Category Archives: Bourbon County

Grass Carp and Algae Control for Ponds

Submitted by Christopher Petty

Grass Carp

Grass carp, a fish species native to Asia, feed on aquatic plants and filamentous algae. Grass carp are biological tools used to control nuisance growth. Grass carp stocked into Washington lakes must be certified disease-free and sterile. Fish farmers create sterile fish (called triploids because they have an extra set of chromosomes) by subjecting fish eggs to temperature or pressure shock. Testing verifies that grass carp are sterile. Lake managers use grass carp to control the excessive growth of aquatic plants. Grass carp exhibit definite food preferences and consume some aquatic plant species more readily than others. Grass carp may control filamentous algae, although filamentous algae is not a preferred food. Grass carp may eat aquatic plants before eating filamentous algae. Some reports indicate that adding grass carp to a lake may promote the growth of other algae.


Pond owners can remove filamentous algae from the water using a sturdy rake with a rope attached to the end. The operator throws the rake into the water and pulls the rake and filamentous algae to shore. Compost the algae and use it in the garden. Raking is effective for small areas of filamentous algae but is time consuming and labor intensive when controlling larger areas. In addition, filamentous algae grow back quickly and may move around the water body through wind and wave action. Sometimes raking becomes a never-ending chore during summer months. Also, raking cannot remove blue-green algae and many other types of algae.

For more information on pond weeds, join the K-State Research and Extension –Southwind District for an informational pond weed meeting at the Yeager Building, located on the Bourbon County fairgrounds, in Fort Scott, Kan. This meeting featuring K-State Research and Extension Wildlife Specialist Charlie Lee and sponsored by Miller Feed and Farm, will take place at 6 p.m. on Thursday June 8. A ten dollar registration fee, payable at the door will cover meals and materials. Please preregister for a meal by calling 620-223- 3720 or e-mailing Southwind Extension District Agent for Livestock Production and Forage Management Christopher Petty at

Commission Removes Previous Position

Environmental Service Coordinator Eric Bailey left a hole in the county’s staff with his recent resignation, but instead of filling the position, the county commissioners decided to use the employees they have to complete the tasks Bailey had been responsible for.

Bailey worked his final day Friday after reaching the decision to move from the county and begin his own sub-contracting business. His job included working with contractors, overseeing inspections for those buying and selling homes and approving permits for projects occurring in flood plains, among other responsibilities.

During their Tuesday morning meeting, the Bourbon County Commission and attorney Justin Meeks discussed the decision to use four employees from the GIS/IT and Assessor’s departments to cover those tasks. By doing so, the county would save the money that would be needed to cover an employees salary and would instead cover the hours the individuals would work.

Meeks said those employees should be able to maintain the quality of the work the county usually provides, but may not always be able to in the same timely manner as when they had a full-time employee devoted to the position. If the change does not seem to work, or if area development suddenly increases, the commission would revisit the decision.

Continuing in the budget season, the commissioners said they have to work carefully to make sure the needed finances are available as they collect budget requests from various departments. Already, they are trying to discern how to increase the wages for members of the sheriff’s department, to make the positions more competitive, within the current budget. Five positions have also been cut from the roads and bridges department in order to consolidate positions and save funding.

Meeks said the main way a county is able to save money is by cutting people or services, while commissioner Jeff Fischer added it is up to the leadership to prioritize their services and decide where to invest their money.

4State Makes Changes to Recycling Services

For the past couple months, 4 State Sanitation has provided free recycling to residents of Bourbon County residents, but changes will come this month to improve the service and prevent the abuse of the free service.

Stock Photo from 4 State Sanitation

Taysha Meech of 4 State said that the first couple months showed them just how much manpower is needed and how much it costs to cover the diesel needed to transport the items brought to them. She also said a number of people decided to take advantage of the service as an opportunity for a free trash service, bringing bags of personal trash instead of only recyclable items.

It’s not a moneymaker,” City Manager Dave Martin said of the recycling services that 4 State provides. “They’re losing money tremendously on it.”

In order to discourage the misuse of the service and cover some of the expenses, a small fee will be added for residents wanting to recycle. While it will remain free for 4 State customers, others will pay a $5 fee each month for an unlimited use of the recycling services.

