Cotton farmers plagued by deer

In Southeast Farm Press

In recent years, many growers have noticed an increasing incidence of deer feeding in young cotton. There are many theories as to why this may be occurring now relative to years prior.

The most common theories are the loss of aldicarb applied in-furrow for thrips and nematode control, major reductions in peanut acreage in the early to mid-2000s, and the resulting absence of preferred food sources during that time. The number of deer feeding complaints in cotton has risen sharply in the last five years; however, these cases are relatively isolated to fields that regularly encounter noticeably high numbers of deer and fields in close proximity to preferred bedding habitat. Continue reading

Wild hogs continue to be a nuisance for farmers

In Delta Farm Press

Rooting and wallowing by wild hogs cause extensive land and crop damage, which can be stopped only by getting rid of the invasive animals.

Bill Hamrick, a wildlife associate with the Mississippi State University Extension Service, said wild hogs use their snouts to turn over soil as they search for food. Continue reading

The best window of time to trap wild pigs is about to close

by Adam Russell, Texas A&M AgriLife

Wild pigs are most vulnerable to trapping before food and forages become more available in the spring, said a Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service expert.

Dr. Billy Higginbotham, AgriLife Extension wildlife specialist, Overton, said most acorns have either been consumed or are rotting on the ground now, and wild pigs are searching for alternative food sources. Continue reading

Registration open for Ohio River Valley Woodlands and Wildlife Workshop

by Carol Lea Spence, University of Kentucky

The Ohio River Valley Woodlands and Wildlife Workshop returns to Kentucky on March 25.

This year’s workshop, a tri-state event covering Kentucky, Indiana and Ohio, will be held in the Boone County Cooperative Extension Enrichment Center in Burlington. Forestry experts will provide an array of forestry- and wildlife-related educational sessions to help woodland owners get the most from their properties. Continue reading

University of Florida works with snake hunters to remove invasive pythons

In Southeast Farm Press

The University of Florida’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences and the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission are working together on unique projects to target Burmese pythons in Florida. Two projects include using detection dogs and Irula tribesmen to help remove pythons from environmentally sensitive areas.

In their first eight days on the job, the Irula tribesmen — world-renowned snake catchers from India — removed 13 pythons, including four on their first visit to Crocodile Lake National Wildlife Refuge on North Key Largo in partnership with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Traditionally, the main occupation of the Irula tribe has been catching snakes. They have successfully hunted and captured Indian pythons in their home province of Tamil Nadu. Continue reading

Texas A&M entities helping understand, monitor Chagas disease

To keep both animals and humans protected from Chagas disease, Texas A&M University System entities have been studying the parasite-host-vector interaction at sites in South Central Texas.

Chagas is the common name for a disease transmitted by insects and animals that can cause severe symptoms, even death, in humans. It is responsible for an estimated 50,000 deaths annually in Latin American countries, according to the World Health Organization. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimate 8 to 11 million people throughout Latin America have the disease, the majority of whom do not even realize they are infected.

Continue reading