy Beck and Hunter Autrey came away with a 102nd place finish in the Lake Fork Tourney. The Corsicana Tiger Bass Club will resume the season Feb. 22, 2020 when they travel to Lake Ray Hubbard near Rockwall. Full results can be viewed by visiting the Texas High School Bass Association website at thsba.com.

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he pond at Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center is one of the sites for upcoming trout stocking the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department reports. Lake Zebco Casting Pond 2 at the Texas Water Fisheries Center is due for various stockings in December, January and February. A total of 7,200 trout will be headed for the Athens pond. Elsewhere, trout produced in the fishery ponds at TFFC where be headed for numerous locations around the state such as Daingerfield State Park, Lake Tyler and Mesquite City Lake. TPWD will be stocking a total of 343,650 rainbow trout in Texas from Nov. 26 through the beginning of March. Because rainbow trout are unable to survive in Texas after the winter, anglers are encouraged to keep up to their daily bag limit of five trout. Rainbow trout are an attractive, tasty fish found on many restaurant menus, and anglers can easily find recipes to prepare these fish online. According to TPWD, Rainbow trout can be caught on a variety of baits and lures. Depending on an angler’s experience level and interest, they can be caught using simple, light tackle or on hand-tied flies using a fly rod. Other tips to consider when trout fishing include arriving early to stocking sites on stocking days, maintaining a safe and courteous distance from fellow anglers, keeping an array of baits and lures nearby and having ice available when harvesting trout to keep fish fresh. TPWD invites families looking to spend a day or weekend exploring a Texas State Park to add fishing to their list of activities, as more than 15 state parks throughout the state will receive periodic stockings of rainbow trout this winter. Many state parks offer excellent fishing amenities such as fishing piers and shoreline access, cleaning stations, and equipment rentals for tackle and kayaks or canoes. As a bonus, state parks are the only locations in Texas that anglers can fish for free without a fishing license.


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November-December 2019

Fruit tree selection

By Jo Anne Embleton Jacksonville Daily Progress

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he local soil, which Cherokee County AgriLife Extension horticulturalist Kim Benton describes as slightly acidic, makes the area a prime spot for growing food, especially fruits and nuts. “We have good soil and good water … the slightly acidic soil we have is actually good for gardening. In some areas, it’s really acidic and that doesn’t bode well for production. But in general, with a pH of 6 to 6.5, we have really good growing production for vegetables and for fruit trees.” Benton led a Nov. 18 class on “Fruit Tree Selection” at the Jacksonville Public Library, drawing a crowd of 15 people, interested in learning ideas on how to help their trees become more productive. “I think many are eager to create a homestead, where they’re producing some of their own food,” she said. “A homestead is a place where they’re growing food to consume, and they’re finding more pleasure in growing what they want to eat.” It isn’t unusual to find fruit trees growing locally, in Zone 8, “because we get so much rain in East Texas that we can grow most fruit trees – we have a great opportunity to grow things that might be considered unusual that grow well for us,” she said, adding that having few extreme hard freezes take place during the winter also contributes to ideal growing conditions. “But mostly, it’s our rainfall, which helps the plant’s survivability. The thing that hinders fruit tree growth around here is the heat of summer – that’s what keeps us from growing really sweet cherries, etc.,” Benton said. Other factors to consider when growing fruit or nut trees are sunlight and access to water, which she described as the “two really biggies.” “If there’s not full sun, it’s not going to fruit for you anyway, and if you don’t have access to water, you’ll have a really tough time keeping it alive,” she said.

A handout compiled by Texas A&M AgriLife Extension lists a variety of fruit and nut trees suited for growing in Cherokee County, ranging from peaches, pears and apples, to blueberries and blackberries, to pecans, almonds and certain varieties of grapes. Of these, peaches (23 varieties which are suited to the local soil) are the most popular fruit folks want to grow. “Peaches are always what people are so eager to grow, because they love them and they want to eat them. Sometimes there’s a learning curve to that, though, because to successfully grow peaches takes more care than some of our other fruit trees,” she said, describing how this particular fruit needs numerous chill hours (with temperatures ranging 32 to 45 degrees Fahrenheit) and a spray program to curb brown rot of peach. For those wanting to attempt growing fruit that needs less maintenance, there’s always fruits and some variety of pears. “They’re the easiest for ‘just put it out there and let it do what it’s going to do’ types of trees,” she said. During her Nov. 18 presentation, Benton told attendees that the things to consider when first deciding to raise fruit or nut trees is to look at the variety selection of fruit, then ensure that the site chosen for planting is well-drained, has ample sunlight and availability to water, and to keep in mind spray requirements for dealing with pests. Also, take into consideration the number of chill hours needed for a tree, primarily peach, needs to have in order to bear production, she said, referring the class to the website, www.ETXweather. tamu.edu/chill/, which monitors chill hours on a monthly basis. “Most fruit trees have a certain number of chill hours needed before they can bloom,” she said. Another important thing to consider is healthy stock: Check for disease or damage, and pay close attention to whether the stock has bound or girdling roots, which could strangle the plant. Pruning techniques also were noted, as Benton described which fruits benefitted

