Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - May 16, 1972, Lethbridge, Alberta
THE LETHBRIDGE HEBALD Tucsdny, Woy 16. 1972 T Alberta Marketing Commissioner Harry liar- grave's call for a quarantine station in Western Can- ada will finally feel the pounding hooves of caltle with the release and issue of 246 import permits to 75 applicants. The caltle will be coining in from Australia for the first lime, and (hey will be air-freighted lo the Krimonlon International Airport station near Leduc in three shipments July, November and March. 'Hie cattle will undergo preliminary quarantine in Australia, and on arrival at the Edmonton station will undergo a further minimum quarantine of 90 days. Providing they meet health standards, they will be released from quarantine to the importer. Canada's supply of powdered milk will take a lick- ing this year following the signing of an agreement between l.his country and Mexico for the sale of 61 million pounds valued al 517 million. The Canadian Dairy Commission said the total represents one third of the Canadian skim milk pow- der which will be available for export from 1972 pro- duction. For all those high-flying farmers who consider some of their Saskatchewan counterparts a little slow on Ihe draw (and there lire a few in this they had better sit up and take notice of Art Mainil of the Stoughlon district soulh of Hegina. Apparently Art was mad at the sale of Federal Grain elevators to The Pool system, so he asked the Canadian Grain Commission for some boxcars. Box- cars, according lo Ail, belong lo the producers, so he asked for six. After a struggle, lie a s consigned the cars, loaded them himself and had them shipped by the rail company, lie completely bypassed Ihe country olevalor system, using five tracks and two augers and managed lo load Ihe bushels in one day. Wonder what would happen if all farmers wanted different colored boxcars? Those who keep nattering about Canada's depend- once on the U.S. in all matters are forgetting parts of the huge agricultural industry. Figures released recently show that Uie acceptable daily intake of insecticides as set by the World Food Organization of the United Nations for a 150 pound man is 350 micrograms (0.000350 grams) of DDT or seven micrograms (0.000007 grams) of dieldrin. Canadian figures for these two insecticides are 38 micrograms and 3.G micrograms respectively. The figures in the U.S. stood al 55 and 4 0. In Britain, the figures were 44 and C.G. Not only does Canada apparently show greater concern for Uie use of insecticides, but it actually uses less of Ihe stuff than the slale of California. .Speaking of insecticides, the information division nf Ihe Canada department of agriculture in the Sir John Carling Ijiiilding. Ottawa, has initiated it's pesti- cides program for 1372. Right in the spring work activity is when Ihe JiKijorily of the "accidents" occur. The (.'DA is mak- ing available posters, sluffer.s and pamphlets on rc- cjuesl from the above address. Teachers would be wise to distribute Ihese lidhils to students, especially to rurally-oriented students whose parents haven't Ihe right education in the handling of the poisons thai could conceivably kill their children. Then there was the unlucky fellow right off the farm who phoned his girl lo see if she was doing any- thing that evening. She said she wasn't, so lie took her out. And sure enough, she wasn't. IMPORTS SAID TOO HIGH Canadian chicken breeders more than ?1 million an- iiially on imported ehi c k e n Dreccline; slock. A poultry geneticist with the poultry division of the [lepnrlment of agriculture feels lhc.sc breeders may going lo B lot of unnecessary trouble and expcn.se. A recent study car ried out in the U.S. and Can- ada showed Ilial gowl breeding slocks are available in Canada. There arc now 75 strains In various stages of development, a tremendous po- tential to develop new and im- proved si rains which will benefit Canadian breeders and Magnetism seed treatment increases crop Wlier ri man can throw n m a g n o i. into the works and come onl world-re Unowned for (licorip.s and practices to in- crease agricultural production, lie earns respect and the nickname Magnelinan. Urban PilUnan, who graduat- ed from high school in Warner (o become a pilot for the Royal Canadian Air Force during the second World War, started his road to magnetic immortality when lie .signed on the slaff of the Lelhhridge Research Sta- tion in 15-ra. His initial research was with irrigated crops .such as sugar beets, corn and soft wheat hut in 1951 he was directed lo in- vestigate dryland cropping methods for southern Alberta. His search for improved cul- tural practices for winter wheat production lead him to the door- step gome of the most, unique agricultural research in North America. TTirough acute observation he discovered that winter wheat seeded