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Transcript for March 14, 2020

This show includes the following segments: 

  • Beaver County Wildfire Information
  • Wheat Disease Update
  • Mesonet Weather
  • Market Monitor
  • Livestock Marketing
  • Cow-Calf Corner
  • The Importance of Regular Prescribed Burning
  • Food Why



(fast-paced country music)

>>> Hello everyone and welcome to SUNUP!

I'm Lyndall Stout.

Last weekend a fire broke out

along Highway 412 in Beaver County.

The winds blew the fire north 29,000 acres

before firefighters successfully extinguished it on Monday.

Now SUNUP's Dave Deken takes us to Beaver County

to see the damage and to learn

how we can help those affected.


Beaver County Wildfire Information

>>> This past weekend wildfire moved across Beaver County

and Loren, let's talk about how much

of Beaver County was impacted by the fired.

>>> Just a little over 29,000 acres was burnt

and again, the conditions,

they'd been warning for sometime.

winds and low humidities.

It just set up for the perfect type of deal

and it took off and down around Highway 412

and ended up at Beaver there soon after.

>>> And the track has been 18 and then about another five,

so I mean it was a long run of a fire.

>>> It was, it really was.

35, maybe 40 mile an hour gusts

and it was a situation where when they would flank the fire

it would actually reignite, so it was a very difficult fire

to try to stop the advancement of it.

At this point in time nobody's reported

any livestock losses, it's just amazing.

>>> The fire actually made it to the edge

of the city of Beaver and there was some damage there.

>>> There was a few houses right on

the far southwest side of Beaver.

The school softball, baseball fields burnt

and part of the football field burnt, so yes (mumbles).

Something we've been concerned about for some time

and the conditions were there and it happened.

>>> There are already donations coming in

from all over the country and showing up in Beaver.

>>> Yes, I mean we've been busy this morning

trying to coordinate mostly hay at this point in time

but I'm getting calls that later on

they will need some fencing material.

And of course the hat families that lost their homes,

people addressing that issue too.

>>> And this is a process that's gonna take

a little bit of time to get past,

but it's already started and it's starting to rebuild.

>>> It's sad to say, the last few years

we weren't directly, well we were,

but the headquarters and stuff

was located in another county.

They're assisting us.

They were on the phone this weekend,

"Here, you need to this, you need to that."

So we've had a tremendous amount of help.

Neighbors and far away neighbors,

it's just amazing the people that want to participate.

You know, no loss of life,

just some buildings and a lot of grass and a lot of fence.

>>> Speaking of that grass we're looking out

over this land here, part of the 29,000 acres.

With a couple of good rains

it should start changing the landscape.

>>> It's amazing.

As John Weir would say, "This country was designed

to withstand fire and it will."

Earlier we talked about the possibility

of moisture this weekend.

By the end of March you won't hardly recognize this,

it'll be very green.

>>> And as far as donations,

if people want to help they can contact

the Beaver County Extension office in a couple of ways.

>>> Yes, we're kinda trying to be a coordination point,

use our website and our Facebook page and stuff

to kind of direct people to the right direction.

>>> Okay, thank you very much Loren.

And for more information on those sites

go to our website, SUNUP.OKSTATE.EDU.

(fast-paced country music)


Wheat Disease Update

>>> Bob Hunger, our Extension wheat pathologist joins us now.

Bob, we want to talk about how things

are looking in Oklahoma mid-March,

but first, tell us what we're seeing here

and kinda how the science has evolved over time.

>>> Well this is one of the real success stories

with the wheat breeding program here at Oklahoma State

because a variety like this has shown up this year,

hit very hard by a virus disease

called the wheat soil-borne mosaic,

wheat spindle streak mosaic complex,

and it's a virus that is brought into the seedlings

in the fall by a soil-borne fungal-like organism

and then the symptoms are expressed in the spring.

And the reason you don't hear much

about this anymore is because

practically all of the varieties that are released

have good genetic resistance to this virus-disease complex,

and so they appear like the variety on the right there

that is nice deep green and doesn't show

any difficulties with it

as opposed to the yellowing and mosaic pattern

in the leaves here.

>>> Great success story but there's still work to do.

You are seeing some diseases this spring.

>>> Oh yes, there's some down here at the end of the field

that we can go look at.

