Featured Articles

  • Sep
    08
    Apply for science writing internship


    Sept. 8, 2016 – ASAS is now accepting applications for its 2017 Science Communications Summer Internship. Applications are due Oct. 15, 2016.


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  • Sep
    08
    We need your ideas for Jr. Animal Scientist


    Sept. 8, 2016 – Help ASAS put animal science information in the hands of kids across the country. Give us your ideas for the 2017 issues of Jr. Animal Scientist! 

    Would you be willing to serve as an expert on a particular topic? How about helping us out by recruiting a group of undergraduate or graduate students to write content for the magazine?

    Jr. Animal Scientist is published in January, March, May, July, September, and November. Individual, family, and school or group subscriptions are available. The magazine features articles about animal science concepts, interesting careers, and fun activities for kids. Subscribers also receive a monthly e-mail newsletter to supplement information found in the magazine, as well as access to exclusive content at AnimalSmart.org.

    Interested in sponsoring a subscription for a classroom in your community? Learn more about classroom sponsorship in this Taking Stock article.


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  • Sep
    01
    Sponsor a Jr. Animal Scientist classroom


    Sept. 1, 2016 – Give the gift of a Jr. Animal Scientist subscription to an elementary school classroom or group in your area! The cost is only $5 per student! Each student will receive a copy of the Jr. Animal Scientist magazine, which is published in January, March, May, July, September, and November.  


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  • Sep
    01
    New USDA app protects cattle from heat stress


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    By Jan Suszkiw, Agricultural Research Service, USDA

    USDA’s Agricultural Research Service (ARS) has launched a new smartphone application (“app”) that forecasts conditions triggering heat stress in cattle. The app is available at both Google Play and the App Store.

    Compatible with Android and Apple mobile phone, the app issues forecasts one to seven days in advance of extreme heat conditions, along with recommended actions that can protect animals before and during a heat-stress event.

    In some cattle, distress and discomfort from prolonged exposure to extreme heat cause diminished appetite, reduced growth or weight gain, greater susceptibility to disease and, in some cases, even death. Cattle housed in confined feedlot pens are especially vulnerable to heat-stress events, notes Tami Brown-Brandl, an ARS agricultural engineer at the Roman L. Hruska U.S. Meat Animal Research Center (USMARC) in Clay Center, Nebraska.


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  • Sep
    01
    Call for platform speakers for 2017 annual meeting


    Sept. 1, 2016 – The 2017 ASAS-CSAS Annual Meeting and Trade Show Overall Program Committee is looking for submissions from both committees and the general membership for platform speakers. Submit your suggestions by September 28, 2016.

    As our society enters into a new era of opportunities, the 2017 program committee will build upon our recent successes and continue to revitalize our annual meeting. In 2017, the annual meeting program will offer symposia that feature current issues, technologies and scientific discoveries under the umbrella of global food security.

    To further expose membership to leading scientists and unify short presentations within a topic, platform speakers will be introduced as anchors to existing sessions. This subtle change allows for the incorporation of greater numbers of talented speakers into the program by removing structured programmatic barriers.

    ASAS and CSAS are looking to refocus on 12-minute talks by reducing the number of symposia and adding 45-minute talks to the beginning of general sessions.


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  • Sep
    01
    Call for abstracts for 2017 Midwest Meeting


    The annual meeting of the Midwestern Section ASAS and Midwest Branch ADSA® will be held in Omaha, NE, on March 13-15, 2017. Members are encouraged to submit abstracts of papers for oral or poster presentation. The deadline to submit an abstract for this meeting is October 26, 2016, at 11:59 pm CST.

    Abstracts not meeting this deadline will be rejected. All abstracts must be submitted electronically. Other criteria for acceptance or rejection will include those outlined in the “Instructions for Abstract Submission,” which may be found on the Abstract Submission site: https://asas.confex.com/asas/mw17/cfp.cgi

    Due to space restrictions, submissions are limited. Space limitations allow a maximum of 400 words, not including title, authors and institutions. Abstracts that are too long will be rejected automatically by the system. It is recommended that all abstract components (title, body, and table) be copied directly from a word processing file. The formatting and special characters will carry over directly into the abstract system.

    Abstracts can be submitted for oral presentations, poster presentations, the Graduate Student Competition (oral and poster), or the Undergraduate Research Abstract Competition (oral or poster). Learn more about types of abstracts in the Instructions for Abstract Submission on the Midwest website.


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  • Sep
    01
    D.C. interns wanted for 2017


    ASAS is now accepting applications for its 2017 Science Policy Summer Internship Program. Applications are due Friday, October 21, 2016.  

