People, Places & Events

    AgriView: Deer Hunting Season is Just Around the Corner
Special to The Monitor
ATHENS-Deer hunting season is just around the corner. 
Deer hunting is big business in Texas. Lease hunting for deer continues to be a source of revenue for many Texas landowners. 
Texas landowners hold a unique position for lease hunting. 
Unlike many other states, Texas has little federally or state owned land available for public hunting. 
Thus, the private landowners control the major supply of huntable land. This position affords Texas landowners an important source of income.
Location of the deer and not the ownership of the animals, however, generates the revenue. 
In Texas, all indigenous wild animals such as white-tailed deer belong to the state. As such, the state can regulate taking of game through hunting laws.
Although the state regulates when, how and how many deer may be taken, the state cannot authorize trespassing on privately owned land. 
Permission from private landowners must be secured. Granting the right to enter and hunt generates the income for private landowners.
Historically, permission to hunt was granted for the asking. 
In modern times, however, Texas landowners have begun exacting a price for this privilege in the form of an agreement commonly referred to as a hunting lease. 
Depending upon the size of the lease tract, the abundance of game and the amenities available to the hunter, prices may range from a few dollars per day to thousands of dollars per season.
The lease may last a few hours, a few days, several weeks or the duration of the hunting season. 
The so-called Texas hunting lease is not, in fact, a lease but rather a license. 
Technically, a lease is a contract that conveys exclusive possession or control of land to another for a specified period. 
A license, on the other hand, grants permission to do something that otherwise would not be allowed or would be illegal. 
Because the typical Texas hunting lease does not grant the hunter exclusive possession or control of the land, it is better characterized as a license.
Granting the hunting lease takes numerous forms. It may be given orally on the payment of a specified amount of money. 
Or, it may be given by way of an elaborate written document covering all aspects of the hunt, including how the landowner's property may be used. 
Whether the lease is oral or written, the landowners and hunter should concur on key issues before consenting to the agreement. 
By doing so, each party knows what to expect and thereby avoids possible misunderstandings. The terms of the agreement may affect the lease price.
A sample lease form is available at the county Extension office.
Trinity Basin Conservation Foundation 
The goals of the newly formed Trinity Basin Conservation Foundation are to improve the quality of life, economic sustainability and ecological integrity of areas associated with the Trinity River Basin through a coalition of local communities, NGO's and stewards of private and public lands. 
Conserving rural farms, ranches and forestlands by providing strong incentives for good land management appears to be a key in maintaining our land-based assets. In addition to on-the-ground management, this also requires support from urban areas. 
Therefore, an effective conservation strategy must include both urban and rural interests. Consequently, landowners, municipalities, and extension factions must work together to achieve common goals. 
Gov. Perry's September announcement of support for the conservation initiative in the Trinity Basin goes a long way toward making this sort of cooperation and accomplishment possible. 
In launching this program, Perry announced that the Texas A&M Institute for Renewable Natural Resources will work with the Trinity Basin Conservation Foundation to produce results for rural and urban people in the basin. 
Among the issues Perry foresees as important projects for the Trinity Basin team are:
Analysis of land use and groundwater recharge to obtain an understanding of how groundwater recharge in the basin responds to changes in vegetation and land management. 
The results will be used to predict how land use change might impact groundwater recharge in the basin and analysis of land use and surface hydrology to predict the influence of land use changes on flood plain capacity and changes in surface hydrology. 
The results of these studies can produce alliances between rural landowners and urban residents by showing how landowners can conduct money-making practices that solve water supply problems for urban interests. Certainly, other benefits and projects will be studied by the Trinity teams.


