Daily Newspaper for Reeves County, Trans Pecos, Big Bend, Far West Texas

Main Menu|Archives Menu|Classified|Advertising|Monahans



Feb. 27, 1996

Farmers organize pink bollworm fight

Return to Menu

Staff Writer
PECOS, Feb. 27, 1996 - Get 40 farmers together and you may get 40
different opinions on any one subject.

Pink bollworm control was the subject for a meeting Wednesday at
Cattleman's Restaurant, hosted by the Texas Department of Agriculture.
About 40 farmers and representatives from support agencies hashed and
re-hashed the old problem.

Rick Smathers, deputy director for agri-system programs for TDA, read
portions of a proposed draft of cotton pest regulations, pointing out
changes made at the request of producers.

Regulations are formulated by producers and enforced by TDA for the
benefit of all producers, Smathers said.

A quarantine program was set up in 1917, which restricted movement of
products and equipment across the state. In the 1950s, a group of
producers petitioned the TDA to put in stalk destruction requirements.

"We have had different groups of producers that, in the 70s, petitioned
again to implement stalk destruction requirements to control pink
bollworm," he said.

Then in 1988, producers in the Lower Rio Grande Valley and Coastal Bend
petitioned to make regulations more restrictive than the "shred or plow
out" of stalks, Smathers said.

"They wanted to shred and plow," he said. "A committee like this got
involved. Regulations were changed in some zones to require shredding
and plowing. These regulations cover quarantine and cotton stalk
destruction requirements for specific zones. Only those areas that
petitioned are regulated."

In the last Legislative session, the pink bollworm and boll weevil laws
were updated, he said.

"There was some confusion which we fall under. The Legislature combined
the two into the Cotton Pest Law. These are regulations that correspond
with what was passed in the last Legislative session," he said of the
proposed draft.

Smathers said he helped draft and design the regulations, taking both
sets and lumping them together.

Agriculture Commissioner Rick Perry has called for a Sunset review of
all regulations to determine if they are effective.

"If they are good, we will keep them. If not, we will revise them,"
Smathers said. "If they are outdated, we will get rid of them."

Regulations have been revised, clarified and made more "user friendly"
in the proposed draft, he said. They were distributed to regional
offices so TDA inspectors in the field can look at them and to farmers.

"The next step is to get producers' input to see if anything in the
regulations can be revised or clarified to make it better for the
producers," Smathers said.

"The bottom line is that producers make the program. It is of no
benefit to the department to enforce regulations that are of no benefit
to producers. From all the input, we will combine the recommendations
into what changes need to be made."

Recommendations go from a representative group like the Trans Pecos
Cotton Association, which has members in Reeves, Ward and Pecos
counties, he said. They nominate producers from each county, and the TDA
chooses one from each county to serve on the liaison committee.

Kenneth Lindemann represents Reeves County, Dennis Braden Pecos County
and Manuel Lujan Ward County, Smathers said.

Under the present regulations, Reeves, Pecos and Ward county producers
are required to shred and plow up cotton stalks by February 1 unless
they are granted an extension.

Smathers said that blanket extensions are made when conditions require
it. Individual extensions can be granted for good cause.

"Right now the pink bollworm is only present in Pecos, Ward, Reeves,
Hudspeth and El Paso counties," Smathers said. "They don't have stalk
destruction on the High Plains, but the cold weather does a pretty good
job of keeping them under control."

Stalk destruction helped solve the problem in the Rio Grande Valley and
Coastal Bend areas, he said.

Rex Friesen, extension entomologist for Pecos and Reeves Counties, said
that data from the Valley and Coastal Bend was used to formulate local

"Indications from other states and other counties strongly suggest this
is probably the single most effective practice," he said.

A.L. Gibson of Toyah said Reeves County is different from other
counties and states, in that cotton seldom comes back out from the roots
of the old stalk.

"The big thing that's really hurting us is the trash we are leaving on
the ground," he said. "Shredding that dead stalk is nothing. We have
been shredding for years and make a nest for the insect on the ground.
We put a light layer of dirt on this trash on the ground.

"This last year is the first year I have ever had a problem. I have
been farming in this county for 40 years. I don't agree we are doing any
good killing stalks," he said.

Friesen said he agrees that shredding alone probably makes it better
for the bollworm, but cutting the stalk and disking it under does work.

Clarence Stephan of Coyanosa said he has watched one particular area
where the ground is broken every year.

"That farm has more pink bollworms than anywhere else," he said. "You
are not doing real deep. You are making a home for them to come out a
little later than they would ordinarily."

Friesen said that bollworm emergence is related to heat and moisture.
Early irrigation wets the ground, and when the sun heats it up, the
worms begin to emerge, he said.

Stephan said that running cattle on the field to clean it worked in the

Gibson said he had no problem with pink bollworms on fields where he
ran cattle after harvesting his crop.

"They were only on the outside edges of my farm; usually coming in from
somewhere else."

Larry Turnbough, president of Trans Pecos Cotton Association, said that
some farmers are mis-informed.

