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2004

Organization

  • Duane Hauck was appointed NDSU Extension Service interim director effective Jan. 1.
  • The week of Jan. 12, the North Dakota State Board of Higher Education approved the establishment of the NDSU Center for Community Vitality to coordinate all of the campus outreach efforts in community economic development and leadership under one heading, making it easier for citizens to access and use the resources available. Kathleen Tweeten was appointed director of the center while retaining her appointment as Extension community economic development specialist with the Department of Agribusiness and Applied Economics.
  • A visioning process initiated in fall 2003 generated much discussion about NDSU Extension Service programs, delivery, staffing, budget and more. A product of the discussion is a document titled "Who We Are and What We Do." Many updates later, you can find it at www.ag.ndsu.edu/extension/about-us/NDSUExtensionService.pdf/view.
  • A new semi-monthly (instead of monthly) payroll process was instituted on all North Dakota University System campuses in July.
  • The State Board of Agricultural Research and Education had extensive discussions about NDSU agriculture's administrative structure during their August 31 meeting. They passed a motion supporting a structure that included a vice president for agricultural affairs and university extension. They also supported having a director for Extension and a director for Experiment Station reporting to the VP. The director of the experiment station would also serve as dean of the College of Agriculture, Food Systems, and Natural Resources. However, SBARE's motion suggested that consideration be given to having a separate dean if needed. The motion was presented to President Chapman.
  • A new logo was launched for the NDSU Extension Service that “is more modern-looking and better reflects the extension service as part of North Dakota State University." (Duane Hauck Sept. 13 email to staff)
  • On Dec. 2, eight framed displays featuring the 22 major crops of North Dakota were presented to Congressman Pomeroy, and Senators Dorgan and Conrad for their Washington, DC offices. One was also given to Governor Hoeven. Displays were also made for the NDSU President’s office, Vice President for Agriculture’s office, Northern Crops Institute (NCI) and the N.D. State Seed Department. The displays were made by Bill and Lori Lymburner as a collaborative effort of the NDSU Extension Service, North Dakota Agricultural Experiment Station, NCI and the North Dakota State Seed Department.
  • Patricia Jensen retired from her position as vice president and dean of the College of Agriculture, Food Systems, and Natural Resources (CAFSNR) on Dec. 31. She had been in the role since July 1997. As vice president, she oversaw the academic efforts of the CAFSNR, agricultural research and Extension. Ken Grafton, director of the N.D. Agricultural Experiment Station since July 1, 2002 remained so, and Duane Hauck, who had been interim director of the NDSU Extension Service since Jan. 1, 2004 was appointed to a two-year term as Extension director, closing a national search to allow Jensen's replacement the opportunity to participate in the search for the Extension head. At Jensen's retirement, President Chapman called for a review of the current administrative structure of agricultural research, Extension and teaching, to see if adjustments could be made to strengthen NDSU agriculture into the future. Several structures were proposed by the department heads/chairs, Research Extension Center directors and Extension Leadership Team. 

Program Highlights

Knowledge was extended to North Dakotans through 636,659 face-to-face contacts by NDSU Extension Service employees.

The weather took a heavy toll on North Dakota’s crop production in 2004. Southwestern counties had the worst drought longtime residents can recall, while up to three times more rain than normal fell in counties in the north-central part of the state. To make matters worse, up to 18 inches of snow fell in some northern counties in May, just as farmers were planting. Southwestern counties had the added blows of three serious frosts in June as crops were emerging, followed by insect infestations. Then a widespread frost hit the state in mid-August. Activating the county USDA emergency committee and answering producers’ questions were key duties of the Extension agents. They also put out information in weekly ag alerts, newspaper columns, newsletters, radio programs, fax, email and the Web. State specialists and agents stayed connected on conditions through conference calls. Extension specialists provided the data collected on producers’ economic losses because of the weather to the state’s congressional delegation to help obtain disaster aid for producers. Crop losses totaled more than $350 million. Soybeans took the hardest hit at $170.6 million, followed by hay at $109 million and corn at $84.3 million. The weather extremes gave NDSU researchers a chance to see how crop varieties they developed performed under adverse conditions and illustrated the importance of breeding plants that mature earlier, have a tolerance for cold and are disease resistant. (2004 Annual Highlights - Duane Hauck, Ken Grafton, Brenda Rettinger and Tim Semler)

