A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

UK personnel working to implement environmental changes, help lower obesity rates in Martin County

By Katie Pratt University of Kentucky University of Kentucky personnel are working to implement environmental changes to help lower the obesity rates of residents in the state’s most obese county. Faculty and staff with the UK College of Agriculture, Food and Environment are collaborating with many community leaders in Martin County to improve the county’s built environment infrastructure, increase...

New tool to help Kentucky grain producers plan disease management strategy for growing season

By Katie Pratt University of Kentucky Kentucky grain producers have a new, free tool at their disposal to see the past yield losses and economic impacts of common diseases affecting corn and soybeans. This tool can help them plan their disease management strategy for the upcoming growing season. Developed by the Crop Protection Network, the Field Crop Disease Loss Calculator can tell producers how...

Eighteen Garrard County students complete Teen Court training and will be sworn in November 21

Eighteen Garrard County students who have completed Teen Court training will be sworn in as officers of their local court at a ceremony Nov. 21 in Lancaster. The public and media are invited to attend. The event will take place at 5 p.m. ET in the District Courtroom of the Garrard County Judicial Center at 54 Stanford St. Circuit Court Judge Janet C. Booth and District Court Judge Jeff Moss oversee...

Buy Local funds exhausted, Quarles cites ‘testament to the strength of Kentucky’s local food culture’

Funding for reimbursements under the Buy Local program has been exhausted for 2019, Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles announced. Buy Local is a Kentucky Proud initiative that rewards participating restaurants, distributors, and other foodservice businesses for buying Kentucky food products. “This is a testament to the strength of Kentucky’s local food culture,” Quarles said. “More and more,...

Hunters face penalties for bringing whole deer and elk carcasses into Kentucky from out of state

Modern gun seasons for deer in surrounding states open as soon as this weekend. It’s a good time for big game hunters traveling outside of Kentucky to review the rules on bringing their harvests home. Kentucky prohibits anyone from bringing whole carcasses of deer or elk into Kentucky from another state. This also applies to other big game, such as caribou or moose. Hunters may transport deer and...

Art Lander’s Outdoors: The Cooper’s Hawk is a winged hunter with awe-inspiring aerial skills

Hunters who spend a lot of time afield in the fall are likely to observe all sorts of amazing animal behavior, none more awe-inspiring than the aerial skills of the Cooper’s Hawk (Accipiter cooperii). Like all raptors in this genus, the Cooper’s Hawk hunts on the wing, while flying through timber and brush. Its hunting skills are the very definition of stealth and surprise. The Cooper’s Hawks’...

Rural Blog: Kentucky wildlife officials to shoot feral hogs from helicopters at Land Between the Lakes

Kentucky wildlife officials are proceeding with plans to shoot feral hogs from helicopters in the federal Land Between the Lakes National Recreation Area. “The winter campaign to eradicate feral hogs at LBL begins in November and also includes bait trapping and euthanasia, managed by the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife and the U.S....

Governor-Elect Andy Beshear unveils transition website; you can apply for place in his administration

By Tom Latek Kentucky Today Governor-elect Andy Beshear unveiled a website for his gubernatorial transition on Tuesday. Governor-Elect Andy Beshear The website is besheartransitionky.com and Beshear said the initial site provides Kentuckians with a way to connect with the transition team and apply to work in the administration. As the transition progresses, the site will be updated. “I am honored...

Drought is officially over in all 120 Kentucky counties; recent rains eliminated deficits

The Kentucky Energy and Environment Cabinet and the Office of the State Climatologist, in coordination with the Kentucky Drought Mitigation Team, have removed drought declarations for all 120 counties in the Commonwealth. Recent rains have eliminated precipitation deficits and improved stream flows and soil moisture levels. Precipitation events since Oct. 3, when the statewide Level 1 and Level 2...

Bio-acoustic fish fence aimed at stopping Asian carp migration now operational at Lake Barkley

An experimental project designed to keep invasive Asian carp from moving farther up the Cumberland River was unveiled Friday at Lake Barkley. A bio-acoustic fish fence (BAFF) was deployed on the downstream side of Barkley Lock. U.S. Senator Mitch McConnell and U.S. Congressman James Comer along with project partners, ceremonially inaugurated the BAFF system as part of a three-year evaluation to deter...