Search For Miss Teen Kaufman County Noted
Special to The Monitor
KAUFMAN-If you are single, and between the ages of 13 and 18, applications are now being accepted for the title of 2007 "Miss Teen Kaufman County."
"Miss Teen Kaufman County" will represent her county at the Miss Teen Texas Pageant to be held at the Scottish Rite Auditorium in beautiful, downtown San Antonio, May 4-6, 2007. 
The young woman chosen as "Miss Teen Kaufman County" will become an ambassador from the Kaufman County area and receive an official title and sash! 
The young lady chosen as Miss Teen Texas will receive a scholarship and prize package valued at more than $15,000 and the opportunity to represent Texas at the 2007 Miss Teen International Pageant. 
The American Heart Association and The United Way are the official charities of the Miss Teen Texas Pageant. 
The current reigning Miss Teen Texas is Michelle Jones of Spring.
As Miss Teen Texas, Michelle speaks to children about "The Dangers of Tobacco". 
Michelle lost her grandmother to lung cancer in 2004, after a lifetime of smoking. 
Her goal as Miss Teen Texas is to educate as many children as she can about the detrimental effects of smoking. 
Michelle has partnered with Tobacco Free Kids to promote the cause.
Teen contestants will compete in Personal Interview, Fitness Wear, Fun Fashion Wear and Evening Gown. (There is no talent or swimsuit competition).
Teenage ladies living in Kaufman County interested in applying should write for a bio. form:
Miss Teen Texas International Pageant, 14427 Brookhollow, Suite 197, San Antonio, TX 78232.
Or call (210) 403-0589 or e-mail for more information to


Tips On Cattle Injections
By Brian Cummins 
VZ County Extension Agent

CANTON-Injection Sites. Stop and Think Before You Inject:
Give all shots from the shoulder forward. Seems simple enough until you get ready to do it. Then you really question the sane thinking of some academic type for suggesting giving all shots in the neck area when it is so much easier just to pop the needle in the hip. 
Just like your dad and granddad did. 
No big deal. Surely whatever you were giving will be gone by the time the animal is slaughtered. 
Well think again. Research by Colorado State University shows that everytime something is stuck into a muscle, you take a sizeable risk of causing an injection site lesion.
Everytime a needle is stuck into a muscle, we're at risk of toughening the meat up to three inches from the injection site. 
That is why Colorado State researchers estimate the loss to the beef industry at more than $200 million or $7.05 per steer or heifer slaughtered.
How can this happen? 
Let's look at lesion blemishes and then the toughness aspect. 
A lesion or scar tissue forms in response to an
irritation. The medicine gets into the system more effectively if the area around the injection site is irritated. 
Some of the medicines have adjuvants which are designed to irritate the muscle. 
This muscle irritation can be good to keep the animal healthy or from dying but it is not very good for creating a product that is uniform, consistent and tender.
Tenderness is the next area we need to focus on. 
In the 1991 National Beef Quality Audit, consumers rated overall palatability sixth and inadequate tenderness seventh on a scale of 1-10.
By 1995 those same two problems were ranked second for inadequate tenderness and third for overall palatability. 
Lesions or scar tissue can be trimmed out, but the remaining muscle tissue, up to three inches away from the visible lesion may be considerably tougher. 
This is just the wound heeling process. When a
muscle is wounded, it begins to build structures in and around the injured area. 
On the outside it appears as a scar, on the inside it
creates changes in the amount of gristle or connective tissue.
This can affect the area up to three inches from the injection site. 
How tough is tough? 
A "restaurant quality" steak is thought to
have a Warner-Bratzler shear force of 8.5 pounds per square inch, while
steaks in retail should score less than 10 pounds. 
Anything greater than 10 pounds per square inch is unacceptable. 
At the lesion site, Colorado State University researchers reported shear force value of 30.56 pounds; 22.03 pounds at one inch
away; 16.73 pounds at two inches away and still 12.78 pounds at three inches away - all clearly unacceptable.
To avoid problems use the following rules of thumb:
* Follow the label. Always read and follow label directions. 
* Stay away from the muscle. If there is any other label-approved route, avoid the muscle. Give the shot under the skin in the neck
region if possible.
* Never mix products. Label directions are specific for
individual injectable products. Mixing products could cause tissue damage.
* Use multiple sites. Never inject more than 10 c.c. of product in any one site.