The Wurdack Research Center is made up of some 1,200 acres – the majority of which includes upland hardwood forest. The rest of those acres are made up of Meramec River bottom soil and provides demonstration and research of rotational grazing practices, novel fescue and cattle husbandry.
The Center’s annual field day will feature presentations on the research taking place across Wurdack. The field day, which will take place on Friday, Oct. 6, will begin with registration at 8:30 a.m. and tours from 9 a.m. to noon. Lunch will be served at noon.
The event, including lunch, is free and open to the public.
“The Wurdack Research Center wants to be a local resource for the area,” Superintendent Dusty Walter said. “In many ways, the research and day-to-day operations of this farm face challenges similar to every other farm in the region – armadillo damage is a prime example. This field day is our annual open house event where the public should feel free to visit and ask questions.”
There will be two tours for attendees to take part in. The first one will be a wagon tour and will include the current shortleaf pine research taking place at Wurdack. University of Missouri forestry graduate student Stephen Lyczak will talk about the survival, growth and management of the shortleaf pine.
Fescue will also be discussed during the wagon tour. Hundley-Whaley Research Center Superintendent Bruce Burdick will talk about novel fescue establishment and results. Rusty Lee, MU Extension agronomy specialist, will present on fescue management to promote grazing quality.
“More and more we hear about tick-borne illness being a real problem,” Walter said. “From recent deaths in the region to long-term illness, the outdoors can be a little scary. The final presentation on the wagon tour will be by Kim Smith, with the Crawford County health department. She’ll present on staying healthy while enjoying the great outdoors. She will talk about tick-borne illness and prevention, mosquito illness and prevention, as well as rabies and tetanus.”
The second tour will feature variety of topics. David Calandro, a wildlife specialist with USDA, will talk about wildlife damage management. Roger Branson, Red Rooster Sawmill operator, will describe its operation and custom cutting.
“Finally, as with all farming, we’re a part of a much larger community,” Walter said. “We recognize that agriculture issues, whether state or national, have a real impact on local communities.”
Kelly Smith, Missouri Farm Bureau, will talk about the challenges and opportunities for agriculture and rural Missouri during the free lunch. Smith will be fielding questions about local, state and national issues.
The Wurdack Research Center is located at 164 Bales Road in Cook Station, Mo., and is one of the MU College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources Agricultural Research Centers. For more information about the field day, contact Walter at 573-999-1541 or Farm Manager Brent Booker at 573-743-6612, or email Walter at WalterD@missouri.edu. For more information about the Wurdack Research Center, visit wurdack.cafnr.org.