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Feature Story from 2009

February 26, 2009 - Filed Under: Animal Health

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Students at Mississippi State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine will welcome thousands of school children to campus on the first weekend in April.

MSU’s College of Veterinary Medicine will open its doors from 8:30 a.m. until 3:30 p.m. on April 3 and from 8 a.m. until 2 p.m. on April 4 for the 25th annual open house at the Wise Center, located on the south side of campus off Spring Street. “Treating the Sick, Teaching to Save” is the theme for this year’s event.

March 5, 2009 - Filed Under: Children and Parenting

By Karen Templeton
MSU Ag Communications

MISSISSIPPI STATE – Mississippi may surpass the national average of children living in poverty and the teenage birth rate, but its child advocates plan to refocus their efforts after sharing success stories and ideas at the recent Mississippi KIDS COUNT Summit.

More than 150 attended the second annual Summit at the Mississippi State University Riley Center in Meridian. The purpose was to focus on the progress that Mississippi must make to improve the well-being of its children.

Melissa Mixon, left, and Xiaoxi Lu recently signed a five-year general agreement for academic cooperation between Mississippi State University and China's Jiangsu Academy of Agricultural Sciences. (Photo by Marco Nicovich)
March 5, 2009 - Filed Under: Agriculture

MISSISSIPPI STATE – Two agricultural schools are planning to unite in their common goals despite being a world apart geographically.

A delegation from China's Jiangsu Academy of Agricultural Sciences recently visited Mississippi State University, and representatives from both universities discovered interests in many of the same fields of study. Administrators from the universities signed a five-year agreement “to foster international cooperation in education and research.”

March 5, 2009 - Filed Under: Catfish

MISSISSIPPI STATE – Two scientists at Mississippi State University’s Thad Cochran Warmwater Aquaculture Center recently received a national technology transfer award for their work with young channel catfish.

Jim Steeby, an aquaculture specialist with the MSU Extension Service, and Les Torrans, a fish biologist with the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Agricultural Research Service, received the 2008 Technology Transfer Award for Superior Efforts. The award was announced Feb. 10 in Washington, D.C.

March 5, 2009 - Filed Under: Community

MISSISSIPPI STATE – A Mississippi State University student group conducting food drives for area pantries, soup kitchens and shelters unveiled a new spring campaign to show people they can make a difference in the national War on Hunger initiative.

Members of the MSU Committee of 19 will conduct their second annual campuswide food drive April 20-24. The goal is to motivate university students, faculty and staff to donate nonperishable food that is still good but normally discarded or left at semester’s end. The group collected more than 1,500 pounds of food in 2008.

March 5, 2009 - Filed Under: Women for Agriculture

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Women, who are often the sole decision makers in their agricultural businesses, and their business partners are the target audience for an upcoming statewide seminar in Jackson.

The April 2-3 program will provide updates on current issues facing agriculture and reinforce information shared at previous workshops. The workshop is open to all women with an interest in farming as well as those who have taken part in previous seminars.

Mississippi State University is researching high tunnel greenhouses as a way to grow produce and cut flowers year-round in Mississippi without heating. Strawberries can be seen growing March 6 in black plastic mulch rows in this high tunnel in Faison, N.C. (Photo by Mengmeng Gu)
March 12, 2009 - Filed Under: Farming

MISSISSIPPI STATE – Growing produce and cut flowers year-round could offer a potentially significant economic opportunity, and Mississippi State University researchers are collecting data to determine if it is a feasible strategy for the state's growers.

Bill Evans is the leader of a team that received a nearly $500,000 competitive grant for a three-year project at two MSU and two growers' sites. This project was supported by the National Research Initiative of the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Cooperative State Research, Education and Extension Service.

March 12, 2009 - Filed Under: Wildlife Youth Education

MISSISSIPPI STATE – Those with a love for the outdoors have five conservation camps to take advantage of this summer offered through the Department of Wildlife and Fisheries in Mississippi State University’s College of Forest Resources.

The camps are educational and intergenerational and are geared for anyone interested in the outdoors. They will be especially useful for those who participate in wildlife competitions or on Wildlife Habitat Evaluation Program teams.

March 12, 2009 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Technology

By Patti Drapala
MSU Ag Communications

MISSISSIPPI STATE – Mississippi farms and specialty businesses have a virtual route to potential customers with an interactive computer mapping program on the Internet.

