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Belize ag report
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Belize Ag Report, Beth Roberson
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May 2016 1 Harvesting Ag News from All of Belize The Belize Ag Report Belize's most complete independent agricultural publication May 2016ISSUE 32 3 12 Fungus Devours HLB 8 Soursop 10 Whiz Bang Chicken 36 6 Bread 35 Spanish Lookout 33 For Sale by OwnerMacal River lots pg 2


May 2016 2 Harvesting Ag News from All of Belize How communities interact with the landscapeMap prepared by Jaume Ruscalleda Source: Ya'axch Extra large riverside lots and more, all with mature trees, adjacent to owner's farm, birder's paradise, utilities to door and only 10 minutes from downtown San Ignacio Easy access to scenic Mountain Pine RidgeStarting $ 75,000 USD For sale by owner at Cedar Bluff (501) 663-6777


May 2016 3 Harvesting Ag News from All of Belize Deforestation in Belize: Why Does the Agriculture Sector Need Standing Forests?By Jaume RuscalledaBelize has lost more than 770,000 acres of forest since 1980, which is almost equivalent to the area of the entire Belize District. According to a report published by CATHALAC (Spanish acronym for Humid Tropics Water Centre for Latin America and the Caribbean, based in Panama), between 1980 and 2010 approximately 25,000 acres(more than 7 times the area of Belize City) of forests were cleared every year in Belize. According to another study produced in 2013 by Belizean expert, Emil Cherrington, 33,000 acres of forest were lost in the Jewel, and in 2014 that number rose to 36,000 acres, which shows an increase in the deforestation rate. That trend has continued during the last 2 years. CATHALAC and University of Belize Environmental Research Institute (ERI) used data models, based on past trends, to predict forest cover toward the year 2100. The authors ran the model under different scenarios that ranged from the current deforestation rate being halved to the deforestation rate being doubled. According to the data in the study, in the period from 1980 to 2010, the average deforestation rate was 0.6% per year. Data collected since 2010 indicates that the deforestation rate has increased to close to 1% per year. The scenario in which the deforestation rate is doubled is the closest to reality right now. Under this scenario, the forest cover in Belize by the year 2100 Agricultural development is the main driving factor of deforestation in Belize; so it is reasonable to predictthat this reduction in forests would correspond to an extraordinary growth of the agricultural sector from now until the end of this century. But what consequences could forest loss of this extent have for the agricultural sector in Belize and for Belizean people in general? Forests are our main source of fresh water. They are a sponge that soaks up water into soils and aquifers during the wet season, and then slowly releases that water during the dry season. If we dont have forests, water runs off the land without soaking in, and we have already seen in neighboring Peten, where increased frequency of drying rivers and ground water levels dropping beneath well depth are taking place. Consequently, having healthy, large blocks of standing forests distributed in all 35 of Belizes watersheds is absolutely critical for the future of the agricultural industry. The forest is Belizes water factory; it provides this essential economic foundation for free. But, like any factory, it needs reinvestment and maintenance or it will cease to function. Beyond providing the water to feed and nurture our agricultural rural farmlands and urban areas. They do this very simply, by periods. This slowing protects the topsoil, preventing runoff and erosion, and helps retain valuable nutrients for productive soils. We cannot ignore the advice of the worlds climate scientists: forests are one of our greatest weapons against climate change. We have to stop considering forests as unused land; forests can help us adapt by regulating local weather conditions which are predicted to increase in frequency for this region of the world. There is ongoing work in southern Belize to heed the advice. At Yaaxche Conservation Trust we work with small scale farmers to promote agricultural techniques that conserve soils, enabling farmers to stay in the same plot rather than exhaust the soil and move to another one. These techniques include Inga alley cropping (with Inga edulis, I. oestediana and I. feuillei) which increases production of corn, beans and pineapple, and also cacao and coffee based agro-forestry (in combination with fruit and timber species). This will make agricultural areas more resilient to the effects of climate change, ensuring food security for farming families. At the same time, we use satellite images to monitor land use change within our area of work (a portion of the Toledo district) to see how communities interact with the landscape (see map 1, pg 2). Belizeans in general, and the agriculture sector in particular, have a vested interest in the conservation of forests in Belize. This calls for a change in the approach that the agriculture sector has had in the last 40 years, and it includes small scale biggest consumers of water supplied by forests and also the major contributors to deforestation in Belize. Whilst the sector needs to grow to provide for the expanding population, it needs to make sure that this growth is not at the expense of forested areas. Every agriculture producer can seek to improve practices, intensifying existing production rather than clearing valuable for sugar cane, shrimp, banana and cacao are helping farmers to make this change, whilst improving the prices for their products. There is advice available to help make changes towards better Continued on page 21


May 2016 4 Harvesting Ag News from All of Belize TO THE EDITORJanuary 2016 Dear Editor, We felt to express our deep appreciation that Belize has not been We understand that through modern biotechnology, genetically animal, virus, or bacteria genes to alter DNA or genetic material in vegetables and other things. These alterations are impossible to achieve from natural pollination or crop breeding, and must be produced in sophisticated genetic laboratories. The resulting organisms are then patentable property of the large corporations creating them. Someone has coined a thought provoking an humans consider themselves wiser than our all-wise omnipotent Creator? Are human beings better able and wiser to design or vegetables and other forms of life, each after its own kind humanity will bring upon itself more problems, rather than less, called good. Jesus once illustrated that a father whose child asks or a serpent (Luke 11: 11-12). Today, children asking for food from a society that mingles genetics may no longer be certain what they may turn out to be a proverbial (or even part of an actual) harmful scorpion or serpent. 1.) Being under patent, these seeds may be planted only by purchasing them, without saving seed, each season from the companies holding the patent. 2.) genetics of someone elses crops who wishes to keep them from an open-pollinated corn may pollinate it so the would be extremely regrettable. 3.) There are concerns that rights to save ones own seeds can be even in cases when this doesnt happen willfully. Losing the uncontaminated would seemingly be a poor trade off for the claims of improved proteins, yields, etc., without even mentioning what unknown harm time may prove for these modern innovations. We should not do as Esau, for one morsel of (food) sold his birthright (Hebrews 12: 16). Thanks to the Department of Agriculture and Central Farm, improvements seem possible through using traditional plant breeding efforts. The greatest concern for all of us, for all of his wonderful name. Signed, NOTICE: Please feel free to share The Belize Ag Report by publishing the link to our website or sharing it with others. The Belize Ag Report welcomes petitions to reprint articles. However, please note that the PDF download and individual articles are copyright protected and permission MUST be granted by the Editor prior to reproduction. We also require that reprints indicate The Belize Ag Report as the source and that our website be referenced.The Belize Ag Report Cayo District, Belize, Central America Telephone: 663-6777 (please, no text, no voicemail)Editors: Beth Roberson and Dottie Feucht Associate: Sally Thackery Publisher: Beth Roberson Printed by BRC Printing, Benque Viejo, Cayo District, Belize Submissions as follows: Letters to the Editor, Ads & Articles to: Deadlines for submissions: 1st of the month prior to publication. 4 Issues per year Mission Statement:The Belize Ag Report is an independent quarterly agriculture newsletter. Our purpose is to collect, edit and disseminate information useful to the Belizean producer, large or small. We invite opinions on issues, which are not necessarily our own. Belize Ag neither solicits nor accepts political ads. Dear Beth, Thanks for publishing interesting articles, such as the green banana and many more. We all enjoy making and trying new recipes. Here we are send ing a cake recipe which we all like very much. We want to try more of the green banana recipes. who cant handle or tolerate wheat. Thanks again. Birdwalk Community


May 2016 5 Harvesting Ag News from All of Belize Come enjoy our tropical plant collection which in addition to Vanilla and Black Pepper, includes Cardamom, Clove, Nutmeg, Cashew, Rambuttan, Sapote, Anjili, Bilimbi, Carambola, Nellipuli, Jackfruit, Mangoes, Jatropha and many more.New Water Garden with Lotus Bridge!Tours available; call for lunch reservationPlants and Spices for Sale Belize Spice Farm & Botanical Gardens Belize Spice Farm & Botanical GardensCome and visit the largest Vanilla & Black Pepper farm in Belize!!! Golden Stream, Southern Highway, Toledo District 221 km, or approximately 3 hours drive from Belize City (501) 732-4014 Green Banana Recipe Winners!In our February Belize Ag Report (issue #31), writer Harold Vernon challenged readers to enter original recipes using green bananas in a contest. Harolds plea for Belizeans to eat this very neglected, nutritious, tasty and cheap starch source stimulated some The contest winners for the most original and best tasting recipes Deborah Harder of Upper Barton Creek, Cayo District, Youth and Adult categories, respectively. Each receives a $50.00 prize. Thank you, Sally Thackery, Belize Ag Test Kitchen Supervisor and kudos to Harold Vernon for your instigation and prize donation. Thank you also to those contributing recipes. The Belize Ag Report will appreciate readers suggestions for future recipe contests. Green Banana PocketsBy Paige DietrichFor the tortilla: Big pinch baking soda 1 teaspoon salt 2 tablespoons coconut oil 1 cups water Pour coconut oil and water into the middle of the dry ingredients. 6 unripe, unpeeled apple bananas 5 cloves garlic 2 small onions 1/2 teaspoon grated ginger teaspoon salt 1 teaspoon black pepper Enough oil to deep fry pan. minced garlic and ginger. mixed. when the oil is hot enough to fry. Cook until brown and crusty. Repeat with the rest and put aside to cool. Continued on page 30


May 2016 6 Harvesting Ag News from All of Belize Restoration of the San Ignacio Town ClockBy Dr. Greg ShropshireWorking on various community projects focused on refurbishing the San Ignacio Police Station in 2014, I became curious as to why the San Ignacio Town Clock wasnt working. I recalled that when I emigrated to San Ignacio in 1982 that it did work. I began to ask citizens why the clock wasnt working. some information from Jr Simmons, owner of the venerable Hy-Et Hotel, on the corner of West Street and Bullet Tree Road. in the late 1940s, to honor our men who served during World clock was installed by 1950; the former San Ignacio Postmaster, Emilio Zetina, served as keeper of the clock for many, many years until he retired, when the keeping of the clock became the responsibility of the San Ignacio Town Board. By Spring of 2015 the other projects undertaken by the Peoples Coalition of Cayo (PCC) with assistance of the US Embassy, parking lot lights, and emergency backup generator), were town board worker who had had a bad accident and couldnt lock and replace it, which I did. I found an amazing three story counterweight pendulum clock with two main windlass wind up crank stations. Needing advice and guidance before attempting anything with the mechanism, I approached Errol, the watch repair man in Santa Elena; he declined to assist because the debris fallen into it from the bell tower frame and louvers which were in need of replacement and painting. The steel cable to the bell strike was also rusted through at the cable clamps and needing repair. We determined that the mechanism of the clock should be preserved with a good coat of heavy grease so after the debris was removed and the bell cable reattached, the clock was wound and the pendulum set in motion. The clock worked for a short Roofers began replacing the San Ignacio treasury, courthouse and bell tower roof zinc so the Town Clock Project came to a Tut realized that the minute hand on the north was jammed into the face of the clock ring itself, thus stopping the mechanism. north side of the tower and successfully pried the minute hand So my brothers and sisters, Ask not for whom the bell tolls; it tolls for all a we. I hope the clock will serve, as was intended, as a source of pride for the community. I am now curious, especially given the heartiness of the clock mechanism, how many of the originally donated clocks are in good condition and with some loving care could work and be an item of pride once again for their communities. Rumors have it that there are sister clocks on Barracks Road in Belize City, Find out and contact Pictures courtesy Rissy Guggenheim