Photo by Jo Anne Embleton

Cherokee County horticulturalist Kim Benton uses a young Elberta peach tree to demonstrate how to search for the right spot for pruning during a Nov. 18 “Fruit Tree Selection” presentation she held at the Jacksonville Public Library. from an open center technique (peaches, plums, nectarines, apricots, almonds and cherries) or from a central leader (apples, pears, mayhaws, pecans and persimmons). With either method, it is important that as trees mature, “you want a shorter tree, making it easier to protect and pick,” she said, noting that when pruning, “you’re giving it a haircut every year.” The need for fertilizer varies as the tree matures: According to a handout Benton circulated, newly planted trees should receive “approximately 1/4-cup of slowrelease fertilizer the spring after they are planted,” while “two-year-old trees require a minimum of 1/2-cup of a complete fertilizer in March and in May; a good

general rule for mature trees is to use one pound of fertilizer per inch of trunk diameter.” However, the handout noted, “Never fertilize pears, and only lightly fertilize grapes and figs.” For more information about growing fruit and nut trees, visit the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension website, which posts topics such as “Fruit & Nut Disease Control Products for Use in Texas” and a “Homeowner’s Guide to Pests of Peaches, Plums and Pecans.” Or, contact Cherokee County AgriLife Extension horticulture agent Kim Benton, kim.benton@ag.tamu.edu, or call 903-6835416.

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County horticulturalist Kim Benton observes Jud Morrison, who attended “Fruit Tree Selection” presentation held in Jacksonville on Nov. 18, as he begins pruning the tree he won as a door prize.

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November-December 2019

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East Texas Farm & Ranch Living

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“Big Chicken” Gets $6 Million Plucking!

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olks who live in rural areas are entitled to peace, harmony and freedom from outside intrusions—and that includes foul odors! Since the big chicken companies expanded their operations in East Texas, it’s no secret that conflicts have occurred. Biggest criticism is that some of the contract poultry growers just can’t seem to quit stinking up the neighborhood. Most times the grower takes pains to control the odors—but sometimes, refuses to comply with common sense approaches. Then there is the damage to highways and county roads as big trucks loaded with feed, chickens or poultry innards run the roads time and time again. Those growers who are a part of the community where they farm are commended for their efforts. The others, generally Vietnamese origin growers, don’t seem to understand the need to get along with neighbors and blend into the neighborhood.

Several landowners in Henderson County got fed up, hired attorneys and sued nearby poultry growers along with Sanderson Farms. Sanderson Farms is the owner of the birds tended to by growers and has feed mills and processing plants in East and Central Texas. The Henderson County lawsuit was one the largest civil suits ever in the county. Neighbors to two chicken farms near Malakoff, Huynh and T&N Poultry Farms, reported they were subjected to excessive noise, smells and decrease in their property values by the growers operations. One resident said exhaust fans, machinery and other noises filled the air day and night. One claimed earplugs were needed when on their property. The property owners sued to recover damages to the property in the form of monetary relief exceeding a million dollars. The local jury went even better— awarding six million dollars

to the plaintiffs’. Of course the verdict will be appealed by Sanderson Farms and the poultry farmers Sanderson Farms and their bevy of lawyers were not happy with the jury verdict. In closing arguments, Sanderson Farms attorneys said the company encourages cleaner farms in order to produce healthier chickens. Another Sanderson Farms lawyer finished his closing argument by asking, “if you cannot have a chicken farms on a Farm to Market Road, where can you have one?’ The jury was not impressed with his comment. The trial lasted over three weeks. Over 10 lawyers, numerous legal assistants, nine plaintiffs, 10 defendants and 12 jurors, plus two backup jurors and a Judge listened to both sides before the final ruling by the jurors. The conflict between some landowners and nearby poultry growers is far from over. Those bureaucrats who run economic

development programs should be held responsible for handing out millions of taxpayer dollars to accommodate “big chicken”. Big tax breaks for years to come, providing city services at little cost and building roads to the plants is expensive. But the economic development gurus take pride in bringing “new enterprise” to East Texas. The damage to our roads, air quality and tranquil living is not their concern! Quoting Tom Mullins who runs the Tyler Economic Development Council, the newest Sanderson Farms complex near Tyler is a “game changer” for the area. Mullins was instrumental in luring Sanderson Farms to Tyler with the offer of $18 million in incentives of free land and tax abatements. Mullins says the Tyler area Sanderson operations will create 1,600 new jobs and have a $1 billion impact to the area over the next decade.

Taxpayers are well aware that the big chicken outfits in East Texas have a massive turnover in employees. One of the Sanderson plants is said to have employee longevity of only six months before they burn out. That’s –30—horace@valornet.com

Nature’s efficiency at its best By Joel Harlow

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Athens Daily Review

en Hendley is easily recognizable by his trademark bow tie that he sports each day. He has many passions in life. As an investment advisor, he helps many people plan for their financial future. He also plays a role in everyone’s survival. He is a beekeeper. Hendley became a beekeeper over 30 years ago when he acquired his neighbor’s beekeeping equipment. Since that time, he has become one of the most knowledgeable individuals in this area about one of nature’s most important insects, the bee. He is a member and past president of the North East Texas Beekeepers Association. Contrary to popular belief, bees are not headed for extinction. Hendley states that a few years ago, the bee population was indeed in danger and decreasing due to the varroa mite, a parasite that attacks bees and weakens them. He said this parasite was brought under control and the bee population is thriving and increasing. In a colony of bees, each bee has a specific job. The queen, when impregnated once, can lay eggs for up to five years. All worker bees are females that gather pollen into “pollen baskets” on their back legs and carry it to the hive where it is used for food for the developing eggs. They are able to direct other bees in the colony to a food source with movement or a “waggle dance.” The “drones” or male bees do not have stingers nor do they

gather nectar or pollen. The drone’s only role is to mate with an unfertilized queen bee. Bees play an important role in our survival. Farmers rely on them for pollination of crops. Seventy to 80% of all crops grown in the United States require pollination to produce

