Category Archives: K-State Extension

Urban Wildlife Damage Control

Christopher Petty.

Urban Wildlife Damage Control Workshop Set for October 30

Most wild animals mind their own business and never create problems for people. But sometimes animals do become a nuisance, destructive or menacing, especially when we encroach into their habitat.

Learn about wildlife damage control with Charlie Lee, K-State Extension Wildlife Specialist, on Wednesday, October 30, at 6:00 pm at the Chanute Auditorium Alliance room.

K-State Research and Extension – Southwind District is sponsoring this event, and it is free to attend.

Please call the Erie office to RSVP – 620-244-3826.

Learning To Write Successful Grant Proposals

Strengthening communities: Grant writing workshop planned for November 8

Do you know how that playground equipment at the park down the street was purchased? Or the new sign leading visitors to a local landmark? How about initial money for a festival? In any community, chances are that someone, or a group of individuals, wrote a grant proposal and received funding to help with the project.

Individuals and community groups can learn more about writing successful grant proposals at a workshop planned in Fort Scott, KS in November. The workshop is presented by Nancy Daniels, a community vitality specialist with K-State Research and Extension and the author of many grant proposals.

The training will be held November 8, 2019 at the River Room Event Center, 3 West Oak Street in Fort Scott, KS from 9:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. and includes lunch. The cost to attend is $10.

Deadline to register is Nov. 1.

“This workshop is for everyone, whether they’ve never written a proposal before and have no idea where to start, to those who have experience but are looking for ways to improve their approach,” Daniels said. “The magic that happens in a local community when people find out they don’t have to wait to get something done, that they can do it themselves, is incredible.”

Participants also learn from each other, Daniels said, adding that even experienced grant writers pick up tips and are reenergized after coming together with peers in their communities.  Participants are encouraged to bring their grants or grant ideas to share.

Workshop topics include:

  • Sources of data for community needs (where do you find the numbers to back up your request?);
  • Where to find grants;
  • The five common elements of a great grant proposal;
  • Practicing the grant writing elements.More information and registration is available by contacting Carla Nemecek at the Southwind Extension District Iola Office, 620-365-2242 or email

To view the event flier:

Grant workshop FlyerFS

Landscape Improvements Now Will Bring Big Dividends Next Spring

Krista Harding
District Extension Agent, Horticulture
Southwind Extension District
111 S. Butler
Erie, KS 66733
Office: 620-244-3826
Cell: 620-496-8786


Fall and spring are my favorite seasons. Finally, some cooler temperatures have arrived and it is actually feeling more like fall! I encourage you to get outside and enjoy the fall season. It is the perfect time to do some tasks around your landscape that will help next spring.

First, let’s talk lawn weeds. I know, they are probably the last thing on your mind since we are winding down the mowing season. Believe it or not, it is the ideal time to tackle those weeds. Not next spring when you fire the mower up again!

Cool season broadleaf weeds such as henbit, dandelions and chick weed all germinate in the cool moist periods of September and October. They overwinter as small plants, barely visible unless you get down close to the ground to look. Once warm weather arrives in the spring, the plants grow rapidly and flower.

Fall control is ideal for these cool season broadleaf weeds. The weeds are storing food in their roots and will send a leaf applied herbicide to their roots as well. The herbicides will translocate to the roots and will kill the plants from the roots up. These plants are also small and easily controlled right now.

There are several products on the market that are effective on these fall germinating weeds. Herbicides such as 2,4-D or combination products that contain 2,4-D, MCCP and Dicamba, sold under the trade names of Trimec, Weed-B-Gon, or Weed-Out, can be used. A product called Weed Free Zone is also an option. It contains the three active ingredients mentioned above plus carfentrazone.

Newly planted lawns should not be treated with any herbicide until the new grass seedlings have been mowed two or three times depending on the product. Read and follow the label directions closely.

Next, let’s talk flower bulbs. Bulbs are a good addition to any landscape or garden because they offer a variety of bloom color, flowering time, plant height, and shape. Now is the time to get those bulbs in the ground!

Bulbs can be planted in a variety of locations including around house foundations, under deciduous shrubs and trees, along borders, in perennial beds, and rock gardens. You can also plant them in containers and even on steep slopes.

