Issue: 860

College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Online
July 27, 2015 – No. 860

Top Stories

Plant and Insect Diagnostic Clinic is “Emergency Room” for Plants
The ISU Plant and Insect Diagnostic Clinic helps to identify and treat a range of plant and insect problems. Whether you’re a professional fruit or vegetable grower, a turf manager on a golf course or a private homeowner with a sick oak tree, the team of diagnosticians will help clients respond to pests and plant diseases efficiently and effectively. Lina Rodriguez (left) is one of the clinic’s diagnosticians. Laura Jesse (right) is the clinic’s director and a diagnostician who specializes in entomology. More


Biomass Project Receives Governor’s Award
Emily Heaton, agronomy, and the Leopold Center have been involved with a biomass project at the University of Iowa that has been recognized with the Governor’s Iowa Environmental Excellence Award. The initiative uses miscanthus to reduce the university’s carbon footprint. The crop is grown to supply electricity, steam and chilled water to the main campus and is part of a mix of fuels being developed to reduce the university’s use of fossil fuels. Heaton and her research recently were featured in a series about ISU faculty who are using science to change the world for the better. 

Swenson on an Increase in Work Permits for 14- and 15-Year Olds
Iowa has seen an increase in the past few years in the number of work permits issued for 14- and 15-year-olds. David Swenson, economics, told The Gazette that as the economy improved from the 2008 recession, adult workers have moved out of low-paying jobs to other positions that generally offer them better hours, better pay and perhaps the opportunity to not work multiple part-time jobs. As the lower-level jobs are freed up, Swenson said companies can have a hard time finding workers to fill those positions and may be looking toward younger workers to fill the need. More

Blodgett on Studying Ways to Increase the Monarch Population
The July 24 issue of USA Today ran an article on efforts to save the monarch butterfly, including the Iowa Monarch Conservation Consortium at ISU. The consortium grows nine different milkweed species at 12 ISU research farms to study their effectiveness for enhancing the monarch population. “It’s very unique and other states are looking to emulate what we are doing here in Iowa,” said Sue Blodgett, entomology. More

Extension and Outreach

Animal Science Roundup Reaches 100 High School Students
One hundred Iowa high school students spent three days working with animal science faculty during 4-H animal science roundup, June 30 to July 1. The students were selected through an application process to attend in one of five species areas: beef, dairy, horse, sheep and swine.
Activities included youth learning about careers in animal science, carcass evaluation and live evaluation; hands-on activities at farms and industry tours; meat cookery, animal handling, nutrition, anatomy and reproduction; and creating videos of their experiences. The videos will be used to promote the program in the future. Faculty and staff who helped make the event a success were Patrick Gunn, Dan Morrical, Christen Burgett and Nikki Ferwerda. To see the videos, contact

4-H Hosts Animal Science STEM Camp
4-H hosted the second annual animal science STEM camp held at the 4-H center in Madrid. Twenty-one middle school students participated. Activities included: watching eggs from the ISU poultry farm hatch; a dairy program conducted by Brad Skarr; a horse barn tour by Nikki Ferwerda; a guide dog program led by Kelly Schulz; an egg program conducted by Amy Powell; a dog genetics program conducted by Zachary Brown. The event ended with a program on careers in animal science. 

Around the College

Agronomist Receives Early Career Award
Maria Salas Fernandez, agronomy, received the National Association of Plant Breeders Early Career Award at the NAPB annual meeting, July 28-30, in Pullman, Wash. She initiated and leads a sorghum field breeding program to develop germplasm for forage and biofuel production adapted to the Midwest. More

Animal Scientists Receive National Awards at ASAS/ADSA Meeting
Several CALS faculty received national honors at the American Society of Animal Science and the American Dairy Science Association held in Orlando, July 12-16. ASAS presented awards to:

  • Max Rothschild, Morrison Award, the highest award given by ASAS, presented to a member for research achievements that have been important to livestock production.
  • Steven Lonergan, Distinguished Teacher Award.
  • James Reecy, Rockefeller Prentice Award in Animal Breeding and Genetics and the Animal Growth and Development Award.
  • Cheryl Morris, Corbin Companion Animal Biology Award.
  • Elisabeth Lonergan, elected to Board of Directors, ASAS.
  • Leo Timms and Stephanie Clark are members of ADSA Board of Directors.
  • John Patience, the New Frontiers in Animal Nutrition Award from the Federation of Animal Science Societies and the American Feed Industry Association.