>>> Okay.

Bob, what are you seeing here?

>>> Well, in this variety strip here, we found stripe rust,

which is shown here on this leaf.

It has those real kinda orange-ish-colored

spores or pustules

with the orange-ish-colored spores inside of it.

It's at a very low incidence in here

but there is some stripe rust in here,

which people should be watching for now

as the weather's starting to get more moist

and temperatures are getting more optimum.

>>> And you're keeping your eye

on a couple of other areas, too.

>>> Yes, there's a number of different areas

that are showing various diseases.

One of those is powdery mildew,

which is an early-season foliar disease of wheat,

and then a lot of the leaf spotters, tan spot and Septoria,

are showing up.

All this is on the lower leaves of the plants.

But with this kind of weather,

it'll definitely be spreading.

>>> What is the prevalence around the state?

Obviously, we're in Stillwater but are you seeing things

or hearing things from producers around Oklahoma?

>>> Yeah, overall, the incidence of foliar diseases

is still extremely low,

but I have been getting more reports

from southern Oklahoma, south-central Oklahoma

of powdery mildew and the leaf spotters

and a little bit of stripe rust.

So far, I have not heard of anything

of leaf rust at this point.

But it'll come with the weather.

>>> With all this in mind, any management tips at this stage?

>>> No, well of course, management would have been

to think about your variety selection last fall

for varieties that have resistance to the different diseases

that fit your system, no-till versus clean-till,

so on and so forth.

But now that the varieties are set,

the option management would be to use a fungicide

if that's needed.

And so, need to scout for these diseases

and see if they're there

and then use a fungicide if appropriate

to help manage that disease.

>>> We appreciate the update.

Of course, keep us posted and we will see you again soon.

>>> Will do.

>>> Thanks a lot.

(upbeat music)


Mesonet Weather

>>> Hi!

Wes Lee with the weekly Mesonet weather report.

Spring officially begins next week,

but according to the fruit trees, it has already began.

Everything from apricots to pears are in full bloom

in the southern half of the state.

Unfortunately, most of the state is still

several weeks away from the last average freeze date.

This map shows the average last freeze in Oklahoma City

to be around April 10th for the 30 years

between 1981 and 2010.

But there is still hope for a decent fruit crop.

In the last decade that just ended,

the OKC Mesonet site only dropped below freezing

after March 14th

on seven out of 10 years.

If we can make it to next Saturday without a freeze,

and the long-range models predict we will,

the chances for OKC increase to 50-50.

To date, the last hard freeze for most of the state

was on the morning of March 6.

Here we see the lighter blue shaded areas

got down into the mid-20s.

For the most part, it looks like the fruit

was able to survive this day with minimal damage.

For peaches, this table shows that it takes

temperatures well below freezing

to severely injure the crop

while it is still in the bud or bloom stage.

Apples and pears are even more cold-tolerant.

Now here's Gary with a look at next week's forecast.

>>> Thanks Wes and good morning, everyone.

Well, early spring in Oklahoma

when things can certainly change in a hurry.

But sometimes, the more they change,

the more they stay the same.

Let's see what I'm talking about.

So, the thermometer is changing.

The temperatures are going up and up it seems

as we go through March,

but the drought is remaining the same.

Even though we got a little bit of rainfall,

we still have that area of moderate drought

across southwest Oklahoma

and the surrounding area with abnormally dry conditions

and we have that moderate to severe drought

up in the western panhandle.

So, things are changing but things are staying the same.

Now, I think this is gonna change but if we don't get

some good rains up into central Oklahoma,

I'm afraid we're gonna see those drought conditions

spread into that area as well.

As you can see from this percent of normal rainfall map

from the Mesonet for the last 30 days,

we generally have less than 50% of normal rainfall

across much of central Oklahoma

and then, of course, that extends all the way up

into east-central Oklahoma.

But a large part of the state for the last 30 days

is definitely below normal in precipitation.

>>> Now here's where that change is coming in.

We do see from the eight to 14 day outlook,

this is for March 18 through the 24th,

so for much of next week we see a big trough

of low pressure digging into the western half

of the United States and that comes in the form

that increased odds of below normal temperatures

across that area.

You can see those dark blues out to our west.