MarketMaker is a tool to link farmers with grocery stores, food processors, specialty outlets, food industry representatives and consumers who want to buy their products. University of Illinois Extension created this software five years ago when specialty beef producers had trouble reaching potential buyers in Chicago.

March 12, 2009 - Filed Under: Environment, Wildlife

By Karen Brasher
MSU College of Forest Resources

MISSISSIPPI STATE – Intensive commercial forestry and urban development are threatening natural habitats and have put the gopher tortoise on the federally threatened species list for Alabama, Mississippi and southeastern Louisiana.

March 12, 2009 - Filed Under: Health, Colon Cancer Screening

MISSISSIPPI STATE – Recruitment is under way for people to become Smart Aging: Healthy Futures volunteers to help promote healthy living among seniors in their communities.

Training is scheduled from 9 a.m. until 3:30 p.m. on April 1. The session will be at the Lauderdale County Extension office located on the fifth floor of 410 Constitution Ave. in Meridian. The deadline to apply is March 30.

March 12, 2009 - Filed Under: Beef

MISSISSIPPI STATE – Cattle producers will gather this month in Verona to network and position themselves for possible upswings in the demand for beef. 

The 12th Mississippi Beef Agribition, or MBA, will be held on March 27 and 28 at the Lee County Agri-Center. The event will provide a venue for cattle buyers and sellers to develop new business relationships and learn more about improving their herds.

March 19, 2009 - Filed Under: Poultry

MISSISSIPPI STATE – A newly established poultry assistantship will help Mississippi State University expand its research of animal welfare issues.

KFC and the Yum! Brands Foundation are funding the assistantship at MSU’s Poultry Science Department in memory of J. Paul Thaxton, a former professor of poultry science at MSU and member of KFC’s Animal Welfare Advisory Council. Thaxton passed away in October 2007.

March 19, 2009 - Filed Under: Soybeans

MISSISSIPPI STATE – Efforts to beat soybean rust are already under way before the soybean crop is even in the ground in Mississippi, but without federal funding, experts are scrambling to secure money to monitor for the presence of the disease this year.

March 24, 2009 - Filed Under: Nuts

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Mississippi pecan growers can learn how to maintain their orchards at an April 9 workshop in Crystal Springs.

The half-day workshop begins with registration at 9 a.m. at Mississippi State University’s Truck Crops Experiment Station. Lunch will be provided following the workshop.

Topics for discussion include use of clovers in pecan orchards and crop insurance. Participants will visit clover plantings in the orchard located at the experiment station.

Scientists have discovered that butterflies do a lot more than just pollinate plants. Conserving the butterfly population by increasing their habitats benefits food production and the ecosystem. (Photo by Kat Lawrence)
March 26, 2009 - Filed Under: Environment, Insects

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Scientists at Mississippi State University's Forest and Wildlife Research Center are researching ways in which farmers, through the use of conservation buffers, can help keep butterfly habitats safe and healthy.

March 26, 2009 - Filed Under: Timber Harvest

MISSISSIPPI STATE – Logging professionals throughout Mississippi have opportunities to take required core classes or earn continuing education credits and maintain their expertise.

To earn “trained” status, loggers must complete core classes in four educational areas. These classes cover the sustainable forestry initiative, logging and transportation safety, best management practices for water quality, and business management.

March 26, 2009 - Filed Under: 4-H

By Patti Drapala
MSU Ag Communications

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- More than 94,000 Mississippi youth enrolled in 4-H have a lifeline to achievement and purpose because of adult volunteers who help them make their best even better.

“The people in our organization all seem to have one thing in common,” said Harvey Gordon, 4-H youth development specialist with the Mississippi State University Extension Service. “They love 4-H and feel a huge need to share the 4-H experience with anyone who will listen.”

Jerome Goddard
April 2, 2009 - Filed Under: Insects-Human Pests, Insects

By Patti Drapala
MSU Ag Communications

MISSISSIPPI STATE – A medical entomologist and a physician spent several months researching a small bloodsucker on the comeback trail and their findings are bringing extensive national attention to the problem.

April 2, 2009 - Filed Under: Soybeans

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Producers getting ready to plant soybeans in 2009 can expect fewer problems than they faced last year when they dealt with shortages, poor quality and small sizes.

Trey Koger, soybean specialist with the Mississippi State University Extension Service, said poor germination and vigor resulted in a significant amount of seed withheld from sale last year.

“This coupled with extreme demand due to high soybean prices resulted in a shortage of good-quality seed to be planted last year for many varieties,” Koger said.

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