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News From 2015

This is an image of Anna Hughes, a field technical assistant with the Early Years Network helped with post-tornado child care at a Red Cross Shelter in Louisville, MS in May, 2014.
October 16, 2015 - Filed Under: Disaster Response-Youth, Family Dynamics

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- One of the most difficult tasks a parent or provider will face is guiding children through the grief and instability brought on by tragedy.

Natural disasters, terrorism, mass shootings, deaths of loved ones, or acts of domestic or physical violence are traumatic for everyone. When faced with these events, children and adults alike experience feelings of fear, helplessness and anxiety. However, children have very little, if any, experience in properly dealing with those feelings.

This is an image of two mallard ducks flying. Waterfowl can carry various strains of the avian influenza virus. Hunter can help prevent spreading the virus by following recommended precautions.
October 16, 2015 - Filed Under: Poultry, Avian Flu, Wildlife, Waterfowl

It’s that time of year when medical experts recommend we all get flu shots to minimize the chance of influenza causing us to get really sick or, in extreme cases, even die. Believe it or not, wildlife can get the flu, too. 

This pecan at Pecan Hills Farms in Raymond, Mississippi, is open but not quite ready for harvest on Oct. 8, 2015. The state’s harvest is delayed by a few weeks because of the dry summer. (Photo by MSU Extension/Susan Collins-Smith)
October 16, 2015 - Filed Under: Nuts

RAYMOND, Miss. -- Despite a wet spring followed by a dry summer and fall, Mississippi should have average pecan yields in 2015.

October 15, 2015 - Filed Under: Organic Fruit and Vegetables, Sweet Potatoes

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Mississippi sweet potato growers will benefit from Mississippi State University’s work in a U.S.

The bright colors of ornamental kale add pizazz to any fresh salad or stir-fry. Nagoya ornamental kale is a favorite snack for many Mississippi gardeners because it is already chip-shaped. Mix with a little extra virgin olive oil and sea salt, and bake at 240 degrees for about 45 minutes. (Photo by MSU Extension Service/Gary Bachman)
October 12, 2015 - Filed Under: Flower Gardens

Some of the best choices we can make for reliable late fall and winter color are cabbage and kale. I’m not talking about the regular vegetable garden varieties, though these are quite pretty in their own right. The cabbage and kale you need are the ornamental types, and the time to plant is now.

Stacia Applewhite, a senior veterinary medical technology student at the Mississippi State University College of Veterinary Medicine, left, and equine resident Dr. Brenna Burkett examine an equine patient. National Veterinary Technician Week is Oct. 11-17. (Photo by MSU College of Veterinary Medicine/Tom Thompson)
October 9, 2015 - Filed Under: Animal Health

By Karen Templeton
MSU College of Veterinary Medicine

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- The Mississippi State University College of Veterinary Medicine is celebrating National Veterinary Technician Week October 11-17 by recognizing this growing program and the graduates who have found careers in the dynamic animal health field.

Dave Burrage, Mississippi State University Extension Service professor, demonstrates safety features on a life raft used aboard commercial fishing vessels. (Photo by MS-AL Sea Grant Consortium/Melissa Schneider)
October 9, 2015 - Filed Under: Fisheries, Seafood Harvesting and Processing

BILOXI, Miss. -- The Atlantic hurricane that sunk the cargo ship El Faro in early October highlights the need for sailors to be trained in how to react in an emergency.

Dave Burrage, Mississippi State University Extension professor of marine resources at the Coastal Research and Extension Center, is trained to certify marine safety instructors who are sailors on commercial vessels. Two Mississippi sailors he trained survived an on-the-water collision that sunk one boat in the Gulf of Mexico last year.

Libby Beard, co-owner of The Flower Center in Vicksburg, Mississippi, left, and Anna McCain, Warren County Extension agent, look over some of the fall bedding flowers available on Oct. 7, 2015. (Submitted photo)
October 9, 2015 - Filed Under: Fruit, Commercial Horticulture

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- If inquiries about new or expanded businesses are the heartbeat of Mississippi horticulture, then agricultural economist Alba Collart knows 2015 is a healthy year for the industry.

Collart, assistant professor of agricultural economics with the Mississippi State University Extension Service, said horticultural crops are important to Mississippi’s agricultural economy. These specialty crops include fruits, vegetables, tree nuts and products grown for environmental horticulture, also known as the green industry.

Donna Beliech, horticulture agent with the Mississippi State University Extension Service; Judson Lecompte, MSU research associate, and Guihong Bi, MSU associate research professor, listen as tea blender Beverly Wainwright explains the process of developing tea blends at The Great Mississippi Tea Company in Brookhaven, Mississippi, on Oct. 2, 2015. Wainwright is working with other tea consultants to make unique tea blends for the company. (Photo by MSU Ag Communications/Susan Collins-Smith)
October 6, 2015 - Filed Under: Agriculture

BROOKHAVEN, Miss. -- Mississippi tea drinkers are one step closer to experiencing a locally grown product.

The Great Mississippi Tea Company began harvesting a small quantity of leaves from its 2-year old plants in mid-September and will soon share samples with prospective vendors.

Fall offers many opportunities for families to enjoy the outdoors, including agritourism businesses with corn mazes and pumpkin patches, such as this one at Mitchell Farms in Collins, Mississippi. (File photo by MSU Ag Communications/Kevin Hudson)
October 5, 2015 - Filed Under: Wildlife Youth Education

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- As the leaves begin to change colors, Mississippi State University experts have several suggestions for getting children more involved in outdoor activities.

