Powell, Big Horn Basin program empowers ag women

Empowering farm and ranch women to manage information systems used in critical decision-making processes and build local networks throughout Wyoming is the goal of a University of Wyoming (UW) Extension program in Powell.

The program is based on Annie’s Project, a program for women in agriculture with a passion for business and being involved in their family operations. The Annie’s Project program was developed by Iowa State University Extension and is offered around Wyoming.

“Annie was raised in a small farming community,” said Sandra Frost, extension educator. “She was dedicated to being an involved business partner and running the farm with her husband. Though they struggled, they accomplished much.”

This women’s empowerment program is offered in six sessions from noon-4 p.m. Saturdays, Jan. 26, Feb. 16 and 23, and March 2, 9 and 16.

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Powell commercial driver license study group set for January

University of Wyoming (UW) Extension and Northwest College are offering a free commercial driver license (CDL) study group in Powell.

The study group meets 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Jan. 7-11 in the multi-purpose room at the Park County Fairgrounds. A brochure about the study group is at http://bit.ly/ZdvsNu.

“The state of Wyoming enforces the class of license regulations, even if you are a farmer driving your product within 150 miles of your farm,” said Sandra Frost, UW Extension educator. “If the vehicle’s gross vehicle weight rating or the actual weight is more than 26,001 pounds, the driver should have the appropriate class of license for that vehicle. If the gross vehicle weight rating or actual weight is more than 55,000 pounds, the vehicle is automatically acommercial vehicle and a commercial vehicle license is required.”

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Natrona County extension horticulturist receives outstanding educator honor

Donna Cuin

Donna Cuin, horticultural program associate in the Natrona County office of the University of Wyoming Extension, received the Outstanding Extension Educator Award from the Wyoming Association of County Agricultural Agents.

The award was presented in November in Laramie at the annual extension trainingconference. Cuin is an active member of the association and was honored for her excellence in extension education, leadership for extension programming, for tackling challenging issues and mentoring new extension employees.

Cuin joined extension in 2002. Her specialties are perennial gardening, xeriscaping and proper tree pruning practices, and she is the Natrona County Master Gardener coordinator and coaches 4-H vegetable judging teams.

Flying Oreos and hourglasses: UW researchers name insects in Ecuador cloud forest

Meteorus oreo, named for its white middle.

There are Oreos, beans, pearls and hourglasses flying through the moist, cool and amazingly green high-elevation cloud forests in the Ecuadorian Andes.

And, some of those species on the lush slopes are named in honor of University of Wyoming (UW) students, faculty members and alumni.

About half a world away – 12,000 miles – a newly discovered wasp in Thailand was named by the researchers in honor of Scott Shaw, professor of insect biology and classification at UW and curator of the UW Insect Museum. That wasp is in the same journal article that describes the Lady Gaga wasp. The Shaw species name, not nearly so flamboyant, is Aleiodes scottshawi.

Despite what you may be thinking, entomologists take naming new insect species they’ve discovered pretty seriously. UW Ph.D. student Guinevere Jones names 10 new species of Meteorus wasps in an article published in the November issue of the journal Zootaxa. Shaw, her adviser, is coauthor of the paper.

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UW ag college dean receives Wyoming Wool Growers Amigo Award

Dean Frank Galey and the Amigo Award from the Wyoming Wool Growers Association.

The Wyoming Wool Growers Association (WWGA) presented its Amigo Award to Frank Galey, dean of the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources at the University of Wyoming, citing support of sheep research and outreach programs for producers.

The WWGA announced the award during its joint meeting with Idaho and Utah woolgrowers last month. The WWGA’s executive board decides recipients, said Bryce Reece, WWGA executive vice-president.

The college conducts an annual ram test, installed a sheep GrowSafe feeding system, which allows data collection on an individual animal while in a feedlot with other livestock, and entered into an agreement with the WWGA in late 2011 to house the Von Krosigk Targhee flock at the Laramie Research and Extension Center (LREC).

“Frank has fought pretty hard for us,” said Reece. “The discussion around the table was that few universities are even interested in doing sheep anything any more. Frank has not only maintained sheep activities, but it’s still a strong program.”

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