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» June 27, 2007 «
They know there are more critical votes to come, but farm groups that support immigration reform expressed encouragement after the U.S. Senate voted to resume debate on the issue yesterday (Tuesday). Farmers and ranchers in California and elsewhere around the country say they consider reform crucial, to allow more people to enter the country legally to harvest crops. The Senate bill contains specific provisions designed to address labor needs on farms and ranches.
Digging for bioenergy breakthroughs, California institutions will participate in a nationwide research effort announced yesterday by the U.S. Energy Department. The California research will focus on liquid fuels made from plants. It will involve scientists from three national laboratories, the University of California Berkeley and Davis campuses, and Stanford University. They'll work to improve ethanol production and create what researchers call "the next generation of biofuels."
Some branches are propped and others have already snapped from the weight … and almond growers throughout California report their trees are loaded with nuts. Some say they must spend considerable time cutting broken branches from orchard floors. Government forecasters estimate the almond crop is 17 percent larger than last year's, and will issue a new forecast on Friday. Even with indications of a heavy crop, almond prices remain strong thanks to high demand.
How far can a fire ant fly? Learning that will help pest fighters figure out where to look for new fire ant infestations … and University of California entomologists are finding answers. Two researchers from UC Riverside have learned how to measure the fire ant's flight duration and speed. Now, they're checking weather conditions under which the ants swarm. Red imported fire ants attack crops and sting people and animals, and have been found in parts of Southern California.Top