Field Scouting Basics Workshop

A one-day hands-on course for beginning corn and soybean crop scouts.

 

Thursday, May 10, 2018

Registration check-in opens at 9:30 am and the workshop begins at 10:00 am. The workshop concludes at 4:00 pm. The optional Agricultural Worker Pesticide Safety training follows at 4:00 pm to 5:00 pm.

$100 registration fee. Registration deadline is midnight, May 3.

Field Extension Education Laboratory
1928 240th Street, Boone, Iowa | map link

The Crop Scouting Field Basics Workshop is for interns scouting fields and reporting back to farmers, crop consultants, or others. 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, implement malfunctions, and other issues, that might not be seen from a 'windshield survey.'

The objective is getting students out of the classroom and in the field, completing activities a crop scout will actually be doing. This opportunity builds confidence in the field. Students should be prepared for typical spring weather and field conditions and dress accordingly.

Attendees receive one copy each of:
Corn and Soybean Field Guide
Weed Identification Field Guide 2nd Edition
Field Crop Insects
Corn Diseases
Soybean Diseases

This program is capped at 75 students for maximum student-instructor interaction and discussion.

Here are some highlights from the 2017 workshop.

Agricultural Worker Pesticide Safety Training

The Worker Protection Standard (WPS) is intended to protect agricultural workers and pesticide handlers from the risks of prolonged pesticide exposure. Crop scouts entering fields where pesticides have been applied must receive training before they begin work and every 12 months. The session includes information about pesticide residues, the potential health effects of pesticide exposure, and how to avoid bringing pesticide residues home. This is an optional session provided to registered attendees of the Field Scouting Basics Workshop. Certificates of completion will be provided.

Target audience

  • This is a beginning-level course focusing on individuals working as crop scouts for the 2018 growing season.
  • The course is open to any individual wishing to learn more and sharpen their crop scouting skills.
  • The course is intended for individuals 18 years of age and older.

Curriculum

Time Presentation
Students are divided into smaller groups that will rotate through the program topics listed below.
9:30 am Registration check-in
10:00 Opening comments
Crop Scouting Tips and Tricks – Angie Rieck-Hinz, Extension field agronomist
11:00 Corn and Soybean Growth and Development – Mark Licht, Extension cropping systems agronomist
12:00 pm Lunch (provided)
12:40 Weed Identification – Bob Hartzler, Extension weed specialist
1:40 Insect Identification – Erin Hodgson, Extension entomologist
2:40 Break
3:00 Disease Identification – Ed Zaworski, Plant and Insect Diagnostic Clinic
4:00 Workshop concludes
4:00 - 5:00 Optional Agricultural Worker Pesticide Safety Training - Betsy Buffington, Pesticide Safety Education Program

Crop Scouting Tips and Tricks
Angie Rieck-Hinz, Extension field agronomist

Angie will discuss what tools to have ready to take to the field and give safety tips to think about when working in the field. She will work through examples of reading maps, including plat books, and how to communicate what you see in the field with farmers.


Crop Growth and Development
Mark Licht, Extension cropping systems agronomist

Mark will briefly cover corn and soybean growth and development with a focus on early season staging. If weather allows, he will take the students to nearby plots to show how to measure stand counts. The students will be able dig some plants and Mark will explain what issues to look for.


Weed Identification
Bob Hartzler, Extension weed specialist

Weed seedling identification is key to deciding effective management practices. Bob will have common weed seedlings to use to teach how to differentiate seedlings that look similar. If weather allows, he will take the students outside to look for emerged weeds in our weed garden and nearby plots.


Insect Pest Identification
Erin Hodgson, Extension entomologist

Correctly identifying insects when scouting fields is essential because insects in a field could be a crop pest or a beneficial insect. Erin will teach how to identify insects based on key characteristics and discuss another important topic which thresholds are. Thresholds vary based on the insect and are used to determine when to take action against a pest.


Disease Identification
Ed Zaworski, Plant and Insect Diagnostic Clinic, Iowa State University
Early season seedling diseases are tough to diagnose and Ed will explain some things to look for in the field when a scout thinks they may be finding a disease. He will also discuss common diseases in corn and soybeans and the symptoms that are used to identify them.


Agricultural worker pesticide safety training
Betsy Buffington, Pesticide Safety Education Program

Betsy will teach about many concerns for crop scouts including pesticide residues, the potential health effects of pesticide exposure, and how to avoid bringing pesticide residues home. By attending this presentation, you will be trained as a worker/handler under the Worker Protection Standard regulation.

Registration

Register online.
Print a form.
Register by mail

Cost: $100.
Includes lunch, handouts, and field guides (Corn and Soybean Field Guide, Weed Identification Field Guide, Field Crop Insects, Corn Disease and Soybean Disease).

Date: May 10, 2018

Time: check-in begin at 9:30 am. The program starts at 10:00 am and concludes at 4:00 pm. Optional pesticide safety training follows at 4:00 pm to 5:00 pm.

Location: FEEL, 1928 240th St, Boone, IA.
Printable directions and map.

Deadline: midnight, May 3, 2018.
Pre-registration is required to attend.

Cancellation: To cancel your registration please call (515) 294-6429 or email anr@iastate.edu. Cancellations requesting a refund must be received prior to midnight, May 3, 2018.

Confirmation: registration receipts are sent via email. Please provide a valid email address when registering.

For assistance with registration, receipts, cancellation or questions on the status of your registration contact Program Services at (515) 294-6429 or anr@iastate.edu.

Program contact

Warren Pierson
FEEL Coordinator
(515) 509-8308
wpierson@iastate.edu