"The Feb. 1 law was put in place many, many years ago," he said. "All
it said was shred only."

Two years ago it was changed to shred and plow, he said.

"The first organization you make change through is a certified cotton
producer organization. We have Trans Pecos Cotton Association
representing three counties. The board is from all those areas.

"So it is that group who asked TDA to enforce stalk destruction. We
asked for shredding and plowing up. In Reeves County we have a few
farming for disaster and insurance payments. In June and July there is
no insect control, and they prefer not to harvest it. They are creating
a place for insects to thrive. Without a deadline they will have cotton
the year around," Turnbough said.

Turnbough said he and his father have been shredding and grazing their
fields, but the problem was getting worse. Plowing up the stalk prevents
it from putting out new shoots and giving pink bollworms an early crop
to feed on.

Charles E. Brandenburg of Grandfalls said they are isolated from
everyone and get more rain and hail than other areas.

"We got 20.5 inches of rain last year," he said. "We planted early to
try to get ahead of the rain and hail. Nearly every year by the time we
get to the gin with the last bale, it is Jan. 10-15, and Feb. 1 it has
to be plowed up. We have to call in for an extension. That's killing us.
This year we got a shredder and followed the stripper."

Turnbough said that disturbing the soil is part of the key to
controlling bollworms.

"If you bury them deep, that is best," he said.

Pink bollworms drop off the plant and go into the soil for diapause, he
said. Tests have shown that a maximum of 30 percent stay on the stalk
and 70 percent go into the soil «MDBO»«MDNM»¼ inch or less.

Worm specialists with the U.S.D.A. recommend early planting so the crop
will mature early, Turnbough said. Pink bollworm populations are small
through July, but generations get bigger and bigger, until they have
multiplied 12 fold by October.

"There is a huge number in September. If 20 percent of is planted late,
it will just be peaking out when you have a huge number. They will all
go to that late cotton," he said. "They are stressing `stop late cotton.
Try to get everybody in as early as they can.'"

Last year's late rain in September caused a lot of re-growth that added
to the expense, he said.

A study on pink bollworms showed they are most susceptible at
mid-diapause, 90 days after they drop off the stalk, Turnbough said.
That is the time to plow and disturb their nest.

"If they drop off Aug. 1, we have some Nov. 1 already at mid-diapause.
If you have late cotton and they drop off at the end of October, you
have through January. By Feb. 1 they are at mid-diapause."

El Paso Valley farmers say to disturb them as early and as often as you
can, he said.

"Every time you go out there, you will catch another patch of them in

Linda Glenn said pinkies have gotten worse since the plow-up program
was implemented two years ago. "We are making little beds for them," she

Turnbough said that farmers have never complied with the stalk
destruction law.

"We have never had a test in Reeves County (to see if it works)," said
Gibson. "We are going to go broke this way faster."

Turnbough said the program should knock the bollworm down if producers
do it for one or two years.

If the problem continues to get worse and the worms spread to other
areas, this zone could be quarantined, Turnbough said.

"We are so close to that. All it takes is a few complaints. That means
heavy equipment has to be quarantined. Cotton in the bale can't be
shipped all around the country. That can cost us tons of money."

TDA regional director Ronald Bertrand said the turnout is the best he
has seen at this type meeting.

Farmers continued to talk in small groups after the session closed at 9

Five year plan reveals `what if'

Return to Menu

At the request of the Cotton Board, Cotton Incorporated is currently
developing a five-year strategic plan that will be used to guide the
Cotton Research & Promotion Program through the year 2001. The
accompanying graph that tracks cotton's market share since 1961 reflects
a positive retail rebound. Now look at the 1961-1975 trend line.
Cotton's market share could have remained dismal had growers not, among
other things, initiated the passage of the Cotton Research & Promotion
Act and invested in the future of their commodity. Their foresight
should obviously be commended.

Online information service

offers downloaded tax forms

Return to Menu

Taxpayers who have a computer, a modem and a printer can download and
print their own IRS tax forms and publications in a matter of minutes
from anywhere in the world. This service is provided by FedWorld, an
on-line information service operated by the National Technical
Information Service (NTIS), an agency of the U.S. Commerce Department.

To log onto FedWorld by modem, dial 703-321-8020. Or log on through the
Internet via Telnet (; file transfer protocol
(; or World Wide Web (
Technical assistance is available from the NTIS help desk at
703-487-4608.U.S. Residency Status Affected

Household goods are deduction

in job-related move outside US

Return to Menu

Job-related moves outside of the U.S. and its possessions may qualify
as a tax adjustment.

Among the items that may be claimed as adjustments on U.S. tax returns
are moving household goods and personal possessions, some storage
expenses and traveling to a new home.

Both a distance and time test must be met. The distance to the new main
job must be at least 50 miles farther from the former home than the
distance to the old main job location. For example, if the old job was
five miles from the former home, the new job must be at least 55 miles
from that former home.

