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Feature Story from 2012

September 10, 2012 - Filed Under: Community, Insects

PICAYUNE – School groups, 4-H groups and families are invited to Bugfest, a two-day event at Mississippi State University’s Crosby Arboretum in Picayune.

The hands-on learning event will be held from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Sept. 21 and from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sept. 22. Participants can collect and identify insects, make crafts and play games.

MSU professor John Guyton and entomology student Breanna Lyle will bring a traveling classroom and a portable scanning electron microscope for an up-close look at Mississippi’s insects.

September 11, 2012 - Filed Under: Animal Health

MISSISSIPPI STATE — Lights, camera, action! The Mississippi State University College of Veterinary Medicine is inviting children to submit artwork that showcases animals on the “silver screen.”

Visiting artist Mary Hark shows Mississippi State University				students how to screen cotton pulp in a mold and deckle as the first step in making paper.				Hark, whose art installation is on display in MSU's Visual Arts Center Gallery through Oct.				3, was on campus to teach the process of making fine art paper out of local materials.				(Photo courtesy of MSU University Relations/Megan Bean)
September 13, 2012 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Community

MISSISSIPPI STATE – Mississippi State University students recently discovered making paper is a noisy, messy and creative activity.

Internationally known fiber artist Mary Hark, a professor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, came to MSU’s campus to teach art and fashion students about the beauty and versatility of handmade paper.

Common vetches and clovers, such as crimson clover, can be used as cover crops to prevent soil erosion, add organic matter, suppress weeds and retain soil moisture. (Photo courtesy of USDA-ARS/Bob Bjork)
September 13, 2012 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Crops, Forages

MISSISSIPPI STATE – Long before scientists created commercial fertilizers, farmers used cover crops to increase soil health and productivity and many of today’s producers are returning to those roots.

Mississippi State University professor Jac Varco, a researcher with the Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station, said a cover crop is one planted during the off-season to benefit the soil. Common cover crops include clover and vetch.

Kelli McCarter
September 13, 2012 - Filed Under: Technology, About Extension

MISSISSIPPI STATE – When someone asks the Mississippi State University Extension Service for information, the answer soon might be, “There’s an app for that.”

Kelli McCarter joined the Extension Center for Technology Outreach in March as an applications developer. Her primary job is to write apps, which are computer programs that run inside another service. These apps will run on Apple Operating System, or iOS, devices such as the iPhone and iPad. Later, she hopes to develop apps for the Android platform.

September 13, 2012 - Filed Under: Lawn and Garden, Flower Gardens, Vegetable Gardens

POPLARVILLE – The hot, humid climate of South Mississippi can make it challenging for home gardeners and landscape professionals to choose plants that will perform well under additional pressures from diseases and pests.

All gardeners are invited to the annual Ornamental Horticulture Field Day on Oct. 4 at Mississippi State University’s South Mississippi Branch Experiment Station in Poplarville to hear about the latest research on plants in South Mississippi.

A Mississippi State University Extension Service team gets a				crash-course in how sprayers work from Dan Reynolds. From left, Jamie Varner, Kelli McCarter and				Randy Loper are writing an app that will help farmers properly calibrate sprayers. (Photo by MSU Ag Communications/Kat Lawrence)
September 13, 2012 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Technology

MISSISSIPPI STATE – A new app is being written to help farmers properly calibrate sprayers, an involved process with the potential for making mistakes.

As a precaution against a new strain of swine flu, Extension agents and veterinarians will be closely monitoring the health of hogs involved in the 2012 Mississippi State Fair in Jackson. (MSU Ag Communications file photo)
September 17, 2012 - Filed Under: Animal Health, Swine, Health

MISSISSIPPI STATE – Mississippi veterinarians and livestock officials will address new swine flu concerns with increased educational messages and surveillance during the upcoming State Fair in Jackson.

Mark Crenshaw, swine specialist with the Mississippi State University Extension Service, said like humans, pigs occasionally get the influenza virus. Typical pig influenza viruses do not cross over to humans, but a new strain is proving to be an exception. As with all flu strains, frequent hand washing and other good hygiene practices are the best defense.

Peanut producers from northwest Mississippi learn about successful production techniques at the Aug. 30 peanut field day near Clarksdale. (Photograph by DREC Communications/Rebekah Ray)
September 19, 2012 - Filed Under: Peanuts

By Rebekah Ray
MSU Delta Research and Extension Center

STONEVILLE – About 80 farmers gathered for two North Mississippi peanut field days in late summer to learn how to cash in on one of Mississippi’s increasingly popular crops.

Mississippi State University Extension Service and Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station scientists gave producers research updates and introduced new field harvesting techniques.

September 20, 2012 - Filed Under: Community, Lawn and Garden, Flower Gardens, Vegetable Gardens

CRYSTAL SPRINGS – The largest home gardening event in the Southeast will focus on more than healthy plants during the festivities in Crystal Springs on Oct. 5 and 6.

“Healthy Living – Healthy Gardening” is the theme for the 2012 Fall Flower and Garden Fest at Mississippi State University’s Truck Crops Branch Experiment Station. The 34th annual fall fest will take place from 9 a.m. until 2 p.m. on Friday and Saturday. Admission and parking are free.

