Making A Difference in Our County
We're working hard for the citizens we serve. Here are some examples of successful projects from the past year:
AGRICULTURE AND NATURAL RESOURCES
Turner County Extension Agriculture and Natural Resources Agent Will Gay conducted or assisted four research trials in 2016. One of these trials was an on-farm study that provided answers on controlling the two-spotted spider mite in peanuts. The 2016 growing season provided conditions that were favorable to the two-spotted spider mite. Results of this trial were used help growers decide if they wanted to treat the mites and what treatment to use. Other trials involved anthracnose control in watermelon, the combined effect of thrips and herbicide damage on peanuts and foliar fertilizer on watermelon. Watermelon growers started the year out with caution by having UGA Extension test ponds for overwintering Phytophthora capsici. P. capsici can be a devastating disease of watermelon, and the Turner County agent responded to it this year by testing ponds with baits, providing sound identification and guidance on fungicide. A recap of 2016 in Turner County must include Extension’s response to extremely high populations of whiteflies in cotton and vegetables. Whiteflies are generally not a common pest in Turner County. Agent Gay met with Extension cotton entomologist Philip Roberts to get a better assessment on the severity of whiteflies in the county. After this, Gay was able to convince growers that treatment of infested fields would be important to maintain a good cotton crop. He spoke on whiteflies at the Sconyers Gin meeting to 120 cotton producers from Turner and surrounding counties.
4-H AIR PISTOL PROGRAM
Youth need a safe place to belong, develop self-confidence and build quality relationships with adults. Research suggests that participation in organized extracurricular activities by children and adolescents can have educational and occupational payoffs. Turner County 4-H planned quality experiences with young people through an air pistol program. In the past two years, the program has grown to 14 participants and three certified coaches. These youth have garnered achievements, including top honors at the state competition. This group has also started competing in national events and won the prestigious East Coast Division Gold Medal and Bronze Team awards. A survey taken by participants indicated that important traits learned were safety, respect to partners, discipline and sportsmanship. Members also learned safety, including muzzle and range safety. Students indicated that they would continue competing in air pistol events, and would potentially participate in shotgun events. One parent said, “I am very thankful for air pistol. It has not only given my son a chance to shoot, but the chance to do it in a setting that is competitive and very supportive. He has learned as much about life and friendship as he has about shooting and safety. Thank you!”