But we also see, on the precipitation outlook map

for the same time frame, increased odds

of above normal precipitation across much

of the United States, again as that large trough

of low pressure across the western U.S.

starts to rotate across the United States

that will bring us some cooler air

and also some increased chances of some rain

and possibly some storms.

Of course, it's springtime in Oklahoma,

so we always have to watch out for storms.

So again, more chances to get rid of that drought,

that persistent drought across parts of Oklahoma

and keep drought from spreading

into other areas of Oklahoma.

So that's it for it for next time.

We'll see you next time

on the Mesonet Weather Report.


Market Monitor

>>> It's been another interesting week

for prices across the country,

and Kim, where are we

with the ag commodity prices right now?

>>> They're going down.

You look at wheat, that price,

and looking at harvest prices,

I think that's the most important

one to talk about.

In mid-February it's $4.77.

This last week is $4.21.

That's down 56 cents.

You look at corn.

Again, out to harvest delivery, 375 in mid-January.

It's down to 347, that's a 28 cent decline.

Soybeans, again start at mid-January,

you could forward contract for 8.75.

It's down to $7.97 this week.

That's down 78 cents.

And cotton is looking at that harvest contract

for cotton in mid-January at 71 cents.

It's down to 61 cents now, a 10 cent decline.

Now the basis on every one of those were steady.

All that decline was in the market.

>>> So, usually whenever we hear prices moving

in that direction it's because there's usually

more supply than what we need.

How much of this is contributed because of that

but then also the news about the coronavirus?

>>> Well the coronavirus is definitely having

a negative impact on the market,

but we don't know how much.

You look at wheat.

You know, last year's production 1.92 billion bushels,

projected to be 1.84.

The ending stocks for wheat, 965 million bushels,

down to 777.

So you'd think you'd have higher prices,

but if you look at the world,

world production's projected to be at 28.3 billion bushels

up from the record 28.1 this year.

So higher world supply, I think,

we know that our wheat price

is determined in the United States.

Corn, on the other hand,

is 13.7 billion last year's harvest,

projected to be 15.5 next year.

You're looking at corn ending stocks 1.9 billion bushels,

Up to 2.6 billion bushels.

Significantly more corn and you'd expect lower prices there.

Soybeans, it's a different story.

Production 3.6 billion this year, 4.2 next year.

Higher production but with the China, if we can get that,

beans moving into China, they're looking

at ending stocks going from 430 million bushels

down to 320, so you'd expect higher prices.

And probably a bigger impact 'cause

there's a lot more uncertainty there on soybeans

or getting them into China.

With cotton, production down, both the United States

and the world, 20.1 million bales this year

down to 19.5.

Lower ending stocks, 5.4 million bales

down to 5.3.

So it's a mixed bag there and I think you've got

both the market and corona impacting these prices.

>>> When it comes down to it, prices haven't been

overly great for a long time.

Some producers may not be too enthusiastic

about those prices.

What advice do you have for Oklahoma producers

when it comes to preparing for the future?

>>> Well, we'll see what happens with coronavirus,

but, you know, the world is developing.

You got the former Soviet Union countries,

you got South American countries,

you've got Eastern European countries.

Their economies have been improving.

Their technology has been increasing.

It increases the risk, not just the risk,

but the competition for our products.

I would say that's gonna continue

probably for at least the next five years.

And then I think on these commodities,

probably consumption will catch up with

and maybe surpass production

and we'll get improved prices.

But, I'd say for the next four or five years,

given good weather, that our price is probably gonna stay

in these relatively low ranges.

>>> Okay.

Thank you very much.

Doctor Kim Anderson, grain marketing specialist,

here at Oklahoma State University.

(upbeat music)


Cow-Calf Corner

>>> Even though we're still in the midst

or in the latter part of the spring calving season,

we're only a few weeks away from the start

of the spring breeding season

for those spring calving herds

here in the Southwest.

That means it's time to make an appointment

with your local large animal veterinarian

to have the bulls given a breeding soundness exam

and I think that's very important

that we do that each year.

You know there's some old data

that comes from Colorado back in the '60s and '70s

where they looked at the information

from over 10,000 bulls

and they found that one out of every six

actually did not pass a breeding soundness exam

and that could be pretty costly if

those one out of six happens to be in your herd

and could be a situation where you'd lose

a certain percentage of your calf crop the following year.

