The Alaska Invasive Species Workshop, Nov. 13-15 in Homer, will highlight invasive species management and research statewide and will emphasize marine species. The theme is “Surf and Turf: Invasive Species Above and Below the Tideline.” The annual event kicks off with a free workshop on invasive species at 5:30 p.m. Nov. 12, followed by a 6:30 p.m. public lecture at the Alaska Islands and Ocean Visitor Center. Matthew Barnes, an assistant professor from Texas Tech University, will talk about the forensic use of environmental DNA to survey for and manage invasive species. Environmental DNA is the DNA of organisms contained in soil or water samples. Read more 

The Alaska Sustainable Agriculture Conference will take place in Anchorage Nov. 5-7. More than 80 presentations will cover diverse topics, including seaweed farming, rhodiola production, soil health, marketing, honeybees and pollinators, reindeer husbandry, livestock feeding, farm energy, the cut flower industry, and farming and gardening in rural Alaska. One session will even cover how to use pigs to improve land for farming. Pigs forage on vegetation, loosen soil, clear land and enhance soil fertility. Read more

The University of Alaska Fairbanks Cooperative Extension Service has received a four-year $679,000 grant to help Alaska farmers and other agricultural workers with disabilities. The grant is one of 14 awarded to Extension projects around the country as part of the National Institute of Food and Agriculture’s AgrAbility program. A NIFA announcement said, “The projects focus on increasing independent living and the quality of life for agricultural workers with disabilities by providing them and their families with farm safety education, assistive technology help and networking support enabling them to return to/remain active and successful in agriculture production.” Read more

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