May 2016 7 Harvesting Ag News from All of Belize Update on the Sugar Industry Management Information System (SIMIS)By Gregorio Canto From data collected it has been analyzed that cane variety B79474 remains the most dominant variety accounting for 60% of total area under production. This is followed by B52298 representing 17% and Belize Barbados varieties (9 BBZ varieties) account for and represented on the pie chart. Another valuable item of information collected was the spatial parcel. Data shows that small parcels between 0.1 to less than 5 acres represent 37,589.85 acres (51%) of sugar cane under production; 5 to less than 10 acres represents 23,543.76 acres (32%); 10 to less than 15 acres represent 7,467.74 acres (10%) and other areas 15 acres and greater represent 5,657.51 acres (7%) under production. This information indicates that the majority of farmers plant in smaller parcels as opposed to doing block farming. This is also due to the fact that farmers carry out traditional methods of harvesting; mechanization is not used by and is the cane producer with larger parcels. As case studies but the parcels need to be in large blocks. This data will be used by industry stakeholders to make better decisions regarding Also collected was crop class, categorized as Plant Cane (recently planted but not harvested) and Ratoon Cane (cane already harvested once or more). Plant Cane accounts for 9,208.06 acres that the majority of sugar cane under production is Ratoon Cane and productivity varies depending on the soil type, outbreak of pests and other environmental factors such as drought and that builds the technical capacity of farmers on best practices of sugar cane husbandry for both Plant Cane and Ratoon Cane. established to replant sugar cane. This data is very useful in determine economic thresholds for sugar cane production. been obtained. SIRDI as the technical arm of the sugar industry in and recommendations to its stakeholders to increase productivity etc. SIRDI is also engaged in its fertilizer trials, clean seed program and demonstration plots to show farmers and other stakeholders the importance of best practices in sugar cane husbandry to obtain Mile 54 George Price Highway, Cayo District, Belize C.A. P.O. Box 335, San Ignacio Tel: 822-2279 cayograin@btl.netProcessing & ExportingWhite & Yellow Corn Cayo Grain & Agro Supply Ltd. better decisions in sugar cane production by providing both quantitative and qualitative data to its stakeholders. Acreage distribution Field count Sum of ACREAGE Percentage 0 5 15,457 37,589.85 51% 5 10 3,540 23,543.76 32% 10 15 623 7,467.74 10% 15 20 193 3,296.59 4% 20 25 53 1,175.40 2% 25 30 18 481.58 0.5% 30 35 13 428.82 0.5% 35 40 5 187.86 0% 40 45 2 87.27 0% Grand Total 19,904 74,258.87 100%


May 2016 8 Harvesting Ag News from All of Belize Importance of Biological Control and its Role in Managing Huanglongbing (HLB) in Belize Contributors: Ing. Helen Theresa Choco, Manuel Garcia, Veronica Manzanero-MajilThe presence of the Asian Citrus Psyllid (ACP), a tiny insect Later, in 2009, the presence of Huanglongbing (HLB) (formerly vector responsible for the spread of HLB in the Americas. Considering the potential gravity of HLB based on experiences from other countries, the Citrus Research and Education Institute (CREI), the research arm of the Association collaboration with the Belize Figure 1: Adult Asian citrus psyllid (ACP) and nymphs (Warnert, 2013)Agricultural Health Authority (BAHA), the International, other interested parties adopted major parts of the three pronged approach for the management of HLB from China, Brazil and other countries battling the disease. This three-pronged strategy to manage HLB evolved into a four-pronged approach in 2013 with the interventions of a technical cooperation program funded control program to manage the ACP vector of HLB was integrated into the four-pronged approach to manage the disease. The four components of the management strategy for HLB are to (1) remove infected trees in groves with low incidence of HLB, (2) suppress ACP population using chemical and biological control methods in citrus groves and biological control for starting new plants or for replanting, and (4) use a robust fertilizer management programme and improve control of other pests (especially Phytophthora, Leprosis, and greasy spot) in the groves and backyard citrus trees. predators in managing pests and their damage. This group is the primary group used in biological control of insects. Bio-control provided by these living organisms, collectively called natural enemies, is especially important for reducing the numbers and many predators are highly specialized and attack a limited number of closely related pest species (Dreistadt, 2014). In the case of HLB management, a tiny wasp called Tamarixia radiata is the natural enemy of ACP. This wasp is present in Belize.


May 2016 9 Harvesting Ag News from All of Belize spores from the psyllid cadavers are isolated with the use of a microscope and cultured in special media conducive to growth of fungal pathogens. Upon obtaining a clean fungal culture, scaleup culturing is done using a spores are obtained, they are collected and released onto backyard trees and groves by means of sprays. If mortality is the fungal pathogen is considered to be effective in controlling ACP. Currently, CREI is conducting laboratory trials with two ACP, the Hirsutella citriformis and the Isaria fumosarosea. Biological control of ACP using Tamarixia radiata to suppress ACP in Belize is a complement to the already existing ACP control program using insecticides, a component of the fourpronged approach to HLB management. While the use of Tamarixia radiata is a more environmentally friendly approach to controlling the ACP, experiences from other countries that use biological control on its own in citrus groves have shown that this level required to successfully manage HLB. The Tamarixia wasp population will always lag behind the ACP population because in nature the wasp has to ensure its survival and thus will seldom Reunion Island as reported by Etienne & Aubert, 1980 whereby conditions on the island and in the grove were more controlled. ReferencesEtienne J., Aubert B., 1980. Biological control of psyllid vectors of greening disease on Reunion Island. Proceeding of 8th Conference Dresitadt, S.H. Biological Control of Natural Enemies. 2015. Natural Resource. University of California. Publication 74140 Control of Asian Citrus Psyllid in Florida. Univeristy of Florida. IFAS Warnert, J. E. 2013. Newly Found Asian Citrus Psyllids Prompt Quick Action in Tulare. ANR News Realeses. Published August 2, 2013. Division of Agriculture and Natural resources. University of California. According to Dresitadt (2014) types of natural enemies include: Parasites: organisms that live and feed or develop in or on the hosts body. Adult females such as wasps feed on and kill their hosts but often only the immature stage of the parasite used in bio-control, true parasites do not typically kill their hosts. Species useful in bio-control kill their hosts; they are more precisely called parasitoids. Pathogens: microorganisms including certain bacteria, fungi, nematodes, protozoa and viruses that can affect and kill the host. Predators: insects that kill and feed on several/many individual prey during their lifetime. Predatory lacewings and wasps feed on various pest insects or mites. At CREI, the biological control program aims at mass producing parasitoids and entomopathogens to combat the ACP vector of HLB, particularly in backyard citrus and unmanaged citrus groves. Currently, the two major components under the biological control program are (1) mass production of the parasitoid T. radiata and (2) the collection and culturing of entomopathogens such as Hirsutella citriformis and species of the Isaria and Bovaria genus. Mass Production of the Parasitoid Tamarixia Radiata the parasitoid Tamarixia radiata program entails the mass production of the Tamarixia wasp on its host, the ACP reared on Murraya paniculta (orange jasmine). After an adult female Tamarixia wasp mates with an adult male and becomes fertile, it deposits an egg in the lower abdomen instars (developmental/ juvenile stages) of the ACP nymph. The nymph is killed as the wasp develops inside and then exits by making a hole on the top area of its thorax. The adult Tamarixia wasp also female Tamarixia wasp can kill up to 500 psyllids in its life span. Currently, CREI has a clean collection of orange jasmine plants and an HLB-free colony of psyllids. Work is now underway to scale up the production of Tamarixia wasp at CREIs facilities. Figure 3 shows the rearing facilities for T. radiata Entomopathogen Collection and Production The collection and production of entomopathogens aims at determining the different pathogenic fungi that attack and kill cause the highest mortality rate of ACP are selected and cultured in large scale in the laboratory for application by means of spraying in backyard citrus trees and unmanaged and abandoned citrus groves to control ACP populations. Psyllid cadavers (dead psyllids killed by pathogenic fungi) are collected from groves and brought to the laboratory for Figure 2: Adult Tamarixia radiata female (above) and male (below) (CREI/CGA, 2014) Figure 3. Facilities donated by FAO for rearing T. radiata at CREI. (CREI/CGA 2014) Figure 4: Hirsutella citriformis on ACP cadaver (CREI/CGA, 2010)


May 2016 10 Harvesting Ag News from All of Belize Sweet and Sour DreamsBy Jenny Wildman we are reading in the news that a thousand year old Anglo Saxon recipe found in the British Library that is actually ninety percent effective in the eradication of Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus). Following the directions to the letter, scientists concocted a stew of onions, leaks, and garlic, stewed in vintage wine and cows bile in a brass vessel for nine days to an amazing success. It may appear to be improbable that, after all, ingredients have the power to cure devastating diseases, but perhaps we need to pay more attention. For centuries folk healers around the world have claimed that they cure. This is the Doctrine of Signatures written and found recorded in ancient manuscripts created by the wise. The great General and Natural History of the West Indies the word traveled with Spanish explorers although it was not Spain with recipes from the native Taino people including the cooking methods of the barbacoa a.k.a. bbq, smoking tobacco and In 1523 he was commissioned by Spain as the historian of the Indies and was part of the colonization of the Caribbean. Imagine how the strange world with its odd exotic fruits and brilliant apple, breadfruit, cacao, soursop and bananas all so weird and wonderful. Learning their uses, limitations and culinary secrets of the very lucrative spice age. Fast forward to 2016: I am in my garden looking at this large prickly lopsided heart and wondering what message is encased days to ripen to a pale yellowish green and opens to a reveal delicious sweet/sour white fruit with an abundance of jet black seeds housed in juicy segments. Perhaps the seeds and segments resemble cells. The fruit is grown commercially for the making of ice cream, sorbet and juices but it is also used as a vegetable in Asia. Food value? Rich in carbohydrates, vitamins C, B1, B2, phosphorus and potassium. However when one googles the it is the leaves that gain all the notoriety and also the controversy. They are used as a supposedly affective treatment for certain cancers to inhibit the growth of cancer cells, is antibacterial, anti many warnings as there are glowing endorsements so one might on chemotherapy and pharmaceuticals each year but the humble soursop leaf, so easy to grow, seems to often be only addressed as a last chance alternative. Listen to all the disclaimers and even recalls for what certain drugs can cause and you may be less inclined to be frightened of a few leaves. In general, boil 15 washed older green soursop leaves and one small stem in a liter of water for 30 minutes, simmer, then leave to steep. Drink 2 cups a day hot or cold half an hour before food. Add honey and mint leaves for added enjoyment. Very refreshing. Soursop has been used to ensure a good nights sleep just by placing a few aromatic leaves under the pillow. To further induce tea which has a really pleasing taste. This tea is also particularly good for those suffering from gout. Leaves can be added to bath mashed for eczema, skin eruptions and aching joints and younger leaves for ulcers. Not long ago soursop leaves were selling 10 leaves for US$8; now they cost about US$ 30 for 500 leaves (US$.60 for 10 and corossol. Now here is a surprising detail: the mashed seeds are an effective draw out chiggers. So I would recommend keeping the seed out of your smoothy. The bark of the tree can be used as animal poison and the wood contains enough cellulose to make paper. Soursop is a fast grower from seed bearing fruit in about 3-5 years. The tree can grow to 30 feet but can be topped at six feet for easy harvesting. two scoops in a sugar cone on a hot day. Pictures courtesy Xen Wildman


May 2016 11 Harvesting Ag News from All of Belize Introduction of the African Bee to South America and BelizeBy Montse CasademuntThe African honeybee (Apis mellifera adansonii) is a native of Africa, occupying roughly of the continent, from the Sahara Desert in the north to the Kalahari Desert in the south. In 1957, 26 swarms of African bees, breeding studies in a apiary near Rio Claro, Brazil, escaped, starting the Africanization of bees and establishing themselves as feral swarms occupying now the whole of South America (except what seems to be their climatic limits south of 32o S. on Northern Argentina), The African bee has the same number of chromosomes (16 in drones and 32 for the queen) as the Italian or European races but their development from egg to insect is slightly shorter. They also start working in the collection of nectar and pollen before the European bees. The life of the adult Africanized honeybee is a little shorter than the European races, but they start working them more productive. Africanized bees are very aggressive. They usually attack in great numbers once they have been disturbed. Some families are more aggressive than others. Africanized bees pursue their victims for longer distances. They have the tendency to rob. Therefore, the inspection of the hive, feeding, introduction of queens, etc. have to be done at the right time and with great care. laying even during times of dearth. Bees consume more reserves during the dearth period due to the constant egg-laying of the they abscond (abandon the hive) so frequently. Absconding is very rare in European races. Absconding is also a response to poor climatic and resource conditions. Rather than dwindle and starve, as often happens in European races, Africanized bees abscond reasons for absconding are lack of water, crowded condition of the hive, attack by predators and even with several queens move together. Swarming by Africanized bees is very common, averaging 3.2 per colony. Climatic adaptations: Africanized bees adapt extremely well to almost any climatic condition. In the tropics they can build nests in the open, and they occupy crack and crevices in trees and on wall rocks, empty boxes, hive bodies, and other places. Their natural habitat in Africa ranges from rain forests with an annual rainfall of 197 inches to desert areas with as little as 4 inches per year, but it is in the semi-arid regions where they attain their maximum population densities. All the areas that LOOK OUT FOR OUR BRAND! BEEKEEPINGis a sustainable activity that protects our forests, ensures the pollination of plants and provides income to our members. CAYO QUALITY HONEY PRODUCERS COOPERATIVE LTD CENTRAL FARM, CAYO DISTRICT BELIZE cayoqualityhoney@gmail.comnet weight 2 lb 8 oz CAYO QUALITY HONEY store in a close container, away from heat calories fat saturated fat carbs cholesterol protein dietary ber 1 tablespoon of HONEY 60 0 g 0 g 15 c 0 mg 0 g 0 gTO ORDER 6512771 cayoqualityhoney 4 have received mass invasions receive less than 80 inches of rain (see Belize rainfall map) and usually between 40 and 60 inches. In areas where the rainfall is high, the initial invasion population attains the maximum density that can be sustained in the new environment. European races do not survive in the wild for long periods of time contrary, the success of feral Africanized swarms established in the forest means that even if a certain degree of hybridization occurs, they retain the traits that allow them to be successful under conditions where European bees usually fail. This suggests that selection for many of the African traits may be intensive, making possible the fact that Africanized bees reaching us might be genetically very similar to the African stocks which escaped from Rio Claro, Brazil, 59 years ago. The average rate of spread between 1957 and 1963 was approximately 60 miles per year probably due to a lapse of population build-ups since the introduction of Apis mellifera adansonii was a small one. By 1962 a large number of swarms were established in the countryside. The most rapid movement was between 1963 and 1966 in which the front advanced 330 miles. We have to note that this advance was made in habitats that were climatically very similar to the natural habitat of the Apis mellifera adansonii in East Africa where they are extremely abundant. Increasing rainfall encountered between 1969 and 1976 in the north and increasing cold periods between 1963 and 1975 in the south are associated with slower rates of speed. In miles from 1974 to 1975 and about 200 miles between 1975 and 1976 in an area with no feral swarms and few managed colonies. travelled 200 miles from 1974 to 1977 to Venezuela. A second, faster-moving front entered southeastern Venezuela from Brazil, advancing 300 miles per year. border in 1980 and has since spread to Panama, Costa Rica and Trinidad & Tobago, only 7.5 miles off the coast from Venezuela. Africanized honeybees into new areas is said to occur by means 90 minutes and covering 11 to 30 miles are possible. The density of the front varies according to climatic and resource conditions. Continued on page 15