When planted along a foundation, bulbs will add color in the early spring if planted in a grouping of twelve or more bulbs. If you have evergreen shrubs planted along a foundation, they will provide a nice background for planting of bulbs. Bulbs will “pop” with color in contrast to the green of the shrubs.

A border of bulbs planted along the edge of the lawn will add a splash of color to the lawn area. Or consider planting low growing bulbs around the edge of a flower bed to add interest. You can add them directly into a perennial bed. The bulbs will bloom in March, April and May before perennials start to grow. Make sure to locate the bulbs so the dying foliage will not be noticed.

Both spring and summer bulbs can be planted in portable containers. The nice thing about container plantings is their versatility. For spring bulbs, once bloom is past, the container can be moved to a location out of sight while the foliage matures. Summer bulbs will add color all summer long to areas such as a patio or deck.

Keep in mind that planting bulbs of one variety or color in mass will have greater visual impact. This will provide uniform color and texture that is pleasing to the eye. With bulbs such as tulips or daffodils, plant at least twelve bulbs of one variety in a grouping. Smaller bulbs should be planted in groups of fifty to have visual impact.

Take action now to have a beautiful, weed-free, colorful lawn next spring!

Krista Harding is a K-State Research and Extension Agricultural agent assigned to Southwind District. She may be reached at or 620-244-3826. Portal of Personalized Information

K-State Research and Extension Southwind District , Joy Miller 620-223-3720 or program is starting this fall to help Medicare beneficiaries manage personal Medicare benefits and service information. Registering with gives you access to your personalized information at any time. Registering lets you:

  • Check your Medicare information, such as your Medicare claims as soon as they are processed and important Medicare-related information specific to you.
  • Find your eligibility, entitlement, and preventive service information.
  • Check your health and prescription drug enrollment information.
  • View your Part B deductible information.
  • Manage your prescription drug list and other personal health information.
  • Print an official Medicare card.
  • Create an “On the Go Report” that allows you to print your health information to share with your healthcare providers.

Medicare uses the same information that the Social Security Administration (SSA) has on file for you (or the Railroad Retirement Board (RRB) if you get RRB benefits) to verify your information and set up your online account. To register online, you’ll:

  • Enter your Medicare number (as it appears on your red, white, and blue Medicare card).
  • Register with the same address that the SSA or RRB has on file for you. During Registration, you will be asked you to validate your address. This is an important step to protect your personal information, because Medicare may send you mail at this address that contains important personal account information.
  • Create a username and password that you can remember and use to sign into each time you visit.
  • Provide information to reset your username or password if you forget it in the future.

Medicare will mail you a confirmation letter and send a confirmation email if you provided one during registration.

The security provided by prevents others from illegally gathering data from or about you, keeping your personal information safe. Your account may only be accessed by signing in with your own username and personalized password. You or your appointed Authorized Representative are the only people who should have this information.

Remember, you play an important role in protecting your personal information (including your Social Security number) from unlawful access. Always log out of your account after you are finished with your session. Do not share your login information with anyone. Keep your username and password stored in a safe place.

Annual Medicare Open Enrollment is October 15th– December 7th, make an appointment with a Senior Health Insurance Counselor for Kansans (SHICK) for assistance in setting up your account when reviewing Part D prescription and Advantage Plan options for 2020. If you have questions or would like to make an appointment at one of the Southwind Extension District offices (Fort Scott, Erie, Iola, and Yates Center), contact me at 620-223-3720 or

Join 4-H in the Southwind District!


