Thursday, May 30, 2013

Grasshopper & controling them






Tuesday, May 28, 2013

A few facts about Water Rights in Texas

Surface water in Texas is owned by the state and held in trust for the citizens of the state. The state grants the right to use this water to different people, such as farmers or ranchers, as well as to cities, industries, businesses, and other public and private interests.  Anyone who wants to use surface water in Texas must first get permission from the state unless they are using the water for one of several “exempt uses” in the Texas Water Code.

The most common exemption is Domestic and Livestock (D&L) use. D&L users are given the highest priority, and their use takes precedence over other water rights in the basin. Landowners along Texas rivers and streams can divert surface water for D&L use, without a permit. D&L use includes water used for livestock, to meet household needs, or to irrigate a yard or home garden.  Diverters can also impound water, as long as the average volume is 200 acre-feet or less in 12 consecutive months.
Surface water diversions that are not exempt require a water right. For example, if you use surface water to irrigate crops, you must have an irrigation water right in order to divert.
The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality is the agency responsible for managing water rights in Texas. There are limits to the amount of water which can be permitted. Water rights are granted on a "first come, first served" basis. Irrigation rights have these features in common:

·         They have an assigned priority date. This date determines your seniority.
·         They specify the volume of water you may use each year.
·         They can allow you to impound this water, to divert it, or both, depending on the permit.
·         They do not guarantee that this water will always be available to you.
·         Regardless of the priority date, D&L users have seniority over other permitted uses.

Irrigation rights are regarded as property interests and may or may not be sold with the land.  When property changes ownership, it is important to know if the water right was included with the sale.  All changes in ownership of a water right must be reported to the TCEQ.  Forms to report change in ownership can be found here:

Some areas of the state (Concho River watershed, Rio Grande basin, and south Texas) have wastermasters that manage available water and water rights. Outside of watermaster areas, water right holders must submit a water-use report no later than March 1 every year. Water right holders who fail to submit water-use reports may be subject to fines and/or enforcement actions. The state could revoke a water right if use is not reported. You can find forms to report your water use here:  <>.

If you have more questions about surface water rights, visit <>, or contact the TCEQ’s Water Rights Permitting and Availability Section at 512-239-4691, or Small Business and Local Government Assistance Program at 1-800-447-2827.

Helping Children Cope After a Disaster

Adults worry about their children when disasters occur. They may feel that they don’t want to discuss the events such as tornadoes or explosions that have occurred.  However, parents shouldn’t worry that talking about disasters will make children afraid. More often, children are more frightened when information is whispered or not discussed.   It is important to allow children to talk about the disaster and especially the questions that puzzle them such as, “What will happen if there is a flood and I am in school,” or “What will happen to my dog.”  Try to answer questions and address the concerns with solid and easy to understand information.

            Often children can have a difficult time coping with the trauma of a disaster. They may be sad or afraid and reenact the disaster over and over to make sense of it.  Sometimes their behavior may regress; they may have trouble eating, stomach aches and nightmares.

            To help young children under 5 you can do the following:
  • ·         Reassure them and give them physical comfort.
  • ·         Return to a normal routine as soon as possible including bed time.
  • ·         Encourage them to talk about their losses, such as the death of pets or loss of toys.
  • ·         Monitor their exposure to news media reports about the disaster.
            To help older children:
  • ·         Give them extra attention and consideration. Temporarily relax your expectations of their performance at home and school.
  • ·         Set gentle but firm rules for acting-out behavior.
  • ·         Give them structured, but undemanding home chores and other activities.
  • ·         Encourage children to express their thoughts and feeling and be willing to listen.
            Some children may suffer long term affects such as depression, prolonged grief and stress. This may include persistent sadness, irritability, loss of interest in activities, and sleeping problems. If a child is having a difficult time, for a period of time, it is best to seek help from a qualified health professional.

            Parents can help children be prepared for a disaster such as a fire, tornado or flood. Practice with them before a disaster and how to respond. Explain that when a disaster occurs there may be people hurt, no electricity, water, or telephones.