May 2016 12 Harvesting Ag News from All of Belize Limbe LimeBy Milton DueckBack in 1976, citrus farmers in southern Belize were in need of agricultural lime (ag lime or white lime) in order to improve the pH levels in their soils. As a result of numerous tests being done the farming industry tremendously over the years. Forty years later, the company he started is still in business, managed by farmers, including citrus, banana, corn, teak, and many others. It is also widely used in the aquaculture industry. Agricultural lime, or white lime, is essential to soil because it increases the soils pH, which results in more nutrients being available to crops. The following chart shows that the most nutrients are available to soil with a pH range between 6.5 and 7.5 although iron is on the low end of the pH value and potassium, sulphur, and molybdenum are readily available to a pH of 10. Neal Kinsey of Kinsey Agricultural Services, Inc. specializes in analyzing soil samples and making recommendations on what to do to grow the best crops on those soils. After testing soils from over 65 different countries around the world, Neal Kinsey states: One of the major limiting factors in farming is that of understanding calcium: when its necessary, how much to use, and what that will do for the crop not just in terms of yield, although it can make a big difference in yield, but also in terms of nutrient values as well. Although fertilizers are often marketed as all you need to have a high quality crop, research is now showing that fertilizers are second to having adequate amounts of calcium and magnesium. Neal Kinsey explains:Calcium is necessary to get every other nutrient into the plant. If we dont have enough calcium it takes more nitrogen to do the same job, it takes more phosphorous to do the same job, it takes more potassium to do the same job, it takes more of all the trace elements to do the same job. So calcium is the doorman; its the element that needs to be in the soil to open the door to get all the other elements into the plant. If we dont have enough calcium, it takes more fertilizer to grow the same crop. As you can see, calcium is vital to have in your soil, so that all other nutrients can be taken up. Additionally, having the right Continued on Page 13 balance of calcium and magnesium will:Cause crops to be much more resistant to all types of diseases.Enhance the effectiveness of herbicides.Improve water penetration of the soil.Promote root development and plant growth.Lower toxic levels of aluminum, manganese, and iron.Cause citrus to be more resistant to the disease caused by the Asian citrus psyllid and other diseases.Ensure your crops have enough calcium and other And much more Neal Kinsey has also stated: Limestone is the most undervalued material that makes a difference in terms of production for agriculture in the world. Not just under-valued in terms of price but also under-valued in terms of what it will do for you. Because until you get the calcium right, you dont have the potential to get the right yield. The only way to determine how much lime you need is to do a soil test.* Unfortunately, every soil is different. To fully know what your soil needs, you need a thorough soil analysis that not only tests for pH but also how much calcium, magnesium, potassium, and sodium is in your soil. All of these affect the pH on your soils. In many cases, the pH level is ok, even though the calcium is high. In that case, lime that is high in calcium, or calcitic lime, must be applied, since calcium brings the magnesium level down.Limbe provides a few different types of lime: lime that has a balance of calcium and magnesium, lime that is calcitic, or very


May 2016 13 Harvesting Ag News from All of Belize Understanding Bacillus Thuringiensis (Bt)By Sam VigueDo you use chemicals on your vegetables? is a question that the farmer selling directly to the customer is likely to hear. organic. For questions like this, it is hard to give an accurate answer because most farmers whether organic or not, use some form of chemicals on their farms. Some farmers that are strictly organic must avoid certain chemicals but are still likely using some natural forms that are considered non-toxic. basic substance that is used in or produced by a reaction involving changes to atoms or molecules. It is evident then, that chemicals include many things which may be harmful or helpful. Chemicals come in many forms. They can kill instantly, be completely safe even over the long-term. The inherent properties, method of use, concentration, and other factors determine the effect on the human body whether dangerous or not. For example, vinegar, bleach, sulfuric acid, glyphosate, and cyanide are all chemicals and have very different effects on our body and on living things in the environment. A better question then is for the customer to ask the farmer What types of chemicals do you use? the customer an informed understanding of the subject. What is used to grow the food we are eating is important to all of us. It is important for the farmer and the customer to know about types of chemicals used in agriculture so wise decisions can be made about the food we grow and eat. With that goal in mind, I would like to discuss Bacillus Thuringiensis (Bt) which is used in both organic and conventional substances called biopesticides or biologicals. Biopesticides are certain types of pesticides derived from plants, bacteria, fungi, animals, or certain minerals. The term biological means that they are the product of natural chemical synthesis usually as a biological in itself doesnt indicate whether it is toxic to the human body; it only indicates that it comes from a naturally occurring source. Certain plants, for example, can contain strong poisons that could kill you very quickly. Therefore, it depends determine its toxic or non-toxic properties. Based on research up to this point, Bt has been observed to contain components that are non-toxic to the human body when used in sprays because it does not penetrate the cellular wall of the plant cell, but deadly to certain types of insects. This bacteria produces a protein that, when inside the intestines of certain types of caterpillars or worms, forms protein molecules that cause holes to form in the intestinal lining of the insect. The worms then disintegrate from the inside out and are soon shriveled and black in the garden. Bt bacteria is widely accepted as a non-toxic spray and allowed even in some of the strictest organic farms. It is applied as a liquid spray or a dust to the leaves of the plants where the worms are located. Since it contains a living bacteria in the ingredients, the Bt concentrate needs to be kept in a sealed container out of intense heat and light. It is usually able to be found for sale in farm chemical supply stores.Limbe...Continued from Page 12 the topic for which this bacteria is infamously known for. This in certain corn varieties that are widely grown in the United States. Capitalizing on the action of the proteins produced by this Bt bacteria species, scientists found a way to take the DNA deadly insect killer molecule and insert that DNA into a cell taken from a corn plant. The cell is then multiplied in a laboratory with the result that after several steps, full size plants are able to be produced. These plants can be grown to produce corn seeds that contain genetic information that automatically produces the same protein originally produced by the Bt bacteria in every cell of the corn plant. The result of this technology has been incredible. Now with every cell of the plant containing protein molecules that are toxic to caterpillars and worms, the two greatest pests of corn, (corn borer and corn earworm) are almost completely controlled without sprays. Now every time the eggs of these pests hatch on the corn plant, the larvae immediately have only a food source that is almost 100% deadly to them. There is however a very small number of these pests that somehow are resistant to the Bt toxin. Because of this, it is a concern that at some point in the future this technology will no longer be effective as an insect control if a population of insects resistant to Bt is eventually able to dominate. In conclusion, Bt is the name of two things. Both have a deadly effect on the target insect pests. However, the similarities stop genetic trait created within a plant to manufacture certain exterior of the crops and the other is genetically produced within every plant cell. Both are said to be safe for consumption but to date there hasnt been comprehensive research to determine the they are consumed. Research is needed to determine how these protein molecules are absorbed in the digestive system and the short term and long term effects on the body.high in calcium and very low in magnesium, and lime that is high in magnesium. Every year we take numerous tests to make sure we provide our customers with the optimum lime for their crop. Limbes lime also provides the advantage of long-term/slow release to the soil. It takes from 3 to 4 years until the lime is fully will not be realized until the second or third year of application.There is an understanding in the farming community in Belize, that fertilizers and lime cannot be applied at the same time. But according to Neil Kinsey, this does not matter with good soil fertility management including a base saturation of calcium and soil, it can be determined what type of lime you need. Applying the lime is very easy, since Limbe provides spreaders to spread the lime. Check out our website at, where you can see *Soil samples can be sent to the Kinsey Lab via Agro-Base in Spanish Lookout.


May 2016 14 Harvesting Ag News from All of Belize Considering Potassium and Manganese in Soil Fertility for PotatoesBy Neal Kinsey that producing good yields of potatoes must involve the application of large amounts of fertilizer directly under the seed row. The perception is that potato roots do not spread out much, and that they tend to grow straight down below where the seed is placed. This does show to be the root growth is actually abnormal compared to what should and In fact, when soil fertility reaches the level it should be for growing potatoes, the plants send out roots that even spread across the middles, growing right on past roots coming from the next adjacent row of potatoes on each side. When possible, roots grow to where the needed nutrients can best be taken up. Because of the false perception that potato roots do not spread out, large amounts of fertilizer ordinarily tend to be placed directly under each row. This application contributes to certain has to do with soil nutrient supplementation and plant nutrient uptake. The soil is the plants stomach. Feed the soil and the soil will then properly supply nutrients to the crop. Therefore, when of the soil and apply what is perceived as just what is needed to grow the crop, soil health and plant health can be adversely affected. Furthermore, depending on various nutrient levels unique to each individual soil, several different problems can be brought about or seriously aggravated by applying large amounts of fertilizer under the row. involved a large potato grower/processor in Africa who hired us for a farm visit to help solve a problem he was concerned about in his potato crop. His potatoes would begin to grow off well, but then suddenly the plants would develop weak vines and fall over, resulting in scorching or sun scald on the stalks. Then after a time, the potatoes would stand back up and begin to grow as they should have all along. But since they had been injured by the sun the concerns were how much this damage was affecting his potato yields and how to prevent it from happening time after time. Soil samples had been taken and sent to us for analysis and hand it was possible to evaluate several conditions standing right there looking at those plants. Potassium (K) levels were to produce. And even though our recommendations plainly stated all fertilizers were to be broadcast, I asked if he had applied potassium under the row as most potato growers do. Sure enough, he had ignored the broadcast instructions and put the potassium directly under the row When everybody does it, it must be the correct thing to do right? Well, not in the potassium level in the soil to increase by too much. In such potassium exceeds 7.5% of the soil nutrient holding capacity (commonly called the CEC), this begins to tie up the boron, and then if enough boron is not replaced via foliar applications it results in smaller potatoes. But boron was not what was causing If the potassium applied directly under the row, combined with the sodium also present there, exceeds 10% of the soils nutrient holding capacity, it can cause plant uptake of manganese to begin to be blocked. In such cases, soil tests show the soil has plenty of manganese, but there is so much potassium and/or sodium there that the manganese has trouble competing in terms of plant availability. This was higher the percentage goes above 10% K, the harder it will be to get manganese taken up by the plants. When the potassium and other nutrients were placed below the seed, the potatoes sent their roots down to take up needed was too much for that soil and once the potatoes roots entered that area, the blocked uptake of manganese caused the problem that resulted in sun scald on the stalks. also needed for strong stalks. When the potatoes could not take up enough manganese, all that potassium was no substitute for the needed manganese. The potato stalks became weak and fell excess potassium zone, the plants could again take up enough manganese and the vines straightened up and began to grow as they should. That was several years ago and since that time, no potassium is placed under the row on potato land there except in the case of no problem with weak stalks in potatoes grown there. Even though very important to vine strength, manganese provides manganese plants grow more slowly. It also affects seed set. And question for growers is What really is enough manganese in the soil for potatoes? The answer tends to be confusing because Continued on page 33 HILL HOUSEPrivate, Incredible Views, Semi Furnished 2 bed room 3 bath office 5 minutes from San Ignacio out of town but close to town Additional land connecting to river available$299,000 USD+501-668-0749 / 663-6777


