With 52 articles a year, I try to stay seasonal with what is happening currently. From time to time I mention the family in my articles. My girls, Kendall and Lindsay, keep Tonya and I very active. I would estimate that together they have played 150 plus softball and basketball games in the last year. That may be a low estimation. We also have a barn full of show calves and along with their cousin, have a meat goat show team. Life is busy, but it keeps the kids active and they are learning valuable life skills.
Recently it was goat-clipping day for the next round of shows. I really like the goats. If you can get a handle on controlling the internal parasite issues in goats, they can be a wonderful youth project. The animals are small and the 1st graders can handle them. Some youth will stick with the goats for their entire exhibitor career while others will use it to prepare for a larger species like a calf.
A few minutes into turning on the clippers, we were introduced to our problem of the afternoon. The mosquitoes were terrible. I think I was bombarded with numerous bites before I could reach the repellent.
Early in the summer my entire weekly article was on mosquitoes. With the recent rains, I decided to revisit briefly some control measures for this outdoor activity-ruining pest. I will be sharing information from a UGA pamphlet by authors Jorge Atiles, Paul Guillebeau and Punya Nachappa. I will also share some information from the 2012 Georgia Pest Management Handbook.
First, if you can reduce the standing water outside a home, you can help reduce the mosquito population. Be an investigator and look for the sources. Mosquitoes lay eggs in water. Hatched mosquitoes will stay in water for four to 10 days. If you change out water from say a birdbath about twice a week, this will keep mosquitoes from developing. Common breeding sites are clogged gutters, old tires, stumps and tree holes and areas around leaky faucets to name a few.
When the mosquitoes are bad, wear light colored clothing, long pants and even long sleeved shirts to reduce the risk of bites.
In addition, sitting in front of a fan will keep the mosquitoes away. There are several traps sold for mosquito control. The handbook mentions the Mosquito Magnet, Flowtron Power Trap and The Dragon-Fly to name a few.
It does mention knowing the species of mosquito you have first to make sure that particular trap is effective. If you go a repellent route, make sure you read the label entirely for who and how the product can be used. Some repellents can make you sick if they are not used correctly.
Since the mosquitoes were attacking when we were preparing for 4-H competition, I wanted to give a plug for 4-H. Since Gordon 4-H is ran through our office, I think 4-H is the best youth development club in the world.
This week our older youth that earned a spot at 4-H State Congress will be competing in their project areas for “Master” 4-H’er status. At the big banquet later in the week, our two state winning teams will be recognized.
We have youth competing in the areas of Beef, Vet Science, Dairy Science, Human Development and Sports. With all of our livestock success in Gordon County, I bet the last two project areas threw you.
I have always told folks that agriculture is our roots and our base, but 4-H is so much more. We have something for all youth. School will be starting up soon so Ms. Becky and Mr. Kurt will be looking for new members to join our club.
There are no membership dues and our club is open for kids in 5-12 grades or ages 9-19. Call and visit with our 4-H staff about your child and 4-H.
Upcoming events, the clock is ticking if you still would like to participate in Master Cattlemen. The class is starting to fill up. The entry deadline is August 10 for the seven-night class. You can stop by the office to pick up class information or I can email it to you. Master Cattlemen will not come back to our area for years so don’t miss out. The speakers are outstanding and the topics will be valuable.
Also, on July 28 and then on August 4 and 5, there will be lamb and goat shows happening at the livestock pavilion for 4-H and FFA member. Come out and support these youth. You can call Gordon County Extension at 706-629-8685 or more information or email email@example.com.