Submitted by: Carla Nemecek, Director
National 4-H week is just around the corner, October 6-12, 2019 and you will have an extra opportunity to learn about 4-H through various media – including radio, newspaper and social media. Once you have been exposed to 4-H in the Southwind District, your family will likely be wanting more information on how or where to join.  In Allen, Bourbon, Neosho and Woodson Counties, there are a total of 21 4-H clubs to choose from! Usually these clubs meet once a month to plan activities and practice parliamentary procedure….but mostly they come together to have FUN!
Kansas 4-H is open to youth between the ages of 7 and 19. The new 4-H year starts in October, so many prefer to join 4-H during this month. To be eligible to exhibit at the County Fair, members must be enrolled by January 1 to get the full 4-H experience. 4-H enrollment, however, is open year round, so youth can join any time and take part in any non-competitive 4-H activity.
So often, community leaders and other volunteers hear from families that they don’t have the “time” to commit to 4-H.  This can be a hard statement to swallow when 4-H can have such an impact on all kids of all ages from all backgrounds of life.  Families can put in as little or as much time as they have available, and there are no set requirements kids have to meet to be a part of 4-H.  Record books are not a requirement, but an option.  They are done differently today than most parents remember and can be a great resource tool for High School seniors who then go on to apply for college scholarships.
4-H teaches skills that last a lifetime, and leadership is at the forefront. Other life skills include – a positive self-concept, an inquiring mind, concern for the community, healthy interpersonal relationships, and sound decision making. 4-H is more than a single game or activity. Your kids will learn to speak in front of a group, handle responsibility, help their community, try new things, work with others and make good decisions.
In this busy world, schedules often send family members in a variety of directions. 4-H can bring families together. 4-H families learn together. They plan meetings, events, projects and activities together. Family members help out as club leaders, project leaders, meeting helpers, transportation aides and in a variety of other ways. Parental involvement can help ensure the best learning experience for your child. Club participation, projects and friendships with other members become memorable parts of the 4-H Program. Equally important are the skills that last a lifetime. Successful adults often credit their experiences in 4-H as turning points in their lives.  They credit planning, organization and public speaking skills as essential to their success.
 As part of the 4-H experience, youth are encouraged to learn about and contribute to the betterment of their communities. 4-H also utilizes a variety of community resources to enhance the educational experience of members. Those resources may include meeting places, guest speakers, volunteers and field trips.
In 4-H, youth “learn by doing.” Much of that learning happens through project experiences. From beef to bicycles…electricity to entomology…forestry to food science…photography to plant science…rabbits to rockets…Kansas 4-H offers 32 project areas designed to develop the wide range of interests that appeal to today’s young people. In addition to subject-matter skills, many young people develop interests that last a lifetime.
If 4-H is something you or members of your family have been interested in, but have had reservations, give us a call at the Extension Office and we would be happy to talk to you or answer any questions you might have.  Find any of the Southwind District Offices at


Carla Nemecek
Southwind Extension District
Director & Agent
1 North Washington, Iola, KS 66749


Steps for Improving Fescue Lawn Quality

Krista Harding
District Extension Agent, Horticulture
Southwind Extension District
111 S. Butler
Erie, KS 66733
Office: 620-244-3826
Cell: 620-496-8786


Above normal rainfall this year meant one thing – the lawn mowers have never stopped running! Our fescue lawns did not go dormant this year and the crabgrass hasn’t slowed down either. You might be surprised at how much of your lawn is actually crabgrass and not fescue. If you are thinking about renovating your lawn, September is the time to do it. Renovating doesn’t have to be done by plowing under the current turf and starting from scratch. Instead, lawns can be thickened up by overseeding.

To start the overseeding process, mow the grass short (1-1.5 inches) and remove the clippings. This will make it easier to get good seed-soil contact and increase the amount of light that will reach the young seedlings. The success of overseeding is dependant on good seed-soil contact. Thatch can prevent the seed from reaching the soil and germinating. If the thatch layer is ¾ inch or more, use a sod cutter to remove it. A power rake can also be used to reduce a thatch layer.

Next, the soil should be prepared for the seed. Holes must be made into the soil for the seeds to fall into. A verticut machine can be used. It has solid vertical blades that can be set to cut furrows into the soil. Another option is to use a core aerator. This machine will punch holes into the soil and deposit the cores on the surface of the ground. Each hole will produce an excellent environment for seed germination and growth. Machines to do such work can often be rented, so check around.

Fertilizer should then be applied at the rate suggested by a soil test or a starter fertilizer should be used at the rate suggested on the bag.

