Feature Story from 2011
HOUSTON – Two Chickasaw County farmers are discovering it takes a village to raise a crop.
Doil Moore and James Earnest have been business partners for more than two decades, but their latest adventure requires an extensive network of advisors to guide them through each challenge. In 2009, they started a small produce business on 3 acres in Houston. Thanks to advice from Mississippi State University specialists and other producers, they have expanded their acreage, crops and markets in 2011.
MISSISSIPPI STATE – Mississippi’s 2 million white-tailed deer have an estimated $1 billion economic impact on the state, so knowing how to manage this wildlife resource is a common goal among landowners and hunters.
Two Mississippi State University short courses in July will teach those wanting to manage white-tailed deer populations on their land. There will be a July 23 session in Senatobia and a July 30 session at MSU. They are sponsored by the MSU Extension Service, MSU College of Forest Resources and the Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Parks.
MISSISSIPPI STATE – Jonathan Pote has been named head of the Department of Agricultural and Biological Engineering at Mississippi State University.
Pote has served as interim head of the department since July 2010. He joined MSU in 1985 and has held a variety of administrative positions, including associate vice president for research and economic development and associate director of the Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station.
BILOXI – State experts are assessing the economic impacts of the Gulf of Mexico oil spill on the Mississippi seafood and other marine-related industries.
Mississippi State University’s Research and Extension Center in Biloxi is conducting a survey to find out more about the economic well-being of marine-related businesses affected by the oil spill. Researchers need information from these industries to accurately assess the economic impacts of the 2010 oil spill.
By Alicia Barnes
MSU School of Human Sciences
MISSISSIPPI STATE - Aiming to serve the 54 percent of Mississippi children attending unlicensed home childcare programs, the Nurturing Home Initiative provides materials and education to improve the quality of these popular programs.
As part of the Mississippi State University Extension Service, the Nurturing Homes Initiative, or NHI, partners with home childcare programs where caregivers open their homes to create safe learning environments.
By Karen Templeton
MSU Ag Communications
MISSISSIPPI STATE – A new program is targeting the youngest members of families to help parents make healthy and affordable food choices.
Mississippi State University is teaching families in low-income communities about healthy, low-cost foods so they can eat nutritious foods on a budget. The efforts are funded by the ConAgra Foods Foundation, which works through national partnerships to help end childhood hunger.
MISSISSIPPI STATE – It takes two planting seasons to harvest one sweet potato crop, and hot, dry weather made this year’s second planting challenging for Mississippi growers.
In March, sweet potato growers bed their crop, which means they plant high-quality seed stock in the ground to produce transplants, known as slips. These slips are planted in May and June to produce the harvest in September and October of the state’s highly acclaimed sweet potatoes.
PONTOTOC – Mississippi State University experts will provide information and demonstrations about agronomic research activities on July 14.
MSU’s Pontotoc Ridge-Flatwoods Branch Experiment Station will host its biennial Research and Demonstration Tour. Registration begins at 7:30 a.m., and the tour will get started at 8:30 a.m. Lunch will be provided, and continuing education credits will be available.
MISSISSIPPI STATE – A comprehensive reference publication on the various aspects of dairy science was recently published under the leadership of a long-time Mississippi State University professor.
John Fuquay, now professor emeritus in MSU’s Department of Animal and Dairy Sciences, is editor-in-chief of the second edition of the Encyclopedia of Dairy Science. Fuquay served as the dairy production editor on the first edition and in 2008 was asked to be the primary editor of the second edition.
By Karen Templeton
MSU Ag Communications
MISSISSIPPI STATE – One of America’s fondest symbols, the bald eagle, could be flying high again after a concerned citizen and three organizations worked together to save its life.
A passerby noticed an injured bald eagle in the Burnsville community near County Road 306 and immediately sought help.
MISSISSIPPI STATE – J. Mike Phillips has been selected as the new head of the Department of Plant and Soil Sciences at Mississippi State University.
Phillips has been the chair of the Department of Agricultural Sciences at Morehead State University in Kentucky since 2007. Before his appointment at Morehead, Phillips served as professor of agronomy and director for the Southwest Research and Extension Center at the University of Arkansas.
MISSISSIPPI STATE – All species of mammals are susceptible to rabies, but pet owners can create a line of defense with a few simple precautions.
Bill Epperson, head of Mississippi State University College of Veterinary Medicine’s Department of Pathobiology and Population Medicine, said the rabies virus is generally transmitted through the bite of an infected animal. One way to prevent or reduce the risk of rabies is to vaccinate pets.
By Edward D. Entsminger
MSU Forest and Wildlife Research Center
MISSISSIPPI STATE – Two Mississippi agencies are working together to determine if growing native plants along highway rights of way will reduce maintenance costs while maintaining visibility and safety.
By Bonnie Coblentz
MSU Ag Communications
MISSISSIPPI STATE – Summer of Innovation Camps being held across Mississippi look like a lot of fun with rockets, but children who participate are also brushing up on their science and engineering skills.
The camps are a White House effort spearheaded and funded through NASA. In Mississippi, 26 camps are being offered this summer through 4-H, the youth development arm of the Mississippi State University Extension Service.
By Keri Lewis
MSU Ag Communications
MISSISSIPPI STATE – Summer jobs, lemonade stands and family vacations make summer the perfect time to talk about money matters, and free resources can help parents and children make sense of a complex issue.
Children are more likely to learn the money lessons they will need as adults when parents use real-life situations, said Sheri Worthy, professor in Mississippi State University’s School of Human Sciences.
PICAYUNE – Pat Drackett is the new director of Mississippi State University’s Crosby Arboretum in Picayune.
The Crosby Arboretum was established in 1980 as a living memorial to timber pioneer and philanthropist L.O. Crosby Jr. It is part of MSU’s Coastal Research and Extension Center and showcases the native plant species of the Pearl River Drainage Basin of south-central Mississippi and Louisiana.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Elected and appointed municipal government officials in Mississippi have another resource to turn to for leadership and problem-solving in the daily operation of local government.
The Mississippi State University Extension Service’s Center for Governmental Training and Technology recently published its Third Edition of Municipal Government in Mississippi. The center distributed more than 1,200 copies of the book at the recent Mississippi Municipal League Annual Conference in Biloxi.
VICKSBURG – Three mid-south universities met recently to develop a plan to combine resources to strengthen support for agricultural enterprises.
Experiment station and Extension Service directors from the University of Arkansas, Louisiana State University Agricultural Center and Mississippi State University met June 11-13 in Vicksburg to discuss cooperating on research and educational programs to benefit agriculture.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- An upcoming conference in Louisiana will provide a chance for participants from rural Mississippi and Louisiana to learn about unique tourism options.
The Miss-Lou Regional Tourism Summit will be Aug. 9-11 in Oak Grove, La., which is located in the northeast corner of the state, near the Mississippi River.