AG News

OSU Extension Certifying Youth in Machine Safety

A Tractor Safety and Machinery Operation certification course for youth has been scheduled for Wednesday evenings from February 1 through March 8 through OSU Extension.  March 15 is a possible make-up day in the event of inclement weather.  The six sessions will go from 6:00-9:00 pm in the OSU Extension office Spark Lab, 1021 W Lima Street, Kenton.  There will be an exam at the conclusion of the course, along with a hands-on operation skills course component that is planned for Saturday, March 18 at the Hardin County Fairgrounds as part of the Community Farm Safety Day planned by Farm Bureau.  This certification course is recommended for youth ages 14-15 who will be operating farm machinery either on their parents’ farm or someone else’s farm.  Individuals successfully completing the course will receive a certification card.  Other ages can observe the class, but are not able to be certified until age 14.  Older youth can participate at the recommendation of their parent or employer.


The six sessions will include Introduction: Overview of agriculture, types of risks, and regulations related to agricultural safety and health; Safety Basics: Youth safety and risk, appropriate clothing and personal protective equipment (PPE), warning signs, hand signals, and basic first aid; Agricultural Hazards: Hazards associated with machinery, animals, pesticides, electricity, confined spaces, and farm chemicals; The Tractor: Comprehensive overview of the tractor, including but not limited to tractor types, hazards, controls, lightning, and starting and operating a tractor; Connecting and Using Implements with the Tractor: Various types of implements, such as drawbars, three-point hitches, and how they are connected and used with the tractor; and Materials Handling: Skid steers, all-terrain vehicles (ATVs), and utility vehicles.


The U.S. Department of Labor’s Agricultural Hazardous Occupations Orders (AgHOs) regulation prohibits 14 and 15-year-olds from operating farm tractors and attached powered equipment unless (1) they are working on a farm owned/operated by their parent or legal guardian, or (2) the youth has successfully completed an approved safe tractor and machinery operation-training program.  General information regarding tractor and machinery certification for Extension educators, high school ag instructors, parents, and employers can be found at  Education and training on safe operation is always encouraged, even if it is not legally required.

Registration for the Tractor Safety and Machinery Operation course for Youth needs to be completed by January 18 by calling the Hardin County Extension office at 419-674-2297 to ensure enough time to order manuals.  The cost to participate is $40 for the course, which includes manuals, handouts, certification card, and refreshments.  The course will be taught by Agriculture and Natural Resources Extension Educator Mark Badertscher with possible assistance from Hardin County Agricultural Education Instructors and Farm Bureau members.  There may be possible scholarships provided by the Hardin County Farm Bureau.  Preference for enrollment will be Hardin County youth, but young people from other counties will be encouraged to enroll with a limit of 25 students.


OSU Extension To Host Agronomy Webinars

Ohio State University Extension announces a series of four webinars available to producers, Certified Crop Advisers, and industry offered throughout January and February 2017.  The Corn, Soybean and Wheat Connection series is scheduled to begin on January 24, 2017 and will focus on issues and updates in grain crop production.  Each webinar will begin at 7:00 p.m. and can be viewed at several host sites across the state or from your home computer.  Certified Crop Adviser credits will be available each evening at physical locations only.


The first session on January 24 will feature Dr. John Fulton and Dr. Elizabeth Hawkins on how to efficiently utilize data from precision agriculture technology to guide farm management decisions.  The second webinar will be held on January 31 and will detail how to assess growing conditions and their impact on ear rots, mycotoxins, and malformation in corn.  This session will be taught by Dr. Peter Thomison, state Corn Production Specialist, OSU Extension and Dr. Pierce Paul, state Corn and Wheat Disease Specialist, OSU Extension.  This January 31 Corn Production and Diseases webinar will be hosted by the Hardin County Extension office, sponsored by Farm Credit Mid-America located in Bellefontaine.


The third webinar will be held on February 21 and will cover improving soil health and utilizing cover crops by Dr. Steve Culman and Dr. Ryan Haden, both from Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center in Wooster.  The final webinar on February 28 will give producers management strategies to increase soybean yield and provide updates on insect trends from 2016.  This session will be taught by Dr. Laura Lindsey, state Soybean & Small Grains Specialist, OSU Extension and Dr. Kelley Tilmon, state Field Crops Entomology Specialist, OSU Extension.


Participants can register to view at host locations by contacting the host directly.  Find a host location near you and a full schedule at  If you prefer to view the webinars at home, you must pre-register one week before each session to receive login information.  You may register online at  If you are interested in viewing the webinars at the Hardin County Extension office, contact Mark Badertscher at 419-674-2297 or  These webinars are on outreach tool of the OSU Extension Agronomic Crops Team.  Each webinar will be recorded and available online one week after the live session.  The location of the recordings will be announced in the C.O.R.N. Newsletter and published at  To subscribe to the newsletter, visit



Conservation Tillage Club Breakfast Series Planned

The 2017 Conservation Tillage Club breakfast program series will begin on Tuesday, January 10 at the Plaza Inn Restaurant in Mt. Victory.  Each session will start at 7:30 am with complimentary buffet breakfast followed by the program at 8:00 am.  Other sessions will be held on January 24, February 7 and 21.