California produces approximately onequarter of the nation’s almonds. Almond farmers will import up to two and one half million bee hives this year, at a cost of $185 to $215 per hive to pollinate their crops. Without beehives, the average yield of one acre of almonds is about 750 pounds. With the aid of bee hives, this yield will increase to about 3,500 pounds per acre. It is money well spent. Oklahoma farmers also import hives to increase their yields on Canola. Minnesota farmers import hives for their cranberry crops. Locally grown honey plays an important role in easing the symptoms of pollen allergies. As the bees are able to break down the pollen, locally grown honey contains an enzyme specific to the area which when eaten, aids in the management of pollen allergies. Therefore, it is essential that the honey be produced from the area that the individual lives to get the maximum benefit. Hendley advises that one of the easiest ways to tell if honey is actually produced locally is its appearance.

“If it does not look extremely refined, and has a little wax floating in it, it is a good sign that it is truly locally produced,” he said. If one wants to become a beekeeper, Hendley suggests that they “start out small” with a single hive and the basic equipment, including a protective bee suit, and to visit and learn the practice from an experienced beekeeper. Bees are one of the most complex creations in nature, and play a vital role to our continuing existence.


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November-December 2019

Walking onions? No way! Y

es way, in fact. lium x proliferum, the walking onion,   is a perennial cross between Allium cepa, the cultivated onion (or bulb onion), and Allium fistulosum, the Welsh onion (or bunching onion.) The fascinating part about these onions is that they produce tiny topset bulbs (bulblets) at the top of the stalk in the late spring and early summer where other onions make flowers. As the heavy stalks dry out, the topsets weigh the stalk down and it will lay over T bulblets root where they land and make a new plant. The length of that stalk is as far as they can “walk”. Sometimes the bulblets at the top grow some small leaf blades themselves, giving the onions a very odd and unusual medusa look. This onion is completely edible. Eat them as you would any onion, only perhaps more sparingly. The bulblets can be cooked or eaten raw (pickled or sliced) and the onion blades can be eaten just like bunching green onions. The smaller blades can be eaten just like chives. Even the bulb itself can be eaten like an onion, but they tend to be ‘hot’ or very strong and pungent. Walking onions are a great addition to a perennial vegetable garden, and can last for many years. Hardy in zones 3-10, it is perfectly happy during our hot summers and relatively mild winters. Although the plants die back in the winter, they green up in the spring and produce more topsets for ‘walking’. They prefer full sun, but will tolerate partial shade as well.

Kim Benton

Cherokee County Horticulturist Interestingly enough, these onions are resistant to juglone, which is produced by black walnut trees to keep plants from growing in the root zone, making them one of the few plants that can be cultivated alongside a walnut planting. Propagation of these perennial onions is no problem. Just break off the bulblets once they turn brownish-reddish and plant. They can be separated into individual bulblets or planted as clump and will grow well either way. They also multiply from the base, so established clumps can also be divided in spring. They are subject to slug damage, and don’t tolerate wet feet, but otherwise are very hardy in the garden.

Texas pecan crops exceeding early expectations By Adam Russell

Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service

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ecan quality and quantities are exceeding early expectations, according to a Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service expert. Larry Stein, Ph.D., AgriLife Extension horticulturist, Uvalde, said the early pecan crop estimate was for a below-average year. But timely late-season rains and plenty of sunshine helped kernel production. “Pecans were originally predicted to be off somewhat, but they’ve been better than expected with regard to yields and especially quality,” he said. “It was a stressful summer in Southwest Texas, but as long as growers had plenty of irrigation water, it looks like quality has been superior to last year.” Stein said kernel quality was much better than last year when late-season rains and cloudy skies hurt pecans as they were filling. This year, an early freeze at the end of October caused some concerns because pecans froze with shucks still unopened in late-maturing varieties like Choctaws and Kiowas, Stein said. Once unopened pecans freeze, they must be opened physically, which translates into more harvest labor. “I think most of those pecans were mature enough to be OK,” he said. “I haven’t heard about any major problems with the kernels associated with freeze damage.” Stein said freezing temperatures “caught the trees off guard” because temperatures swung from warm to cold so quickly. The combination of dewy mornings and extreme foliage drops were causing some issues with harvesting nuts on the ground.   The early leaf drops could also affect the 2020 crop, he said. Typically, trees shed leaves around Thanksgiving, which provides trees several weeks to store energy and food before going dormant. “It’s not uncommon to have freezes at Halloween, but I think this year trees weren’t acclimated to the cold,” he said. “Luckily we haven’t heard of any major issues with this year’s crop. Now, what it means for next year, who knows? But typically, we see a drop in production when trees get less recovery time to store up food and energy for next year.” Despite good quality, pecan prices have been mediocre this season, “not bad, but not good either,” Stein said. The U.S. Department of Agriculture reported retail and holiday gift markets were steady and pecan demand was strong. The commercial/domestic market softened, and some domestic buyers were waiting to see if the price will continue to decline before committing to purchase pecans. The American Pecan Board reported stable pecan prices and that growers had weathered the ongoing trade war