KDFWR debuts new crime-fighting app; available through iTunes App Store, Google Play Store

Need to report suspected illegal activity related to fish, wildlife or boating to the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources? Now, there’s an app for that. Kentucky Fish and Wildlife has partnered with tip411 to offer the public a way to submit anonymous tips using the new KFWLaw smartphone app or by text message and the web. Similar technology has helped reduce crime in communities nationwide. “Through...

Kentucky Proud launches statewide 2019 holiday ad campaign to showcase Kentucky farm products

Kentucky consumers are reminded that “the freshest gift ideas come from Kentucky farms” in the 2019 Kentucky Proud holiday advertising campaign that will launch statewide next week. “Kentucky Proud products make unique, thoughtful gifts from the Commonwealth we all love,” Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles said. “Buying Kentucky Proud also helps support Kentucky farm families and small...

Art Lander’s Outdoors: Cast iron cookware has been used for generations in traditional Kentucky cooking

Venerable cast iron cookware has a place in the hearts of generations of Kentucky cooks who love to prepare traditional meals for family and friends. On a campout, there’s nothing quite like a breakfast of thick-sliced hardwood smoked bacon or country sausage, fried up with eggs in a cast iron skillet over an open fire. A cast iron dutch oven (Photo from Lodge) At home on the weekend, coming in...

Modern gun season for deer opens Nov. 9; hunters can take advantage of full rut cycle over 16-days

One of the favorite times of the year for tens of thousands of Kentuckians begins Nov. 9 as modern gun deer season opens statewide. The 16-day season closes Nov. 24. The season sits squarely in the rut, when male deer are most actively pursuing does to breed. “Our modern gun season this year starts very early in November,” said Gabe Jenkins, deer and elk program coordinator for the Kentucky Department...

Kentucky State Parks offering discounted rates to current military, veterans and retirees through March

Current and former members of the nation’s armed forces can receive lodging discounts at Kentucky State Parks with the USA Military Discount program through March 31. Those on active military duty, retired members of the military, veterans, members of the National Guard and reservists, are eligible for the program. The lodge at Pine Mountain State Resort Park in Pineville (Photo from KSP) With the...

UK Cooperative Extension Service racks up national awards at Epsilon Sigma Phi meeting in Colorado

The University of Kentucky Cooperative Extension Service took home several national awards at the annual meeting of Epsilon Sigma Phi, The Extension Professionals’ Association in Colorado Springs, Colorado. Ann Porter, a lifelong extension supporter and volunteer from Mason County, received the organization’s 2019 Friend of Extension-Volunteer/Lay Leader Award. “Our volunteers are the backbone...

Protective zone implemented below Lake Barkley lock as officials test barrier to restrict Asian carp

The lock chamber of the Lake Barkley tailwater in Western Kentucky has closed to fishing, bow fishing and boat anchoring in order to protect an experimental barrier being installed to block the movement of Asian carp into the lake. The Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources is one of several agencies and partners involved with an extensive research project to investigate the effectiveness...

KDFWR increasing monitoring of deer and elk for chronic wasting disease as hunting season returns

As hunters return to the woods and fields for the fall seasons, the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources is increasing its efforts to monitor the state for chronic wasting disease (CWD) at the same time. Seventeen years ago, the department recognized an encroaching threat to Kentucky’s deer and elk herds and took steps to prevent the spread of CWD to the state. Now, in 2019, the agency...

Art Lander’s Outdoors: Kentucky Wild program supports endangered, threatened non-game wildlife

The Kentucky Wild program, launched during the summer of 2018 by the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources (KDFWR), directly supports non-game wildlife facing threats in our state. Many wildlife species that we take for granted like have experienced long term population declines in recent decades, most notably songbirds, bats and amphibians. Proceeds from membership in the program are...

Rural Blog: Department of Agriculture publishes rules allowing widespread production of hemp

The Department of Agriculture has published a final rule allowing farmers to legally begin widespread hemp production. It has “requirements for licensing, maintaining records on the land where hemp will be grown, testing the levels of THC — the active ingredient in marijuana that causes a high — and disposing of plants” that could, David Pitt reports for The Associated Press. The rule...