AMES, Iowa — Six Iowa teams participated in the Iowa State University Extension and Outreach and Integrated Pest Management (IPM) program’s seventh annual Crop Scouting Competition on July 31 at the Field Extension Education Laboratory in Boone, Iowa.
The teams, which consisted of Iowa youth (grades 9-12), were tested on their knowledge of crop insects and diseases, growth and development, weed identification, crop disorders, herbicide injury and spraying pesticides. Teams took a written test and then rotated through eight field stations run by ISU Extension and Outreach specialists at the Field Extension Education Lab. The overall goal of the competition is for youth to learn from and interact with ISU Extension and Outreach specialists, and gain more knowledge IPM and scouting methods.
“One of the best parts about the Crop Scouting Competition and Regional Crop Scouting Competition is the kids are actually learning during it,” said Adam Sisson, IPM program specialist with ISU Extension and Outreach. “They will walk away with trophies and prizes, but they’ll also walk away with knowledge and, hopefully, an increased knowledge of extension.”
The first place overall winning team at this year’s Iowa State Crop Scouting Competition is Kuhlman Seed, which consisted of Hannah Holdsworth, Emily Boettger, Brady Fredericks and Connor Garrett from Denison, Iowa. Participants of Clayton County Team #1—Ted Hilgerson, Andrey Shirbroun, Cole Deitchler, Matt Whittle and Max Gibson—from Clayton County, Iowa earned second place. Members of Clayton County #2—Cassidy Penrod, Jon Whittle, Tom Whittle, Laci Orr and Mia Gibson—from Clayton County, Iowa earned third place. Caleb Geer and Hudson Geer from Monroe, Iowa secured fourth place for their team, Geer Seed.
The top two teams have the opportunity to compete at the Regional Crop Scouting Competition, and take on the top two overall winning teams from the University Nebraska-Lincoln Crop Scouting Competition and the top two teams from the Purdue University Crop Scouting Competition. Iowa’s winning teams, Kuhlman Seed and Clayton County Team #1, will compete in this year’s Regional Crop Scouting Competition at the Crop Diagnostic Training and Research Center in Lafeyette, Indiana on Aug. 28.
— Daren Mueller, Department of Plant Pathology and Microbiology and Adam Sisson Integrated Pest Management, Iowa State University Extension and Outreach
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