with China relatively well as global demand continues to grow. “The tariff situation with China is still not resolved, and that hurts U.S. exports and ultimately prices for producers,” Stein said. “Growing demand from the Chinese market had been a game-changer for pecan producers over the last decade.” AgriLife Extension district reporters compiled the following summaries: CENTRAL: Wheat planting continued with good weather conditions. There were a few cotton fields remaining. Cattle were in poor to good condition, and producers were feeding hay early this year. Cattle markets were holding strong, and sheep and goats experienced a slight increase. Pastures were in poor condition because of earlier-than-normal freezing temperatures. Nearly all counties reported short soil moisture levels and fair overall rangeland and pasture conditions. ROLLING PLAINS: Wheat planting neared completion in most areas. Feeding supplemental hay to stockers awaiting wheat growth was common. Cotton harvest was in full swing.  COASTAL BEND: Pecan harvest continued with good yields only coming from irrigated orchards. Weather prevented progress on fall field work in cotton and grain fields. Producers looked for more hay locally, and hay sales were limited or seeing price increases in areas where frost occurred. Many producers were feeding hay and protein supplements. Livestock were in good condition, and markets were seeing runs of weaned calves and cull cows. EAST: Some producers were still finishing up their last cutting of hay, while most counties reported pastures had gone dormant. Winter pastures were doing well. Pasture and rangeland conditions were fair. Cattle prices were down. Timber prices increased over the past few months. Wild pigs continued to be active and highly destructive.   SOUTH PLAINS: Very little moisture was received. Producers continued to harvest crops before any measurable snowfall happened. Some grain crops remained in fields, but most were harvested. Wheat was planted, and more plantings were expected following cotton. Pastures were OK with most cattle grazing wheat.    PANHANDLE: The weather was mildly warmer. All corn was harvested. Cotton and sorghum harvests were almost complete. Winter wheat emerged in most areas and was in fair condition. Pasture and rangelands were in good to fair condition in southern parts of the district and in poor condition in northeast areas. NORTH: Temperatures dropped to around 20 degrees for several nights with very strong winds across the entire district. The strong wind  thrashed some pecan orchards, which were reporting a pretty good crop this year. Wheat plantings were 65-70% complete. FAR WEST: Temperatures ranged between highs in

the low 80s and lows in the upper 20s. Some freezing rain was reported. Western Schley pecans were dropping and appeared to be average. Chances of rain might delay both cotton and pecan harvests. The pecan harvest was also slowed by a hard freeze that kept most pecans in their shucks or on trees. Growers were waiting on pecans to dry down and fall. WEST CENTRAL: Marginal yields were reported in many areas. Some acres continued to be destroyed due to low yields. The cattle market opened the week with more demand on calves and yearlings in ideal condition. Stocker steers and heifers sold $3-$5 higher per hundredweight. Feeder steers, heifers, bulls, pairs and bred cows all sold steady. SOUTHEAST: No report. SOUTHWEST: Temperatures continued to be cooler than normal. Moisture helped pasture and rangeland conditions improve in some locations. However, others remained dry with burn bans still in effect. Winter wheat and oats looked good in areas that received moisture. Traces of precipitation were encouraging for ryegrass. SOUTH: Cool weather conditions with short to adequate soil moisture levels were reported. Soils were holding moisture better due to cooler temperatures. Some rainfall was reported. Very little peanut harvesting occurred due to rainfall. Wheat and oat planting also slowed down due to weather. Pasture and rangeland conditions were fair to good and improving in some areas. Livestock supplemental feeding continued but was reduced in some areas. Pecan orchards were reporting a good harvest.


November-December 2019

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East Texas Farm & Ranch Living

Support Agriculture Businesses... They are the Heartbeat of Our Economy

A Sheep Thanksgiving F

or some reason this Thanksgiving, I’m thinking of sheep. The sheep industry is havin’ a fair year. One factor is lamb being included and advertised in specialty dog food. The sheepman’s equivalent market to fast food burgers. How to strengthen the market, you ask? Breed more dogs, you say? Or get humans in Canada and the U.S. to eat more sheep and wear more wool? So how do you get people to buy more lamb? You either change the people or change the product. We are living in a time of unimaginable technology involving gene tinkering. What

if it were possible to change the animal by gene splicing. Say something as simple as changing the color of wool. How ‘bout a palomino gene to produce the much sought after Golden Fleece or a leopard gene to get a spotted virgin wool jacket. Or even a Scotchman’s gene to produce a fleece that’s already plaid? I can envision wool t-shirts with logos or rock stars already on the sheep. Sheep have never been considered a beast of burden, a burden perhaps, but never a beast of burden. As is, they could be enlisted to carry light loads. Pack saddles or panniers would require no cinches or straps. Just

velcro the equipment directly to the wool. Certainly we could gene splice in some mule parts or camel humps. We could wind up with a quarter horse that has its own saddle pad or a sheep with feet like a Clydesdale. Many animals are raised for the purpose of milk production. Cows, of course, and goats. By gene splicing we could get a 120 lb. critter covered with black and white wool and a bag the size of overalls on a dirigible. With only two teats it would halve the expense of costly udder inflation replacements. This would lead to the use of hippopotamus gene splicing so the calves mouths would be big