    The main purpose of this internship is to provide experience for undergraduates or graduate students in legislative, regulatory, or administrative science policy activities in Washington, D.C. related to animal science or the production of animal-sourced foods.

    At the date of application, students must be enrolled in an undergraduate or graduate program closely related to animal science (e.g., agricultural economics, agricultural business, food science/products, environment) in an accredited college or university in the United States.

    Students will be awarded $3,500 (payable at the start of the internship). The term of the internship is 60-90 days during the academic summer session in 2017.


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  • Sep
    01
    2017 Annual Meeting - Register now and save


    Sept. 1, 2016 – Join us for the 2017 ASAS-CSAS Annual Meeting and Trade Show in Baltimore, Maryland from July 8 to 12, 2017. Special pricing now available!


    Register today to take advantage of the limited time offer of a $300* registration fee for both Professional members and nonmembers by using the Promotional Code AS17Pre online. Available through September 19, 2016.

    As many of you are aware, this is the inaugural year of the ASAS-CSAS Annual Meeting and Trade Show. Therefore, we have three main goals for the 2017 meeting:

    View the meeting registration brochure for full meeting details.


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  • Aug
    29
    Highlights of science communication symposium


    By Tameka Phillips, ASAS Public Policy Committee

    August 29, 2016 – As animal scientists we put a lot of time and energy into our research, teaching, and business obligations. For many, we are considered the experts in the field of animal science. So, when it comes to informing the public, we as animal scientists want our imparted information to be understood. The Contemporary and Emerging Issues Symposium: Communicating Animal Sciences Effectively was an avenue to learn about effective science communication. Sponsored by Elanco Animal Health, the symposium was held last month during the ASAS-ADSA®-CSAS-WSASAS Joint Annual Meeting in Salt Lake City. It was co-chaired by incoming ASAS President Deb Hamernik, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, and incoming ASAS Director-At-Large Kristen Johnson, Washington State University.

    Four invited speakers well-versed in science communication spoke to ASAS annual meeting participants, discussing a range of topics from statistically driven data to their own personal communication experiences.

    Due to the large participant presence at this symposium, the interest in communicating animal science effectively can only grow and create more dialogue in the future.


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  • Aug
    29
    New report on impact of investing in ag research and extension


    By ASAS Public Policy Committee

    August 29, 2016 – A new report, “New Insights on the Impacts of Public Agricultural Research and Extension,” discusses the importance of public investment in agricultural research and extension activities. While the U.S. has been a leader in science-based increases in agricultural productivity for most of the 20th century, growth in public funding for agricultural research declined by 20% from 1995-1998, rebounded slightly through 2006, and then further declined during the economic recession since 2009. In contrast, Brazil and China have been investing heavily in agricultural research.

    The USDA’s Current Research Information System (CRIS) maintains an archive of data from research projects funded by the USDA. In 1970, about 70% of the U.S. total expenditures on agricultural research were on research that addressed agricultural productivity (e.g., production of crops and livestock with increased efficiency and lowered costs; protection of crops and livestock from diseases or pests; etc.) and 30% of public funding supported other types of research (e.g., rural development, agricultural marketing, conservation of natural resources, forestry, wildlife, etc.). Since 1970, the relative amount of public funding on agricultural productivity-oriented research in the U.S. has been declining.

    It takes time for society to realize the impact of investing in research. For example, it has been estimated that at least 9 years are required to see an impact of agricultural research followed by another 6 years of receiving high and constant benefits from agricultural research and then another 20 years for the impacts of agricultural research to decline or become obsolete. In contrast, about half of the impacts of extension are realized within one year after delivery of extension programs, because extension programs are designed to influence current decision-making processes.


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  • Aug
    29
    American Innovation and Competitiveness Act


    By Penny Riggs, ASAS Public Policy Committee Chair

    August 29, 2016 – To invest in innovation through research and development, and to improve the competitiveness of the United States, the American Innovation and Competitiveness Act, S. 3084, was introduced in the Senate in June, with support of Senators Cory Gardner (R–CO), Gary Peters (D–MI), John Thune (R–SD), and Bill Nelson (D–FL). The bill was quickly passed by the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation with strong bipartisan support. This important bill would benefit scientific research through language to maximize basic research and reform federal science agencies. By reducing administrative burdens for researchers, enhancing agency oversight, and improving research dissemination, this legislation aims to increase the return on investment for taxpayer-funded research.

    As previously described in Taking Stock, the 2010 America COMPETES Act expired in 2013. The prior House version was called the FIRST Act. The current bill retains the existing peer review process of the National Science Foundation (NSF). As noted in Science, the inclusion of language to ease administrative burdens on campus-based research is “music to the ears of university officials,” as well as research faculty. Amendments added in committee to the current bill would authorize funding for the National Science Foundation and the National Institute of Standards and Technology. Other components of the bill call for awards for excellence in STEM mentoring, improved undergraduate STEM opportunities, and additional leveraging of private sector resources.