Seeding is the next step. For overseeding, use half the amount needed compared to seeding bare ground. For tall fescue, the normal rate for bare seeding is 6 to 8 pounds per 1000 square feet so the overseeding rate would be 3 to 4 pounds per 1000 square feet. You don’t necessarily have to overseed with the same variety you planted before. The quality of a lawn by can be raised by overseeding with a fescue variety that has better growth habits. Many stores carry blends of several newer high-quality tall fescues.

Finally, water everything in and then keep the seedbed constantly moist to insure rapid germination. Frequent light waterings are better than deeper, infrequent watering as the seedlings become established.

Fertilize with a high nitrogen fertilizer again 4 to 6 weeks after seeding to keep plants growing well and to build up food reserves.

On a side note, many homeowners often want to overseed bare spots under trees, but have minimal luck. The turf will sprout as fall progresses and will get established by winter. It continues to look good going into spring. However, the next summer it begins to die out again – despite any care it is given.

In many cases, this is due to too much shade or the type of turf planted isn’t a good fit for the location. Tall fescue is the only widely used lawn turf in Kansas that can survive some shade. All other cool and warm season turfs need more sunlight.

Instead of establishing grass under trees, consider underplanting the tree with shade tolerant ornamental plants. Examples include ground covers such as vinca minor vines, Boston ivy or liriope, or plants such as hostas or hardy ferns.

Krista Harding is a K-State Research and Extension agent assigned to Southwind District. She may be reached at or 620-244-3826.

K-State Research and Extension is an equal opportunity provider and employer.

Cattle Grazing School Sept. 28

Upcoming grazing school to be held in Bourbon County – Stay tuned for more details

Southeast Kansas is rich with grasslands. These grasslands are ideal for grazing cattle. To learn more about cattle grazing, specifically in southeast Kansas, plan to attend a one-day grazing school held in Bourbon County, Kansas on Saturday, September 28, 2019.

This program is hosted by the Southwind Extension District, the Wildcat Extension District and Cherokee County Extension, and will feature classroom instruction and ranch tours. More details are forthcoming, but tentatively scheduled activities include classroom sessions on pasture fertility, extending the grazing season with alternative forage crops, and the economics of grazing.

Tentatively scheduled tours include a progressive operation near Fort Scott, Kansas which specializes in advanced breeding techniques, and an operation near Redfield, Kansas utilizing rotational grazing and improved livestock watering systems.

This program will run from approximately 9:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m.

Specific details including location, meal, and registration fees will be available at your local extension offices within the next couple weeks.

For questions contact K-State Research and Extension -Southwind District Extension Agent for Livestock Production and Forage Management, Christopher Petty at 620-223-3720 or by e-mail at


 Thirteen 4-H members from the Southwind Extension District – Allen, Bourbon, Neosho and Woodson Counties – had the opportunity to participate at the annual Kansas 4-H Livestock Sweepstakes at Kansas State University. Their skills and knowledge were challenged by participating in Livestock & Meats Judging, Livestock Quiz Bowl and Livestock Skillathon contests. Those attending were (from left to right) Carla Nemecek (District Director & Coach), Taylor Elsworth, Leah Mueller, Gwen Fry, Kristy Beene, Carly Dreher, Brody Nemecek, Jillian Keller, Clay Brillhart, Haydon Schaaf, Haleigh O’Brien, Trey Sommer, Sadie Marchiano and Aidan Yoho. ________________________________________________________________


4-H members from the Southwind Extension District excelled at the annual Kansas 4-H Livestock Sweepstakes event on August 24-25 in Kansas State University’s Weber Hall.  The Southwind District is especially proud that 4-H members represented 4-H Clubs from Allen, Bourbon Neosho and Woodson Counties.

4-H members learned gained new knowledge and worked on livestock skills in order to be competitive in the Sweepstakes event which consisted blending scores in four contests. Southwind Extension District completed the weekend by being named the 2019 Champion and 3rd Overall Kansas State 4-H Sweepstakes Teams. Top ten individual Sweepstakes winners for Southwind were Jillian Keller, 10th; Aidan Yoho, 7th; Sadie Marchiao, 5th; Clay Brillhart, 3rd; Brody Nemecek, 2nd; and Haydon Schaaf was named High Individual Overall (for the second consecutive year!) after excelling in all contests.

