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News from Around the Farm World - Nov. 28, 2012
Maker of methyl iodide ends U.S. EPA registration
FRESNO, Calif. (AP) — The maker of the controversial strawberry fumigant methyl iodide has agreed to remove all of its products from the U.S. market and end all sales permanently.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced Nov. 21 that Arysta had requested voluntary cancellation of all of the company’s product registrations, which means the suspected carcinogen will no longer be used or sold in this country by the end of the year.
The company’s decision ends five years of legal battles by environmental groups and farm workers who had fought approval of the fumigant during the Bush administration. In March, the company announced that it would voluntarily pull methyl iodine from the U.S. market.

Methyl iodide was seen as a replacement for methyl bromide, which is being phased out under international treaties because it depletes the Earth’s ozone.

Southern Indiana boy, 2, dies after falling from horse
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. (AP) — A 2-year-old Bloomington boy has died from injuries he suffered when he fell from a horse during a Thanksgiving gathering at his grandfather’s farm.

Monroe County Coroner Nicole Meyer told The Herald-Times Lucas Ryan Stephenson died at IU Health Bloomington Hospital from injuries he suffered when the horse stepped on the youngster after he fell.

The boy’s maternal grandfather, Steve Crowe, said about 30 people who had gathered at his 120-acre eastern Greene County farm had just eaten Thanksgiving dinner when several of them went outside to enjoy the farm. He says his grandson and another person were on a horse when they both fell off of the animal.

Lucas’ maternal grandmother, Janet Crowe, said the youngster’s death is “just a nightmare I want to wake from.”

Judge refuses to overturn Mich. exotic swine ban
TRAVERSE CITY, Mich. (AP) — A judge in Marquette County has refused to overturn a state policy making it illegal to possess exotic swine.

The Michigan Department of Natural Resources (DNR) last year banned ownership of animals known as wild boar, feral swine or razorbacks. Officials say they’re escaping from hunting preserves, reproducing and wreaking havoc in woods and farm fields. The DNR estimates thousands are running loose.

Farmers and ranchers in northern Michigan are challenging the order in five separate lawsuits. They say their hogs aren’t escaping and they’re being unfairly targeted. They asked Circuit Judge Thomas Solka to throw out the policy as unconstitutionally vague.
Solka rejected the request in a ruling Nov. 19. But he said the lawsuits can continue because the hog owners can still fight the DNR policy on other grounds.

Pigs worth more than $38,000 stolen from Iowa farm

SHELDON, Iowa (AP) — Investigators are searching for several hundred pigs and hogs stolen from a northwest Iowa farm.
KMEG reported the animals that were taken from the Dekker family’s farm Nov. 17 were worth more than $38,000. The Dekkers said 220 feeder pigs and 195 fat hogs went missing. Tina Dekker said she and her husband have no idea who took the animals, but they are installing an alarm system on their hog barn to prevent future thefts.

Investigators said the burglars broke into the back of the hog barn and loaded the pigs onto a semi-trailer truck. Dekker said it’s common for many hog farmers to load animals at night, so a neighbor may not have noticed the theft.

Two Iowa men accused of stealing $10,000 of soybeans

MARENGO, Iowa (AP) — An Iowa father and son have been accused of stealing more than $10,000 worth of soybeans from an eastern Iowa farm.

The Iowa County Sheriff’s office said Christopher Brennan, of Montezuma, and his father, Ricky Brennan, of Deep River, were both arrested Nov. 19 in connection with the thefts. The sheriff’s office said the Brennans entered a grain storage bin on an Iowa County farm on five different occasions to steal the soybeans.
Both men are suspected of five counts of burglary and one count of theft. The Brennans both posted $5,000 bond and were released the same day.

Ohio officials work to get exotics owners registered

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — State officials are continuing to work with owners of exotic animals to help them register their creatures with the Ohio Department of Agriculture (ODA).
Owners faced a Nov. 5 deadline to complete their registrations under a new law.

But the ODA said about 30 registrations covering roughly 200 animals met the deadline but contained errors or omissions.
An agency spokeswoman said Friday the biggest issue is some owners haven’t implanted their animals with a microchip containing information to help identify them if they get lost or escape. The ODA is working to help those owners find veterinarians to perform the task.

A list of registrations obtained by The Associated Press through a public records request show at least 114 private owners have successfully registered with the state.