May 2016 15 Harvesting Ag News from All of Belize KINSEYS AGRICULTURAL SERVICESsoil fertility consultant297 County Highway 357, Charleston, Missouri 63834, U.S.A. Tel: (573) 683 3880Fax: (573) 683 6227 e-mail: Web: www.kinseyag.comProblems with crop quality, poor yields?We specialize in correcting soil fertility problems of farms, ranches, vineyards, orchards, gardens and lawns... quality crop production anks very much for last years [recommendations]. It was the best corn crop in this area ever. We think we averaged over 200 bu per acre. e highest check we happened to take was 265 bu per acre which was the second highest that our Pioneer dealer took. Most beans were in the lower 50s in this area but ours averaged 60. Randy Vogeler, Garrison, IowaImpact of the Africanized bee in Belize: In general terms, the beekeeping industry in all the countries where the bees are found has been severely affected by the Africanization of the bees. Small or amateur beekeepers their bees too aggressive to handle and abandon or destroy their colonies. Large producers also to maintain production since the management of Africanized honey bees is generally more Africanized honeybees arrived in Belize in.. with the same consequences. A low level of assistance and technical skills, coupled with the aggressive nature of the Africanized bee and the alarm among the general population, caused many of the beekeepers to give up their bees. It is a fact that the Africanized bee represents a real threat; over the years they have killed people and livestock in the areas where they have been established. The public should be advised not to go near colonies and swarms and, under no circumstances, disturb them. The National Fire calls to remove bees in buildings; people should not attempt to handle the bees themselves. Persons with allergy to bee stings or anyone experiencing dizziness should seek medical treatment as soon as possible. People who are stung 50 or more times should also be taken to a medical facility in case treatment is necessary. do not report bees in the vicinity of their homes until the swarm has been established. Nevertheless as a precautionary measure, aviaries should be fenced, located at least 200 yards from houses and animals and have a sign indicating their presence. The Africanized bee, friend or foe: the arrival of Africanized bees, most countries, including Belize, reacted with enforcement to capture and destroy the swarms and feral colonies, coupled with an intensive selection process in order to maintain the original genetic stock of European bees. their policies, having recognized the positive characteristics and many advantages of working with Africanized bees: their general resilience, resistance to disease and changes in climate, and extreme laboriousness. Native to the tropics and environments with many natural enemies, Africanized bees of the colony. They do not get sick easily because their highly When properly managed, they are excellent producers of honey, wax, pollen and propolis. Cayo Quality Cooperative has been training beekeepers for several years in the proper management of Africanized bee colonies. The results have been working alongside nature and with species that are adapted to our climatic conditions and our environment.Bees...Continued from page 11


May 2016 16 Harvesting Ag News from All of Belize Specialized in Cleaning, Packing & Exporting Beans and Other Grains PLANT LOCATION: Route 20 East Spanish Lookout, Cayo District, Belize Currently Bel-Cars main exporting products are corn meal, corn grits, and dry edible beans. It has Black Eye Beans, Light Red Kidney Beans, Black Beans, and Small Red Beans available at most times. MAILING ADDRESS: BEL-CAR EXPORT & IMPORT COMPANY LTD. Box 578, Spanish Lookout, Belize, Central America CONTACTS: Tel:501-823-0318 / 501-823-0271 Fax:501-823-0136 Remembering Mr. Anil Sinha Sinhas name is synonymous with CARDI, the Caribbean Agriculture Research and Development Institute he served for 34 years as an agricultural a year and then the agriculture sector of Belize from 1983 until his sudden death on 20 February 2016. He was appointed the country representative for CARDI in 1989 and served as the CARDI representative on many technical and advisory boards, including the Pesticide Control Board accomplishments advanced Belizean agriculture far more than his breeding and development of cereals and grain legumes adaptable to the tropics. His efforts at partnering with other organizations, countries and Belizean farming communities for the conduct of numerous projects enriched agricultural pursuits in the entire Caribbean region. The list of his accomplishments below, obtained from CARDI, also does not include his personal dedication to solving problems for individual farmers, his tireless effort to mentor his staff, his willingness to offer advice in his own quiet, humble way, nor attendance at endless meetings to share his valuable insights and considerable experience in agriculture, climate change, and natural resources management. Development of post-production technologies for the harvesting, drying and storage of cereals and grain legumes kidney beans, which laid the foundation for the export of this commodity from Belize to the Caribbean community Initiation and development of the CARDI 70 rice variety, one of the varieties cultivated in Belize in the early 1990s Annual evaluation, development and maintenance of a seed bank for commercial varieties of soy beans, corn, red kidney beans, peanuts and rice. This effort enabled CARDI to supply seeds to Haiti and Dominica in the post disaster recovery in those countries. Publication of more than 40 technical papers and books and individuals who had the pleasure of knowing him and his personable ways. His vast contribution to the agriculture sector in the Caribbean region was recognized in 2009 when he was Clarke, Executive Director of CARDI stated, Anils life and work can be perfectly summed up with the quote, be pure, be true, be helpful, be attentive and be reverent.


May 2016 17 Harvesting Ag News from All of Belize The Toledo DistrictBy Harold Vernon District. The soils of the Toledo District have all been formed under conditions of higher temperatures and higher rainfall. foothills that create the largest number of drainage courses of the 7 watersheds. This district has the largest number of rivers that are relatively fast moving and are broken up into many subunits or tributaries. The mountains form a barrier that collects moisture from the coast and create conditions of condensation as rain River, Deep River Southern Coastal Plain. Using the rock types as reference parent hillsides, upland soils, northern/southern coastal plain soils and alluvium deposited. Limestone is widely dispersed, although highly weathered, containing rocks in many places. The soils of this article. As we proceed south from the junction of Independence access road and the Southern Highway, we see a continuance of pine forested areas interspersed with swampy patches featuring nutrition content. Extremely leached soils or Ultisols that have the underlying hardpan or compacted clay predominate on the right. These areas are complemented on the left side by sandy The old mango farm was established on these sandy soils as mangoes are tolerant of these conditions. Banana farms have been established on the recent alluvial terraces of the Trio and Bladen branches with mixed results. These acid soils slowly give way to soils that are formed by old and new alluvial deposits including limestone and thus have a more favorable pH. The vegetation changes to an admixture of broadleaf in forested areas that have higher densities of large trees. The main soil types are occur and are bordered by alluvial soils such as Entisols (old alluvium) and Inceptisols (new alluvium) on the areas, typically under a hardwood forest cover which results in organic matter and relatively high native fertility on the surface. However, most are shallow as they have clay-enriched subsoil limestone, have aluminum (Al) and iron (Fe) that make the soil neutral to acidic, especially in the lower horizons. Interestingly, the coastal area known as Port Honduras has large spans of swamps with peat bogs and muddy inlets, rocky outcrops saline. The Paines Creek National Park is a good example of one of these areas. As we go further south, we encounter limestone hills and soils in association with the karst (limestone hills) on the upper and lower Coastal Plain and land form is mildly undulating on the coastal side with higher hills occurring on the western side. Citrus and areas have been utilized for pasture with native grasses the predominant vegetation. Due to the constraining factors of high milpa farming occurs with virgin land increasingly becoming scarce. Coconuts are to be found everywhere. constitute the areas with the largest cultivable spreads but the landscape is punctuated by rivers and streams and limestone hills; many of the soils have stones that allow only hand cultivation and are hostile to mechanical cultivation. Native vegetation is cohune and broadleaf forest including valuable hardwoods. The a number of crops but are currently used for corn, beans and rice. Flooding is a persistent enemy and in the lower reaches can last for weeks in some areas as water comes down from the hills in surface and subterranean channels. The soils are easily saturated and swamps are the dominant feature of the Temash water control infrastructure, especially drainage.Author's Note: This article is the last in the series and the information provided by technical observations of the author and was adapted from the separate publications published Resource Surveys of Northern Belize, Stann Creek and Toledo Districts published by Natural Resources Institute, Kent, UK and available in print only. a soil order in USDA soil taxonomy. form in semiarid to humid areas, typically under a hardwood forest cover. They have a clay-enriched subsoil and relatively high native fertility. Alf refers to aluminium (Al) and iron (Fe). Comments to: Need inks and toners? Printers?Belmopan Business Center#5 Capital Gardens Plaza, Belmopan, Cell: 661-1651 We deliver to San Ignacio!


May 2016 18 Harvesting Ag News from All of Belize How Sweet It IsMaking Ice Cream at Western DairiesBy Feucht/RobersonStanding in line is not always a bad thing, especially if you are in line to buy ice cream at Western Dairies (WD) in Spanish Lookout Behind the scenes are 6 busy people packaging the ice cream into 3 gallon, 1 gallon, gallon, quart, pint, and 5 oz.cup size. The 3 gallon size is the best seller; it is the size that restaurants, resorts, and WD ice cream shops buy to serve their customers. Vanilla, chocolate and cheese cake seem to be the favorites sold in that size. However, vanilla counts for 35% of all sales. The newest product is an ice cream bar, vanilla ice cream coated with chocolate on a stick, called Delight. Soft ice cream mix is poured into a mold that hold 22 bars; then its covered with a top that has the sticks inserted into it and quickly put into a special freezer for 11 minutes. The freezer, which holds 4 molds, has a chilling medium 98% alcohol that holds the temperature at -34 F. The frozen bars are then dipped into melted chocolate which is 85 but instantly hardens on the bars. The bars are then put on a conveyer where a Finamac machine automatically slips the wrapper on to the bars and they are packaged 10 per box. Five thousand of these delicious Delights are produced every 9 hour workday. WD is in the process of purchasing a machine to produce Delights all automatically; then they can expand the pasteurized in a steam-heated tank for 30 minutes at 180F, then piped to a homogenizer for a few minutes, which keeps the milk psi causing them to be equally distributed throughout). The milk passes through the homogenizer to a heat exchanger where the milk is cooled to 35 40F as it passes over water cooled plates on its way via pipes to one of two 300 gallon tanks in the processing/ packaging room to be made into ice cream. The tanks are thoroughly cleaned in between use. Powdered milk, cream, sugar, salt, and stabilizer are added to the 250 gallons of 3.5% butterfat milk in the holding tank and mixed constantly for 16 Continued on page 19


May 2016 19 Harvesting Ag News from All of Belize A New Pest: The Yellow Sugarcane Aphid Infesting Sorghum in BelizeBy Adriano VasquezPlant Health Department, Belize Agricultural Health AuthorityThe yellow sugarcane aphid (Hemiptera:Aphididae) is an invasive specie introduced in the new world and spreading rapidly throughout the American continents. The primary hosts of this pest are sorghum, sugarcane and oats, and secondary hosts are rice, corn, and some pastures. The weed Johnson grass is a preferred host of this pest. If this pest is not controlled on time it can affect the production of sorghum, sugarcane, and other grains in Belize. Air and machinery movements are spreading the aphids. attacking sorghum. Since, the discovery of the aphid in Belize a Cayo Districts. The survey results revealed a widespread of the pest in Belize. The reproduction of the yellow sugarcane aphid is predominantly asexual. Adult female aphids are winged or wingless and both give origin to nymphs. This aphid has 4 nymph stageswhich develop in 5.4 days at 25C. The average life cycle of this insect takes 15 daysto 28 days to produce approximately 96 nymphs per female. Wingless adults have a life span of 11.7 days average and produce 46 nymphs per female. Winged adults have an average life of 7.5 days and produce 10.6 nymphs per female. A sorghum plant can be infested with 30,000 aphids. The yellow sugarcane aphid measures 1.1 mm 2.0 mm. This aphid is variable in colour depending on the host plant and climatic conditions: pale yellow, yellow-brown, dark brown, gray or pink. The beak reaches the second pair of coxae. Fully grown nymphs may have scattered brown markings randomly distributed on abdominal tergum. Sometimes inter-segmental lines are marked brown.The antennae are usually 6-segmented and rarely 5-segmented, about as long as the body. The cauda is pale and has 4 setae on each side. The siphunculi is short and brown and the tarsal segments are dark. and then advance to the upper leaves. The aphids are usually found on the upper surface of the leaves. In some situations if they are not controlled, the aphids may even colonize the grain sorghum head. When conditions are favorable, some colonies can quickly grow to large colonies and produce a large amount of honeydew. Highly sticky leaf surfaces may help protect the aphids from predation. The damage caused to sorghum by this pest depends on a number hours to improve the texture. Five hundred gallons of mix are used every day as the foundation for all WD ice cream products; mix is transferred 5 gallons at a time to the batch freezer where (5 minutes for bars), which increases its bulk, at a temperature below zero to the soft stage. Containers of the various sizes -4F. The 5000 gallon capacity vault should be called ice cream heaven with its rows and rows of shelves of ice cream. Its the favorite spot of the 7,800 students (195 student groups) who tour WD every year. WD has come a long way. They got their start making ice cream in the early 1990s when good quality ice cream was $32/gallon in Belize City. As soon as they purchased a new machine in 1994 and began making ice cream they could hardly keep up with the and Belize City. Having worked toward Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point ( is now HACCP means among other things that through a batch number system they can trace milk to its source. HACCP opens up export possibilities. Continued on page 41 Ice Cream...Continued from page 18 The last tarsal segment of the legs are dark Cauda is pale Short, brown Siphunculi and conical form with wide base Antennae 6 and rarely 5 segment ed, about 1/2 as long as body Adult is 1.1 2mm long; pale yellow, yellow brown, dark brown, gray, purple or pink.


