Public Lands Council to meet

Public Lands Council members from across the West will gather in Pendleton, Ore., Sept. 12-15.

They will tackle such issues as grazing rights, grazing fees, national monuments, and wild horse and burro management. Speakers will include those from the Natural Resources Committee, the Heritage Foundation, the Wild Horse and Burro Advisory Board and more.

For more information: www.publiclandscouncil.org

Group bets on new members

Idaho Cattle Association President-elect Charles Lyons is offering up a challenge for the group's membership drive, which runs Sept. 1 through Nov. 15.

Lyons is so confident that he will be able to recruit more members than anyone else that Percy Ranch, Mountain Home, has bet $500 on it. The top recruiter will receive $500 cash.

For more information: www.idahocattle.org or 208-343-1615.

Beef field day set for Salmon

SALMON, Idaho -- Developing a Wagyu beef program to cater to niche markets will be one of the topics during the annual field day planned at The Nancy M. Cummings Research, Extension and Education Center Sept. 17.

The 1,100-acre Cummings Center is one of the nation's largest research facilities devoted to pasture-based beef-cattle production. It began operation a decade ago through donations from the Auen Foundation and the Idaho Cattle Association.

The field day will begin with registration at 9:30 a.m. at the center, which is the former Hot Springs Ranch, eight miles north of Salmon along U.S. Highway 93.

Presentations will include summer annual test plots, a managed-grazing project, sexed-semen study, vaccination programs and nutrition. Ranch tours will conclude the field day.

Lunch is provided. For more information, contact John Hall or Judy Skinner at the Cummings Center at 208-756-2749 or jbhall@uidaho.edu

Conservation loan limit raised

A low-interest loan program aimed at helping Idaho ag producers implement conservation projects on their farms and ranches has increased its loan limits.

The revolving loan fund known as the Resource Conservation and Rangeland Development Program will offer loans up to $200,000, an increase from the previous limit of $125,000.

The fund is administered by the Idaho Soil and Water Conservation Commission.

The commission has more than 200 current loans and hopes to see additional applications with the increase in funding, said chairman Bill Flory, a grain producer from Winchester.

"The commission's loan program is a tremendous avenue for farmers and ranchers to find the capital to meet their conservation goals," Flory said in a press release.

Interest rates on the loans vary from 3 to 5 percent, depending on the length of the loan.

Interested applicants may now apply for a single loan of up to $200,000, but cannot exceed a total of $300,000 in total loans per individual.

Applications received before Oct. 15 will be reviewed by the commission during a Nov. 17 meeting in Burley.

For more information: info@swc.idaho.gov or 208-332-1790.

Grandin movie nets awards

"Temple Grandin," the HBO movie based on the life of the animal science expert who overcame autism to pioneer humane treatment for cattle, received five awards Aug. 29 during the 62nd annual Primetime Emmy Awards presented by the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences in Los Angeles.

The movie was honored as best TV movie and Claire Danes, who portrayed Grandin, was honored as best actress in a TV miniseries or movie.

Grandin teaches at Colorado State University and travels widely to speak on animal welfare and autism. She is also a consultant for Food Alliance, improving the group's criteria as a third-party certifier of sustainable animal agriculture.

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