The Livestock Quiz Bowl started with a qualifying exam. The twelve teams with the highest average scores advanced to the quiz bowl competition. Southwind #2 (Schaaf, Nemecek, Brillhart, Yoho) was seated first after the test and was later named the Reserve Champion Quiz Bowl Team. Southwind #1 (Marchiano, Keller, Dreher, Fry) earned 3rd best team.

The Livestock Judging contest consisted of nine judging classes and four sets of reasons with 201 contestants and 43 teams from across Kansas. Southwind #2 (Keller, Brillhart, Nemecek, Schaaf) was 1st in Sheep/Goats; 1st in Hogs; 1st in Cattle and 1st in Reasons and named Champion Team Overall. Southwind #1 (Dreher, Marchiano, Fry, Yoho) was 2nd in Sheep/Goats; 3rd in Hogs; 10th in Cattle; 4th in Reasons and named Fourth High Team Overall. Individual livestock judging results are as follows:

  • Jillian Keller – 1st Sheep/Goats; 3rd Hogs; 8th Beef; 5th Reasons; High Individual Overall
  • Clay Brillhart – 3rd Sheep/Goats; 4th Swine; 4th Beef; 3rd Reasons; 2nd Individual Overall
  • Haydon Schaaf – 5th Hogs; High Individual Beef; 4th Reasons; 3rd Individual Overall
  • Brody Nemecek – High Individual Hogs; High Individual Reasons
  • Sadie Marchiano – 5th Sheep/Goats; 2nd Hogs; 6th Reasons; 7th Individual Overall

    As the State Champion Livestock Judging Team, Southwind District (Keller, Brillhart, Schaaf, Nemecek) will represent Kansas 4-H at the American Royal Livestock Show in Kansas City, MO this coming October.

    The Meats Judging contest was based on identification of thirty retail cuts, six placings classes and three sets of reasons. Southwind #2 (Schaaf, Brillhart, Nemecek, Yoho) was 3rd in Placings, 5th in Reasons, 2nd in Retail ID and Champion Team Overall. Southwind #1 (Beene, Fry, Keller, Marchiano) was 2nd in Meats Reasons. Individual meats judging results are as follows:

  • Haydon Schaaf – High Individual Retail ID and High Individual Overall
  • Jillian Keller – 2nd Reasons
  • Clay Brillhart – 7th Individual Overall

    In the Livestock Skillathon, 4-H members rotated individually through stations that addressed six areas of animal science. Those included feedstuffs, breed identification, equipment identification, meat identification, wool evaluation and a written test. There was also a team component where members worked together on evaluating a performance Angus genetics scenario, understanding livestock biosecurity, and understanding issues in livestock reproduction. Southwind #2 (Brillhart, Marchiano, Nemecek, Schaaf) was 1st in Exam, 1st in ID; and Champion Team Overall. Southwind #1 (Dreher, Fry, Keller, Yoho) was 4th in ID and 4th Team Overall. Southwind #3 (Beene, Mueller, O’Brien, Elsworth) were 5th in the Exam.  Individual Skillathon results are as follows:

  • Brody Nemecek – 2nd Exam; 1st ID; High Individual Overall
  • Sadie Marchiano – 5th ID; 4th Individual
  • Haleigh O’Brien – 1st Exam
  • Aidan Yoho – 8th Individual
  • Haydon Schaaf – 6th Individual
  • Clay Brillhart – 5th Individual

    This group worked hard and studied a great deal of material to prepare for four state contests. To be named the Champion Livestock and Meats Judging Teams, Reserve Champion Quiz Bowl Team, Champion Livestock Skillathon Team, and Overall Champion Sweepstakes Team at the state contests shows how hard these 4-H members pushed each other to “Make the Best Better.”  The Southwind District is proud of their accomplishments and look forward to future growth and learning.

K-State, County Extension Councils, Extension Districts, and U.S. Department of Agriculture Cooperating.  K-State Research and Extension is an equal opportunity provider and employer.