enough. Which would result in better consumption because the shippocow could eat more in less time. And finally we would be able to attack the biggest problem the sheep industry has...no one likes to eat it. We could literally pick the flavor we wanted and splice it in. We could make the meat

taste like catfish, chocolate, beef, butter, pumpkin pie, cranberry sauce, dressing, and yes, even turkey! Which gets me back to Thanksgiving. Someday we might be able to offer a leg-o-lamb that tastes like everything on the Thanksgiving table! Call it shurkey. The possibilities are endless. Easter sham, backyard sheef burgers, shicken cordon blue, shoysters on the halfshell, a wildgame feed with shelk, sheer and shantelope, a shuffalo robe, a shink coat, shackaroni and sheeze, shangaroo tail, a singing sharakeet, and sheep....uh, grits. I better schtop now…!

Path to the Plate runs at Navarro County Youth Expo

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ore than 800 fourth graders from around Navarro County recently attended the Food and Fiber Round Up at the Navarro County Youth Expo. The program focuses on Path to the Plate by teaching students where their food and clothes come from through a series of learning stations, a mobile dairy and petting zoo, and providing a nutritious lunch for students. Students from 4-H, FFA, FCCLA and NC John Deere provided leadership at the stations, with assistance from several community based businesses and adult volunteers working together to teach the program.

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East Texas Farm & Ranch Living

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November-December 2019

National Finals Steer Roping; College rodeo update

O

ut of the 15 cowboys who are competing in this weekend’s National Finals Steer Roping, three are from West Texas and each one is a Texas Tech graduate. They are Vin Fisher Jr. and J. Tom Fisher of Andrews and Garrett Hale of Snyder. The 2019 NFSR began Friday, Nov. 22, and concludes Saturday, Nov. 23, in Mulvane, Kan., which is in the Wichita area. Vin Fisher Jr., 38, entered the NFSR ranked No. 2 in the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association’s 2019 steer roping world title race with $59,844.49. He came into the Mulvane championships $12,000.73 behind No. 1 ranked Trevor Brazile, the winningest PRCA cowboy of all time. Fisher said in an interview before the 2019 NFSR that he will have to place in both the rounds and the average race (prize money that’s awarded for the better aggregate times after 10 runs) in order surpass Brazile. “I’m going to have to go out there and win a bunch because I know Trevor is going to win his fair share,” he said. “I know this, you’re going to have to place in the average to walk away with a gold buckle. You’re not going to do it just in the rounds. My goal is to go out there the first night and be patient and be consistent and make sure I rope five steers and I tie them tight, tie five steers down, and get some go-round checks. “After the first night, then you can kind of look at it in the second night on how the roping is staking up in those last few rounds. I think a guy has to be consistent and stay in the average to have a chance to win it. I’m going to try to be a little more patient and try to stay in that average a little more than I have in the past.” Fisher earned his 16th trip to the NFSR (200203, 2005-06, 2008-19). He became a PRCA member in 2001 and surpassed $1 million in earnings at PRCA shows earlier this year. Last year, Fisher placed 10th in the NFSR average with a 74.2-second time on six head. He earned

$22,730 at the 2018 NFSR in Mulvane. He finished eighth in the PRCA’s steer roping world standings with $78,698. J. Tom Fisher, 34, was ranked No. 4 in the 2019 steer roping world title race with $55,846.29 going into the 2019 NFSR. He has earned his seventh trip to the NFSR. He qualified for the NFSR in 2010, 2013, 2015-19. Last year, he finished eighth in the NFSR average with an 84.9-second time on seven qualified runs. He earned $23,993 at the 2018 NFSR. He finished 10th in the final 2018 world standings with $75,353. Brothers Vin Fisher Jr. and J. Tom Fisher are the sons of Dan Fisher who has qualified for the National Finals Steer Roping 16 times (1986-90, 1994, 1996-97, 2000, 2003-04, 2008-10, 2012-13). Dan Fisher also competed in the PRCA’s National Finals Rodeo (in Oklahoma City) in team roping in 1981 and 1982. In July, Dan Fisher, at age 68, finished second in the steer roping title race at the renowned Cheyenne Frontier Days in Wyoming

and earned $12,793. Hale, 27, entered the 2019 NFSR ranked No. 10 in the 2019 steer roping world title race with $39,310.16. He earned his second consecutive trip to the NFSR. When Hale made his debut at the National Finals Steer Roping last year, he also came in 11th in the average race with 76.2-second time on six qualified runs. He earned $16,732 at the Mulvane championships. He finished 11th in the 2018 world title race with $66,133. The 2019 NFSR consists of 10 rounds--five during the Friday night performance and five during the Saturday night performance. According to the PRCA, the 2019 NFSR’s total purse is $425,000. The 2019 NFSR is being conducted at the Mulvanebased Kansas Star Arena.

