SDSU Extension Takes a Multi-State Approach to Avian Influenza Education & Outreach for Families

BROOKINGS, S.D. – In response to the recent Avian Influenza outbreak, SDSU Extension launched a multi-state approach to providing research-based information and resources to families.

“By leveraging our resources and strategically sharing information with families throughout South Dakota, Minnesota and Iowa we are able to provide daily updates and recommendations,” said Suzanne Stluka, SDSU Extension Food & Families Program Director of the cooperative project with Iowa State University Extension and University of Minnesota Extension

Together, extension staff from the three Land Grant Universities will provide families with information on everything from food safety education and stretching food dollars as the cost of eggs and poultry increases to implementing strategies to manage a family’s finances and stress during tough times.

“Avian Influenza has had a very real impact on families – while our SDSU Extension counterparts are working to address producer issues – this group will focus on the families struggling with the human challenges brought on by Avian Influenza,” Stluka explained. “Whether that is ensuring families are implementing the proper food safety techniques when preparing eggs and poultry, the loss of employment or dealing with seeing their food budget increase, as eggs, which are traditionally an inexpensive protein source, have more than doubled in price.”

SDDOT Distributing Highway Funds to Local Governments

PIERRE, S.D. – The South Dakota Department of Transportation will be distributing $12.5 million in state highway funds to local governments by the end of June 2015. The funds will go to counties and cities with populations above 5,000, also known as Class 1 cities.

“This past legislative session, Gov. Daugaard not only led the effort to increase funding for state highways, but to lessen the restrictions on how local governments use highway funds,” Transportation Secretary Darin Bergquist said.

In previous years, the federal Surface Transportation Program (STP) funds that were allocated to each of the counties and Class 1 cities had many restrictions and could only be used on federal-aid eligible projects let to bid through the DOT. These restrictions resulted in several counties and cities accumulating their allocations for years until they were able to use the money on allowable projects.

The annual allocation is now being given to the local governments in the form of state highway funds that can be used on any road or bridge repair or maintenance.

Starting in September, the department will begin issuing checks to replace the accumulated STP balances with state highway funds.

For more information on the program, contact Doug Kinniburgh at 605-773-4284.

Opportunity Scholarship Positively Impacts Degree Completion

Since 2004, when the merit-based South Dakota Opportunity Scholarship was first awarded, observers have credited the scholarship with keeping students in college and completing a degree. Now there are new data to prove that point.

An analysis by the South Dakota Board of Regents looked at 2,652 students from South Dakota high schools who began a bachelor’s degree program in fall 2008 at one of the six state universities. Six years after initially enrolling, nearly nine in 10 students (88.5 percent) who received a South Dakota Opportunity Scholarship either had graduated or were still enrolled in a postsecondary institution.

For students who did not receive or did not qualify for the scholarship, only six in 10 students had similarly persisted.

Monitoring Herd Performance

By Warren Rusche, SDSU Extension cow/calf field specialist

Profit or loss in a cow/calf operation depends a great deal on the reproductive efficiency of the herd. For obvious reasons herds that have a high percentage of cows that settle early in the breeding season and deliver live calves are much more likely to be profitable.

Successful and profitable reproduction involves a number of key components. Factors such as pregnancy rates, calf death loss, and culling rates all play a role. Just as a chain is only as strong as the weak link, a problem in one area can undo exceptional results in another. The challenge is keeping track of the data and then using that information to drive management decisions.

‘Jurassic’ movie has giant animals; Lenkers have giant plants

dave lenker reaches high2

By Dan Merritt, Advocate reporter

“Jurassic World” movie, recently released, shows gigantic reptiles lumbering around the countryside.

In town, in Winner, there are gigantic rose plants 15-feet tall and probably higher at the David and Pat Lenker home, southwest Winner.

The rose blooms tower high, nestled among the foliage of cedar evergreens. The trees support the rose plants as they stretch upward.

“They want to climb to the sky! We’ll stand back and see,” Pat observed.