Leslie Burger, assistant Extension professor in the Mississippi State University Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Aquaculture, said kids copy the actions of their parents. If parents want their children to go outside this fall season, they must lead the way and become active and connected with nature themselves.

Trim branches at the branch collar, which is a slightly raised area around the point where the branch is connected to the tree trunk. The tree will heal better if the branch is removed at this point rather than flush with the trunk (Photo by MSU Extension Service/Gary Bachman)
October 5, 2015 - Filed Under: Trees

In my position with the Mississippi State University Extension Service, I tend to look at myself as a problem solver. I recently had the opportunity to evaluate some less-than-optimal tree pruning.

The question at hand was whether the pruned trees were irreparably damaged or if some corrective actions were needed. In my opinion, while the pruning in this case was sloppily performed, the trees will survive and should be OK.

October 5, 2015 - Filed Under: About Extension

BILOXI, Miss. -- Mississippi State University’s Coastal Research and Extension Center launched a new web site Oct. 5.

The updated site is mobile friendly and gives clients of the MSU Extension Service and Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station access to the region’s research-based educational resources with a modern look.

“All of the same information is available to our customers; it just looks fresher and is easier to navigate than the former site,” said Andy Collins, web developer with the center.

Paula Threadgill, associate director of the Mississippi State University Extension Service and state leader of 4-H, reviews a poster that will hang in the 4-H Village in the Trademart in Jackson during the Mississippi State Fair from Oct. 7-18. The photo was taken at MSU on Oct. 2, 2015. (Photo by MSU Ag Communications/Linda Breazeale)
October 2, 2015 - Filed Under: 4-H

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Mississippi 4-H members and volunteer leaders are active every month, but the State Fair in October usually signals the pinnacle of their year.

“The State Fair provides many opportunities for our 4-H members to show off their livestock projects, as well as other projects and activities they have been working on during the last year,” said Paula Threadgill, associate director of the Mississippi State University Extension Service. “The 4-H Village at the fair also highlights the opportunities available through the youth development program in Mississippi.”

Many myths and half-truths surround the invasive wild hog population, including the notion that hogs will not cross a paved road, as they are seen doing in this photo taken in the Mississippi Delta. (Photo courtesy of Delta Wildlife)
October 2, 2015 - Filed Under: Nuisance Wildlife and Damage Management

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- A great deal of my time with the Mississippi State University Extension Service has been spent raising public awareness about wild pig problems, and I have encountered quite a few myths and half-truths about these often destructive pests.

Harvest of the state’s soybean crop was about two-thirds complete by the first of October. These soybeans were drying out Sept. 19, 2015 at the Mississippi State University R.R. Foil Plant Science Research Center. (Photo by MSU Ag Communications/Kat Lawrence)
October 2, 2015 - Filed Under: Soybeans

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Erratic yields in Mississippi’s early-planted soybean crop reflect the extremes of temperature and rainfall farmers faced during the spring and summer of 2015.

“This season was one of extremes,” said Trent Irby, soybean specialist with the Mississippi State University Extension Service. “We went from cool, wet conditions in early spring to hot and dry during a critical point of the season, and that has taken a toll on yield for some of our acres.”

Each fall, scientists from all over the world come to Mississippi State University to learn the latest insect-rearing techniques. Ellis Driver from Bayer Crop Science in Morrisville, North Carolina and Brook Merrill of Koppert Biocontrol in Howell, Michigan examine a black soldier fly larva in an MSU lab on Sept. 30, 2015 at the 18th annual International Insect Rearing Workshop. (Photo by MSU Ag Communications/Kat Lawrence)
October 1, 2015 - Filed Under: Insects
October 1, 2015 - Filed Under: Farming

CRYSTAL SPRINGS, Miss. -- The Alliance for Sustainable Agricultural Production will hold its second statewide field day in conjunction with Mississippi State University’s Fall Flower & Garden Fest in Crystal Springs on Oct. 16.

The Fall Flower & Garden Fest is set for Oct. 16 and 17 at the MSU Truck Crops Branch Experiment Station in Crystal Springs. This collaboration is part of the agricultural alliance’s efforts, with its partners, to hold field days across the state at local demonstration farms.

October 1, 2015 - Filed Under: Food, Health, Nutrition

STARKVILLE, Miss. --The executive vice president and provost of the University of Western States in Portland, Oregon, has been named head of the Mississippi State University Department of Food Science, Nutrition and Health Promotion.

Marion Willard “Will” Evans begins his position December 1. A master certified health education specialist and certified wellness practitioner, Evans brings experience and leadership in health promotion and wellness.

September 30, 2015 - Filed Under: Children and Parenting

POPLARVILLE, Miss. -- Early childhood education proponents pulled together to establish Mississippi’s 17th resource and referral center on the Pearl River Community College campus.

The Early Years Network, a program of the Mississippi State University Extension Service, partnered with Excel By 5 and the community college to open the new center.

September 28, 2015 - Filed Under: About Extension

CHOCTAW, Miss. -- The 2015 Choctaw Challenge Mud Run and Health Fair will be held Oct. 31 at Lake Pushmataha in Choctaw.

The Mississippi State University Extension Service, along with other state and federal agencies, is partnering with the Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians to organize the event.

The mud run is open to anyone age 10 and up. Registration begins at 7 a.m., and the race begins at 8 a.m. Cost is $15 per person.

The health fair is free. It opens at 8 a.m. and closes at noon. Informational booths will be located at the starting line of the race.