To meet the time test, an employee must work full time at a new
location for at least 39 weeks during the first 12 months after arrival
at the new location.

Tax adjustments that can be taken include move-related lodging expenses
and the moving of household goods.

Retirees or their survivors moving back to the U.S. after working
overseas may also take an adjustment for appropriate moving expenses.

More information about moving expense rules is available in IRS
Publication 521, Moving Expenses, and Publication 54, Tax Guide for U.S.
Citizens and Resident Aliens Abroad. Both are available by writing to
the IRS Forms Distribution Center, P.O. Box 85627, Richmond, VA
23285-5627, USA. Worldwide

Self employed can deduct

cost of health insurance

Return to Menu

The self-employed health insurance deduction was permanently extended
retroactive to January 1, 1994. Self-employed persons who did not claim
the 25-percent health insurance deduction on their 1994 tax return may
do so by filing an amended return.

Generally, to claim the deduction individuals have to be either
self-employed, with a net profit for the year, or receive wages from an
S-Corporation in which they are more than a two-percent shareholder.
Individuals may not claim the deduction for any month during which they
were eligible to participate in health plans subsidized by their, or
their spouses', employers.

Anyone who qualifies for the deduction for 1995 can subtract 30 percent
of their health insurance premiums from gross income (subject to the
restrictions explained above).

More information on these subjects is available in IRS Publication 15,
(Circular E), Employer's Tax Guide. It can be obtained free by writing
to the IRS Forms Distribution Center, P.O. Box 85627, Richmond, VA
23285-5627, USA.

Red meat use down from 95

Return to Menu

AUSTIN....Texas red meat production totaled 339.4 million pounds during
December, down 1 percent from last year, according to the monthly report
released by the Texas Agricultural Statistics Service. Production was 7
percent below November.

December commercial cattle slaughter totaled 488,700 head, 1 percent
less than last year. Live weight totaled 541.1 million pounds compared
with 540.1 million last year.

The monthly hog kill totaled 31,700 head with a total live weight of
10.5 million pounds. The number of head slaughtered decreased 9 percent,
while live weight decreased 17 percent.

The Texas calf slaughter totaled 1,500 head. U.S. commercial red meat
production declined 5 percent from December 1994 to 3.5 billion pounds.
Commercial cattle slaughter totaled 2.8 million head, 2 percent below a
year ago.
Some 8.1 million head of hogs were slaughtered during the month, down 8
percent from last year. Commercial sheep and lamb slaughter, at 370,800
head, was down 13 percent .

Insects and bad weather cut yieldsher cut yields

Return to Menu

AUSTIN....The 1995 growing season produced lower yields and production
than the previous year as insects and adverse weather conditions dropped
crop output. Production of all summer crops were below a year ago except
for alfalfa hay, drybeans and sugarcane. Likewise, yields were also less
than last year for most crops.

According to end-of-year figures released by the Texas Agricultural
Statistics Service, Upland cotton producers harvested 4.50 million bales
of cotton for 1995, down 8 percent from a year earlier. Harvested
acreage increased 12 percent from a year ago to 5.75 million acres. A
statewide yield of 376 pounds, 82 pounds below 1994 contributed to the
lower production.

"Overall the crop turned out less than expected except for some
isolated areas around the state," State Statistician Dennis Findley

Rice production along the Texas coast is down 16 percent form last
year. Producers harvested 17.8 million hundredweight (cwt), with an
average yield of 5,600 pounds per acre compared with the 6,000 pound
yield in 1994.

Texas peanut production was 553.5 million pounds, 9 percent less than
last year's crop. Average yield was 2,050 pounds per acre, 60 pounds
less than 1994. Peanut planted acreage totaled 275,000 down 7 percent
from the previous year.

Harvested acreage decreased 6 percent from a year ago to 270,000 acres.

The 1995 sorghum crop, at 40.64 million cwt, was down 16 percent,
harvested acreage was down 16 percent, and yield was down 280 pounds to
3,024 pounds per acre. Statewide corn yield averaged 114 bushels per
acre, 3 bushels less than the previous year.

Production decreased 9 percent from last year to 216.60 million
bushels. Harvested acreage dropped 7 percent to 1.90 million acres.

Soybean production totaled 6.0 million bushels, down 15 percent from
the previous year, as yields at 25.0 bushels was down 8.5 bushels.
The state's hay crop also declined with all hay production totaling
8.14 million tons down 4 percent from last year. Of the total, alfalfa
hay accounted for 576,000 tons and was up 42 percent from last year.

United States Upland cotton production totaled 17.6 million bales, down
9 percent from last year. Nationally, producers averaged 536 pounds per
acre compared with 705 pounds in 1994. Sorghum production decreased 29
percent from a year ago to 257.8 million cwt. Yield averaged 3,114
pounds per acre, down 963 pounds from the previous year.

U.S. corn producers harvested 7.4 billion bushels, down 27 percent. The
yield of 113.5 bushels per acre was down 25.1 bushels from 1994.

