Weather Forecast


Will's Windmill - Corn colleges for crop producers Dec. 19-20

Corn Colleges will be held on Wed., Dec. 19, on the University of Minnesota Crookston campus and on Thursday, Dec. 20, 2007 at Minnesota State University- Moorhead campus. The Corn Colleges involve in-depth, hands-on workshops designed for corn producers featuring top extension and research specialists from the University of Minnesota and North Dakota State University.

The Corn College is being co-sponsored by the University of Minnesota Extension Service; the Northwest Research and Outreach Center; the University of Minnesota, Crookston; Minnesota State University-Moorhead (MSUM); and the Minnesota Corn Growers Association.

Registrations for both Corn College in Crookston will be handled by the Extension Regional Center in Crookston. There is a $40 pre-registration fee or $50 at the door if you do not pre-register. Pre-registration deadline is Dec. 14. Lunch will be served at noon. Contact Jolene Pedersen, Extension Regional Center, Crookston at 218-281-8027 or toll free at 1-888-241-0781 (or by e-mail, if you plan to attend.

The workshops at each location begin at 8:30 a.m. with a presentation on Corn: Food, Fuel and Feed by Marcia Taylor from DTN, the leading provider of real-time market, news and weather information services for agricultural and energy markets. The rest of the morning and early afternoon will rotate lectures and laboratories.

Lecture topics include: Corn Storage with Ken Hellevang, NDSU Extension engineer; Cost of Corn Production with Bret Oelke and Bill Craig, U of MN Extension educators; Genetics and Agronomy with Zach Fore, Pioneer; Alternative Feeds with Greg Lardy, Livestock Specialist, NDSU; Grazing with Ryan Walker and Vince Crary, U of MN Extension Educators.

Lab topics include: Weed Control with Jeff Gunsolus, U of MN Extension Weed Scientist; Growth Staging Corn with Dave Nicolai, and Phil Glogoza, U of MN Extension educators; Corn Fertility with John Lamb, U of MN Extension soil scientist, and Russ Severson, Extension Educator; Silage production with Greg Lardy, Livestock Specialist, NDSU.

If you have questions about the Corn Colleges, please contact Doug Holen, regional Extension educator, at 1-888-241-0843 or contact me, Will Yliniemi, Hubbard/Becker County Extension educator at 1-218-732-3391, 1-218-846-7328 or by cell at 1-218-252-1042; you can also reach me by e-mail at:

Feeding livestock during cold weather

Proper feeding of livestock during cold weather is an important management consideration, particularly here in northern Minnesota. Given the area's ability for severe weather during the winter, it is essential to know how to feed your animals during this period. Animals exposed to cold weather require more energy to maintain their body reserves and to maintain their body temperatures.

As a rule of thumb, total digestible nutrient requirements increase about 1 percent for each degree that the wind chill is below 20 degrees Fahrenheit. You should adjust your ration in the colder winter months to accommodate this need for more energy. Having plenty of fresh, high quality feed available is critical during these cold winter months.

There are also other management practices that you can do to provide your animals with the extra help they need to get through the cold winter. First, if your animals are outside, provide windbreaks and shelters to reduce wind exposure, moisture, and muddy conditions. Secondly, during severe winter weather, provide extra bedding as an insulation layer for your animals so they won't have direct contact with the frozen ground.

Lastly, animals will naturally seek shelter from severe weather if it is available to them. By having plenty of fresh, high quality feed available to meet the animals' needs, and providing adequate livestock shelter, your animals will be able to survive the long cold winter much like you do inside your home.

Upcoming workshops and ag events

• High Tunnel Greenhouse Workshop in Detroit Lakes: Dec. 13, 8:30 a.m. in the Detroit Lakes Holiday Inn. For more information, contact Larry Zilliox, 1-320-762-3890.

• Corn Colleges - Intensive All Day Training Session for Corn Producers: Dec. 19, University of Minnesota-Crookston campus; Dec. 20, Minnesota State University-Moorhead campus. For more information, contact Doug Holen, 1-888-241-0843.

• Private Pesticide Applicator Workshops for PPAT License Renewal: Jan. 24, 10:30 a.m., County Office Building, New York Mills; Jan. 31, 12:30 p.m., Holiday Inn, Alexandria; Feb. 4, 1 p.m., Hawley Community Center; Feb. 15, 9 a.m., Government Services Buliding, Fergus Falls. For more information, contact Phil Glogoza, 1-888-241-4527.

• Central Minnesota Irrigation Clinic & Annual Meeting: Jan. 31, Park Rapids. For more information, contact Will Yliniemi at 1-218-252-1042.

• Forage Day - A Workshop for Livestock and Forage Producers: Feb. 12, 9 a.m., Detroit Lakes Holiday Inn. For more information, contact Will Yliniemi at 1-218-252-1042.

• Pasture Irrigation - A Workshop on Irrigating Pasture for Dairy: Feb. 19, Pelican Rapids Library; Feb. 26, Wolf Lake Lions Hall. For information, contact Will Yliniemi at 1-218-252-1042, or Vince Crary at 1-218-385-3000.