Submitted by Carla Nemecek
Southwind Extension District
Director & Agent
1 North Washington, Iola, KS 66749


K-State Beef Stocker field day set for Sept. 19 



Event highlights latest information to help producers make key decisions, say organizers


MANHATTAN, Kan. – Health management of high-risk calves, humane euthanasia practices, beef cattle market outlook and a panel discussion on beef parasite control are among the topics planned for the Kansas State University Beef Stocker Field Day on Thursday, Sept. 19.


“We are excited to host the 20th annual edition of the KSU Beef Stocker Field Day,” said Dale Blasi, a professor of animal sciences and beef cattle extension specialist. “Like all the other events in the past, we bring the latest information on marketing, nutrition, health and technology for attendees to apply to their operation.”


Hosted at the K-State Beef Stocker Unit (4330 Marlatt Ave. in Manhattan), the event starts with registration and coffee at 9:30 a.m. and the program at 10:15 a.m. Niman Ranch will provide a prime ribeye lunch, and the day ends with an evening social featuring prairie oysters and Call Hall ice cream.


Attendees will have a chance to win door prizes, including a fishing trip, ATV sprayers and more. Attendees can also tour the new student housing at the Beef Stocker Unit.


Topics for this year’s agenda include

  • Beef Cattle Market Outlook
  • Changing Industry Structure is Forging a Closer Relationship Between Grow Yards and Feeders 
  • Internal Parasite Management
  • Quality Stocker Production Considerations
  • Humane Euthanasia Practices
  • BeefBasis: Better Information for Better Marketing Decisions
  • Health Management of High-Risk Calves
  • Panel Discussion: Beef Parasite Control

This year’s event is sponsored by Bayer Animal Health. The pre-registration fee is $25 if paid by Sept. 10. More information and online registration is available at After Sept. 10, attendees must pay $35 on site.


For more information, contact Lois Schreiner at 785-532-1267 or

Extend the Season with a Fall Garden

Krista Harding
District Extension Agent, Horticulture
Southwind Extension District
111 S. Butler
Erie, KS 66733
Office: 620-244-3826
Cell: 620-496-8786


I know there is still a lot of summer left. But in just a few weeks, students will be back in school and fall will be here in the blink of an eye. Although our summer gardens are going strong, it is time to start thinking about getting our fall vegetables planted. Believe it or not, fall is a great gardening season!

When you think about it, fall weather is much like spring – warm daytime temperatures and cool nights. Rainfall is typically more abundant in the fall than summer (although we have had plenty this summer) so less irrigation is needed and fall gardens often have fewer insect pest and disease problems. Combine all of these and you have the ingredients for a great garden! And of most importance is the taste of the produce grown. Flavors of fall grown vegetables are often sweeter and milder in taste than those grown during hot summer weather.

Some of the best vegetables for a fall garden are lettuce, spinach, radishes, beets, cabbage, turnips and carrots because of their frost-tolerance. These vegetables can be planted directly into your garden wherever space can be found – next to plants still growing in the garden like tomatoes, cucumbers and pumpkins. Plant mid-August until the first week of September.

Left over seed from spring planting can be used as long as it was stored in a cool, dry location. To speed up germination and seedling emergence, soak the seeds overnight before planting. If you are purchasing new seed, look for the shortest season cultivars that you can find to insure harvest before a killing frost. The average fall freeze date for our area is around October 24 according to the Weather Data Library on the K-State campus.

Sometimes establishing a fall garden can be difficult during the summer when soil temperatures are extremely high. One way to avoid this is to establish plants in containers or pots for transplanting into the garden later in the season when the weather begins to cool. Cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, and collards can be grown in cooler protected areas for 2-4 weeks prior to setting in the garden. Be sure to acclimatize crops for several days before transplanting directly into the garden.

Garden soil should be prepared just like for spring. An application of fertilizer will probably be necessary for optimum plant growth. Use one pound of a complete analysis fertilizer, such as 12-12-12, applied per 100 square feet of garden area. Weeds and grasses will also grow well in a fall garden so mulching may be warranted.

Everyone gets geared up to plant vegetables in the spring, but the fall season offers many benefits to gardening. Few take advantage of the season, but consider giving it a try this year.

The Extension office has the “Vegetable Garden Planting Guide” publication available free of charge. This guide offers information such as days to first harvest, days to germination, planting depth, frost resistance, and more.