Rice production, at 173.9 million cwt, was down 12 percent from the
1994 crop.
Peanut production decreased 18 percent to 3.48 billion pounds.

U.S. production of all hay totaled 154.8 million tons, up 3 percent
from last year.

Drilling permits down in January

Return to Menu

The Railroad Commission issued a total of 845 original drilling permits
in January compared to 856 in January, 1995.

The January total included 573 permits to drill new oil and gas tests,
46 to re-enter existing well bores, and 226 for re-completions. Permits
issued in January included 338 oil, 203 gas, 269 oil and gas, 30
in Jection, and 5 other permits.

In January operators reported 326 oil 351 gas, 33 injection and two
other completions, compared to 315 oil, 306 gas, and 13 injection and
other completions during the same month of last year.

Total well completions for 1996 year-to-date is 712, a one percent
increase from the 634 recorded during the same period in 1995. Operators
reported 1,056 holes plugged and 131 dry holes in January, compared to
880 holes pluggod and 125 dry holes reported the same period last year.


Texas preliminary November,l995 crude oil production averaged 1,366,763
barrels daily, down from the 1,421,940 barrels daily average of
November, 1994.

The preliminary Texas crude oil production figure for November, 1995 is
41,002,887 barrels, a decrease from the 42,658,199 barrels reported
during November, 1994.


Texas oil and gas wells produced 448,202,223 Mcf of gas based upon
preliminary production figures for November, 1995 down from the
November, 1994 preliminary gas production total of 463,128,761 Mcf.
Texas gas production in November came from 161,772 oil and 47,868 gas

New program analyzes cotton

Return to Menu

Producers and ginners are benefiting from a major upgrade in the
Windo~ws version of GINNet.

GINNet for Windows version 2.0 is an EFS System program developed by
Cotton Incorporated that is used to graphically analyze cotton
properties of selected growing areas such as farms, fields, gins or any
combination thereof, according to the measured HVI properties of ginned
samples. The newest feature enables micronaire prediction based on field
samples and allows growers to target harvest for optimum micronaire
measurements. The mathematics are based on a technique developed by Dr.
Hal Lewis, president of Scientific Seeds, Inc., in Dell, Arkansas

Sludge stays put in West Texas windsst Texas winds

Breathe easy. New York City sludge spread on a ranch in windy West
Texas isn't stirring pathogens into the air, a new study has found.

"The most important finding is that the population in Sierra Blanca is
not being impacted by the sludge application," said Dr. Suresh Pillai,
environmental microbiologist at Texas A&M University's Agricultural
Research Center at El Paso. "This sludge application poses little risk
under the conditions."

Sierra Blanca, with a population of about 700 people, is only about
four miles from the ranch site which has been a repository for New York
City sludge since 1993. Pillai studied the location, taking air samples
in the spring and fall of 1995 over an eight-month period, to see if
people were breathing air contaminated by disease-causing organisms.

His lab analyzed the samples for salmonella, fecal coliforms, viruses
and sludge indicators called hydrogen sulfide producers and clostridia,
but no significant amounts of any of those pathogens were found.

"Air quality is the last issue that we didn't have data on," said Bob
Carlile of College Station, technical director for MERCO Joint Venture,
the company which is applying the sludge. "Previous studies have shown
that we are improving the soil, the quality and quantity of vegetation
on the project and that we are not impacting the water. We didn't have
scientific data on the air until now."

Sludge is being applied at a rate of three tons per acre per year to
about 18,000 acres of a 120,000-acre ranch near Sierra Blanca, about 75
miles east of El Paso in the Chihuahuan desert. The Chihuahuan Desert
spreads over some 175,000 square miles in southern New Mexico, the
Trans-Pecos Region of Texas and much of northern Mexico. Some residents
near the site were concerned about the possibility of pathogens becoming
airborne because it is an arid, windy region.

Carlile said that the company will continue to conduct research on the
location because it is the largest biosolids recycling effort - in terms
of land area being used - in the nation.

"It is a controversial project being looked at by a lot of different
people. That's why we're the standard bearer. We are spending tremendous
amounts of dollars to get the answers," he said.

The company also has sought research on the extent to which the applied
sludge is moved off site by wind erosion, according to Dr. B.L. Harris,
Texas Agricultural Extension Service soil specialist.

"The overall amounts of both mineral and organic materials being moved
onto and off the application areas is almost too small to measure,"
Harris reported. "Applying biosolids reduces wind erosion by roughening
the surface, thereby increasing the boundary layer of air just above the
ground surface."

Harris also said the application of biosolids reduces wind erosion
because the material contains nutrients which promoted the growth of
plant species which serve as windbreaks that also filter particulate
matter out of the air as it crosses the site.

"Based on these studies to date, there should be little concern about
potentials for the applied biosolids to be moved offsite by wind,"
Harris said.

Yet because of its location in an arid, windswept region, company
officials wanted to make sure that no pathogens were being stirred up in
the air. At Sierra Blanca, wind speeds of up to 40 miles per hour are
common in the spring.