    Although it is uncertain whether the bill will make it to the Senate floor this fall, American investment in basic scientific research clearly remains a critical need. As noted in this article in Taking Stock, research outcomes that enhance agricultural productivity are essential. Agricultural research can benefit from increased support of funding and fewer regulatory burdens across multiple federal research agencies.


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  • Aug
    29
    Update on Global Food Security Act


    By Cassie Welch, ASAS Public Policy Committee

    August 29, 2016 – On July 20, President Barack Obama signed into law the Global Food Security Act – a bipartisan bill expanding food security priorities and the ability to build capacity for agricultural growth in developing nations. The signing was applauded by agricultural and global development sectors during the White House Summit on Global Development, which was held on the same day as the signing.

    The new law, S. 1252, provides authorization of more than $7 billion for international agriculture and food programs and requires the executive branch to coordinate efforts of relevant federal agencies to address global food security and malnutrition.

    Obama referenced the act as a means of reaching those most affected by food insecurity and as a way to ensure programs, such as Feed the Future, “endure well into the future.” As a presidential initiative created in 2009 by the Obama administration, Feed the Future has helped reduce poverty up to 26% and provided improved nutrition to nearly 18 million more children in areas where its programs are active. In 2015, Feed the Future reached over 9 million smallholder farmers around the globe, whereby the adoption of improved agricultural practices has helped to increase their incomes by more than $800 million.


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  • Aug
    29
    Federal GMO food-labeling law passed


    By Michael Azain, ASAS Public Policy Committee

    August 29, 2016 – President Obama signed a Federal labeling law at the end of July nullifying the Vermont law that took effect on July 1 (See GMO food labeling set to take effect, Taking Stock D.C., April 26, 2016). The law directs the Secretary of Agriculture to establish a national mandatory bioengineered food disclosure system.

    The legislation moved quickly through Congress. The bill was introduced in the Senate by Pat Roberts (R-Kan.) and Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.) in June and replaced proposed voluntary labeling legislation that failed to pass the Senate in March. The current bill was approved by the Senate on July 7 and the House a week later.

    Over 1,100 companies and organizations in the food industry expressed support for the legislation, as it eliminates the possibility of individual states having their own labeling requirements. This was a concern with the Vermont law. Specific language in the bill states that a GM food that has gone through the pre-market regulatory process cannot be labeled as being more or less safe than a non-GMO food. It also stipulates that food products from animals fed GMOs do not need to be labeled as GMO. The bill prohibits states from imposing their own restrictions in addition to what is covered under the federal legislation.


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  • Aug
    29
    NSF requests feedback on strategic plan


    August 29, 2016 – The National Science Foundation is beginning the process of updating its Strategic Plan. As part of that process, the Foundation invites feedback on the Vision, Core Values, Strategic Goals and Strategic Objectives described in the current NSF Strategic Plan, located at http://www.nsf.gov/about/performance/strategic_plan.jsp.

    The Foundation welcomes your input. Please provide comments on the current Strategic Plan through the website: https://www.nsf.gov/od/oia/strategicplan/feedback.jsp. Please send any questions to strategicplan@nsf.gov.


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  • Aug
    25
    Tolleson awarded Extension Award


    By Jamie Hawley, ASAS Communications Intern

    August 25, 2016 – Dr. Doug R. Tolleson was named the recipient of the 2016 Extension Award by the Western Section, American Society of Animal Science (WSASAS), during its annual meeting last month in Salt Lake City, Utah.

    Dr. Tolleson received a B.S. in Animal Science, M.S. in Physiology of Reproduction, and Ph.D. in Rangeland Ecology and Management from Texas A&M University. He has been an Assistant or Associate Extension Specialist and Research Scientist for Rangeland Management at the University of Arizona from 2008 to 2016. He has provided information on sustainable rangeland management to the ranching and natural resource management community. Dr. Tolleson has conducted research on rangeland management topics, primarily dealing with livestock grazing and nutrition, wildlife, wildfire, and range monitoring techniques. These monitoring efforts inform ranch management on public land allotments and are part of helping ranchers renew their grazing permits during environmental impact assessments as required by the National Environmental Policy Act.

    Dr. Tolleson is a member of the Editorial Board for the Ruminant Nutrition Division for the Journal of Animal Science and serves as Liaison to the Society for Range Management for the American Society of Animal Science. He has published 27 refereed journal papers, 36 other peer reviewed publications, 116 abstracts, and 30 popular press or newsletter articles. Dr. Tolleson has secured over $2.5 million in contracts and grants since 1999. He has delivered 33 invited talks or lectures and 135 extension presentations. He serves as a member of the Advisory Council, Western Center for Risk Management Education and has been a Director for the Natural Resource Conservation Workshop for Arizona Youth for 7 years.