Krista Harding is a K-State Research and Extension Agricultural agent assigned to Southwind District. She may be reached at or 620-244-3826.

K-State Research and Extension is an equal opportunity provider and employer.

SSN Card Now Easier to Replace


Joy Miller, K-State Research and Extension Southwind District Family and Consumer Science, 620-223-3720 or


Replacing Your Social Security Card Just Got Easier in Kansas

Your Social Security card should be kept in a safe place with your other important papers and avoid giving it out unnecessarily. Even with best intentions, it may get misplaced. Keep in mind you may not need a replacement, sometimes simply knowing your Social Security number is enough.

If you do need a replacement, the state of Kansas has made it easier. Kansas residents now have the ability to request a Social Security card replacement online, allowing you to skip the in-person appointment process. Replacing your card is quick, secure, and free.

To replace your card online, first you will need to log in or create your My Social Security account. Your personal information is protected by using identity verification and other security features. To set up an account go to

To replace your card online, you must also meet certain criteria. This includes being a U.S. Citizen age 18 or older with a U.S. mailing address, cannot be requesting a name change or any other change to your card, and must have a driver’s license or state-issued identification card from one of the states participating in this program.

My Social Security is an online service provided by the Social Security Administration (SSA) that allows you to review your earnings history, check current or future benefits, and access other Social Security services. You can also use your My Social Security account to:

  • Check applications.
  • Set up direct deposit for your benefit payment.
  • Change your address or phone number.
  • Request a benefit verification letter.
  • Request a replacement of tax forms SSA-1099 or SSA 1042S.
  • Check the status of a pending claim or appeal of disability.

K-State veterinarian urges producers to plan for animal heat stress

Chris Petty, K-State Extension.

Tarpoff says water is just one part of the equation

MANHATTAN, Kan. – Compared to recent years, Kansas’ weather has been mostly nice to the state’s cattle producers this summer. That has recently changed this summer.

Kansas State University beef veterinarian A.J. Tarpoff is sounding the bells for livestock producers to take some extra measures to protect their herds during a stretch of days in which temperatures are forecast to tbe very hot across the state.

“Water, water and lots of water,” said Tarpoff, who noted that the beef industry loses an estimated $369 million each year due to the effects of heat stress. “Whenever we have a heat stress event, that is the most essential nutrient for animals, times five.

“I say, ‘times five’ because the question always comes up about how much water do cattle need, and the answer is that they need five times the amount of water that they are taking up in dry matter.”

For a cow that is consuming 30 pounds of dry matter, that comes out to about 20 gallons per day. Multiply that by the number of cattle in an operation, and the need for water grows exponentially.

Tarpoff said cows try to cool themselves by panting heavily (evaporative cooling), and somewhat by sweating – though they are inefficient sweaters compared to humans. Cows accumulate a heat load during the day and rely on cooler, nighttime temperatures for relief.

Producers can aid in cooling not only by providing more water, but also by changing some of their management strategies during the hottest days.

For example, Tarpoff notes, producers should consider providing most of the cattle’s feed later in the day, as much as 70 percent. Doing so will help to reduce digestive heat, or the heat that accumulates when cattle eat.

“This time of year, we may be providing that ration at 6 or 6:30 in the evening so we can push back that digestive heat load into the cooler hours of the night,” Tarpoff said. “That can make a big impact on how much these animals deal with during the heat of the day.”

Producers should also try to avoid lower quality straw hay or other foods that are fibrous, which create more heat in the animal’s rumen. Feedlot rations and lush green grass are better options for helping animals control digestive heat, Tarpoff said.

In feedlots or other confined settings, producers should provide plenty of water and shade (if available), and use sprinklers to cool pen floors. Tarpoff said they also should minimize handling of animals because the more they have to move, the more heat they produce.

The Kansas Mesonet Network at Kansas State University maintains a Cattle Comfort Index that combines the effect of temperature, humidity, wind and solar radiation. Tarpoff said it’s an excellent online source for producers to monitor when making plans for heat and potential nighttime cooling.

The Cattle Comfort Index is available online at