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ISSUE DATE: 06/02/2014

Lesser prairie-chicken recovery effort begins

By Larry Dreiling

When the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service March 27 announced the final listing of the lesser prairie-chicken as threatened under the Endangered Species Act, it was not unexpected.

After all, the population of the lesser prairie-chicken has dropped 84 percent from its highest numbers. Between 2012 and 2013, the population dropped about 50 percent to a record low of 17,616 birds across Texas, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Kansas and Colorado, the lesser prairie-chicken’s historical range of native grasslands and prairies. The states’ conservation plan has a population goal of 67,000 birds rangewide, a USFWS statement said.

A “threatened” listing means the species is likely to become in danger of extinction within the foreseeable future; it is a step below “endangered” under the ESA and allows for more flexibility in how the Act’s protections are implemented.

Also announced was a final special rule under section 4(d) of the ESA that will limit regulatory impacts on landowners and businesses from this listing.

“In recognition of the significant and ongoing efforts of states and landowners to conserve the lesser prairie-chicken, this unprecedented use of a special 4(d) rule will allow the five range states to continue to manage conservation efforts for the species and avoid further regulation of activities such as oil and gas development and utility line maintenance that are covered under the Western Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies’ (WAFWA) rangewide conservation plan,” a USFWS statement said.


NEWS

Century-old sod wall highlight for researchers, students
Gov. Sam Brownback signs bill objecting to federal action on lesser prairie-chicken
House ag funding bill considered
Insects represent a link for antibiotic resistance traits
KDA kicks off annual photo contest
Panel outlines global food challenges
Researchers on the trail of fire ant pheromones
Rural Development invests $244M in Nebraska
Six inducted into Tyrus R. Timm Honor Registry at San Antonio event
USDA releases final 2012 Ag Census Report
Worth the weight: Economist discusses value of gain projections for feeder cattle, beef herd expansi

CROPS

A budding threat: Palmer amaranth spreads in Midwest fields
Biodiesel producers hit hard by policy uncertainty
Economist urges producers to consider renegotiating cash rental rates
Free webinars for water well owners on well construction, fracking
Hoffman Harvesting's preparation is year-round project
Iowa State University crops team places second
Kansas Grain Sorghum Commission, Association join in cooperative agreement
Kansas Water Authority meets in Garden City
Lesser prairie-chicken recovery effort begins
MGGA and MGF award 2014 scholarships
New NRCS report: Use of no-till is on the rise but not statewide in South Dakota
Oklahoma Farm Bureau calls on state legislators to pass drilling tax agreement
Osowski team to begin northward trek
Plants may need hand-pollination to set fruit
Potato pest dissected for clues to better controlling it
Texas sunflower production doubles
UNL to host New Crop Technology Conference
Wheat Plot Tour planned near Belleville
Women in Denim Conference planned
Yearly survey shows better results for pollinators, but losses remain significant
Z Crew understands the challenge ahead

LIVESTOCK

10 students awarded KLF Youth in Agriculture scholarships
Beef Improvement Federation meeting to celebrate 50th anniversary of USMARC
Cattle temperament linked to feedlot performance
Demand trumps meat prices
Early weaning may help winter-worn cows and new calves
Gelbvieh '$Cow' provides maternal productivity selection index
Grazing sheep may help control spread of noxious weed
Jeff Mafi joins the American Angus Association
Meat prices continue to rise for producers, consumers
Newly released FSIS inspection report shows 'significant flaws' in Brazil's food safety inspectio
President Krebs testifies on Capitol Hill
Sioux County Open Youth Horse Judging set for June 20
Texas BEEF Team promotes beef throughout state

EDITOR

All Aboard Wheat Harvest prepares for launch
Immigration stagnation
Keeping an eye on the future of Colorado agriculture

COLUMNS

A close shave
EPA approves herbicide designed for sugarbeets
Lawmakers come together to update ailing infrastructure
Leaving their marks on the world
Precision potassium fertilizer unveiled by company
Some areas received a dose of beneficial rain
Start smart with breakfast
Universal flange clamp launched

MARKETS

Arkansas livestock auction summary
Dodge City livestock sales report
Drought-stricken counties receive some rain Nebraska
Georgia livestock auction summary
Grain market close
Hay prices steady, light demand in some areas
Hay trade active
High Plains slaughter news report
Most parts of state see rainfall Texas
OKC West livestock sales report
Pratt 3 p.m. cattle sales report
Pratt livestock auction report
Salina livestock auction report
Soybeans have sharp losses
Springfield dairy heifer sales report
Topsoil moisture ratings improve Kansas
Warm temperatures allow soybean planting to progress Missouri
Warm temperatures allow soybean planting to progress Missouri
West Plains regional cattle sales report
Woodward livestock sales report

RANGE

Alfalfa weevil survived winter, larvae threaten first-cutting hay
Extension specialist: May hay is OK
Getting hay equipment ready for the new season
Plant warm-season annuals to boost pastures' productivity

FAMILY

Composting for homeowners
Control rabbits in the garden
Cowboys compete in ranch rodeo scramble
Dover's facade classic, eye appealing
Eating cookie dough
Food safety scientists double up on ground beef testing this summer
Independent woman
Kansas Sampler Festival sees record attendance
Keep pets in mind when making emergency plans
Meditation
National Land and Range Judging held
Purple Flash named Texas Superstar
Resilient families better able to cope with crisis

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