On January 10, the program will feature Dr. John Fulton, Precision Ag & the 4Rs.  Fulton is from The Ohio State University, Department of Food, Agricultural and Biological Engineering.  Fulton has been a national leader in Precision Agriculture, doing research in this area.  His work has him studying drones and aerial imagery to help make management decisions with crop production.  He has also been using variable rate technology and multi-hybrid seeding in plots around Ohio.  He is working on compaction studies and its effect on yields.  His presentation at the Conservation Tillage Club breakfast will focus on using precision ag to determine fertilizer needs and then using equipment technology available to farmers to get the right source of fertilizer applied at the right time, using the correct rate, and the proper placement.


The January 24 program will feature Dr. Jeff Stachler, Agriculture and Natural Resources Extension Educator in Auglaize County.  Stachler received his Ph.D. in Weed Science and has worked out of state before coming back to Ohio to serve as a county extension educator.  Stachler will address New Weed Control Options such as the Roundup Ready 2 Xtend program and other new pesticide programs to help farmers control problem weeds such as marestail, giant ragweed, waterhemp, and Palmer amaranth.  His talk will discuss using fall or spring burndowns, pre-emerge, post-emerge, and use of residuals to help control problem weeds in soybeans and corn.


February 7 Cal Whewell will speak to the Conservation Tillage Club.  He will be presenting the Grain Marketing Outlook, providing area farmers with grain marketing strategies.  Whewell is no stranger in grain marketing circles.  He is a Risk Management Consultant and Regional Director at FC Stone, serving the Toledo area.   FCStone Inc. provides clients across the globe with a comprehensive range of customized financial services and tools to help them protect their margins and manage volatility.  A pioneer in specialized financial services, they open markets for underserved mid-market clients with insight, guidance and access.


The February 21 program will feature Steve Baker, Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) State Soil Scientist speaking about Soil Health.  Baker is a well-known expert on soil health, speaking to audiences about the importance of building soil quality to maximize fertility and improve crop production.  He will discuss various conservation practices that build soil health, while at the same time protect natural resources such as our land and water.  Some of his resources include unlocking the secrets of the soil, soil health and sustainability, and discovering soils from the ground up.  Attendees will gain knowledge of how they can improve their soils, while protecting this most important resource.


The Conservation Tillage Club breakfast program series is jointly sponsored by OSU Extension and the Soil and Water Conservation Districts of Hardin, Logan, and Union Counties, and in cooperation with the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service.  Breakfast is provided by the generous support of agricultural lenders and agricultural businesses.  All events are open to the public and no advance registration is required.  Continuing education credits for Certified Crop Advisers is pending.

For more information about OSU Extension, Hardin County, visit the Hardin County OSU Extension website at, the Hardin County OSU Extension Facebook page or contact Mark Badertscher, at 419-674-2297.


New Animal Drug Laws Begin With New Year

The Veterinary Feed Directive will go into Effect on January 1, 2017 or sooner. There will be changes to the way Over-the-Counter drugs can be used with livestock. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) amended the distribution and use of Veterinary Feed Directive (VFD) drugs and animal feeds containing such drugs.  So what do these federal regulatory changes mean to you and your livestock operation? Well, According to the FDA, the VFD is a “written (nonverbal) statement issued by a licensed veterinarian in the course of the veterinarian’s professional practice that orders the use of a VFD drug or combination VFD drug in or on an animal’s feed”.


How does a Veterinary Feed Directive work?  This written statement authorizes the owner of and caretaker the animal(s) to obtain and use animal feed bearing or containing a VFD drug or combination VFD drug to treat the client’s animals only in accordance with the conditions for use approved by the FDA.


Examples of drugs or products classified as “VFD” are Aureomycin 4G Crumbles (contains chlortetracycline), Scour-Ease Medicated (contains neomycin and oxytetracycline), SAV-A-CALF Scours & Pneumonia Treatment (contains neomycin sulfate and oxytetracycline), and Calf Medic Plus (contains neomycin and oxytetracycline).


Examples of drugs or products classified as “prescription” are L-S 50 Soluble Powder (contains lincomycin and spectinomycin), Sulfamed-G Soluble Powder (contains sulfadimethoxine), Di-Methox Soluble Powder (contains sulfadimethoxine), and Strike III Type B Medicated Feed (contains hygromycin B).

So what are the changes to drugs that livestock producers may have used in the past to manage the health of their livestock?  To be VFD, drugs that you may have purchased in the past as over-the-counter to be included in your feeding program(s) will now require a Veterinary Feed Directive (VFD) from your Veterinarian of Record with whom you have a valid Veterinary-Client-Patent-Relationship (VCPR).  If you are planning to continue using the drug(s) listed as a VFD in your feeding program, a VFD for each drug is required to be able to buy the drug or product.  VFD drugs must be followed exactly as per label.  


To be prescribed, all water soluble antibiotic and sulfa products that were labeled for administration via water will require a written prescription from your Veterinarian of Record with whom you have a Veterinary-Client Patent-Relationship (VCPR).  Livestock producers would need to have the VCPR to be able to buy these drugs or products.  


Cattle, swine, sheep, and poultry as well as other food producing species such as honey bees, fish are included in these new rules from the Food and Drug Administration.  These new changes become effective January 1, 2017 or sooner, depending on when the manufacturer changes the labeling.  Some suppliers that were able to sell these drugs or products in the past may not be able to sell them after January 1, 2017.  Consult your veterinarian for more information or call or OSU Veterinary Extension at 614-292-9453 if you have further questions about how these changes may affect your livestock operation.


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