Municipal sewage sludges are routinely used on agricultural lands in
various parts of the world, Pillai said. In the United States, as much
as 33 percent of the municipal sludge produced is applied onto
agricultural lands. Pillai said there has been "only limited information
on the occurrence of airborne microbial pathogens during sludge

"With the ban on ocean sludge dumping and the increasing restrictions
on landfills, disposal onto land surfaces becomes almost the only
alternative and is expected to increase in the future," he noted.

Pillai collected air from five locations - upwind, at the
rangeland-population interface, at the old application site, at the
current application site and at the hopper loading site - throughout the
two study periods. The collection devices, called impingers, where
placed on poles and set to collect at a rate similar to the breathing
patterns of humans - about five feet in height and three gallons of air
in 20 minutes.

An average person breathes about 20 cubic meters of air per day.
Microbiological analyses then were performed on the concentrated air
samples at Pillai's El Paso lab.

"We looked for the total numbers of bacteria in the samples, looked for
specific pathogens such as salmonella, then we did some genetic
fingerprinting of airborne clostridia to help us determine their
sources," Pillia said.

He explained that clostridia are bacteria that forms spores. Since
sludges have gone through a heat digestion process, the clostridia
originating from sludges are heat tolerant. So, by comparing the genetic
fingerprint of airborne heat tolerant clostridia with that of the
clostridia isolated directly from the sludges and surrounding soils, it
is possible to identify the sources of airborne clostridia, according to

"This new molecular fingerprinting has tremendous application in doing
exposure studies to trace the origins of airborne bacteria," Pillai
said. "Future studies of this type will need to include the analysis of
clostridia in addition to the other pathogens so that sources could be

Youth livestock shows airing dirty laundry

Return to Menu

COLLEGE STATION - Unethical behavior at youth livestock shows is kind
of like dirty laundry -it's better aired from the inside out.

"My position is that the vast majority of people at the (youth
livestock) programs are doing the right thing, but the time has come to
not tolerate the people who don't," said Dr. Jeff Goodwin, Dallas County
Extension agent and chair of the national youth livestock program ethics
symposium planning committee.

"As long as we don't discuss it, the unethical people will have free
rein," he added. "I've been accused of airing our dirty laundry, but
dirty laundry is better aired from the inside out."

And the "airing out" has begun. It began with the National Youth
Livestock Program Ethics Symposium in December in Las Vegas. It
continued with another program to give students and all interested
persons an opportunity to hear the action plan developed at the Las
Vegas conference. That conference was Feb. 6 at Texas A&M University.

The four biggest possible downfalls of the youth livestock program,
Goodwin said, are illegal and extra labeled drug use on show animals,
physical alteration of animals, false ownership of animals, and
excessive involvement of professional fitters who do the work for the

Many of the major livestock shows have already instituted some type of
ethics policy, Goodwin said, but competitors, booster clubs and others
involved youth livestock programs also should develop a "zero tolerance"
policy for unethical behavior. Rules should be enforced.

"It's not the kids who plot these underhanded actions. It's the adults
involved," he said. These fall into three categories:

* A small group of people who are just crooks. "They're in every kind
of program," he said.

* Those who will cross the line if it's convenient to do so. "If
everyone else is doing it, they will. If we can remind them not to, they
won't," he added.
* Those who may never break the rules but are at the stock show for the
wrong reasons. "Adult egos are at the root of 99 percent of the problems
in the program," he said.

"Remember the ultimate purpose for the youth livestock show program -
youth development," he added. He recommended that parents, vocational
agriculture teachers and county Extension agents shift their involvement
to more of a coaching mode as the child gets more adept at handling the
responsibility of caring for and exhibiting an animal.

Additionally, he recommended, 4-H and FFA clubs should institute local
level ethics programs. "We've seen a lot of positive things happen when
we do that," he said.

Goodwin has developed a video called "A Question of Ethics." The
20-minute video is available for $60.50 (includes shipping and handling)
from the Instructional Materials Service, F.E. Box 2588, Texas A&M
University, College Station, Texas, 77843-2588.

"Ninety-five percent of the people who've seen it just love it. They
say it's about time. We're just on the side of doing the right thing,"
he said.

Cud-chewing cows need diet

with the correct amount of fat

Return to Menu

By Kathleen Davis
BEEVILLE - Dieting isn't just a human thing. Cows should be fat-conscious
at certain times in their lives as well.

Unfortunately, cows don't have prepackaged frozen entrees or personal
weight trainers out in the pastures. So animal scientists at the Texas
Agricultural Experiment Station are trying to cook up a menu and figure
out how to get cows to eat just the right amount of fat - a real
challenge in a state where six million female bovines stomp around
chewing their cud all day.

Forty cows will begin a feeding study Feb. 1, with 10 cows eating four
diets with different amounts of a soybean oil byproduct over a two-month
period, according to Dr. Gary Williams, Experiment Station animal
scientist in Beeville. He expects to have enough results for ranchers,
perhaps even new feed recommendations, by the end of this year.

