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News From 2012

Mississippi State University's Matt Ross studies the effects of pesticide exposure on the human body. This information could lead to the development of beneficial drugs. (Photo by MSU College of Veterinary Medicine/Tom Thompson)
January 26, 2012 - Filed Under: Animal Health

MISSISSIPPI STATE – Dr. Matt Ross, an associate professor of toxicology at Mississippi State University, has a passion for research that has led to his work involving pesticide and lipid metabolism in the Center for Environmental Health Sciences and the Department of Basic Sciences.

After multiple surgeries and extensive physical therapy for cerebral palsy, Jamie Mangum, pictured with his horse Bubba and grandfather James Roy Hawkins, shows halter horses without assistance. (Photo by Scott Corey)
January 26, 2012 - Filed Under: 4-H

MISSISSIPPI STATE – Placing first at the Southern Regional Horse Show might not seem like a great feat to some, but for former Bolivar County 4-H’er Jamie Mangum, it meant overcoming difficult obstacles.

Mangum is no ordinary 4-H’er. Though he was born with cerebral palsy, a disorder affecting the ability to control movement, he has never let his disability control him.

Agents with the Mississippi State University Extension Service learn how to can meat during a food preservation workshop on Jan. 18, 2012. Terence Norwood of Jefferson Davis County (from left), LaToya Evans of Pike County, Thelma Barnes of Jefferson County and Carolyn Conger of Covington County were among the 42 agents taking part in the three-day workshop. (Photo by Linda Breazeale)
January 26, 2012 - Filed Under: Family, Food, Food Safety

MISSISSIPPI STATE – Hard economic times may prompt people to preserve food at home to cut meal costs, but Extension agents are betting the taste and quality of the products will hook them on the experience.

Brent Fountain, human nutrition specialist with the Mississippi State University Extension Service, led a three-day workshop in January for 42 Extension agents from across the state. True to Extension’s 4-H educational philosophy, “Learn by doing,” the agents gained hands-on experience they will pass on to residents in their communities.

Traci Mongeon, Mrs. Mississippi and Choctaw County 4-H agent, will compete in the Mrs. International pageant in July. She promotes 4-H and ATV safety as her platform. (Photo by Kat Lawrence)
January 26, 2012 - Filed Under: 4-H, About Extension

By Kaitlyn Byrne
MSU Ag Communications

MISSISSIPPI STATE – 4-H agent Traci Mongeon of Ackerman recently earned the title of Mrs. Mississippi International and will travel to Chicago in July to compete for the title of Mrs. International 2012.

Mongeon said she felt compelled to compete in the Mrs. Mississippi International pageant after learning that the Mrs. International pageant focuses on giving back to the community and helping others.

January 26, 2012 - Filed Under: Technology

Shopping online can be extremely useful for busy consumers, but it often leaves small businesses out in the cold.

There are numerous options for the small business owner or entrepreneur when it comes to selling online, but determining the right fit for your growing business can be a challenge. Most tech-savvy folks say there is no perfect online payment system. Rather, it’s a choice between what software helps net the most sales minus the software that gives you the least amount of headache.

Cyclamen come in a variety of colors, including red, pink, white and lavender. The nodding flowers are held on straight stems high above the foliage. (Photo by MSU Extension Service/Gary Bachman)
January 23, 2012 - Filed Under: Lawn and Garden, Flower Gardens

If you’re still looking for a fantastic indoor plant for the winter season, try cyclamen. It has a long blooming period and produces loads of colorful flowers to enjoy on dreary days.

Flowers can be found in a variety of shades of red, pink and white, but I think some of the most attractive are the soft pastels of pink and lavender.

The nodding flowers have swept-back petals that are held on straight stems above the foliage. Another highly attractive feature of cyclamen is that they have varying patterns of silver and gray on the cordate, or heart-shaped, leaves.

January 20, 2012 - Filed Under: Rural Health

MISSISSIPPI STATE – Mississippi high school juniors considering medical careers in their home state have the opportunity to take part in an intense summer program at Mississippi State University.

The five-week Rural Medical Scholars summer program at MSU aims to identify the state’s future primary care doctors and help them become members of the medical school class of 2021.

January 20, 2012 - Filed Under: Wildlife Youth Education, Fisheries, Wildlife

MISSISSIPPI STATE – Young women interested in wildlife, fisheries and natural science careers can apply for the second annual discovery day to be held at Mississippi State University.

The Conservation Careers Discovery Day will begin at 4 p.m. March 30 and conclude at 6 p.m. March 31. Participants will learn outdoor skills such as GPS orienteering, canoeing, and plant and wildlife identification. This year, a camp-out and campfire chat with experienced professionals and scientists have been added.

Dr. Andrea Varela-Stokes (foreground) and graduate student Gail Moraru use "tick drags" to collect specimens for their tick-borne disease surveys. (Photo by MSU College of Veterinary Medicine/Tom Thompson)
January 19, 2012 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Animal Health

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Research, teaching and diagnostic efforts focused on parasites, such as worms, fleas and ticks, are important for all of the clients served by Mississippi State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine.

Dr. Andrea Varela-Stokes is an assistant professor in basic sciences, teaching veterinary parasitology and helminthology and researching tick-borne diseases. She said there are many applications for parasitology in research and service.