Hoard’s Dairyman Remembers ISU Dairy Scientist Fred Foreman
Fred Foreman, emeritus professor of dairy science, died July 22. He was 94. Foreman spent 31 years at ISU and was leader of the dairy science curriculum from 1968 to 1985. A blog posting in the July 24 issue of Hoard’s Dairyman also describes Foreman as a legendary dairy cattle judge. While maintaining a presence at smaller fairs and shows, Foreman judged 13 national shows, including World Dairy Expo in its first year. A Fred Foreman Scholarship in Leadership Participation is available for CALS students who have demonstrated leadership and volunteerism through participation in college-related extracurricular activities, in sophomore class standing or above. More


Sept. 26: Animal Science Teaching Farms Celebrate 50 Years
Save the date. An event will be held on Sept. 26, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. in honor of the 50th anniversary of the Department of Animal Science teaching farms. 

Funding Opportunities

Megatrends Food, Energy and Water Nexus Webinar
The National Council for Science and the Environment, the Willdan Group, and the School of Sustainability at Arizona State University will host a series of webinars leading up to the 16th National Conference and Global Forum on The Food-Energy-Water Nexus, January 2016. The first webinar is scheduled for July 30 at 12:15 to 1:45 p.m. The webinar will focus on the megatrends shaping the world's food, energy and water systems and their many interactions. More

Funding Information, Opportunities and Deadline Reminders
Dates listed are application deadlines. Contact: Roxanne Clemens, Additional information is posted at CALS Pre-Award Resources

Continuous through Feb. 2020 (concept paper): U.S. Army Natick Soldier Research, Development and Engineering Center - Broad Agency Announcement for Basic and Applied Research.

Sept. 6 (letter of intent): NIH Big Data to Knowledge Development of Software Tools and Methods for Biomedical Big Data in Targeted Areas of High Need (U01); $900,000 direct costs over three years. More

Sept. 9: EPA, The Economics of School Integrated Pest Management; $300,000.

Sept. 25 (letter of intent): NSF Engineering Research Centers. More

Oct. 2: NOAA Marine Fisheries Initiative; $525,000 over three years. More

Oct. 3 (letter of intent): NIH Mouse Metabolic Phenotyping Centers Consortium (U2C). More

Oct. 3 (letter of intent): Coordinating and Bioinformatics Unit for the Mouse Metabolic Phenotyping Centers and the Diabetic Complications Consortium (U24); $11.09 million. More

Oct. 14 (letter of intent): NASA ROSES Satellite Calibration Interconsistency Studies. More

Rolling basis: The Rockefeller Foundation Bellagio Study and Conference Center - Conference Program; facilities and accommodations for small-group conferences that share the foundation’s interests, also some travel support for participants from developing countries.

Communications Kiosk

Historical Photos Available through Special Collections
The Special Collections Department maintains more than 1 million photographs. Historical photos of the following departments and topics can be found in the library’s Flickr albums:  agricultural engineering, animal ecology, animal science, forestry, horticulture, natural resource ecology and management, zoology, Extension, barns and creamery. To request an image, contact University Archives at or 4-4216. The cost for campus requests is $5 per image. More


Bioeconomy Institute Publishes Newsletter
The Bioeconomy Institute has published its first issue of a new email newsletter that includes features, profiles, news and event summaries about biorenewables at ISU and the Bioeconomy Institute.

College of Vet Med’s Summer Scholar Research Day, Aug. 7
The ISU College of Veterinary Medicine Summer Scholar Research Day is scheduled for Aug. 7 at the Scheman Building. A poster session will be held from 10 to 11:30 a.m., followed by a luncheon and program, 11:45 a.m. to 2 p.m. David Swayne, laboratory director of the USDA/ARS Southeast Poultry Research Laboratory in Athens, Georgia, will provide the keynote presentation, “The Role of Research in H5 High Pathogenicity Avian Influenza Control.” More

Celebrate National Farmers Market Week, Aug. 2-8
The 16th Annual National Farmers Market Week will be held Aug. 2-8. The week-long celebration of our nation’s farmers markets, the farmers and ranchers who make them possible and the communities that host them, recognizes the important role that farmers markets play in our local food economies.


What Happens When You Give a Tree an Email Address?
Officials in the city of Melbourne assigned trees ID numbers and email addresses in 2013 as part of a program designed to make it easier for citizens to report problems like dangerous branches. But people did more than just report issues. They also wrote directly to the trees, which have received thousands of messages. For example: “My dearest Ulmus – As I was leaving St. Mary’s College today I was struck, not by a branch, but by your radiant beauty. You must get these messages all the time.  You’re such an attractive tree.” More

College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Online

Julie Stewart, Editor, (515) 294-5616

College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Online, the newsletter for faculty and staff in Iowa State University's College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, is published by email every Monday. The deadline for submitting content is 12 p.m. on Friday.


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