Brazile and Cooper watch

When the PRCA’s 2019 regular season closed on Sept. 30, the top 15 in each event advanced to the Dec. 5-14 Wrangler National Finals Rodeo in Las Vegas or the Nov. 22-23 National

Finals Steer Roping in Mulvane. Roping superstar Trevor Brazile, who lives in Decatur, entered this weekend’s Mulvane-based NFSR ranked No. 1 in the 2019 world title race with $71,845.22. Four-time world champion Tuf Cooper, a Childress native who has homes in Weatherford and Decatur, entered the 2019 NFSR ranked No. 3 with $55,846.29. Brazile and Cooper have a brother-in-law family relationship. Brazile is married to Cooper’s sister, Shada Brazile, a 2013 National Finals barrel racing qualifier. Cooper also qualified for the Las Vegas-based National Finals in tie-down roping. He’s ranked fourth in the world standings with $105,592.44. Two-time world champion Caleb Smidt of Bellville is ranked No. 1 with $131,899.95. Cooper, who clinched the 2017 world all-around title, also is ranked fourth in the 2019 world allaround standings with $136,025.16. Stetson Wright, a rookie from Milford, Utah, is ranked

No. 1 with $182,999.49. Wright has qualified for the Las Vegas-based National Finals in bull riding. There are two potential story lines that can develop at this weekend’s National Finals Steer Roping. The first is about Brazile. If he clinches the steer roping world title at this weekend’s NFSR, it will be a record 25th PRCA world title. When Brazile clinched the world all-around title at last year’s National Finals, it was his 24th gold buckle. Brazile has earned 14 world all-around titles (2002-04, 2006-15 and 2018), six steer roping gold buckles (2006-07, 2011 and 201315), three tie-down roping world championships (2007 and 2009-10) and one team roping heading world title (2010). After clinching the 2018 world all-around title, Brazile entered into semiretirement. But he’s diligently competed in PRCA steer roping competitions throughout the 2019 regular season. Brazile ranks No. 1 in the PRCA’s most world titles category with 24 gold buckles. Guy Allen ranks No. 2 with 18 and all of his

Brett Hoffman, a Texas Cowboy Hall of Fame member, has reported on rodeos for the Fort Worth Star-Telegram for more than three decades. Email him at bchoffman777@earthlink.net.

world championships are in steer roping. The second potential storyline at this weekend’s National Finals Steer Roping is about Cooper. He entered the 2019 NFSR $46,974.33 behind Wright in the 2019 world allaround standings. But he potentially can improve his chances of clinching the 2019 world all-around title by faring well at this weekend’s National Finals Steer Roping.

College rodeo update

At mid-season on the National Intercollegiate Rodeo Association Southern Region circuit, Sam Houston State is ranked fourth in the 20192020 men’s team title race with 1,841.5 points. Trinity Valley Community College is ranked No. 7 with 876. McNeese State is ranked No. 1 with 2,533.5. Sam Houston State’s men’s team finished second at the Nov. 8-9 Sam Houston State Rodeo in Conroe with 490 points. TVCC finished fifth with 240. Wharton County Junior College clinched the men’s team title with 580. SHSU is ranked No. 4 in the Southern Region’s 2019-2020 women’s team title race with 700.83 points. TVCC is ranked No. 7 with 216.5. McNeese State is ranked No. 1 with 1,829.5. SHSU finished third in the women’s team title race at the Sam Houston State Rodeo with 215 points. McNeese State finished No. 1 with 535. The Sam Houston State Rodeo was the fifth of 10 NIRA Southern Region shows scheduled for the 2019-2020 regular season.


November-December 2019

7

East Texas Farm & Ranch Living

Support Agriculture Businesses... They are the Heartbeat of Our Economy

Game Warden Field Notes the wardens later recovered the heads of two bucks. Charges for hunting without landowner consent, hunting without a license, and possession of drug paraphernalia are pending.

The following items are compiled from recent Texas Parks and Wildlife Department law enforcement reports.

The Apple Doesn’t Fall Far From The Pop-Up Blind Two Harris County game wardens responded to a request for assistance from the University of Houston Clear Lake (UHCL) Police Department when they were alerted to a suspicious person in a wooded portion of the campus. The campus police found a father and son, one of whom was holding a crossbow, in the process of cleaning a recently harvested buck. The officer detained the individuals and secured the scene until the wardens arrived. The officers and the wardens worked together to search the area and interview the suspects, when they discovered a pop-up blind, corn and drug paraphernalia. One of the men confessed to shooting three additional bucks during the last week in the same area. After further investigation, it was revealed that the father had a previous charge for poaching a 12-and-a-half-foot alligator from a nearby county park. When searching the individual’s home,

If You Liked it, Then You Should Have Put a Tag on it A Lubbock County game warden was sitting near a wellknown road hunting area when he saw a suspicious vehicle driving slowly down the public road. When the vehicle reached the bottom of a hill, it stopped and remained stationary for several minutes until the warden heard two gunshots. The warden approached the vehicle and found a man and his fiancée trying to load a mule deer doe into the bed of the small pickup. Upon further investigation, the warden learned that the man shot the deer with a .22 rifle off the roadway using the headlights of his vehicle. Multiple cases were filed and civil restitution for the deer was charged.

the river access points. Both individuals did not have a valid fishing license and one of them didn’t have any identification. The warden asked both for their information and when they were run through dispatch, there was a hit. Turns out, the man who had no identification had an outstanding warrant. The warden placed him into custody and transported him to the Brazos County Jail. Once at the jail, it was discovered that he gave the warden fictitious information that belonged to one of his friends who, unbeknownst to him, had an outstanding

warrant for his arrest. The man was then properly identified, and it was revealed that he had two outstanding warrants. The man admitted that he intentionally gave the warden false information because of his arrest warrants. The individual was booked into the jail for Failure to Identify Fugitive (class A), and the two outstanding warrants.