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  • Aug
    25
    Cooke receives Young Scientist Award


    By Jamie Hawley, ASAS Communications Intern

    August 25, 2016 – Dr. Reinaldo F. Cooke was named the recipient of the 2016 Young Scientist Award by the Western Section, American Society of Animal Science (WSASAS), during its annual meeting last month in Salt Lake City, Utah.

    Dr. Cooke is an associate professor in the Department of Animal and Rangeland Sciences at Oregon State University (OSU). He leads an active research program focused on management strategies to improve productivity of forage-based cow-calf operations, including cattle nutrition, health, growth, and reproductive responses. His research findings have resulted in invitations to speak at numerous local, national, and international events.

    Dr. Cooke has authored or coauthored 71 refereed journal articles, 2 book chapters, 44 proceedings papers, 21 peer reviewed extension articles, 80 conference abstracts, 34 station reports, and 35 popular press articles. To date he has mentored 9 M.S. students, 4 Ph.D. students, and 27 interns. He is also the editor of the Oregon Beef Council Research Report, OSU Beef Research Report, OSU Beef Cattle Library, and co-chair of the Western Beef Resource Committee’s Cattle Producer’s Handbook. Furthermore, Dr. Cooke has secured a total of $3,168,651 from private and public, national, and international institutions.


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  • Aug
    25
    ASAS member honored by ARPAS




    The ARPAS Distinguished Professional Animal Scientist Award recognizes an emeritus or retired member of the society that has been active in the society for at least 10 years prior to retirement, has served in a leadership role in ARPAS during that period, and has made a significant contribution to the animal sciences during his or her career.

    Dr. Shell received a biology degree from Pittsburg State College and M.S. and Ph.D. degrees from the University of Arizona. He joined the Ralston Purina Company in St. Louis in 1979 as a research and consulting nutritionist under the direction of Dean Hodge. Shell spent two years in the St. Louis research and technical services area before transferring to the Omaha and Sioux City divisions of Ralston Purina. He worked with the sales force in training and client support for 15 years in these divisions. In 1998, Shell started a private consulting service, Omaha Nutritional Services Inc., for feedlot and ranch enterprises. Shell’s career in ARPAS started after joining Ralston Purina at the urging of Dean Hodge. Shell has served in various positions on the ARPAS Board and was President from 1997–1998. He was an ardent supporter of hiring an executive director to help bring continuity to the board and its revolving directors. Agriculture has been a developing force in Shell’s life. Research, training, and personal relationships with clients and industry personnel have shaped his career.

    It was with great pleasure that ARPAS presented Dr. Lee Shell with the 2016 Distinguished Professional Animal Scientist Award.


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  • Aug
    25
    Check your email for survey


    August 25, 2016 – ASAS members: Check your email for a link to an ASAS strategic planning survey. The email was sent August 23, 2016.

    ASAS is actively involved in strategic planning with the goal of releasing a new strategic plan at the 2017 Annual Meeting. Involvement in strategic planning guarantees members a voice in the direction of the society. To date, we have conducted over 30 external stakeholder interviews, held 10 membership focus groups and conducted a strategic planning retreat.

    Filling out the survey provides us with your input for ASAS Strategic Planning. All answers are confidential. Questions? Email ASAS at asas@asas.org

     


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  • Aug
    22
    Plan ahead!


    Mark your calendar for these upcoming ASAS sectional meetings:

    Southern Section Meeting, February 4-7, 2017, Franklin, Tenn.



    Midwest Section Meeting, March 13-15, 2017, Omaha, Neb.

    Western Section Meeting, June 20-23, 2017, Fargo, N.D. – Watch for details coming soon!


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  • Aug
    22
    Visit the Animal Science Image Gallery


    August 22, 2016 – Have you been to the newly renovated ASAS Animal Science Image Gallery yet? The gallery, now housed at animalimagegallery.org, provides images, animations, and short videos for classroom and outreach learning.

    To supplement the visual information, each file has a description and metadata, including the origin and ownership of the image. Downloading any image within the gallery is free for ASAS members and only $5 per image for non-members. Each file in the gallery has had at least two peer reviews to optimize the image and its metadata, and to ensure that the information is sufficient and accurate.

    Submitting an image to the gallery is easy! There is no submission fee for ASAS members and only a $25 fee (per image) for non-members.

    There are more than 45 searchable categories in the gallery, and more than 600 images, so be sure to stop by the site and submit or download images today!


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