May 2016 20 Harvesting Ag News from All of Belize Fire Useful or Harmful Vegetation Management Tool for Beli zeansBy Dr. Stephen F. ZitzerFire, in the case of burning vegetation, consists of many processes and characteristics operating at various temporal and spatial scales that can result in even more diverse outcomes in terms of impacts on the biosphere. Relatively few terrestrial ecosystems have not another, with both positive and negative outcomes. Today, due to the global scale of intentional and unintentional burning of native vegetation and agricultural crop residues, the overall biosphere is being affected more adversely than positively. be either started by humans purposely or native plant communities can occur annually or with frequencies of greater than centuries. However, most of the plant communities in Belize, with the exception of pine and vegetation management tool that even a frequency as low as once every two or three centuries may be a major determinant of total community biodiversity and sustainable productivity. the frequency, duration and intensity of a direct effects on plants, animals, soils and water and air quality be short term as in the annual pre-harvest burning of sugarcane accompanied by the permanent loss of biodiversity. There are, however, some basic chemical reactions that occur when plant biomass is burned because most plants are composed of the same sixteen essential elements, though the concentrations of each element can vary greatly between species (grasses versus trees) and plant tissue types (leaves versus wood). During burning or combustion, most of the carbon is lost to the atmosphere 2) because it begins to volatilize at lower temperatures nitrogen, phosphorus, sulfur and chlorine are converted to anions (molecules with negative charges) that volatilize in much greater quantities than calcium, potassium, and magnesium which are converted to positive charged cations. Furthermore, range from 300 to 1400 C, with nitrogen losses beginning at 200 C, while phosphorus does not begin to volatilize until 500 and nitrogen is lost to the atmosphere. Conversely, many nutrients are still contained in the ash which may or may not be retained at the burn site.This helps explain why there are often short term increases in many surface soil nutrients after burning. The second major set of impacts of burning is the potential effects on soil structure and the ability of the soil surface to absorb precipitation Continued on page 42


May 2016 21 Harvesting Ag News from All of Belize Climate Change Impact on AgricultureBy Dottie FeuchtAdaptation measures to climate change and variability were the focus of a forum in February when the stakeholders of the agriculture sector and livestock producers met with Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA); direct effects (changes in rainfall and temperature) and indirect effects (changes in pests, diseases and soil fertility) on agriculture crops and livestock. unclude: Drainage infrastructure, systems and mechanisms Well-designed and drained road infrastructure Available rainfall forecasts Relocation of animals and annual cropsThe measures recommended for drought include: Irrigation, including drip irrigation Use of renewable energy sources Watershed management Water harvestingThe measures recommended for climate variability include: Seasonal production The measures recommended for temperature increase include: Selection of heat-tolerant crops, pasture varieties and livestock breeds with emphasis on indigenous genetic diversity Irrigation to alleviate heat stress on plants Silvopastoral systems Heat alleviating infrastructure or appropriately ventilated housing designs for poultry, pigs, sheep and goats environment for aquaculture include: Improved brood stock Access to clean water sources Adequate water storage Use of renewable and alternative sources of energy Information and technology transfer from expert sources Improvement in regulatory servicesThe agriculture sector is in a good position to implement the proposed adaptation measures in terms of technical capacity, institutional and policy environment and stakeholder attitude. practices for all Belizes major agricultural products, including cattle ranchers, through organizations like the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation in Agriculture (IICA), the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) and the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS), all of which have representatives in Belize. Since humans began using agriculture around 11,000 years ago, we have removed more than half of the worlds forests. Belize is an exception to this trend, as it still has more than half of its land covered by forests, and has a unique opportunity to learn from the mistakes of other nations that are facing disastrous consequences of climate change. Deforestation...Continued from page 3


May 2016 22 Harvesting Ag News from All of Belize


May 2016 23 Harvesting Ag News from All of Belize Agriculture Prices at a Glance$$$$$ A-B denotes the difference between 1st preference & 2nd preference and sometimes between wholesale & retail and bulk or small amounts Trend (H) means Higher over last 30 to 60 days (L) Lower (S) Steady. Prices intend on being farm gate in Belize dollars usually price per lb MAY 2016 GRAINS, BEANS & RICE T A BLN/A LN/A H L/S H LH N/AL H L SN/A H SN/A H H S SSUGAR/HONEYS S S SSPECIAL FARM ITEMSL S SCACAOSSH BELIZE CATTLE by District Provided by BLPA T L L N/A L L N/A L L N/A L L N/A U.S. CATTLEL LBELIZE HOGSS S BELIZE SHEEPS S BELIZE CHICKENL L L L S SCITRUSS LCOCONUTSS S***These prices are the best estimates only from our best sources and simply provide a range to assist buyers and sellers in negotiations.***


May 2016 24 Harvesting Ag News from All of Belize eyes. I literally could not get enough of the birds, and I thoroughly immersed myself in the opportunity of being in Belize. I admit that I am a hard-core birder, and I felt I got a lot out of the trip because I put a lot into it. By the end of our eleven-day, ten-night with the whole experience. In Belize it is a common sight to see bumper stickers and billboards with the expression, You better Belize it. When it Editor's Note: Eric Moore is an avid birder and backyard wild bird store owner (Jays Bird Barn) with locations in Prescott, Sedona and Flagstaff, Arizona. You can Birding in Belize A Visitors PerspectiveBy Eric MooreIn February, my wife and I traveled to Belize for the primary purpose of bird watching, but our vacation also included three days bird watching, relaxing, and walking, as our primary time on Caye Caulker was thoroughly enjoyable and stress free; the pace on the island was slow and pleasant. Being an avid birder, I particularly enjoyed the variety of Caribbean specialty bird species we observed on Caye Caulker such as Rufous-necked Warbler. If we had not visited the island, we would not have seen any of these species on our trip. and experienced a guided snorkeling adventure in the Hol Chan life was as colorful as it was abundant. We swam with stingrays, nurse sharks, barracuda, moray eel and observed the colorful coral formations that make up the second largest barrier reef drove by van to Crooked Tree Lagoon to continue our relentless search for birds. The diversity of habitat in this area contributes to high species-richness. At the end of each day, we would sit down together as a group and tally our bird list. We usually came highlight of our time at Crooked Tree Lagoon was a guided boat trip on the lagoon where we saw amazing bird species such as habitats surrounding the lagoon and we saw an incredible variety necked Wood-rail, Roseate Spoonbill and Vermilion Flycatcher how challenging semi-tropical forest birding is with the density of the vegetationquite different from birding in Arizona, where I am from. right in the heart of a semi-tropical forest. When we returned to duPlooys each afternoon, I headed out on my own in search of more birds and never came back disappointed. In the Belize Parrots, Northern Potoo, Band-backed Wren, Chachalaca, and so much more. we went to Black Rock Lodge and Xunantunich, another day to St. Hermans Cave and the Blue Hole, and on another day we provided us with the opportunity to see the beautiful countryside and the amazing birds in the surrounding habitat. I added new bird species to my life list every day; birds that I had Slaty-tailed Trogon observed near duPlooy's Jungle Lodge Red-legged Honey Creeper observed at the fruit feeders at Black Rock Lodge


May 2016 25 Harvesting Ag News from All of Belize Mountain Equestrian TrailsCayo, Belize Wildlife Impacts from Changing LandscapesBy Paul WalkerWith Belizes growing population, spreading urbanization and expanding agricultural footprint, inevitably there are impacts on wildlife as portions of their habitat are cleared for new houses, roads, milpas and large-scale agriculture. Whilst large tracts of wildlife habitat are protected in central and southern Belize by the protected areas that provide critical protection from landslides, the wildlife of coastal and northern Belize are more limited in the provision of safe havens from landuse change. The gradual loss of wildlife across the landscape is going unnoticed. charismatic Yucatan black howler monkey, better known as the baboon or saraguato, one of Belizes two species of monkey. The howler monkey is an important part of Belizes wildlife. Its loud roar is enjoyed not only by Belizeans, but its presence also provides an important tourism resource, contributing toward the economy of Belize. It also plays an important role in maintaining Belizes forests, dispersing seeds as it moves through the forest canopy. Like its cousin, the spider monkey, this specie is globally endangered, with populations declining across its range. Unwilling to expose themselves to attack from terrestrial predators, howler monkeys are generally unwilling to cross are being received of howlers being found stranded in small forest remnants left scattered across an increasingly agricultural landscape. A family group of three to eight howler monkeys need only a few acres of forest rich in their favourite trees, including loudly to advertise the boundaries of their territory and raise their offspring. They thrive even in narrow bands of trees left along river banks and creek edges and surrounded on all sides by forest areas, providing corridors for them to move through the landscape. is the agricultural and other developmental barriers that adolescent howler monkeys become more assertive as they reach maturity, and eventually the mature male of the troop will have had enough and eject his troublesome sons. Encircled by farmlands, there is sometimes nowhere for these teenage monkeys to go, and they can end up escaping to the only other trees in sight: coconut, mango, mahogany and other trees dotted through rural villages, trees that provide structure but very little or no food to the monkeys. The human environment is dangerous for these monkeys, with the threat of being run over by cars, chased and killed by dogs, or stoned by children. Increasingly often, these stranded monkeys have to be translocated to other, safer forested areas by the Forest Department and its partner in rehabilitates and releases monkeys. along river and creek edges as well as using the Baboon Sanctuary model of leaving forest around the borders of farms can do a great deal to assist Belizes monkey populations, leaving not only quality habitat, but also connectivity to allow groups to establish territories and for youngsters to disperse and establish their own family troops. Planning large-scale forest clearance projects with clearing in the direction of contiguous forest will allow monkeys and other wildlife to escape; clearing from the perimeter towards the centre is a sure way to trap monkeys without an escape route. A little prior planning can go a long way to minimize negative impacts on Belizes very special and endangered


May 2016 26 Harvesting Ag News from All of Belize Belize Livestock Producers Association Holds 38th Annual General Meetingth, 2016, the Belize Livestock Producers Association (BLPA) convened for their 38th Highway. Ranchers gathered from all over Belize, and those renewing their membership found a special price of $25.00 annual dues in effect for the day. Alpuche, always a welcomed attendee, made a short presentation foundation for you ranchers to build upon. He also noted that we need to attach a proper value on the cattle industry [of Belize]. Banana Bank, was the guest speaker. He discussed the different passions which he and others feel for the industry for example, the passion at the birth of a calf, and also skin of a stolen animal. He advised more unity within the industry to better meet goals, and mentioned the possibility Mile 63 George Price Highway, Cayo District, Belize C.A. 824-2126/2765 824-3522 RUNNING W Brand Meats It is important to know where your food comes from and to know that it is being produced in a safe, healthy, and ecologically friendly manner. BELIZE LIVESTOCKPRODUCERS ASSOCIATION Cattle-One of the oldest Industries in Belize Now one of the Agriculture Industries with a very exciting future Local and Export OrientedPhone: 501 822-3883 Mile 47 1/2 George Price Hwy, Belmopan BELIZE LIVESTOCKPRODUCERS ASSOCIATION of Belize eventually exporting cattle by boat to Houston, now that we have better marketing and a traceability system in place. Another Association, such as that of Texas. We might study their organization and adapt that to Belize as many ranchers are suffering from rustling. Itza, former head of Sweep 3, joined BLPA in the fall of 2015 and has brought much expertise to the team in collection and collating longneeded baseline industry data. This was essential for BLPA to move forward, see accurately where we have been, where we want to go as an industry and also to manage and access funding. Continued on page 27


