Iowa Farm Science: Volume 25, Issue 4
In the last two years operating costs for tractors and farm machinery have increased 10 percent. Much of the increase is because of higher repair costs. Other factors are higher gasoline and diesel fuel costs and tire replacement on the larger tractors. The authors describe four ways to compute farm operation costs.
Under analysis is the question: Will sheep producers aggressively work to build their industry? There are some optimistic signs, says the author.
Forecast is a higher yielding corn crop, especially for western Iowa, but disease could play an important role throughout the state. Soybean yields should be as good as 1970. Hay yields will be about the same as in 1970, but second and third cuttings in western Iowa may be short because of low subsoil moisture. Pastures will yield about the same, but those in western Iowa may deteriorate a little earlier in the season than normally, also because of the low subsoil moisture.
The same insects keep "bugging" us. The corn rootworm may be a greater problem this year (especially when corn follows corn) because of somewhat larger numbers of beetles laying eggs in corn fields last fall. The alfalfa weevil is spreading; chemical treatment may be necessary on first cuttings of alfalfa in some areas of easten Iowa. And the authors advance a new biochemical hypothesis about the corn plant ( at least some varieties ) and its resistance tolerance to corn borer larvae.
Consolidation of pullet growing, egg production and wholesale egg handling into agribusiness complexes will continue to increase rapidly.