Oh Deer While stopped at a gas station, a Lavaca County game warden noticed multiple elk antlers and legs sticking up from the bed of a

pickup truck. The warden pulled up and congratulated the man icing the animals down and saw two whitetail deer. The man then told the warden about the high-fenced ranch the animals had been taken from. The ranch happened to be one that the warden investigated last year due to multiple hunters on the ranch hunting without licenses. After a short discussion, it was determined that the man’s girlfriend, who was also on location, had killed one of the bull elk and had not purchased a hunting license in five years. The animal was seized, cleaned and donated to a local charity organization. Case pending.

Mistaken Bacon A Gaines/Andres County game warden received a call from a landowner about possible spotlights on her land. After making his way to the property, the warden approached two individuals that were hunting around a wheat circle. They claimed they were pig hunting and had harvested a pig earlier. The warden asked the subjects if he could see the pig they shot and it was determined that it was not a pig, but a javelina. Charges and restitution are pending.

Double Whammy When patrolling the Little Brazos River, a Brazos County game warden contacted two people fishing near one of

East tExas stock PricEs

ANDERSON COUNTY LIVESTOCK

EAST TEXAS LIVESTOCK INC.

Updated: 10/23/2019 Head Count: 214 Buyers: 22 Sellers: 37

Updated: 11/19/2019 Feeder Calf Buyers: 19 Total Sellers: 277 Feeder Calf Companies: 33