So that's why you'd want to have those bulls tested

to make sure they're ready to do the job

for which you've purchased them.

A breeding soundness exam should have

four major components.

Number one is just the general condition of the bull

where the veterinarian will look

at such thing as the eyes,

the feet and the legs,

the general body condition,

the general health of the bull.

Then there'll be an examination of

the reproductive tract,

both an internal exam

and an external exam of the reproductive tract

to make sure that all the organs that are involved

with a production of semen,

the delivery of the semen

are in good shape, good health

and can do the job.

And then finally, the fourth component

for the breeding soundness exam

is where a sample of semen is taken

and looked under a microscope

to evaluate the percentage of the cells

that are forwardly mobile

and the percentage of the cells

that are normal in shape.

And those things all should pass

before the bull is given

what's given a satisfactory report

in terms of that breeding soundness exam.

Now if any one of those four levels of the exam,

they find the bull to not meet the minimum standards,

then they'll probably list the bull

as classification deferred

and that means that he needs to be brought back

in three to four weeks

to be checked again.

That's especially true of young bulls,

those that are a year of age to maybe 18 months of age

we don't want to go ahead and cull a bull

based on the first exam

because those young bulls may change

quite a little bit in their maturity

in just three to four weeks

and so a second exam should be necessary.

Older bulls, if they fail that first exam

and certainly if they fail a second exam

then we probably want to go ahead

and market them

and not try to use them in our herd for breeding purposes.

Have those bulls tested before this breeding season.

Do it in time so that if your bull fails

you have time to go to one of the production sales

and replace him

and have him ready then for the upcoming breeding season.

Hey, we look forward to visiting with you

again next week on SUNUP's Cow-Calf Corner.


Livestock Marketing

>>> We're joined now by Derrell Peel

our livestock marketing specialist.

Derrell, of course the big news is the coronavirus

and the widespread impacts,

including the agricultural markets.

Have we ever experienced anything like this before?

>>> You know, we really haven't.

This is unprecedented.

We've had lots of shocks in markets

including cattle markets

but most of those things were different

in several fundamental ways.

Most of the things that impact us are specific events,

they happen and then you move past them.

You deal with them, you recover from them

so think of the packing plant fire last

in 2019

or even all the way back to the first BSE case in 2003.

And in retrospect it was relatively easy

after those events to see your way out of them.

This is a much different situation,

it's evolving.

We have so much uncertainty about when is it actually

reach its peak in terms of how bad it's gonna be.

So timing is a question

and then beyond that, it's not gonna end abruptly.

It's gonna be a process to get back out of it

on the other end.

So it's a very different thing.

>>> In those times of uncertainty

what type of guidance do you have for producers?

Is it really day by day?

>>> Well it really is.

Obviously this is a situation that's extremely dynamic

so it's gonna change.

Right now for example, we have producers

that have to pull cattle off a wheat pasture.

There's a very strict deadline.

Something's got to be done.

Decisions have to be made

and so what can you say about that?

Well obviously, we're in it now.

It's a bad situation,

the markets have taken a hit.

Is there any option here to hold on

and try to outwait this?

And I think the answer in the short run is probably not.

So if you've gotta move cattle,

if you're trying buy time for two weeks or even a month

I'm not sure that anything can happen

that would allow any significant end to this thing

in the next 30 to 60 days, for sure.

So I think you just have to take your lumps,

do what you have to do

and then start thinking a little bit longer term

in how you deal with the consequences of that.

>>> With all this in mind

how do you see the situation a little later in the year?

>>> You know in some ways to me

that's the most uncertain part.

In the short run it's less uncertain,

simply because it's bad

and I don't think anything can make it less bad

but three to six months out,

or maybe two to nine months out,

that's when it's really uncertain.

At some point, we presumably will peak

in terms of how bad it gets

and we'll start thinking about

recovery after that,

but in the meantime what does a producer do?

>>> It's a very difficult situation, I think in that timeframe

to sort of anticipate, you know, how to even approach this

thing in terms of sort of how defensive to get.