Visiting scholar Alfredo Llecha from Spain and scientists at MSU are studying the black soldier fly as a potential solution for dealing with large amounts of agricultural waste while also generating a feed product.
January 19, 2012 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Insects

MISSISSIPPI STATE – Imagine an insect that can eat nearly anything, control microbes, live off of water alone in the adult stage, and be a good source of protein for animal feed. The black soldier fly is real, not science fiction, and it has researchers at Mississippi State University abuzz with excitement.

Mississippi State University has more than 1,400 acres of crop and pasture land adjacent to the Starkville campus that is dedicated to research. (Photo by Scott Corey)
January 19, 2012 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Crops, Forages, Livestock

MISSISSIPPI STATE – Untrained eyes see Mississippi State University’s extensive North and South Farm as typical farmland, but to researchers, these acres are their laboratories.

MSU has more than 2,200 acres of crop and pasture land adjacent to the Starkville campus. While commonly referred to as North and South Farms, these parcels of land are actually the R.R. Foil Research Center and the Leveck Animal Research Center, respectively.

Greenhouse Tomato Short Course
January 19, 2012 - Filed Under: Greenhouse Tomatoes

RAYMOND – The 22nd annual national Greenhouse Tomato Short Course will be held March 6 and 7 at the Eagle Ridge Conference Center in Raymond, Miss.

The conference is open to current growers and those interested in starting a greenhouse tomato operation. Topics will include greenhouse system components, greenhouse design and engineering, alternative heating options, marketing, budgeting for growers, research updates, plant nutrition, alternative crops, water sanitation, physiological disorders, plant diagnostics, disease identification and control, and pest management.

Jonathan Rodgers of DeSoto County, from left, Nick Murphy of Carroll County, Austin "Bubba" Meriweather of Leflore County and Kenzie Ellenberger of DeSoto County follow instructions to build a robot. The four joined other 4-H youth, volunteer leaders and agents at the recent kick-off of the 2012 robotics project at Mississippi State University. (Submitted Photo)
January 19, 2012 - Filed Under: 4-H, Technology, STEM – Science Technology Engineering and Math

MISSISSIPPI STATE – 4-H robotics projects spark interest in science and technology in youth in some of the state’s most rural communities.

Mariah Smith, an assistant professor with the Mississippi State University Extension Service, is coordinating the program for Mississippi 4-H. In addition to attending local meetings, the club members can take part in online chats to learn new skills and take on new challenges.

January 19, 2012 - Filed Under: Technology

Planning a wedding can be an intimidating experience, but technology can help the couple and their guests enjoy the day.

The Internet can be a good source of information about local photographers, caterers and florists, so investigate before signing on the dotted line. Check the reviews of other customers, and be sure to click on the Images tab to see if any photos of the person’s work are available in addition to the pictures on their website.

Grow microgreens, such as these Hong Vit radishes, to enjoy winter gardening and keep fresh greens on the table.
January 17, 2012 - Filed Under: Lawn and Garden, Flower Gardens
Winter can be hard on avid gardeners because cold temperatures prohibit many gardening activities. They may become bored, restless and perhaps even show irritation at the slightest annoyance.

These are classic symptoms of gardening cabin fever. For the active gardener, it only gets worse when all those catalogs start arriving.

If the environment is not healthy, producing crops is a serious challenge. Farmers are among the most active environmentalists as they make a living while protecting the state's natural resources. (Photo by Kat Lawrence.)
January 15, 2012 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Farming, Environment, Natural Resources

MISSISSIPPI STATE – Many organizations and individuals are dedicated to protecting and restoring the environment, but some would be surprised to find that farmers are one group on the forefront of these efforts.

Erick Larson, grain crops agronomist with the Mississippi State University Extension Service, said farmers are some of the biggest conservationists around.

January 13, 2012 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Catfish, Crops, Commercial Horticulture, Livestock

VERONA – Mississippi State University’s North Mississippi Research and Extension Center will host its annual Producer Advisory Council meeting Feb. 16 at the Magnolia Conference Center in Verona.

This annual event is an opportunity for growers, producers, ranchers and other agricultural clients to meet with MSU scientists and Extension Service specialists to share concerns, ask questions and provide feedback about research and Extension programs.

January 12, 2012 - Filed Under: Wildlife

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Several wildlife groups will assist in seven events across the state for future hunters on Feb. 11 in an effort to lay the foundation for safe and responsible hunting.

Mississippi State University’s Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Aquaculture is partnering with the Mississippi Wildlife Federation, the Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Parks, and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to offer free squirrel hunts for young people. The deadline for registering is Jan. 20.

The hunts will take place at these public wildlife areas:

Floral designs, such as this display by Lynnette McDougald of The University Florist, can combine potted plants, collected materials and cut flowers to create wedding décor that is reusable and environmentally friendly. (Photo by Scott Corey)
January 12, 2012 - Filed Under: Family, Family Financial Management, Flower Gardens

MISSISSIPPI STATE – Brides can save money and bring outdoor elements inside to create an event that reflects an appreciation for nature and highlights native plants and flowers.

Natural materials , such as autumn leaves and leafy branches, are an inexpensive and environmentally friendly way to decorate for a wedding.
January 12, 2012 - Filed Under: Environment, Family

MISSISSIPPI STATE – Couples do not have to sacrifice beauty to plan a wedding that respects the environment and reflects their green values.

Brian Templeton, an Extension associate with Mississippi State University’s Department of Landscape Architecture, incorporated his love of nature into his 2008 wedding and reception.