May 2016 27 Harvesting Ag News from All of Belize Noted Jaguar Predation Expert, Dr. Rafael Hoogesteijn, Returns to Belize in October 2016 Forestry, Fisheries and Sustainable Development, and the Environmental Research Insitute of the University of Belize, together announce that Dr. Rafael Hoogesteijn, will return to Belize in late Rafael has met many ranchers on previous trips and is known as a fellow rancher who also happens to be a veterinarian and a jaguar predation expert. Come to discuss your situation and concerns regarding the cats and the cattle industry. Come learn what other regions have done to lessen their losses. Rancher meetings will be scheduled for: Belize Central Corridor Crooked Tree area, Belize District Spanish Lookout, Cayo District A presentation for the public will be held in Belmopan. He announced that the current phase of the cattle sweep ends on 31 the national herd. We anticipate reaching a National Tuberculosis Free status in 2018. Dr. Itza noted that 54 Belizean farms remain under Belize Agricultural Health Authority (BAHA) quarantine, to buy from a quarantined farm, as that can result in the buyers farm being placed under quarantine as well. During 2015, 8,845 head of cattle were exported and 6,687 head were slaughtered for local consumption, a combined direct value of BZ$42,000,000. Export declined slightly in 2015, but domestic consumption remained steady. The total estimated value of the industry as a whole, including all related business and labor, is approximated at BZ$600,000,000. Although cattle prices in the region have temporarily decreased, they increase as one travels northward; the highest increases are in the EU. BLPA attributes some of the regional prices are anticipated to remain over $2.00 Bz$/lb/live weight. purebred registries. BLPA reminded ranchers that there is a BLPA police bounty payable upon conviction of rustling, and noted that an year) is proof of ownership. Elections for new members for the Board of Directors was held, with During the lively question and answer period at the conclusion of the gathering, several topics arose, the main one being the ongoing problem of losses from jaguar predation. Ranchers are advised that meetings Panthera, who is looking forward to discussing strategies directly with ranchers in various locations. See notice on this page. BLPA...Continued from page 26


May 2016 28 Harvesting Ag News from All of Belize Climate Change, Land Use, and the Future of Water in BelizeBy Stephanie SmithThe reality of climate change has many of us questioning how the change in weather patterns will affect the agriculture industry. Not only have we seen a marked difference in the length of wet and dry seasons and when they occur during the year, but were noticing more extreme weather behavior abnormalities lead us to wonder what the long-term effects of increasing average temperatures will be. The answer is not easy to pin down as it depends on many factors, such as how much average temperatures rise and how much more forest cover is converted to other land uses. Because so many people are interested in knowing how climate change will affect different places around the world, scientists have produced different computer-based models for predicting how possible scenarios could translate to local impacts. A recent study conducted by Cherrington, Kay, and Waight-Cho1 utilized an array of these models to assess how much rainfall, runoff, and erosion we might see across Belizes 16 watersheds by the year 2050, given different climate change conditions and deforestation rates. decreased rainfall in Belize, particularly in the north. At the same the soil rather than soaking into it, will increase. So by 2050 the country will be receiving less precipitation and less water will be decrease in rainfall and increase in runoff are inevitable, the rate of erosion is highly dependent on the amount of forest cover. Currently, 70.6% of the area in Belizes watersheds is forested. If deforestation continues at the same rate, forest cover in these watersheds will be reduced to 54.6% by 2050. Alternatively, cutting the rate of deforestation in half results in 69.3% of this area being maintained as forest. How does deforestation impact erosion? The root systems of trees in forests hold the soil in place with it. When the trees are cleared, there is nothing to hold the soil in place, and as the water washes over the earth, it carries the sediment to the river. Therefore, the less forest cover there is in an area, the more erosion occurs, and as the fertile top layer of soil is swept away, the land becomes less productive for agriculture and surrounding rivers and streams are impacted. Furthermore, the presence of forests across the world is a major factor that mitigates climate change, so clearing forest exacerbates the effects of climate change, leading to even drier conditions. It is important to note that climate change is not occurring in a vacuum, and there are other dynamic factors that might interact with climate change to multiply the effects we experience. For instance, the national rate of population growth is currently 2.4%, and at this rate, the population of Belize will double in 20 to 25 years. In other words, as the water supply is decreasing, the demand will increase. This could cause a hike in water prices, especially considering the fact that the water suppliers will likely have to go to greater lengths to remove the increased sediment from the water due to higher rates of erosion. What actions can the agriculture sector take to ensure a more stable future in the face of changing weather patterns? The use of agricultural methods that dont require further clearing of forest, such as agroforestry and inga alley cropping, will be essential. These methods naturally provide nutrients for the soil and retain sediment to prevent erosion. Additionally, with the of water use will help the sector adapt. The key is to look into the future and begin to modify agricultural practices now in order to prepare for and alleviate the coming changes. If we begin to make adjustments now, Belize can thrive in the face of climate change.1Cherrington, E.A., Kay, E., and I. Waight-Cho (2014). Technical change on Belizes water resources: potential effects on erosion and runoff


May 2016 29 Harvesting Ag News from All of Belize


May 2016 30 Harvesting Ag News from All of Belize Green Banana & Squash CasseroleBy Deborah Harder4 green bananas 1 lb squash (green pumpkin or zucchini) shredded 1 cup milk (regular or coconut) 1 tsp salt cup sour cream 1 egg, beaten 1/2 cup cheese or cooked meat (optional) Boil the bananas whole in enough water to cover entirely. When done, the peels will crack and open. Remove from heat, pour off water and cool. Peel and grate or mash. minutes. Add bananas, and stir together. In a bowl, combine beaten egg, sour cream and milk. Add banana-squash mixture, and stir until completely combined. Pour into a small casserole dish, and bake at 350 degrees for 45 cheese, add on top about way through cooking time.) Note from Deborah: I also tried using mashed green bananas in place of a portion of corn masa, in both corn tortillas and tamales (about 1/3), with good results. I would like to continue to learn to cook with green bananas, a useful staple crop which grows well without chemicals. Recipes...Continued from page 5 All Fencing Accessories Installation Available Poultry NettingBELIZE FENCE COMPANYBarbed Wire Chainlink Bring in this coupon for a special discount. Expires August 31, 2016


May 2016 31 Harvesting Ag News from All of Belize Pro-Organic Belize Visits Pesticides Control BoardUnderstanding Pesticide Labels th (PCB) staff at the PCB headquarters at Central Farm, Cayo District. Present from PCB were was the interest level in learning more about how pesticides become registered and how to understand their labels. Belize recognizes 5 grades of pesticides, which are graded by hazard Acute Oral Toxicity Tables each of yellow, blue and green classes, all of the reds and some of the restricted. Ten (10) percent of all registered pesticides in Belize are restricted. Every 5 years registration is reviewed for all PCBregistered pesticides. All labels carry information of a products LD 50, that is, the dose at which 50% of [test] animals die. Therefore, the smaller the LD 50 rating is, the more toxic a product is, gauged by ingestion or inhalation. PCB offers a one day course for attaining a license to purchase restricted pesticides ($25.00 fee). In Cayo the Spanish training is Users of Pesticides: WHEN USING PESTICIDES, Protect Yourself! Protect Others! Protect the environment! Consumers: Know where your food is coming from. Support farmers with good pesticide management practices. every month, and the English training is every 2 months. PCB also offers 2 hour worker sessions, which are different from the course for the purchasers license. Belize is notable in that we are the only country in our Central American region offering training sessions to farmers/users. visit included questions about pre-harvest intervals (between application and safe harvest) and ongoing market surveillance for domestically-raised produce. At this time, there is no regular or ongoing market surveillance for pesticide residues in our fruits and in our foods contact their area representatives and request higher priority for this expensive task. Also notable is that there is no importers should bear those costs for testing imported produce in Belize Agricultural Health Authority (BAHA) laboratories.


May 2016 32 Harvesting Ag News from All of Belize Homemade HealthPARASITESMARGUERITE FLY BEVIS, RN, BSNHeadaches, pain, joint weight loss, vision problem, cancer, even death. What do these symptoms have in common? All can be caused by parasites. Parasites are organisms that cannot live independently of their host. They are much more common than you may think. In a documentary made by in fact, parasites have killed more humans than all the wars in history. Dr. Hulda Clark writes that all cancers are caused by parasites. I dont know if thats true, but the subject is serious enough to warrant investigation. While this is an unpleasant subject, even repulsive to some, it is a problem that can affect everyone. Parasites can enter the body through the skin or the mouth, by breathing the air, by walking barefoot in the dirt and by eating contaminated food. If you eat meat or fresh fruit and vegetables, you are a candidate. Do you have unexplained abdominal discomfort? Parasites can lodge in joints There are two types of parasites: protozoa and helminths. Protozoa are one-celled organisms which multiply inside the human body. The most common in Belize are giardia, amoebae, malaria and leishmania. Helminths are multi-cell worms. Hookworms, tapeworms and pinworms are common all over the world. These are only a few of the thousands of types of parasites. Leishmaniasis, commonly known as bay sore, or chiclera, is a most common type in Belize is cutaneous leishmaniasis which causes sores on the skin. It begins as a tiny spot. It doesnt itch so one may not notice it until a few weeks later when there is a small ulcer begins to grow exponentially and can become infected with secondary bacterial infection. Visceral leishmaniasis is more severe in that it can affect internal organs and bone marrow. People infected may not be aware of the infection; those who do, experience fever, swelling of the liver or spleen, weight loss and abnormal blood tests. If you think you may have Leishmaniasis, see a tropical medicine specialist who can assess, determine the species, and decide which treatment is most appropriate. There are several bush remedies but none seem to be very effective. Cutaneous leishmaniasis can heal on its own in some cases depending on the immune system of the individual. If a lesion gets to be 1 cm or more, I recommend seeing the doctor. You can distinguish Leishmaniasis from Staph aureus in two ways. Staphylococcus aureus bacteria emit a golden liquid which is visible with a magnifying glass. Leishmaniasis ulcers generally form a hole in the center with raised red edges. these raised ridges with a pentavalent antimonial compound. This should be done under medical supervision and is usually Continued on page 37


May 2016 33 Harvesting Ag News from All of Belize Spanish Lookout Commercial and Industrial Expo 2016By Business Chamber of Spanish LookoutThe Commercial and Industrial Expo held at Countryside Park in Spanish Lookout every other year continues to draw large crowds. The fourth annual expo, held on February 26 and 27, had 15, 500 attendees, 1,000 more than Expo 2014, who came from every district in Belize. For the 1,000 students who came by the busload on Friday and the crowd on Saturday it was a fun time of horseback riding, ATVs, boating, buggy and train rides, jumping on the trampoline, and enjoying a great variety of delicious food.The number of booths also increased from 130 to 140 with 15 new exhibitors. Although there was an increase in livestock showing, probably the largest category of exhibitors was car dealerships with their latest and greatest. Improved parking and livestock infrastructure added to the shows features. Improvements planned for Expo 2018 include another building so that all exhibitors can be indoors and better organization of exhibitor parking.Kinsey...Continued from page 14 Quality Assured Fo rmerly kno w as Rt 40W, Box 579, Spanish Lookout, Cayo, Belize 823-0278 of the various ways to measure and report manganese on soil tests. In fact, the numbers we recommend just to be at adequate levels in the soil is reported as toxic levels on some other soil test reports. A word of caution is needed here: amount of manganese can develop a problem with common scab if enough lime is applied to cause manganese to go from This can happen when calcitic lime is applied on soils that have barely enough manganese (with even because when calcium is applied, it always ties up a certain amount of manganese. If the soil has enough manganese to stand the amount of calcium applied, manganese will not become a problem there. That is one reason why in some areas potato growers can apply calcium limestone and have no problems with common scab, but in other areas no one will dare apply it. And due to soils needing calcium for adequate uptake of all the other nutrients, including nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P) and K, if the problem is not solved, potato production will not only suffer but even decline in terms of yield.Just keep in mind that the primary elements, N-P-K, truly are one of these three are over-applied, providing more than the soil can tolerate, those same elements can cause a whole new set of problems, not just for potatoes, but for all types of crops and growing plants.Editor's Note: Neal Kinsey will again return to Belize for a course at UB CF, in February 2017. Plan to attend and bring all your fertiliser questions. See page 40 for details.


