Focus on the Future – May 8th

The Iowa Nutrient Research Center continues its spring 2024 seminar series, Focus on the Future. Join current and recent graduate students as they discuss their studies and their experiences as early career researchers.

On May 8th, the seminar topics are:

1) Evaluating Wildlife Responses to Working Land and Water Conservation 

Presenter: Michael Rohde, Department of Natural Resource Ecology and Management. Advisor: Adam Janke

Iowa’s urbanized and agricultural landscape has caused water quality degradation and loss of species. Conservation groups are working to protect these resources, but they often lack coordination. To provide insight on the impact of water quality conservation on wildlife. He will provide estimated occupancy of key Species of Greatest Conservation Need (SGCN) across Iowa informed by the Iowa Multiple Species Inventory and Monitoring (MSIM) long-term dataset and the simulated various scenarios of water quality conservation using the Agricultural Conservation Planning Framework (ACPF) to estimate potential effects of water quality conservation on the distribution of SGCN in Iowa.

2) Managing Crop Residue to Reduce AONR (Agronomic Optimum N Rate) for Water Quality

Presenter: Alexandria Logan, Department of Agronomy. Advisor: Michael Castellano

With renewed interest in using crop residue as biofuels and increasing yields, research aiming to understand the effects of residue management on the soil nitrogen cycle is necessary. This research evaluates crop residue management’s influence on optimum nitrogen rates, focusing on the subsequent corn crop.

The presentations are from 3:10-4:00 p.m. and take place online and at 1306 Elings Hall on the Iowa State University campus.

Honoring Leopold’s Legacy: Building a Future for Iowa Webinar

March 22 presentation by Page County, Iowa farmer and conservationist Seth Watkins will provide insights on building toward a more sustainable future

The Iowa Learning Farms (ILF) conservation webinar taking place March 22 at noon CDT will feature Seth Watkins, owner of Pinhook Farm in Page County Iowa. Watkins has been a leading advocate for soil and water conservation efforts across Iowa and was the recipient of the 2022 Iowa Leopold Conservation Award.

In the webinar, “Honoring Leopold’s Legacy,” Watkins will discuss conservation efforts in Iowa, agricultural practices and practical methods being employed to improve the future that all stakeholders are building together. He will share his philosophy and approaches to farming that have been honed over some 40 years and will share lessons learned from successes and failures. Watkins will also address the importance of taxpayer supports for farming and the importance that farmers respond to those supports in ways that regenerate resources, restore water quality and provide healthy food.

A staunch advocate of land stewardship, Watkins once said, “If we’d stop subsidizing the wrong things, we wouldn’t have to subsidize the right things… We probably wouldn’t need price supports if everyone found the most appropriate land use per acre. We must look at and listen to our land, responding to what makes it healthy and productive, and what does not.”

Participants are encouraged to ask questions of the presenters. People from all backgrounds and areas of interest are encouraged to join.

DATE: Wednesday, March 22, 2023

TIME: noon


Shortly before 12:00 pm CT, click the link below or type this web address into your internet browser:

Or, go to and enter meeting ID: 364 284 172

Or, join via phone:

    Dial:  312-626-6799

    Meeting ID: 364 284 172

The webinar will also be recorded and archived. All archived webinars are available on the ILF website, so that they can be watched at any time.

ILF has applied for a Certified Crop Adviser board-approved continuing education unit (CEU) for attending this webinar. Those who participate in the live webinar are eligible. Information about how to apply to receive the credit will be provided at the end of the live webinar.

Upcoming Webinars in the Series:

Next week: Wednesday, March 29, 2023, One Block at a Time: Community-driven planning and equitable adaptation through multi-benefit green infrastructure, Kara Salazar, Purdue University 

March 29: Kara Salazar, Purdue University

April 5: TBD

April 12: Gabriel Johnson, Iowa State University

April 19: Matt Helmers, Iowa State University