"We first want to find the minimum amount of soy oil needed in the
diet," Williams said. "Then we'll work on the supplement and how it is
fed to cows." Cows eat mostly grass or hay, but researchers know that
adding a little fat improves a cow's reproductive ability. Specifically,
cows in previous studies have developed a greater number of medium to
large follicles, sacs in the ovary where eggs develop, and had improved
rebreeding potential when fed 4 percent fat, Williams said.

But providing supplemental fat to range cows - usually in a molasses
mixture - lets some animals eat too much and others not get enough. It
can be costly and labor intensive for ranchers. Also, scientists have
not probed reproductive impacts on cows fed less than 4 percent fat in
their diets, Williams said.

The 40 penned heifers will be fed diets containing zero, low, medium
and high amounts of fat. After the first 60-day feeding trial, a second
one will begin. Next fall, a similar trial will be conducted for cows on
pasture at the Beeville station.

The ariimals will be examined for different metabolic responses such as
serum cholesterol, growth hormone and insulin. Their ovaries also will
be scanned with ultrasound to record the follicle population on the
ovaries, Williams said.

"We should begin to see the differences, if any, after about a month on
the diets," Williams said.

He noted that if significant improvements are found on diets with less
than 4 percent fat, ranchers might begin to adapt new feeding
recommendations, but he cautioned that more time and information from
greater numbers of cows will be necessary to make firm suggestions on
feed content.

"You can measure beneficial biological effects from a small number of
animals and then probably assume that if they are significant enough
they will translate into perforrnance for a larger cow herd," Williams
said. "But the only way to prove that is with long-term use.

"Transferring the basic biology takes a lot of time. But when this
trial is finished, we will be able to estimate the expected outcome," he

The research is supported by Cargill-Molasses Liquid Product Division,
Williams noted. That company will work with formulating diet
recommendations into their commercial fat supplements if new information
is found, he said.

Oil show booths filling up

Return to Menu

ODESSA - It should come as no surprise to anyone even remotely familiar
with the Permian Basin Oil Show that exhibitor spaces are filling up for
the 1996 show. After all, the PBOS is the largest and one of the most
perennially successful oil and gas shows in the world.

Procrastinators, however, can rest assured that the window of
opportunity remains open, and show officials strongly encourage
prospective exhibitors to call for reservations.

"We are at 92 percent right now," PBOS Executive Director Jay Alvey
reported in mid-December. "We are working on our waiting list, and there
is still room."
Alvey also mentions that reservations and exhibit space can be affected
by a relatively new, but important trend in the industry: mergers and

"In some cases, there used to be five or six companies that are now
just one company," Alvey said~. "PBOS still has representatives of those
five or six, but now they are under one name, and therefore, one

This year's show is scheduled for Oct. 16-18 at the Ector County
Coliseum Complex in Odessa, where 1,115 exhibit spaces will be in the
spotlight. The Wednesday through Friday oil and gas exhibition
extravaganza once again promises to be the place for service and supply
companies to showcase a full array of products and services.

No one can offer more insight into the value of the show than PBOX
president W.R. "Bro" Hill, owner and operator of Hill's Specialty Co.,
Inc., a well servicing supply company in Odessa.

Although Hill is donning a new presidentail hat as he oversees all
aspects of this year's show, his exhibitor's hat is at least 20 years

"I have exhibited in a lot of oil shows in the country, but the PBOS is
by far the most productive oil show I have ever exhibited in," Hill
said. "I have never failed to amek new friends and create new business."

The decades-long success of PBOS did not just happen, Hill is quick to
say. It has always required teamwork by the administration and volunteer
board, and the 1996 PBOS will be no exception. If the early planning
stages are any indication, Hill says he knows the tradition of
excellence will continue in '96.

"Jay Alvey does a wonderful job of administering the show. His staff
also should be commended for their diligence and support," Hill said,
referring to Sandi Chesshir and Judi Hernandez. "It is great when you
have a good organization and can see a plan falling together. I cannot
say enough about Jay, Sandi and Judi.

"And, fortunately, we have been lucky enough to add space on a fairly
regular basis," Hill said. "We added new buildings in 1992, which got us
up to 1,115 spaces. There will be at least that many this year."

The administrative efforts are complementd by the 186 volunteers who
serve on the PBOS board and represent all walks of the oil and gas

"It takes the entire board," Hill said. "This is a large show. We have
to have everyone working together, and that is exactly what we have.
They are as great a group of volunteers as I have ever seen. All of them
are willing to work and pull their weight, and they are doing their
jobs, ensuring the show will be a success. I have served on a lot of
boards, but this is the best."

The volunteers have already proven their commitment to PBOS, even
though the show is still 10 months away. But the real work is yet to
come, Hill notes. Volunteers will demonstrate their mettle this spring
and into the following months, as activity intensifies and their
organizational skills are put to the test.