May 2016 34 Harvesting Ag News from All of Belize YamA Gentle Giant of Tropical RootsBy Deborah HarderIn January my husband told me we have several yams waiting to be dug, and we should start using them before the potato crops come in, here in Barton Creek. I asked why he didnt tell me sooner. Soon afterwards a large, brown, muddy, knobby specimen appeared on our back porch; it must have weighed 10 pounds. But my husband said it was only half of the smallest one and these Yam, not to be confused with the smaller and unrelated sweet potato and also not to be confused with the wild yam, a herbal source of estrogen, is surely one of Belizes underappreciated foods. A vine that would thrive climbing up a tree in your orchard, it grows from seeds that look, strangely enough, like miniature yams, borne potatoes. How manifold the variety of our Creators your place, plant the seeds in June or so in a hole either below a tree they can climb or in the garden with some structured support, which can be as simple as a tepee of poles. You would expect the second option to yield more fruit, but so far we have actually had better success just planting them in unplowed ground. You can start eating them about nine months later (the following dry season) but you can leave them in the ground for quite a while after that; however, over time they become which he could not eat all at once, being only one person. He harvested the yam piece by piece, letting the vine grow. In the harvest your yam all at once it also keeps quite a while in the house as you use pieces of it. The cut end dries out so you just have to re-trim it. I have a piece like that in my pantry which has been there for several weeks and shows no sign of spoilage. your yam, cut off the vine with a machete, unless you want to leave it growing as the above-mentioned bachelor did, and dig around with a pick until you can see how to pry it from the ground. Dont forget to search the ground for yam seeds, resembling tiny yams, ranging in size from a jumbo marble to a smallish potato. Better yet, if you get them before they drop, you can take them from the vine. Stick a seed in the ground where you just dug out your yam, if youd like to repeat the experience the following year, and gather the rest, each one a Yams are a bit of a challenge to handle, due to their slimy quality when raw and their tendency to cause itch. (These qualities are reversed by cooking.) I used to always stab them with a fork and peel with a knife so I could do it without touching them, though lately I discovered I could touch them a bit without adverse side effects. It may depend on how sensitive you are. If you didnt scrub it before peeling, which might be a good idea, then you must wash the peeled yam chunks. Now your yam is ready to be cooked. Yam can be used the same way as potatoes: shredded and fried; diced and added to soup, stews and curries; or boiled and mashed, which is our most common way of preparing them. Boiling and mashing them require the least handling of the slimy chunks, and they do mash beautifully. I usually add butter, cream and milk, salt and freshly ground pepper. Even better, my family likes the patties I make from the leftover mashed yam. Add a few eggs, some diced onions, and a half-cup Drop by heaping tablespoonfuls into a greased skillet and fry till golden brown, turning once. This same mixture, with a little more milk added, and perhaps some leftover bits of cooked meat, makes a good casserole when baked. not as abundantly as some years, due to the irregular weather; but there are plenty that can be used up before they spoil, potatoes not keeping as well as more tropical roots like yam. Potatoes are certainly delicious and versatile, as we are enjoying them, but Im not neglecting my yams; mashed yams make an excellent base for bread-making, a nutritious addition to any loaf. So lets give thanks to our Creator for yam, the gentle giant of tropical roots. Custom Made-Hand Crafted


May 2016 35 Harvesting Ag News from All of Belize Breadfruit Basicsby Marc Ellenby, Tropical Agro-Forestry Beautiful tropical breadfruit trees are very well-adapted to Belizes growing conditions including the rainy season; however, they can get water-stressed, resulting in partial defoliation in the dry season months but the tree continues to grow and bear fruit. The breadfruit tree has an exotic, lush tropical appearance due to its very large, lovely, lobed leaves. Breadfruit, (Artocarpusaltilis) cultivated Artocarpus species include Artocarpuscamansi, known as breadnut; A. heterophyllus, jackfruit, and A.integer, champedak. Another relative of the breadfruit called dugdug is A. mariannensis, and the popular marang is A. odoratissimus. The seeds in all Artocarpus species may be boiled or roasted; they are both starchy and delicious. the thickness of bread and buttered and fried for a bread/toast substitute (the thinner the slice, the crisper the chip). However, this versatile fruit may also be cut into chunks and steamed, boiled, baked, or roasted. The cooked fruit is puffy and similar to bread or buns, thus its name. Immature, young and very green fruit may be boiled and reportedly tastes like cooked artichoke hearts. The breadfruit on pre-heated rocks in an outdoor underground oven. Fully ripe breadfruits, both sweet and soft, are eaten as dessert fruits; they may be eaten raw, cooked or baked. thousands of years. Breadfruit trees yield large amounts of fruit and may have a productive life of more than 80 years. Having been carried by travelers, breadfruit plants have been planted throughout the tropical Americas and the Caribbean islands. First introduced into Jamaica as early as 1784, it is commonly grown there both in dooryards and in small commercial plantings. Currently, there is a renewed interest in large scale breadfruit production in the Hawaiian islands, where breadfruit is called fruit production is used both fresh and in value-added products, cultivation may be found on the website of the Breadfruit www. Seed is planted to multiply the seeded breadfruit varieties. But propagation of the seedless breadfruits is done vegetatively, generally by severing root suckers from the mother tree. This may best be done in stages, so that the young sucker develops roots of its own in place before full separation from the mother tree. Air-layering or marcotting is another method used for propagation; marcotting is best done when the plants are actively growing. Also, root cuttings of 3-4 cm diameter that are 12-30 cm long may be propagated in sand or a well-drained organic potting soil. pollination is assured by wind and by insects of many kinds. soft wood may be easily pruned for tree height control and for a dooryard trees in Belize are very large and are not pruned, and this makes harvesting challenging. Still, a broad and spreading low tree canopy may be developed with some judicious pruning cuts. ready for harvest about three months after yellowish color break as the sections, or eyes, seem to spread open. When mature, skin texture is less pointy, and becomes more Natural skin cracks begin dripping small amounts of sap. The color of the fruit stem also becomes more yellow-green. Breadfruit is an excellent tree in traditional agroforestry systems, and many other food plants such as banana, cacao, taro, and soilbuilding legume crops such as perennial peanut (Arachis spp.) and Lablab bean (Lablab purpureus ) thrive as companion plants. Short term vegetable crops such as tomato and pepper or quick perennial fruit crops such as pineapple and papaya may be planted between young breadfruit plants. Diversity created in the broad ecosystem; yields are more continuous, nutrients are shared and conserved, and pest pressure may be minimized. Tropical Agro-Forestry, Ltd. is always in search of new fruit varieties for the forest edges and cultivated areas. As sustainability remains important on our farm, we will continue to explore both fresh production andvalue-added products for nutritious breadfruit. Please visit our website -Spanish Creek Rainforest Reserve -and enjoy a nice video on our Home page to meet our crew.


May 2016 36 Harvesting Ag News from All of BelizeNext step is to put the chicken into the wondrous Whiz Bang Chicken Plucker (WBCP), designed by small chicken farmer, Herrick Kimball, who was searching without success for such a device for his own use. He eventually made his own and wrote a book on how to make the plucker and the scalder and now sells kits and parts for the system. The birds, up to 3 at a time, are placed loose into the plucker drum. A hp electric motor is started and the birds begin to dance. (Neither motor nor drum comes with the WBCP.) The watchful attendant has a hose in hand, to gently rinse the birds as they are bounced around, and the hose water washes the feathers around and eventually out, down the drain at the bottom of the tub, under the raised false bottom. The feathers are used in fertilizer on her farm. A mere 15 20 seconds, and the Whiz Bang Chicken Pluckers gallon drum, (see picture) neatly de-feather the bird. The time for an experienced plucker to manually pluck might be 5 minutes, so this gadget is a great time saver and investment to upgrade a hobby farm to a revenue earner. After plucking, the birds are gutted, and iced down, ready for cooking or freezing for a later day. At you can access more information on the plucker, scalders and other eclectic poultryrelated products and topics. the WBCP kit cost is US$415; the freight from New York to Belize and duty for Chrissie's totaled BZ$380. Chrissies diverse and growing farm behind Cheers provides all the fresh eggs for use in the restaurant, and an increasing amount of the broiler chicken meat and occasionally pork as well. Editors Note: Yes, Nick Roberson is the grandson of Editor Beth Roberson. Who will be the next Belize Ag Youth Reporter? Belize Ag Youth Reporter Visits Miss Chrissie's Whiz Bang Chicken PluckerBy Roberson/Feucht article, although from the title it might be about a farm beside Willie Wonkas Chocolate Factory. Belize Ag Youth Reporter Nick Roberson*, is fascinated and curious about all aspects of chickens and other domesticated fowl guineas, turkeys, ducks, geese, he loves them all. Nick is always ready to accompany Belize Ag writers out on any chicken story. So acquired a brand new Whiz Bang Chicken Plucker, imported from the USA and ready for assembly at her farm behind the Tuppers restaurant, Cheers With a Tropical Twist rd was the big day. Chrissie had completed the plucker San Ignacios Sacred Heart Primary School; she invited us over for a demonstration. humanely slaughter the birds, accomplished in the killing cones on the farm. The next step is to scald the birds in Chrissies new scalder, custommade from a recycled 20 gallon propane hot water heater tank with the top cut off. The scalder has a central core, running from the bottom and rising out of the tub up approximately 36 inches. rack called a gondola for hanging 4 birds upside down by their feet (the feathered body dangling down). With a manual lever, the bar is lowered and the chickens are submerged into scalding water, ideally kept at between 140 and 145 F. The birds are scalded until their wingtip feathers can easily be plucked off by hand approximately 1 minute. If If the bird is over-scalded, by hotter temperature or excessive time, then the skin becomes ultra-fragile, and can easily tear while in the plucker. Chrissie was still trying to adjust her tricky thermostat, which was giving problems, to maintain the steady temperature with less than 4 variance. San Miguel Company LTD. Mile 63 George Price Highway, Esperanza Village, Cayo Phone: (501)824-2147 Fax: (501)824-2147 Malayan Yellow Dwarf Coconut Seedlings Available


May 2016 37 Harvesting Ag News from All of Belize Antibiotics off the Menuby Mary Susan LoanThe Belize Bureau of Standards commemorated World th at the Belize Biltmore Plaza Hotel by hosting a seminar with the theme Antibiotics off the Menu. crisis. The event focused on the risks of antibiotic use in the poultry, pig and cattle industry. The widespread use of antibiotics is used to control, suppress or to kill micro-organisms, stated Armando urged the use of antibiotics to be limited and used only when it is absolutely necessary. He recommended that farmers use best practices by keeping barns and animal lots clean and decreasing the population density of animals. Antibiotics in animal feed also perform the function of growth enhancers for animals, growing animals faster and larger. John Bodden, Principal Public Health Inspector, noted, It is the improper use of antibiotics that threatens the effective prevention and treatment of an everincreasing range of infections caused by bacteria, parasites, residues remaining in the food animal, there is potential for that organism to be transmitted to the human on consumption. advised, Clean hands save lives noting that frequent hand washing is an important habit to employ to help prevent disease. Agriculture and Health Authority, noted that medications which were once used to treat infections are no longer useful. Antimicrobial resistance to food-borne zoonotic bacteria, salmonella, and campylobacter in humans have been clearly advised the following steps to combat antimicrobial resistance: accountability and civil society engagement; enhance infection prevention and control; and foster innovations and research and development for new tools. free animal feed, citing enzymes can be effectively used rather Belize Pharmacist Association, said consumers tend to overuse antibiotics inappropriately when they are ill with viruses and organisms that do not require or respond to antibiotic use; this practice helps create antibiotic resistance to infections when antibiotics are needed. She recommended a national informational plan to regulate sales and use of antibiotics and more consumer education. very effective. Severe cases are treated intravenously (IV) or by blood tests to monitor the effects of the medication on the liver and other organs. As they say, Prevention betta time in the jungle, especially during the dry season, wear protective clothing, spray clothing with DEET, use insect repellant on any exposed skin. Use mosquito nets or screen windows. Check your water source. If in doubt, boil drinking water for at least a minute. Install Dont go barefoot where animals live, especially at night. Hookworms come out of the soil at night just waiting for someone to walk over them. They then latch on and begin to bury their way inside. Every day eat some fresh raw garlic, apple cider vinegar, pumpkin seeds, cayenne pepper, cinnamon, How to Eliminate Parasites From Your Body and Stay Parasite-Free Now that I have you thoroughly freaked out, lets talk about the good news: You can rid your body of them and stay parasite-free. I wont go into the horrid details of each parasite; there are too everything you need to know. Basically, if your gastrointestinal system is healthy, if you have frequent bowel movements (two or three a day) your body can eliminate most parasites naturally because their gestation period move to other parts of the body and begin to cause pain and discomfort. Dr Clarks Store A good way to do a thorough parasite cleanse is to go to this website and order the Parasite Cleanse by Dr. Hulda Clark for US $49.05. You need one set (three items) per person. It is an 18-day cleanse and no change in diet is necessary. It is a potent systemic microbial cleanse. It works throughout the body, not just in the gastrointestinal system. There is also a weekly maintenance plan which keeps you parasite-free. The problem with this choice is that it is expensive. Thankfully, there are other methods, if used faithfully, that will do the job and keep you and your family free from these tiny nuisances. Bentonite Clay Bentonite clay (montmorillonite) and other clays help detox by absorbing parasites and other foreign particles and eliminating bad, so remember to supplement with probiotics to restore healthy metals. Drink lots of water. Diatomaceous Earth L Tvedten (available on Amazon), the author says, Diatomaceous Parasites...Continued from page 32Continued on page 42 Dont be nervousabout nding a printed copy of the next BELIZE AG REPORTSubscribe and relax. The Belize Ag Report, P.O. Box 150, San Ignacio, Cayo DistrictInternational rates upon request