The Let’s Go Walkin’ Mississippi initiative will kick off this year’s event at 9:30 a.m. Friday with a 1-mile fun walk.

Agritourism is increasing in popularity as Mississippi farmers and landowners look for ways to diversify income and share their passion for agriculture. One such business, Bluejack Ridge Kids Ranch near Poplarville, Miss., offers Western-themed fun on weekends in October with activities such as a corn maze, petting farm, wagon train and zip line. (Submitted Photo)
September 20, 2012 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Agri-tourism

MISSISSIPPI STATE – Finding fall fun at a pumpkin patch or corn maze may be easier this year as new signs point the way to Mississippi’s agritourism operations.

Agritourism businesses combine agriculture and tourism to offer fun to visitors and additional revenue to the family farm.

During a recent trip to the Dominican Republic, Mississippi State University scientist Barakat Mahmoud (left) talked to a local Extension agent and a potato farmer about harvesting techniques that reduce the chances of bacterial contamination and food-borne illness. (Submitted Photo)
September 20, 2012 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Food

PASCAGOULA -- Barakat Mahmoud is one of many Mississippi State University scientists whose work improves the safety and security of the global food supply.

The world population topped 7 billion in March 2012 and is expected to exceed 9 billion by 2050. Feeding this many people puts tremendous pressure on the food industry.

September 21, 2012 - Filed Under: Agri-tourism, Natural Resources, Wildlife Economics and Enterprises

MISSISSIPPI STATE – Landowners interested in increasing the return on their investment through recreational business can learn more about habitat management and new income opportunities at an upcoming workshop.

Specialists from Mississippi State University, state and federal agencies, and the private sector will share information about starting and managing a natural resource enterprise, such as wildlife watching, fee fishing, fee hunting and horse trail-riding. The workshop will be Nov. 13 at the Quail Hollow Ranch in Purvis.

September 26, 2012 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Crops

STONEVILLE – Mississippi State University will host row-crop producers for a conference dedicated to Mississippi Delta agriculture.

The Delta Crop Summit will be Nov. 13 from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. at MSU’s Delta Research and Extension Center in Stoneville.

Registration for the free event begins at 7:30 a.m. in the lobby of the Charles W. Capps Jr. Entrepreneurial Center.

September 27, 2012 - Filed Under: Animal Health

MISSISSIPPI STATE – Most people avoid thinking about animal cruelty, but two groups recently joined efforts to train and support law enforcement officials who encounter these cases across Mississippi.

Mississippi State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine and the Mississippi Animal Control and Protection Association hosted a course for animal control officers, veterinarians and others at MSU’s Wise Center on Sept. 13. The goal of the course was to increase awareness of animal cruelty issues and the laws related to them.

Mississippi State University scientists are evaluating a free software tool that can increase irrigation efficiency for the state's soybean producers. PHAUCET, or Pipe Hole and Universal Crown Evaluation Tool, has the potential to reduce water pumped from the Delta's underground water supply. (MSU Ag Communications/File Photo)
September 27, 2012 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Soybeans, Irrigation, Technology

By Dr. Rebekah Ray
MSU Delta Research and Extension Center

STONEVILLE – Mississippi State University scientists are evaluating a free software tool that can increase irrigation efficiency for the state’s soybean producers.

September 27, 2012 - Filed Under: Community, Lawn and Garden

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- A doctoral student in Mississippi State University’s Department of Plant and Soil Sciences recently received a national fellowship from the Southern Regional Education Board.

Andre Payne of Mount Olive, Miss., was selected as a fellow for SREB’s competitive State Doctoral Scholars program, which works to increase the number of minority faculty members at universities in the South. Payne will receive $20,000 per year for up to four years of study.

Dr. Skip Jack, Mississippi State University veterinarian, spent three weeks in Nigeria teaching about fish health. Here, he holds a Clarius catfish with some students in Lagos, Nigeria. (Submitted Photo)
September 28, 2012 - Filed Under: Animal Health, Catfish

MISSISSIPPI STATE – Commercially grown catfish in North America or Africa face similar challenges, a fact that sent one Mississippi State University veterinarian on a training mission to Nigeria in June.

Dr. Skip Jack, a professor of pathobiology and population medicine at MSU’s College of Veterinary Medicine, spent almost three weeks teaching Nigerian catfish farmers, veterinarians and students about health issues related to their fish. He was part of the Farmer to Farmer project, teaching under the oversight of the U.S. Agency for International Development.

September 28, 2012 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Animal Health, Catfish

Sidebar to MSU veterinary expert shares expertise in Nigeria

MISSISSIPPI STATE – Fish make up about 41 percent of the meat in the average Nigerians’ diet, but domestic supply falls short of that, forcing the country to spend $500 million a year on imported fish.

October 1, 2012 - Filed Under: Wildlife, White-Tailed Deer

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- When hunters in Lowndes and surrounding counties see deer with colored ear tags this fall, researchers at Mississippi State University hope they will allow the research subjects to roam.

Scientists at MSU’s Forest and Wildlife Research Center are studying antler size and growth rates for 77 tagged whitetail bucks in the wild. Researchers hope to determine whether antler size in young deer is a predictor of antler size at maturity.

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