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BSE and Food Safety

Posted: 10/27/2006 - The delay in re-opening the U.S.-Canadian border to the transport of live cattle has sparked more discussion about mad cow disease, or bovine spongiform encephalopathy. We talked with a meat scientist at Texas A&M who says the USDA has done a good job responding to the BSE threat to insure the safety of our domestic beef supply.

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Boll Weevil Eradication part 2

Posted: 10/27/2006 - The Boll Weevil eradication program that began in the Fall of 2002 has been, by almost all measures, a resounding success, but while the numbers of weevils have been significantly reduced, the insect has not yet been eradicated. Farmers in the southern blacklands zone have a vote coming up on whether or not to continue the program.

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Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point Systems

Posted: 10/27/2006 - Principles used in food safety today employ a number of ideas that date back to when canning became popular, but the first hazardous analysis and critical control point systems were developed by NASA to use when astronauts began spending extended lengths of time in space. Haccp (pronounced Hassip) is a process control system for preventing food safety problems before they become issues.

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Stress in Cattle

Posted: 10/27/2006 - Stress has a negative impact on the health of human beings so it's not surprising that it would have some of the same effects on livestock, and that is becoming an area of concern for beef producers.

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The Texas Legislature In Session

Posted: 10/27/2006 - The Texas Legislature is in session and although school finance is capturing most of the headlines, there are a lot of issues on the table. We talked with Governor Rick Perry and Texas Ag Commissioner Susan Combs about how Texas agriculture was faring.

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The Texas Legislature In Session

Posted: 10/27/2006 - With the Texas legislature in session, over five thousand bills have been filed, several dealing with animal rights or cruelty to animals. We talked with state representative Rick Hardcastle, whose house committee on agriculture and livestock will decide if any of these bills make it to the house floor.

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The Texas Legislature In Session

Posted: 10/27/2006 - Water has been a big issue in the last two legislative sessions and 2005 is no exception. Representative Robert Puente, Chairman of the House Committee on Natural Resources says ground water districts all over the state are making decisions on whether or not water can be moved from their districts. He also said that one thing he found out in the last session was that the legislature needed to know more about water to be able to write good legislation.

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The Texas Horse Industry/Economic Impact

Posted: 10/27/2006 - As of January 1st, 2005, there were 743,000 registered horses scattered across Texas. When you factor in the grade or unregistered horses, it brings the state's estimated horse population up to approximately 1.2 million head. We talked with with Pete Gibbs, a horse specialist with Texas Cooperative Extension about the economic impact the horse industry has on Texas.

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Cutting Horses

Posted: 10/27/2006 - Smart breeders of any type of animal usually try to start with good genetics, but when it comes to developing a superior cutting horse, genetics is only the beginning.

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Horse Racing

Posted: 10/27/2006 - We continue our look at our state's horse industry by turning our attention to horse racing, which is one of the sectors of the industry that makes the horse business big business in Texas.

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Horse Racing

Posted: 10/27/2006 - In this From the Ground Up, we take another look at horse racing. Many people spend a lifetime looking for that one special horse with an often intangible characteristic that makes it a winner.

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The Texas Beef Council

Posted: 10/27/2006 - The Texas Beef Council was created as a result of the 1985 Beef Promotion and Research Act and is made up of a 20 member board representing nine different Texas cattle and beef organizations. One of the beef council's chief responsibilities is to insure compliance with the beef check-off program that requires that one dollar be collected from the proceeds of the sale of every beef animal, and that money be pooled to enhance the markets for U.S. beef.

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Cattle Theft

Posted: 10/27/2006 - Last year theft investigators for the Texas and Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association recovered a little over four million dollars worth of stolen property that included about twenty five hundred head of cattle. Out of the approximately five million head of cattle in Texas, one and a half million are located in the region that includes and surrounds Brazos county, and apparently the old art of cattle rustling is alive and well.

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Brazos Bottom Cotton Crop

Posted: 10/27/2006 - Extreme heat, cold, drought, floods, sleet, or hail. These are all part of the bag of trials and tribulations mother nature can throw at agricultural producers. Last May parts of the Brazos bottom received 11 inches of rain. This past May some the same places didn't get any.

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Beef Market After BSE

Posted: 10/27/2006 - The twelve year old cow that was confirmed as the first domestic case if bovine spongiform encephalopathy, or BSE, has caused quite a stir in the media, but for the beef market it turned out to be only a small blip on the radar screen.

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Animal ID

Posted: 10/27/2006 - The National Animal Identification System is being developed to identify specific animals in the United States and record their movement over their lifespans. Its goal is to enable 48-hour traceback of any diseased or exposed animal. The most recent case of bovine spongiform encephalopathy or BSE has put a spotlight on animal ID.

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Natural Resources Conservation Service

Posted: 10/27/2006 - The National Resources Conservation Service was created back in 1935 when attitudes about conservation were a little different than they are today. Today the NRCS exists to help private landowners in their efforts to preserve the land and its natural resources.

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Feral Hogs/History

Posted: 10/27/2006 - Part of the challenge of working in agriculture is the adversity Ag Producers face year end and year out. Farmers and ranchers alike battle disease, insects, and of course the weather, all frequent topics of discussion. One growing problem we've not touched on is the feral hog.

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Feral Hogs/Economic Impact

Posted: 10/27/2006 - We often hear about the economic impact that insects, disease, or the weather has on agriculture, but there's another pest that's leaving its mark on farmers and ranchers alike...the feral hog.

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Feral Hogs/Texas Wildlife Services

Posted: 10/27/2006 - Texas is home to about half of the U.S. feral hog population estimated to be around two million, and they are making their presence felt in several different ways all over the state.

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Brazos Bottom Milo/Soybeans

Posted: 10/27/2006 - Farmers face challenges in every phase of production and as our growing season comes to an end, August rains are hampering Brazos Valley farmers' initial efforts to harvest crops.

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Irrigation Systems

Posted: 10/27/2006 - These days it's generally accepted that water is becoming a more and more valuable resource with each passing day. Cities, industries, and agricultural producers are more apt than ever to be looking for efficient ways to use this precious resource. While advances in technology can radically change the way we do certain things, many times it's expensive to implement.

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4H Clubs

Posted: 10/27/2006 - 4-h clubs have been around for a while and through the years we’ve talked with many kids about their various projects. There has been one constant theme throughout all the interviews. 4-h instills confidence and teaches responsibility, record keeping skills, and money management, and all of the young people spoke very favorably about the program.

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Grassland Conservation

Posted: 10/27/2006 - Soil and water conservation districts exist all over the state providing advice to land owners on sound conservation practices. We talked with a rancher in Richards that took a worn out piece of crop land and through the years has turned it into a high quality forage producing cattle ranch.

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September Heat

Posted: 10/27/2006 - The record breaking temperatures we've been enduring for the past ten or so days have taken their toll on area pasture grasses. Already suffering from drought conditions, some ranchers have had to begin feeding their cattle.

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