in a north-south direc- tion normally ripened four to six days earlier than that seed- ed in an east-west direction. Technician Frank Forth and Urban Piltman Dummy magnets, righf, show less growth Agriculture students fill O summer extension position One Ihirri year agriculture student al the University of Al- berta lias joined I he field stall of Ihr AlhfTtn department of agriculture in southern Alberta for the .summer months. He will have 1.hc opportunity Lo loom first hand what agricultural ex- lension means, as veil as pro- viclirs valuable Korvipcs to )o- rul farmers. Herald Fowlic of Hindloss will work out of Clarcs- holm. Acconlinp to C. A. Cheshire, liond nf the district agricultur- ist branch, Ihe summer pro- gram provides young men with a practical experience in (ho field, a unique opportunity dur- ing llicir college years. The sludenls observe and be- come involved in the require- men Is of a complex extension program. Kxp'jri c n c c in Uio past indicates that summer as- sistants, wlwn they return to university for their final year, often riiangc their course work lo coincide with what they have found lo be important, in the field. Besides developing a clear picture of extension work which is of benefit individually, the summer assist.-mis help lighten the heavy summer load of the district agriculturist. They share or assume respon- sibilities in certain projects and provide practical assis t a n c c with demonstration or research projects. Often they assume general office dulics during the district agriculturists' annual holiday. Also, John Burden from Ixnighced is based in Calgary. ]n Rocky Mountain House, Rob- ert flottcn of Boyle is on hand lo offer assistance. From New Seroptn, Wayne Schullz comes to the Provost office for Uie summer. John llogue from Uie Morinvillc area is in Athabasca. FOOD COSTS UP Food prices increased by .slightly more (ban half bc- 19-19 and 1909. In 1X9, it cost nbout to feed a fami- )y of four for a week; it cost About in J949. Wtten I h e soil nx-i.stirre was limited, Uio grain sown in east- west rows yielded two to Ihreo bushels more than the north- south sown rows. Light penetration inlo the crop, air movement through the plant cover, moisture and nutrient content of Ihe soil were similar regardless of seed- ing direction. Scientific curiosity lead Mr. Piltman lo look al the roots rf the winter wheat plants. He found that most of Ihem grew in a north-south direction ra- ther than in random directions. Further study showed that the roots were actually growing parallel to the lines of flux of Ihe earth's magnetic field. By actual measurement, the roots in the area grew 20 degrees cast of true north. In 1962, he travelled to SI. John's, Newfoundland and tests (here showed that winter wheat roots grew 25 degree! west of true north. As a result of this discovery, winter wheat crops ore often sown in rows oriented from the northwest to the southeast. The next stage of discovery was almost accidental. He placed some wheat seeds "be- tween (lie polos of a large mag- net and left Ihem there for 48 hours. lie found that these magneti- cally treated seed.s germinated and grew faster un- treated seeds when llioy were planted. By varying the lengths of lime seeds were held in the magnetic field, he found that 40 hours or thereof were indeed the right durations for magnetic treatments. Seeds trea t ed for interm ed i a le peri- ods failed to respond to the treatment. He had discovered a new blo- magnclic response that could affect production of many crops in southern Alberta. Subsequent research showed that green beans could be in- duced to mature more uniform- ly and lo yield nearly 20 per cent more if the seed were mag- netically treated before it was sown. Malt made from magnetical- ]y-trcnlcil barley contained more sugar than ordinary malt, and potatoes grown from mag- netically treated seed pieces ouLyicldcd those grown from non-treated seed. As a result, his research, an American firm LS mar- keting a machine downed to Lreal seed magnelicnl-y. Mr. Pittman has published more Mian a dozen .scientific papers on biomagnetism, for which he has had world-wide requests. Recently he was contacted by scientists from (he Russian Academy of Science for infor- mation lo be included in a new Soviet, encyclopedia. Seldom a week passes that he doesn't ob- tnin a request for help from budding scientists working on science fair projects tlu ougbout America. In addition to his work on bio- magnetism, he is engaged in extensive research in roil fer- tility and cultural practices for production of cereal ;md o i 1 .seeds on dry lands. Many of Uie currenl farming prscticc-s used in souinern Al- berta and northern Montana arc based on this research. Besides his research work, is active in Assumption Church Parish. He and his wife Mar- lenc arc raising four Iwys and four girte.