Overnight Program for Youth Offered at National Historic Site

Submitted by Fort Scott National Historic Site

Wanted: able-bodied young men and women, of good character, between the ages of 12 and 15, to be recruited for a duration of 28 hours into the Fort Scott Camp of Instruction.

Overnight Camp: Submitted by Fort Scott National Historic Site

Participants will receive clothing for the duration of the camp, a ration of food, sleeping quarters, and instruction in military deportment, marching, and the use of small arms and artillery. Experience the life of a soldier at a frontier military fort of the 1840s.

Fort Scott National Historic Site is pleased to present a Camp of Instruction; a special event for youth that will take place on the site grounds, twice this summer. The dates are June 15-16, 2017, and July 14-15, 2017. The event will serve as an overnight living history camp for youth to experience the life of soldiers and civilians in the 1840s. This unique camp is being held in commemoration of the 175th anniversary of the establishment of Fort Scott in 1842.

Youth attending the camp will stay overnight in the barracks or tents, cook meals in period pots and pans using historic recipes, and be drilled as soldiers. One of the goals of the camp is to provide leadership opportunities for the youth. The camp will be organized similar to how a company of soldiers would have been in the 1840s with the camp divided into squads. The youth will also be dressed in period clothing as 1840s soldiers for most of the activities! Boys and girls aged 12-15 are welcome to sign up. There will be separate sleeping areas and adult chaperons will be present in each, along with the NPS staff that will be staying overnight as well.

Registration for this camp is now underway. Youth groups and individuals are invited to attend. To register, call 620-223- 0310. The last day of registration will be June 9, 2017.

FSCC Hosts Volleyball Camps, Competes in National Rodeo Finals

Submitted by Heather Browne

FSCC Volleyball Program to Host Summer Camps

The Fort Scott Community College Volleyball Program will host several camps this summer to help students who wish to develop or enhance fundamental volleyball skills. The camps will be held at Arnold Arena at the FSCC campus.

Kids’ All Skills Training Camp

The Kids’ All Skills Training Camp, open to students grades 3 – 6, will be held from 9:30 a.m. to noon June 20. Emphasis will be placed on form and movement training for passing, hitting, setting and other skill areas. The campers will work in small groups with a great camper-to-coach ratio. The fee is $15 and includes a t-shirt.

7th – 12th Grade Skills Training Camp

The volleyball camp for students in 7th-12th grade will be held from 1 to 3:30 p.m. on Tuesday, June 20. The camp will focus on fundamental skills, mental training and efficient ball control skills during game situations. The fee is $15 and includes a t-shirt.

College Prep Camp

The College Prep Camp is designed for high school athletes who would like to play volleyball in college. This camp will take place 9:30 a.m. to noon and 1 to 3:30 p.m. on Wednesday, June 21. Emphasis will be placed on fundamental skills, mental training and efficient ball control skills during game situations. The fee is $30 and includes a t-shirt.

Payment is due at the beginning of each camp. Camp shirts will be guaranteed only for those who preregister. To preregister, please visit For more information, please contact Lindsay Hill, FSCC Head Volleyball Coach, at 620-223-2700, ext. 7220 or

FSCC Students to Compete at College National Finals Rodeo

Members of the Fort Scott Community College Rodeo Team will compete at the College National Finals Rodeo (CNFR) in Casper, Wyoming, from June 9 to 17.

FSCC Rodeo Team. Submitted by FSCC

More than 400 students from universities and colleges across the United States will compete at the CNFR. Representing FSCC will be Cooper Belt (steer wrestling), Cory Brown (bareback riding), Colton Delgado (bareback riding), Layne Graham (bareback riding), Wyatt Miller (team roping and calf roping), Mat Swaim (saddle bronc riding), and Trey Ahring (bull riding).

“It’s exciting to take this group of students to the national competition this year. We knew it would be a tough year for us to take a team, and this group really pulled together and motivated each other,” said Chad Cross, FSCC Head Rodeo Coach.

Going into the last rodeo of the season, the men’s team was in third place in the Central Plains Region. The weather that weekend ranged from snow to rain. Despite these challenges, the team persevered and earned the reserve championship title, qualifying them to advance to compete at the national level.

“The students had to work hard and push each other during the last few rodeos so that they could place in the top two teams to qualify,” said Cross. “I’m glad to see these students compete in Casper. It has truly been a pleasure to see them grow and achieve their goals.”

For more information, please contact Chad Cross at 620-223-2700, ext. 7020.