            Teach children how and when to call for help. Teach them how to call 9-1-1. 

            Be prepared to answer questions about things that happen and is seen on the television. Give information that is helpful to them and discuss how they can be prepared.

            Tell children that when a disaster occurs, that there are many people who can help them including the American Red Cross, police officers, a neighbor.

            If you are not with your child when a disaster occur, teach children how to contact you and have someone they can call such as a neighbor, friend or relative, if they cannot call you.  Help your children to memorize the important phone numbers and quiz them every couple of months to help them remember.

Source: American Red Cross and Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Disaster Recovery.

Monday, May 20, 2013

Mark those Calendar for Summer Events

Do It Yourself Mondays Day Camp

The Wise County Texas A&M AgriLife Extension office is hosting a Do It Yourself Day Camp on Mondays this summer. Join us as we create new treasures by recycling old, learn the basics (and create something fun) in Sewing 101, get our hands dirty while gardening, experience life as a robotic and rocket engineer, become Mad Scientists and create culinary masterpieces in the Kitchen! The cost is $15 per session or $80 for all seven sessions! The D.I.Y Monday Day Camp is open to ALL youth ages 8-12 and will be held from 1p -5p on the Tuesdays listed below.
D.I.Y  Mondays Day Camp Schedule
June 10 – Kitchen Smarts
June 17 – Green Thumb
June 24 – Sewing 101
July 1 – Mad Scientists
July 8– Upcycle, Recycle
July 22 – Rocketry & Robotics
July 29 – Chef Camp

            Contact the Extension office at 940.627.3341 to sign up for D.I.Y. Camp. Pre-registration is due on Friday before each session!

Teacher Workshop
            There will be a teacher workshop held at the Weatherford Junior College in Wise County on July 17th & 18th from 8:30 a.m.-4:00 p.m. Cost is $30 and teachers will receive CEU credits at the end of the training. The workshop is open to all teachers and child care providers that work with youth in Kindergarten through 8th grade. The workshops will be filled with FUN hands-on activities that are lessons out of the various curriculum offered by the Texas Farm Bureau, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service and the 4-H program. The workshop will focus on soil and plant science, recycling, bullying, life cycles, water conservation, mobile classrooms, health and nutrition and everything in between!
To register, contact the Extension office, 940.627.3341, or email me at  for the registration form.

Friday, May 17, 2013

Cow Horse Clinic

Horse owners interested in learning or honing on their horsemanship skills, need to think about becoming more involved with what is one of the fastest growing interest for horse owners across the country.  Stock Horse competitions are very appealing to all horse owners for the faster pace of reining and live cow working.

The Horse Committee of the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service in Wise county will be conducting Working Cow Horse Clinic on Saturday, June 8, 2013 at the Salt Creek Arena from 8:30 am – 4:00 pm.  The Salt Creek Arena is located at 7204 S. FM Hwy. 51, Decatur.

The Stock Horse Clinic will feature Jake Lemons of Cross L. Performance Horses.  Jake has been training and showing horses over the past 9 year’s fulltime, and has been around horses most of his life while working on ranches, in feed yards, and horse related jobs.  He resides in Comanche, Oklahoma with his wife and two beautiful little girls that are ready to roll with their boots and jeans to where ever daddy lets them go.  Horses have been a big part of Jake’s life, and with his Bachelor’s of Science degree from Oklahoma State University and his experience in working with some of the best ranch hands and horse trainers, Jake has made it his profession in the equine industry to raise and train horses in a slow and careful manner that will maximize each horses potential.  He has proven his success and training champion horses in the show arena and has titles of Finals Qualifier in the RHAA, NRCHA World Show and was All Around Champion in the Stock Horse Association. His philosophy is to go through life with a passion and purpose and always seek ways to become better and whatever you attempt.

The cost for the clinic will be $45 per participant if pre-registered and a $15 fee for audits.  A $20 late registration fee will be assessed for registering the day of the Clinic.  For more information concerning the Stock Horse Clinic you can call the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service – Wise County at (940) 627-3341 or come by at 206 S. State St., Decatur, Texas  76234.