SHARPEN YOUR SCOUTING SKILLS: A one-day session designed for beginner crop scouts, the ISU Field Scouting Basics workshop will provide in-field experience to better prepare scouts for the growing season.

Learn the basics of crop scouting

ISU offers a one-day field scouting basics course for corn and soybean crop scouts.

Iowa State University Extension is offering a Field Scouting Basics Workshop May 16 at the ISU Field Extension Education Laboratory near Boone in central Iowa. Designed for beginning-level crop scouts, the course provides hands-on, in-field experience to help scouts better handle various in-field situations for the growing season.

“The goal of the workshop is to provide a hands-on learning opportunity at the field lab, and help participants feel confident when they’re scouting fields this year,” says Warren Pierson, program specialist with ISU Extension. “Scouts are the ‘eyes and ears’ in the field, and their reports help drive pest management decisions. Crop scouts often discover other problems in the field, such as nutrient deficiencies, farm equipment malfunctions, and other issues, that might not otherwise be noticed during the growing season.”

Weed, insect, disease identification
ISU Extension specialists and field agronomists provide instruction on the principles of integrated pest management with emphasis on weed, insect and crop disease identification in Iowa corn and soybean production. An overview of basic field scouting skills, including sample collection, observation and documentation, is also offered.

New this year is the addition of an optional session for Agricultural Worker Pesticide Safety. Recent updates to the Worker Protection Standard require crop scouts entering fields where pesticides have been applied to receive training before they begin work and every 12 months.

Timely topics, knowledgeable speakers
The Field Scouting Basics Workshop presentation topics and the ISU Extension and Outreach instructors for the sessions include:

• Crop scouting tips and tools – Angie Rieck-Hinz, Extension field agronomist

• Corn and soybean growth and development – Mark Licht, Extension cropping systems agronomist

• Weed identification – Bob Hartzler, Extension weed specialist

• Disease identification – Alison Robertson, Extension plant pathologist

• Insect identification – Erin Hodgson, Extension entomologist

• Agricultural Worker Pesticide Safety – Betsy Buffington, Extension program specialist

Check-in opens at 8:30 a.m. The program starts at 9 a.m. and adjourns at 2 p.m. Optional Worker Protection Safety Training follows from 2:10 to 3:10 p.m. Preregistration is required and must be completed before midnight, May 10. Registration is $65. Additional workshop information and online registration is available at aep.iastate.edu/feel/scout.

For assistance with registration, receipts, cancellation or questions on the status of your registration contact ANR Program Services at 515-294-6429 or [email protected].

Source: Iowa State University

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