The 15 active PBOS committees are Administrative Information, Budget,
Buildings and Grounds, Airport Shuttle, Hospitality, Honoree,
Membership, Old Timers' Lounge, Parade, Parking, Public Relations,
Publicity, Registration, The Old Rig, and The Old Jail, where bail is
posted with the purchase of a ticket for the traditional PBOS barbecue

"These committees will go into high gear in the spring," Alvey says.
"They w~ill work independently, as well as with our office and the full
board. It is a wonderful thing to work with these people. They
understand teamwork, and will put it all together."

The administrative office will do its part to accommodate exhibitors
and volunteers-even to the extent of relocating.

"One month before the show starts, Sandi, Judi and I will pack up all
records and equipment and move to the show grounds," Alvey explains,
noting that the PBOS' permanent headquarters is in downtown Odessa. "We
could not handle it from headquarters, so we will go to where the action

While the staff will do whatever it can to support Hill and the other
volunteers, it also will accommodate the needs of each exhibitor. Alvey
says information for the Official 1996 Permian Basin Oil Show Program
Guide, which will be published by The American Oil & Cas Reporter
magazine (P.O. Box 343, Derby, Ks. 67037; phone 316-788-6271), will be
compiled in coming months.

It will include the names of all exhibitors, listings of products and
services exhibited by the individual companies, and many other facts
concerning the show.

"All the exhibitors will have to do is come into the office and get
their packets," Alvey says, referring to the opening of the show. "Each
packet will supply them with all the information they need, as well as
their badges, permits and other items. We want to make this as smooth as
possible for exhibitors."

PBOS attracted more than 100,000 people in 1994, including the 70,000
who registered and the more than 30,000 who took advantage of the
educational opportunity offered on the third and final day of the show.
The first two days are reserved for exhibitors to meet with current and
potential customers, but the gates are opened to the public on day three.

Alvey and Hill emphasize the importance of the show's last day. "A lot
of the exhibitors call the third day our `public relations day.' That is
so true," says Alvey. "There are no better people than oil and gas
people. And the public is astounded by the huge machinery and technical
aspects of the show."

Hill echoes those comments, adding that the third day "is a way for
people not directly related to the industry to see what we do. And they
enjoy it; teachers even bring their students in."

Both Hill and Alvey say Executive Committee members deserve a special
round of applause for their extraordinary role in coordinating the PBOS.
In addition to Hill and Alvey, the Executive Cornmittee includes Vice
President John Dinger, Slough Equipment Co. of Odessa; Vice President
Kirk Edwards, Odessa Exploration Co. of Odessa; Immediate Past President
Don Narrell of Midland; and Treasurer Lewis Gray of Odessa.

Also serving on the committee are past presidents.

Cattle feeders get full house

Return to Menu

Austin....Texas cattle feeders reported 2.61 million head of cattle and
calves on feed for the slaughter market on January 1, up 10 percent from
last year. The estimate was down fractionally from the December 1 level.

According to figures released by the Texas Agricultural Statistics
Service, feeders placed 1.60 million head of cattle and calves on feed
during the October-December 1995 quarter, 7 percent above the same
period a year ago. Placements in December totaled 374,000 head, down 22
percent from the November level.

Marketings during the fourth quarter of 1995 decreased 1 percent from
the same period a year ago to 1.31 million head. December marketings, at
369,000 head, decreased 16 percent from November.

Cattle and calves on feed for slaughter market in the United States
from feedlots with capacity of 1,000 or more head totaled 10.31 million
head, up 10 percent from a year ago.

This inventory accounts for 81 percent of the total United States
cattle and calves on feed. The inventory included 6.61 million steers
and steer calves. This group accounts for 64 percent of the total
inventory. Heifers and heifer calves accounted for 3.61 million head.

Council sees near-record crop this year

Return to Menu

NEW ORLEANS - The National Cotton Council of America projects U.S.
cotton producers will plant 15.5 million acres of cotton and produce
19.6 million bales in 1996. That would be the second largest production
in U.S. history, and there is potential to break the 19.7 million record
of 1994. Mill use also is projected to increase from 1995 levels. The
figures were included in a cotton economic outlook Council economists
presented to delegates at the industrywide organization's 58th annual
meeting here.

The acreage estimate, based on interviews with lenders, ginners, cotton
specialists and merchants, also was influenced by results of regional
acreage response models which take into account both a zero acreage
reduction program in 1996 and comparative prices for alternative crops.
The Council did not conduct its annual planting intentions survey of
growers because of uncertainty about the 1996 farm program. Production
is based on a projected average yield of 650 pounds per acre, well above
1995's 540 per acre average. The projection reflects anticipated
declines in planted acreage from 1995 in the Southeast, Mid-South,
Southwest and Far West.

California is expected to have the lowest decline, 4.3 percent.
Virginia and Florida may be the only states to increase acreage - an
estimated 26 percent to 135,000 acres and 9.1 percent to 120,000 acres,
respectively. "The low 1995 yields and severe insect pressure caused
financial problems for many cotton growers and has prompted others to
look at lower risk alternative crops in 1996," said Dr. Mark Lange, the
Council's Director of Economic Services.