An interactive educational program on CD was developed for farmwomen interested in upgrading their commodity marketing skills. The program provides base information on government programs, crop insurance, crop marketing term definitions and marketing strategies, including cash sales, forward contracting, hedging and options. The program was co-authored by an NDSU Agribusiness and Applied Economics professor and graduate student who is now Sheridan County Extension agent. (2004 Annual Highlights - Cole Gustafson and Crystal Schaunaman)

The average living expenditure of 291 farm families in the North Dakota Farm Business Management Education program was $40,517 in 2003, an increase of $2,378, or 6.2 percent, from 2002. Families purchased more goods and services in 2003. An Extension farm management specialist said the likely cause was a strong North Dakota net farm income that increased by nearly 50 percent in 2003 because of good small-grain yields, strong crop prices and improved livestock production profitability. The largest expenditure increase was for vehicle operation and purchases, which rose from $3,785 in 2002 to $4,915 in 2003. Other increases were for utilities, up about 15 percent to $2,052, and education at $1,118, up $185 from 2002. Outlays for personal expenses and recreation ($5,354), and contributions and gifts ($2,139) were nearly unchanged from 2002. The largest expense category was medical care and health insurance, which increased nearly 9 percent in 2003 to $7,040 per family. Other large expenditures were for shelter (includes household supplies, repairs, furnishings, appliances), $6,275; food, $5,973; and clothing, $1,888. (2004 Annual Highlights - Andrew Swenson)

The annual North Dakota Weed Control Guide, available from county Extension offices, Agriculture communication and the Extension website, is often found in a producer’s pickup or tractor or on the kitchen table. The guide is based on federal and state herbicide labels, North Dakota Agricultural Experiment Station research and the North Dakota Department of Agriculture. The guide has an easy-to-follow format to help producers with herbicide application decisions. (2004 Annual Highlights - Rich Zollinger)

More than 80 4-H’ers in Williams, Rolette and Mountrail counties and Fort Berthold served as national youth leaders in the Rural Community Mapping: 4-H Youth Favorite Places project. It was part of a nationwide community mapping effort that involved 4-H members in North Dakota, Oregon and 13 other states. The 4-H members used global positioning satellite technology to pinpoint their favorite recreational sites. They also provided directions to the site, people to contact for more information, hours the attraction is open to the public, photos and testimonials from youths about the attraction.The project has two aims. One is attracting families to small towns and rural areas to help stimulate their economies. Annually, an estimated 6 million 4-H families vacation in the United States and collectively spend more than $1 billion. The other purpose is drawing rural teens into community service projects that will involve them in community planning. In addition, 4-H youth and the state seniors’ health insurance counseling office teamed up at the North Dakota State Fair to teach hundreds of senior citizens how to use the Web to learn more about Medicare. (2004 Annual Highlights - Angie Milakovic)

On March 10, the Beef Systems Center of Excellence gained momentum when the North Dakota Association of Rural Electric Cooperatives signed a $1 million USDA grant to establish an Agriculture Innovation Center. The center’s first project is the Beef Systems Center of Excellence. The plan is to provide leadership and expertise to develop a vertically coordinated beef processing industry in North Dakota. According to the Extension beef cattle specialist, if North Dakota fed and processed 500,000 head of beef cattle annually, the direct additional contribution to the economy would be $300 million. There are no large-scale slaughter facilities in North Dakota, South Dakota or Montana. (2004 Annual Highlights - Greg Lardy)

More than 50 producers have enrolled in the North Dakota Dairy Diagnostic program. Participants rely on a team of experts they choose for advice on improving productivity, efficiency and profitability, as well as reducing costs, labor and herd health problems. In a demonstration project, one dairy producer and participant increased annual income from his 45-cow herd by more than $20,000 by using hay grown by a commercial alfalfa grower instead of hay grown on his farm. The producer’s hay had a relative feed value of about 105 while the purchased hay at $80 per ton had an RFV of about 155. The increased milk production more than paid for the purchased hay. (2004 Annual Highlights - J.W. Schroeder and Andrew Swenson)