For some producers, that may mean that we need to really

start assessing the financial consequences,

how long can we go before this turns into a serious

financial thing, and maybe that means

that we need to start sooner rather

than later to work with lenders and other folks to,

to sort of you know, make sure we get through this in again

in minimize the damage before we even think about going

beyond that and kind of getting back to business as usual.

>>> Kind of play out those scenarios, okay Darrell,

we appreciate your perspective,

and we will see you again soon thank you.

>>> You bet.

(upbeat music)


The Importance of Regular Prescribed Burning

>>> We're standing in an area where there were some commercial

burning going on and John, why did this company want to,

you know, use prescribed fire?

>>> Well, so this is wish you lands, its lands that we are the

university managers own and so again,

they started thinking, you know,

we need to do something with it,

so they came in and cut all the cedars off of it done

a bunch of mechanical work.

So again, it's been a lot of money on mechanical removal of

cedar, trying to get it back.

And as with any landowner, that's considering that

if you don't follow up mechanical cedar control with fire,

you're pretty much just wasting your time and your money

because the cedar is going to come back probably within

six to 10 years, you're going to have just as much cedar

covers you had right before you cut.

Why continue to do it instead of just doing it once?

>>> So again, because fire is not a one time deal,

it's not a one shot process, there's really nothing that's

one shot because, you know, we're dealing with a living

system out here, and it's always can always changing

and always moving, and granted, a lot of times,

the change is slow, and it takes multiple years before

you ever really see a change.

But it's always changing,

these things aren't static out here.

So again, if you come in do mechanical harvest to

cedars, get them all down and get them all out and thinking

you're done with it, and then run one fire through there,

you've done a lot of good with that but again,

within a few years after that one fire, you're still gonna

have stuff start to come back in.

So again, fire is a repeated process that went on

historically and this again should go on now,

repeatedly that and that's what we call fire frequency.

It's, how frequently you put fire back on the land.

>>> There's a time that producers and landowners

are using more prescribed fire like more prescribed,

you know, burn associations are going to be having things

so what do you guys have going on right now

what should people who are interested in you know,

using this tool What should they

start to be considering this time of the year?

>>> Yeah, prescribed fire seasons getting pretty much

getting start ramped up to getting started in full swing

again, we've had guys I know landowners here that have been

burning since right after the first of the year,

scattered all around and you see a lot more fire start

in southeast Oklahoma earlier because I grew up earlier

and it's slowly moves this way to the to the northwest part

of the state so but again like I said there's a lot of

people already burning all over the state different places

again anytime is a good time to burn,

you just know go through the planning process of it

don't just walk out there and think this is a good day

to burn and we're going to burn everybody needs to go

through that planning process and plan it you know get

everything ready fire brakes equipment,

notify the right people and again have a safe effective

burn that way.

>>> All right, thanks, John.

If you'd like some more information on prescribed fire go to

our website

(upbeat music)


Food Whys

>>> Despite being inexpensive today,

did you know that sugar was once reserved

for the extremely wealthy?

Sugar is probably one of the most common

and well known food ingredients.

Historians believe that the first species of sugarcane

to be domesticated was Saccharum Officianarum in New Guinea,

however, it has been suggested that additional species

may have been domesticated at approximately the same time

in areas such as India and Indonesia.

In fact, the first definitive written record of

sugar production occurs in a Hindu religious document

called the discourse on moral consciousness.

Historians also believe that Arabic farmers

improved upon the Indian techniques for cultivating

sugarcane, and producing sugar Arabic merchants

are thought to have then introduced sugar to Europe

between 700 and 900 A.D.

It's interesting to note that because of its great expense,

and Rarity, sugar would have been used exclusively

as a spice or condiment in cooking at this time.

In other words, it would have been used to subtly change

the flavor of a food rather than outright plainly

sweetening it.

It should go without saying that modern consumers

also enjoy sugar although it is much more common

and much less expensive, which has led to occasional

overindulgence our desire for sugar runs all the way from

ancient history to the modern day,

and manufacturers continue to innovate,

to meet our sweet expectations.

For more information, please visit

or fapc.pic.

(upbeat music)


>>> That'll do it for us this week,

a reminder that you can go to

to learn how you can help those affected

by the wildfires in Beaver County, as well as find other

resources about wildfire available through extension.

I'm Lyndall Stout, we'll see you next time @sunup

(upbeat music)

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