May 2016 38 Harvesting Ag News from All of Belize Belize 722-2010 Sustainable Harvest International (SHI) Belize Working with farmers from Toledo & South Stann Creek in organic agriculture Planting the seeds for a better tomorrowWe have available:compost insecticide fungicide organic inspections farm tours Volunteer or donate today! Pro-Organic Belize (POB) Speakers Calendar Lunch can be ordered off the menu during the meetings. Lively question and answer time follows the presentations. Everyone is welcome. Call 677-9658 for more information. Speakers commence at 1 p.m. The POB Speaker Abram HarderThe biggest mistake people make when planting a tree seedling is to plant it too deep, said Abram April meeting. That statement riveted the attention of the 23 people who came to hear him and exchange information with other attendees about growing trees and plants with low input. root and plant the tree so that the soil is only 1 inch above it, never deeper, then clean it around the stem and mulch the tree well. He said that manure from either chickens or cows can be used as fertilizer but the important thing to remember is to keep it away from the trunk. Cow manure has more potassium than chicken manure. He further advised that most trees respond well to applications of Epsom salt (1 cup Epsom salt to 1 gallon of water) because it adds magnesium to the soil. Abram enumerated the growing characteristics of many of the trees in his nursery; for example, he said that avocado trees thrive in the white marl that is prevalent in the Pine Ridge area. spent most of his life around trees and seedlings as he learned how to recognize seedling potential, graft trees and care for seedlings from his father who owned a nursery. When fruits are in harvest, Abrams wife, Deborah, one of the writers for the Belize Ag Report, goes to work canning, dehydrating fruit, making mango butter and many varieties of fruit vinegars, and develops recipes for produce such as cassava. Wild Squash or Wild Pumpkin (Sikil)By Harold VernonBelize has a number of indigenous foods that are increasingly being neglected. sikil C. lundelliana size of a husked coconut, are white with green striations. All the people I have sampled recently cannot remember the last time they had eaten this highly nutritious food. It is usually grown without pesticides. All persons reported that they cooked it (to death) with meats. None reported eating it raw. All squashes can and the best coleslaw I have eaten when julienned and/or complimented with fresh tomatoes and fresh cheese for a simple salad. Please tell us how you prepare and consume this native food. indian creek california red worms for salep.o box 100, Orange walk Town Red Worms located at indian creek village Orange walk district 663-6777 INDIAN CREEKIMPROVE YOUR SOIL & YIELD BRC PRINTING LTD. Printing Publishing Designing The professional print house with the personal touch! Nazarene Street, Benque Viejo Del Carmen, Cayo District, Belize, Central AmericaOur Services, Quality & Prices Are Unmatched(501) 823-3139 (501) 823-3082


May 2016 39 Harvesting Ag News from All of Belize ESPERANZA FERTILIZER 7 environmentally friendly Potassium compounds. OFFERS: FAO Food IndicesNote the worldwide trend in food prices on downtrends except for sugar and oils. Prices of Belize's farm products (see centrefold Ag Prices at a Glance, pg 23) mirror these, showing either stable or slightly lowered prices as well.


May 2016 40 Harvesting Ag News from All of Belize AG BRIEFSThe 2016 Wine and Chocolate will be held on Friday, May 20th at The Lodge at Big Falls in Big Falls Village. The will be at Julian Cho Technical High School at Dump Area, San Antonio Road. Contact or call 722-2531. The University of Belize College of Agriculture at Central Farm (UBCF) will host prominent soil fertility expert Neal Kinsey for the 3rd time in Belize, on February 27th March 1st 2017 (the 2016 course was held earlier in Feb 2016). The upcoming course will be a new course to Belize; the 3 day Intro 2 course begins with a day and a half of trace minerals. Workbooks for the new course are available now for paid registrants of the next years Intro 2 course. All are welcome to attend this course students, teachers, private sector. Contact David Thiessen at 6704817 or Neal reports that this is the favorite course of farmers. The Cayo chapter of Belize Tourism Industry Association (BTIA) is planning a Corn Fest to be held on October 14th & 15th, 2016 at or call Lee at 667-2740. Cayo Quality Honey Producers Cooperative in collaboration with the Department of Cooperatives, the Ministry of Agriculture, GEF/SGP, and GIZ-Selva Maya is announcing the celebration of Belizes 1st Beekeeping Symposium and Honey Day. The event will take place 2016, and intends to engage all beekeeping stakeholders in a discussion to review the challenges and potential of the beekeeping industry as an agro-forest activity that promotes the conservation of biodiversity. You The 2016 Hopkins Mango Fest will be held on Saturday May 28th and Sunday May 29th. Arts music and other activities are planned. Contact the Hopkins BTIA Chapter at or call Nisha at 61503003 for more information or to register for a booth. Mark your calendars for Sustainable Harvests Annual Organic Fair, which will th and Saturday, th, 2016. Further information contact SHI as per their advertisement on pg 38. Pro-Organic Belize meets monthly in Santa Elena, Cayo District with a speaker. Details on pg 31. All are welcome. planting 8 varieties of open pollinated corn, including white, yellow and purple. The objective is to evaluate which will give better yields without irrigation. Fields will be irrigated for germination only. Dr. Ken Foster, Department Head of Purdue Universitys Department of Agricultural Economics visited Belize in March. Ken was on the faculty of the College of Agriculture at Central Farm from 1981 to 1984 while he was serving as a US Peace Corps a breakfast at the University of Belize College of Agriculture at Central of the trip. Ken visited agricultural operations in Toledo as well during his stay. The US Senate voted down HR1599 in early 2016, a bill which had passed in the US House all existing state legislation regarding biotechnology and labeling in the food industry bill's proponents are expected to re-write parts of the bill and resubmit it for another Senate vote. No-till farming is used on approximately 38% of acreage of the USAs 4 biggest row crops, while cover crops are estimated to be utilized on less than 5% of acreage. Look for more about these in our August issue. Local and Regional Fuel Prices Cayo, Belize Quintana Roo, Mexico Peten, Guatemala REGULAR $8.97 Bz/Gal $5.74 Bz/Gal $6.31 Bz/Gal PREMIUM $9.11 Bz/Gal $6.09 Bz/Gal $6.57 Bz/Gal DIESEL $7.89 Bz/Gal $6.00 Bz/Gal $4.87 Bz/Gal Find all the Belize news sites linked from one site, including the Belize Ag Report.For Information on the status of the IGUANA CREEK BR I DGE waters rising or falling, out of water, under water, go to The Iguana Creek Bridge crosses the Belize River near Black Man Eddy Village, off the George Price (Western) Highway. LOOK OUT FOR OUR BRAND! BEEKEEPINGis a sustainable activity that protects our forests, ensures the pollination of plants and provides income to our members. CAYO QUALITY HONEY PRODUCERS COOPERATIVE LTD CENTRAL FARM, CAYO DISTRICT BELIZE cayoqualityhoney@gmail.comnet weight 2 lb 8 oz CAYO QUALITY HONEY store in a close container, away from heat calories fat saturated fat carbs cholesterol protein dietary ber 1 tablespoon of HONEY 60 0 g 0 g 15 c 0 mg 0 g 0 gTO ORDER 6512771 cayoqualityhoney 4


May 2016 41 Harvesting Ag News from All of Belize Land is our language TM Farmland & Riverland Specialists +501-668-0749 P.O. Box 150, San Ignacio, Cayo District, Belize C.A. Monkey Falls3 Ac + Lots available Riverfront homesites, Minutes from San Ignacio Need a House/Pet Sitter in Cayo? With or without pet, light maintenance Reliable and experienced college-bound student needs $. References upon request. email A New Pest...Continued from page 19of factors including the population density and duration of the infestation which can occur immediately after germination, but and during the dry season. The sugarcane aphid causes yellow to red or brown leaf discoloration on both sides. The honeydew may also support the growth of black, sooty mold fungus. Infestation of seedlings can kill young grain sorghum plants and late infestations can prevent grains from forming. High infestations of aphids can cause grain yield losses between 30%-100%.M. sacchari sugarcane yellow leaf virus (ScYLV) and other diseases. An integrated pest management approach is recommendedto manage the yellow sugarcane aphid.Cultural control: Eliminate host plants before and after planting, eliminate crop residues, schedule early planting of sorghum and plant resistant sorghum varieties. Biological control: help regulate aphid populations were collected during the yellow Coccinellidae; Spotless lady beetle (Cyclone dasanguinea L.); Hemiptera; Reduviidae); milkweed assassin bug; Zeluslongipes L.; Neuroptera; Chrysopidae; green lacewing (Ceraeochrysa sp.); Diptera; Syrphidae larvae; parasitic wasps and entomopathogens Chemical control: The criteria used to control the yellow sugarcane aphid on sorghum is the detection of 50-100 aphids per leaf. Apply systemic chemicals for seed treatment: Engeo 24.7 Karate Zeon 2.5 CS to control the aphid. To avoid pest resistance to insecticides use biorational chemicals and rotate them by different modes of action. Shows entomopathogens Shows C.sanguinea on sorghum head.Credit: Shows Z.longipes on sorghum


May 2016 42 Harvesting Ag News from All of Belize earth (DE) is the best natural anti-parasitic medication the author has ever researched, studied, and/or used. Plain food-grade DE is safe for humans and pets, even for children, but the dosage must be carefully calculated. DE works by dehydrating insects, worms and parasites. The adult dosage is one tablespoon per day for seven days. Fasting Use green vegetables for a juice fast lasting several days. Choices to juice are broccoli, cucumbers, leafy greens, carrots, onions, garlic, leafy greens, along with lemon juice and spices such as turmeric. bowels moving to expel toxins and dead parasites. You can fast as long as you are willing because you are receiving rich sources of vitamins and minerals. Lemon Juice Perhaps the simplest and cheapest method is to do a lemon juice cleanse. Add lemon or lime juice to water and drink throughout the day. Lemon juice works at the cellular level, starving parasites who cannot survive a clean environment. Apple Cider Vinegar the environment inhospitable for parasites to survive. Try to mother. Take one or two teaspoons of vinegar in 8 oz. of water. If sweetening is desired, add one or two teaspoons honey, maple syrup, molasses, or 4 drops of stevia. Drink three times a day. Garlic Allium sativa, lamblia and Ascaris (roundworm). Eat freshly cut or diced garlic before meals to stimulate gastric secretions which effectively destroys a parasites chance of survival. Chop up three or four Do this at least once a day, up to three times a day if you are ill. Avoid Sugar and Processed Foods Parasites love the foods you love. They especially love sugar. If unwanted hitch-hikers have taken your appetite hostage. Avoid Drink plenty of water and juice to help eliminate toxins and to and psyllium to smoothies or salad dressings. If necessary use a mild laxative but only for a short period of time. You can take magnesium, aloe vera or acidophilus if needed. Aches, fatigue, mood swings, and headaches are some of the signs your body is eliminating toxins. They should be temporary and can be considered a good sign. The existence of parasites in our lives, much less in our bodies, is something we prefer not to think about. Yet we suffer from various ailments that may be caused by parasites. This document barely scratches the surface of the subject. If you are concerned, ask your parasites even under a microscope. A cleanse two or three times a year along with a maintenance plan would help eliminate them from your body so you can enjoy better health. The simple lemon or lime cleanse can be done by anyone anywhere. At the very least, be aware and consider the possibility. Treatment can literally mean the difference between life and death. Disclaimer: The purpose of this column is to share useful information about health that is relatively inexpensive and generally readily available for everyone. The information is not meant to be a substitute for health care, i.e., regular visits to a healthcare provider and as necessary when you are ill. intensity and duration increase to the point of removing all surface and soil erosion. very local conditions, there is a high probability that somebody is burning vegetation on any given day of the year somewhere in Beliz e. Commonly the main objective of vegetation burning is the huge labor savings while disposing of unwanted vegetation during land clearing in preparation for cultivation. In the case of sugarcane there is also the economic saving due to removing and not transporting the excess leaf material that is burned off the cane while it is still standing live in Fire (Negligent Use Of) Act Chapter 117, Revised Edition 2003, Burning Vegetation Rules. The regulation states: No person shall burn or cause or permit to be burned any vegetation for than the average height of the vegetation before it was cut, provided that in no case shall width be less than six feet, be cleared of debris vegetation which it surrounds is not yet started or is incompletely cut.Consequently, burning is legal year round without a permit, but be maintained essentially from the beginning of the dry season 31 Additionally, it is unclear about the required state of the vegetation, alive or dead, standing or cut during which time it can be burned. Unfortunately, the reality of most burning in Belize is that it is motivated by the labor costs saved on removal of non-consumable biomass, with little consideration of the many potential negative impacts on soils, water quality, the loss of biodiversity, ecosystem services and, of course, increased greenhouse gases emissions that are driving climate change. tool in tropical and subtropical ecosystems, it is now being viewed as an increasingly excessive and environmentally abusive method for disposing of unwanted vegetation. Therefore, it is prudent for Belize vegetation management techniques should be to convert as much nonconsumable plant material into soil organic matter as possible, instead of atmospheric carbon dioxide. This shift away from the over only improve the health of many soils, significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and slow the currently declining health of the planet.Is this how we want to care for the Jewel? Fire...Continued from page 20 Parasites...Continued from page 37


May 2016 43 Harvesting Ag News from All of Belize


May 2016 44 Harvesting Ag News from All of Belize