Extra long staple (ELS) acreage, however, is estimated to increase from
215,000 to 270,000, with California expected to plant a record 160,000
acres. Healthy increases also are projected for Texas and New Mexico,
but Arizona will plant an estimated 17.7 percent fewer ELS acres. The
Council outlook for the 1996 crop year calls for a total supply of 22.3
million bales, with 2.7 million bales of beginning stocks. Mill use is
projected at 11.1 million bales and exports are pegged at 7 million
bales. This should put ending stocks at 4.2 million bales, a 23.2
percent stocks-to-use ratio. The economists noted that U.S. retail fiber
consumption, which includes fiber in apparel, home furnishings,
industrial uses and carpeting, has continued to grow to unprecedented
levels. In the past 15 years cotton consumption has more than doubled to
16.9 million bales and now accounts for 40 percent of retail fiber
consumption - compared to only 30 percent of total consumption in 1982.

"Cotton is an increasingly strong component in U.S. made goods," the
economists said. "Over the past decade, cotton has experienced
substantial growth in apparel and home furnishings with nearly one-third
of all apparel and home furnishings made of 100 percent cotton.

Unfortunately, imports have dramatically increased their share as well.
Imports, which have increased 53 percent over the last five years, now
claim half of retail cotton consumption or about 8.5 million bales
compared to 1.9 million bales in 1982." U.S. cotton product exports,
particularly apparel, continue to increase, however. The 2.76 million
bales shipped in 1995 was a five-fold increase since 1982. Apparel
exports account for nearly 60 percent of all cotton product exports.
Similarly, exports of yarn and fabric have doubled over the last five
years. Much ofthis increase can be attributed to trade policy influences
of NAFTA and the Caribbean Basin Initiative (CBI). The report pointed
out that contributing factors to U.S. cotton's remarkable gains in fiber
market share overseas have been globally competitive cotton prices for
U.S. mills and the successful efforts of Cotton Council International to
establish a differentiated and respected reputation for U.S. cotton
products. CCI is the Council arm dedicated to promoting U.S. cotton and
cotton products in international markets.

Raw cotton exports estimated

to be worth $3 billion in 1996

Return to Menu

NEW ORLEANS- The value of U.S. raw cotton exports for the 1995/96
marketing year is expected to exceed $3 billion with value-added cotton
product exports totaling another $3 billion or more. Cotton Council
International President Meredith Allen made this projection before
delegates at the National Cotton Council's annual meeting here today and
lauded CCI's COTTON USA promotion program as a major factor behind this
healthy trade.

CCI, the NCC arm dedicated to promoting U.S. cotton and cotton products
in international markets, celebrates its 40th anniversary this year.
Allen said that more than 50 percent of the U.S. cotton crop will move
into overseas markets as raw fiber or value-added cotton in 1996. The
Mississippi cotton cooperative executive noted how these markets have
changed, however, since CCI's inception in 1956.

That year, Europe and Japan were by far the primary destination for
U.S. raw cotton. Today's growth markets are more likely to be Indonesia,
China, Colombia and Brazil, countries that would not have been imagined
as markets back then. And the U.S. is exporting cotton fabric to
countries like Japan, Hong Kong and Italy, another notable feat that
attests to the world-renowned quality and service associated with U.S.

Allen attributed these successes to CCI's COTTON USA promotion program
and its partnership with USDA's Foreign Agricultural Service and the
U.S. cotton industry, which he described as "a working partnership of
the best kind."

U.S. cotton exports also have benefited from the financial support and
commitment of all industry segments, especially Cotton Incorporated and
the NCC. With these funds, CCI can continue to develop its COTTON USA
trade servicing, consumer promotions and value-added program efforts
that help bring U.S. cotton to the world. "There is, indeed, a world of
opportunity out there for both raw and value-added cotton exports from
this country," he said.

"While a lot of other U.S. industries talked exports, the U.S. cotton
sector got together 40 years ago and did exports." Allen acknowledged
that the legislative struggle in recent months over the future of U.S.
agricultural policy and its funding has been intense, but through
industry efforts, U.S. agricultural promotion efforts and funding have
been preserved. "A competitive export environment and adequate funding
of export promotion programs for agricultural products is not just
important for us - it is vital for the future economic health of this
country," he said.

Return to Menu

Associated Press text, photo, graphic, audio and/or video material shall
not be published, broadcast, rewritten for broadcast or publication or
redistributed directly or indirectly in any medium. Neither these AP
Materials nor any portion thereof may be stored in a computer except for
personal and non-commercial use. The AP will not be held liable for
any delays, inaccuracies, errors or omissions therefrom or in the
transmission or delivery of all or any part thereof or for any damages
arising from any of the foregoing.

Copyright 1996 by Pecos Enterprise
Division of Buckner News Alliance, Inc.
324 S. Cedar St., Pecos, TX 79772
Phone 915-445-5475, FAX 915-445-4321

Return to Home Page

Return to Menu