STEERS

STEERS

200lb - 300lb

1.05

1.65

300-DOWN

1.33

2.02

300lb - 400lb

1.00

1.57

305lb - 400lb

1.28

1.79

400lb - 500lb

0.95

1.19

405lb - 500lb

1.20

1.74

500lb - 600lb

0.90

1.29

505lb - 600lb

1.15

1.58

600lb - 700lb

0.80

1.10

605lb - 800lb

1.05

1.43

700lb - 800lb

0.70

1.00

200lb - 300lb

0.95

1.50

300-DOWN

1.13

1.80

300lb - 400lb

0.90

1.45

305lb - 400lb

1.09

1.64

400lb - 500lb

0.85

1.38

405lb - 500lb

1.05

1.53

500lb - 600lb

0.80

1.10

505lb - 600lb

1.00

1.40

600lb - 700lb

0.70

0.95

605lb - 800lb

0.90

1.35

700lb - 800lb

0.60

0.80

Cows

0.20

0.48

Cows

0.36

0.63

Bulls

0.50

0.75

Bulls

0.74

0.89

PAIRS

$600

$1250

PAIRS

NA

NA

HEIFERS

HEIFERS

SLAUGHTER

STOCKER COWS GOATS

SLAUGHTER

$450hd

$1000hd

$25hd

$100hd

TRI-COUNTY LIVESTOCK MARKET Updated: 11/23/2019 Head Count: 1110

STEERS UNDER 300lb

1.20

1.70

300lb - 400lb

1.15

1.65

400lb - 500lb

1.10

1.63

500lb - 600lb

1.05

1.42

600lb - 700lb

1.00

1.21

700lb - 800lb

0.95

BRED COWS

NACOGDOCHES LIVESTOCK EXCHANGE

HUNTS LIVESTOCK EXCHANGE

Updated: 11/21/2019 Head Count: 1167 Buyers: 72 Sellers: 159

STEERS

$880/hd

ATHENS COMMISSION COMPANY

Updated: 11/18/2019 Head Count: 1425

STEERS

$750/hd

Updated: 11/22/2019 Head Count: 1329 Sellers: 211

STEERS

UNDER 300lb

1.30

1.75

200lb - 299lb

1.00

1.91

300-DOWN

0.85

2.00

300lb - 400lb

1.15

1.66

300lb - 399lb

1.00

1.71

300lb - 400lb

0.80

1.75

400lb - 500lb

1.05

1.58

400lb - 499lb

1.00

1.59

400lb - 500lb

0.80

1.65

500lb - UP

0.80

1.38

500lb - 599lb

1.00

1.51

500lb - UP

0.70

1.50

1.17

600lb - 700lb

N/A

N/A

600lb - 699lb

1.00

1.35

HEIFERS

700lb - 899lb

1.00

1.27

300-DOWN

0.80

1.70

UNDER 300lb

1.20

1.60

HEIFERS

300lb - 400lb

0.80

1.55

300lb - 400lb

1.10

1.58

200lb - 299lb

1.00

1.33

400lb - 500lb

0.70

1.45

0.90

1.55

300lb - 399lb

1.00

1.30

500lb - UP

0.70

1.30

HEIFERS

HEIFERS

UNDER 300lb

1.15

1.55

300lb - 400lb

1.10

1.40

400lb - 500lb

1.05

1.35

400lb - 500lb

500lb - 600lb

1.00

1.15

500lb - UP

0.70

1.27

400lb - 499lb

1.00

1.35

SLAUGHTER

1.13

600lb - 700lb

N/A

N/A

500lb - 599lb

1.00

1.38

Cows

0.25

0.61

0.85

1.09

SLAUGHTER

600lb - 699lb

1.00

1.20

Heavy Bulls

0.55

0.82

Cows

0.15

0.55

700lb - 899lb

1.00

1.18

PAIRS

Cows

0.15

0.58

Bulls

0.50

0.82

SLAUGHTER

Top

$900

$1200

Heavy Bulls

0.72

0.82

PAIRS

$800

$1300

Cows

0.25

0.62

Low-Middle

$450

$900

STOCKER COWS

Bulls

0.67

0.895

$1040

$1260

STOCKER COWS

0.45lb

1.05lb

600lb - 700lb 700lb - 800lb

1.00

SLAUGHTER

PAIRS

NA

NA

BABY CALVES

NA

NA

STOCKER COWS LOW-MIDDLE

$500/hd NA

$450hd

$1600hd

PAIRS

GOATS

$25hd

$250hd

$975/hd

BABY CALVES

$25hd

$200hd

STOCKER COWS

NA

HORSES

NA

BABY CALVES

NA

$250hd NA

GOATS

$35hd

$250hd

$1180hd

BABY CALVES

$25hd

$200hd

NA

HORSES

$35hd

$500hd


8

East Texas Farm & Ranch Living

Support Agriculture Businesses... They are the Heartbeat of Our Economy

November-December 2019

Holiday Food Safety

By Lorie Stovall

Texas A&M AgriLife Extension

T

he holiday season is here and festive parties, gatherings, and family dinners are a normal event on your calendar and to do list. All the planning and excitement can bring holiday cheer, especially with delicious food around the table. But, the fun can end soon if the foods you eat make you and others ill. A foodborne illness is an infection or uncomfortable irritation of the gastrointestinal tract caused by food or beverages that contain harmful bacteria, parasites, viruses, or chemicals. Some common foodborne illness symptoms include vomiting, diarrhea, and flu-like symptoms such as abdominal pain, fever, and chills. These symptoms can start within hours of eating contaminated food or drink and last a few hours to several days. During holiday parties many dishes are left unattended for more time than recommended causing harmful bacteria to grow. If you are hosting a holiday party or preparing your favorite potluck dish this winter, make sure safe food-handling is practiced in the home. Practicing four basic food safety rules can help prevent foodborne illness and keep you and your guests feeling festive this season,” said Elaine MontemayorGonzalez, a Health Specialist with Texas A&M AgriLife Extension.

Clean: Keep it clean!

their juices be kept away from foods that won’t be cooked. Use this rule while shopping in the store, when storing in your refrigerator (always store raw meat on the bottom of your refrigerator), and while preparing your favorite holiday meals. • Consider using different colored cutting boards for foods that will be cooked (such as raw meat, poultry, and seafood) and for those that will not (such as raw fruits and vegetables). • Do not serve cooked meat or other food that is ready to eat on an unwashed plate that has held any raw food.

Cook: Cook to kill harmful germs!

of food that should be refrigerated within two hours. That includes pumpkin pie and pumpkin rolls. • Leftovers should be reheated to 165 degrees and used within three days. • A good rule to follow about whether a food is safe to eat or not… “when in doubt, throw it out.” Following these food safety rules can help make your party and mealtimes a delicious and memorable time. If transporting a dish to your holiday get-

together, keep it cold in a travel cooler and reheat at the party, or transport warm in an insulated container. Keep you food temperatures outside the danger zone. This winter remember to stay calm, clean your surroundings in the kitchen, read instructions and most of all have fun! Remember a food thermometer is always a good stocking stuffer idea! For more information on planning your holiday feast safely, contact your Navarro County extension agent at 903-654-3075.

• Always use a food thermometer to make sure meat, poultry, and fish are cooked to a safe internal temperature. Foods should never be kept in the danger zone of 40 to 140 degrees. When cooking your turkey, insert a food thermometer into the innermost part of the thigh, wing and the thickest part of the breast. The turkey is safe to eat when the temperature reaches 165 degrees. Always read instructions on holiday hams for proper cooking times and cooking per pound. • Boil sauces, and gravies when reheating to kill any bacteria. • Holiday Baking-always use pasteurized egg products and do not eat uncooked cookie dough, which may contain raw eggs.

• Wash hands with warm water and soap for 20 seconds before and after handling any food. • Wash surfaces such as countertops, cutting boards, dishes, and utensils with hot, soapy water after preparing food items and also before use. • Rinse fruits and vegetables under cool running water and use a produce brush to remove surface dirt. • Do not rinse raw meat and poultry (holiday turkey) before cooking. Rinsing these foods can make it more likely for bacteria to spread around sinks and on countertops.

2805 South Loop 256 • Palestine • 903-723-3164 shelbysavingsbank.com

Chill: Keep it chill!

Separate: Prevent cross contamination! • Keep raw food away from cooked at all times. It is recommended that eggs, meat, poultry, seafood, and

• Prepare for the large quantities of food in your fridge by installing an appliance thermometer. Set your refrigerator at or below 40 degrees and the freezer at 0 degrees. • Food should be defrosted safely in the refrigerator, under cold running water, or in the microwave. Never leave food outside on a countertop to defrost. Once food is thawed in cold water or in the microwave, it should be cooked immediately. • Allow the correct amount of time to properly thaw food. Your turkey this season should take at least three to five days to thaw completely when thawed in the refrigerator. Read instructions for proper thawing times per pound. • Refrigerate leftovers and any type

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Farm and Ranch Living November 2019  

A special supplement to the Palestine Herald-Press focusing on East Texas Farm and Ranch Living.

Farm and Ranch Living November 2019  

A special supplement to the Palestine Herald-Press focusing on East Texas Farm and Ranch Living.

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