Outdoor Skills is one of the fastest growing 4-H programs in North Dakota. Introduced in 2000-01, the Outdoor Skills program includes shooting sports and about a dozen project areas such as waterfowl, wildlife and bird identification, designing and making outdoor clothing, outdoor cookery, safe and ethical fishing skills and outdoor survival. In 2003, the Outdoor Skills program reached about 1,750 North Dakota youth and 220 volunteers who donated the equivalent of $74,000 in time. Seventeen counties reported county programs. (2004 Annual Highlights - Joe Courneya and Al Ulmer)

In partnership with engineers in Dickinson, an area Extension agronomist and a retired assistant director of the Dickinson Research Extension Center designed a cross-slot no-till drill for demonstration and research plots. The drill allowed them to properly place seed and fertilizer in high- and low-residue situations and wet or dry and hard or soft soil conditions. The drill utilized new technology for low-disturbance seeding and fertilizer. The cross-slot drill is only one component of the DREC’s mission, Maka Glu Tecaya, which means renewal of the earth through sustainable practices. (2004 Annual Highlights - Roger Ashley)

An Extension specialist and an associate professor in Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering received a patent this year for a sugar sensor they developed.  The sensor was the result of work they were doing to develop a method of measuring sugarbeet yields in the field. The Sugarbeet Research and Education Board of Minnesota and North Dakota partially funded their research. The sensor is capable of providing an instantaneous reading of the sugar content in sugarbeets. It combines near-infrared technology with statistical software to give producers a reliable analysis. (2004 Annual Highlights - Vern Hofman)

A recent survey indicates the greatest annual percentage increase in North Dakota land values since the late 1970s. Calculations were based on surveys conducted by the North Dakota Agricultural Statistics Service in January 2004. The numbers mark the fourth consecutive year of increased land values after slight declines in 1998 and 1999. The strongest increases occurred in the southeast central region, where average cropland values increased 17 percent to $549 per acre and in the northeast central region, with a 13 percent increase to $470. The values in the southwest central region at $370, the northwest region at $358, the south Red River Valley at $1,059, and the southwest region at $333 represented increases of 6 percent to 10 percent from the previous year. Cropland value in northwest central increased 3 percent to $430, and the north Red River Valley showed a 2 percent increase to $752. Although North Dakota crop land values are approaching the all-time high of about $530 per acre set in 1981, in constant dollars (after adjusting for inflation), current values are about half of 1981 levels. (2004 Annual Highlights - Andrew Swenson)

Beef 101: From Calves to Carcasses was recognized with a Program Excellence Award. Extension team members were Lisa Pederson, Greg Lardy, Kurt Froelich, Cami Metzger, Jesse Handegard, Sandy Erickson, Ron Beneda, Jackie Buckley and Deb Tanner. This hands-on, three-session course taught cow-calf, seed stock and feedlot producers how to capture values at all levels of beef cattle marketing. Professionals from meat markets, custom processing, education and the beef industry also participated.

Agricultural Biosecurity was recognized with a Program Excellence Award. Extension team members were Becky Koch, Lisa Pederson, Marcia McMullen, Kris Ringwall, Charlie Stoltenow, Cheryl Biller and Deb Tanner. Extension agents may be the first detectors of suspicious animal and plant problems in the field. Extension teamed with the North Dakota State Board of Animal Health to teach agents and Research Extension Center staff about their roles in emergency management, foreign animal diseases, plant diagnostic networks and similar topics. The program was delivered at a daylong training at Western North Dakota 4-H Camp near Washburn.

Building Life Skills for Diet and Exercise was recognized with a Program Excellence Award. Extension team member was Rita Ussatis. This program challenged fourth through sixth graders to increase their involvement in healthful lifestyles such as better nutrition and less soda pop, and more physical activity and less television watching. A companion family newsletter encouraged weekly family goal setting and incentives.

Grants of $100,000+ Received

Data unavailable.

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