When she and her husband put five “little shrub” plants, they said, into the soil at the back of their lot near a neighbor’s cedar trees in 2001, it wasn’t known they were climbing roses.

But the plants kept getting taller. “When they met the trees, they went up,” Pat commented.

Through 14 winters. Normally, other flowering rose plants on their place have to be covered in winter to protect against freezing.

But the Lenkers’ towering bavily (or possibly baffin) rose plants can’t be covered.

For some reason, exposed to winter cold, they have continued to survive. And thrive in the summers.

“We’ve never done anything, they just stay alive. That’s an unusual trait,” Pat noted.

The freakishly tall plants sport numerous blooms — in the hundreds, maybe thousands, said Dave.

Former business owner dies in plane crash

The former owner of a crop spraying business in Winner died Monday, June 8, in a plane crash outside of Kadoka.

Joseph Schneller, 49, Keystone, owned Semper Fi Aviation in Winner for a couple of years.

Schneller was a former Rapid City police officer and a U.S. Marine.

According to a story in the Rapid City Journal, Schneller had just taken off from the Kadoka Municipal Airport at 4:18 p.m. in his alfalfa crop dusting plane when the aircraft apparently had a mechanical failure said Jackson County sheriff Ray Clements Jr.

Witnesses saw the plane rising, then saw the right wing dip suddenly.

The plane crashed across the road from the airport along a sports field fence on the east side of town.

Federal investigators reviewed the crash site June 8 to determine the cause of the crash.

‘New’ year means another photo together for kidney transplant brothers

BartlesBy Dan Merritt, Advocate reporter

April’s over and it’s into a new year for brothers Lane and Troy Bartels — the former of Sioux Falls and the latter at Los Angeles, Calif.

They know that at some point in the coming year it will be time again for THE PHOTO. A shot of them together, probably at Christmas at the home of their folks Ray and Judy Bartels, rural Winner.

The photo must be taken by their mother, according to the two men now ages 33 and 43 respectively. No “selfie” — a phone-photograph taken by either one of them as they stand side by side and then e-mailed to mom.

“It’s kind of like the first day of school picture,” Troy noted. Something that only a mother can do, when she takes a photo of her school-age children heading-out to their nearest educational centers.

Yes, it’s definitely a mom photo to take, Lane agreed. “It’s what she does.”

Winner Teeners take 7th place

teener brozik sturgis

Winner Teeners took seventh place in the local Teener tournament this weekend at Leahy Bowl.

In Sunday’s game, Winner defeated Bon Homme 11-3.

The local Teeners rattled off six runs early in the game. Bon Homme got on the scoreboard in the third inning.

Kayleb Brozik was the winning pitcher.

Winner opened the tournament facing Sturgis. Sturgis won the game 15-8 in extra innings.
Riley Calhoon tied the game at 6-6 on his score in the fourth inning. Winner took an 8-6 lead won a score by Jordan Turgeon. In the 7th inning, Sturgis scored two runs to tie the game at 8-8.

Nick Lantz was the losing pitcher.

Valentine defeated Winner 7-5.

Carter Brickman was the losing pitcher.

Legion defeats Gregory

baseball page holden thiemanWinner/Colome Legion baseball team defeated Gregory 11-4 Friday in Winner.

“I thought we did a great job of hitting the ball, especially after struggling in our previous game,” said coach Drew Weber.  “The whole lineup contributed in some way and that is a big key for us moving forward.  Trevor threw a fantastic game for his first time out this year. We were solid defensively,” said the coach.

Pheasants defeat Alexandria

Winner/Colome amateur baseball team won the second game of doubleheader against Alexandria Saturday afternoon.

The Pheasants won the Sunshine League game 11-10. In the 9th inning, Austin Calhoon got a walk off base hit scoring Drew Weber for the win.

“It was a nice walk off win over a good team,” said coach Kevin Graesser. “All players contributed to this win,” he said.

In the first game, Winner/Colome lost 7-5.

Weber was the losing pitcher.