AMES, Iowa – Iowa State University Extension and Outreach will offer a Field Crop Scout School Saturday, March 25, at the Scheman Building in Ames. Designed for beginning crop scouts, the day-long course features sessions on crop growth and development, scouting methods and techniques, and identification of weeds, diseases and insects.
“The school provides a basic understanding of crop pests, how to identify them and field guides to help with identification,” said Warren Pierson, program specialist for the Field Extension Education Laboratory with ISU Extension and Outreach. “It’s very important to be able to identify insects, weeds and diseases to carry out a successful integrated pest management plan. Especially right now, when margins are tight, you want to make management decisions including applications that are timely and cost effective.”
Kollin DeBerg, a senior in ag studies at Iowa State, attended the Field Crop Scout School in 2015 as an incoming intern for Innovative Ag Services. He believes the educational materials helped better prepare him for his internship.
“I also really liked the discussion on weed identification and learning more about the growth stages of crops," DeBerg said. "The scout school gives you a good base of scouting knowledge to know what to look for when you are out in the field. I would recommend attending the scout school because it teaches you something new and provides you with useful materials that you can use in the field."
Pre-registration is required and must be completed before midnight, March 17. The registration fee of $100 includes field guides, course handouts, lunch and breaks. Additional information and online registration is available at www.aep.iastate.edu/scout. Registration fees includes copies of the Corn and Soybean Field Guide, Weed Identification Field Guide, and Field Crops Insects publication. Check-in will begin at 8:30 a.m. on March 25, with sessions beginning at 9 a.m. and adjourning at 3 p.m.
New this year is an optional session providing agricultural worker pesticide safety training, as outlined by the Worker Protection Standard. Certifications of completion for the training will be provided. The optional agricultural worker pesticide safety training session will begin at 3 p.m. and conclude at 4:10 p.m.
PHOTO: Field Crop Scout School provides training in crop growth and development, and field agronomic skills. Photo credit, Jody Korthaus, Iowa State University