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ARCHIVED  October 1, 1997

Change rapid during reign of Weld extension director

CSU’s agent in Weld County retires after 32 years

GREELEY — Before he retired Sept. 30 as director of the Colorado State University Cooperative Extension office in Weld County, Curt Probert recalled some of the significant changes he has experienced during 32 years as an agricultural extension agent.
"To begin with, computerization has made up-to-date information more readily and rapidly accessible to both ourselves and our clients," Probert said. "That˜s been good."
That˜s especially true because the role of the county extension office is to provide research-based information to the public in matters of agronomy, livestock, horticulture, nutrition, family life and consumer affairs, and to coordinate area 4-H programs.
Probert said he has also seen "an increased focus on growing and marketing high-quality, wholesome and safe food for consumers."
Despite recent findings of E. coli bacteria in some U.S. food products, Probert said, requirements for producers to handle fertilizers and pesticides have become far more stringent in recent years, including the requirement that handlers be educated, licensed and certified to handle such materials.
Over the years, Probert has participated in a number of significant programs that have benefited ag producers and, ultimately, consumers.
One such program that occurred about 10 years ago was a study in animal genetics.
Probert said the program was called the Great Western Beef Expo and involved cattle producers from several states who funded the program sponsored by the Logan County extension office. Probert was an extension agent there before coming to Weld County in 1989.
"The bottom line of the expo was to give the beef producer reliable information on how different genetic lines would produce, so that when a producer utilized a particular sire line, the resulting herd would have more-predictable characteristics," Probert said.
Probert earned a degree in animal science from Colorado State University and a master˜s degree from the University of Nevada. He worked in extension affairs in Nevada before coming to Colorado, where he served in Morgan, Logan and Weld Counties.
Milan Rewerts, director of cooperative extension at CSU, said Probert˜s position is expected to be filled by the first of the year. In the interim, Don Nitchie, a regional extension director in Akron, is helping out at the Greeley office.Ault company does custom work
AULT — At Dahlgren Manufacturing, located on U.S. Highway 85 two miles south of here, it˜s not uncommon for a piece of farm equipment to go in one end of the white Quonset hut and come out the other end looking entirely different.
In fact, according to owner Ken Dahlgren, one of the company˜s largest custom jobs was the conversion of a four-horse trailer into a three-horse trailer with a dressing room and a custom-built saddle cabinet.
"I˜m not an engineer. My engineering comes from whatever experience I˜ve had and how comfortable I feel putting something together," Dahlgren said.
"One trailer we˜re currently doing requires a hydraulic system. I basically sat down and figured out what I wanted in a hydraulic system, went through some manuals," he said.
The Ault native started his business in 1975, six years after graduating from Highland High School. Today, the company grosses about $150,000 annually doing general welding and fabrication, repairing and retrofitting trailers and farm equipment and manufacturing the Redi-Pull, a $52.95 fence post puller.
"A friend of mine designed it and built it, and when he didn˜t want to build it any more, he turned it over to me," Dahlgren said. "It˜s not a patentable item, because it˜s basically a lever, a simple machine, and they aren˜t patentable."
Dahlgren said he has built a number of hydraulically adjustable loading chutes, most of which were about 40 feet long to handle loading sheep onto a triple-decker truck.
The company also makes a lot of branding irons, often using a blacksmith˜s forge to heat the steel and mold and shape it into an owner˜s design, Dahlgren said.Special feeds make champions
FORT COLLINS — A number of the area˜s livestock champions this year chowed down on special feeds created by Ron Treiber at his feed manufacturing business, Cache La Poudre Feeds.
Treiber said the list of winners he has so far includes the National Western Stock Show˜s Grand Champion Junior Market Beef from Brighton; the Colorado State Fair˜s Grand Champion from Caon City, the Reserve Grand Champion Market Lamb from Longmont and the Grand Champion Market Beef from Hayden; and the Wyoming State Fair˜s Grand Reserve Steer.
"Our major feed line is called Profile Show Feeds. It˜s a specialty feed line that targets the 4-H, FFA and professionals who show all classes of livestock all over the U.S.," Treiber explained.
Treiber˜s specialty feeds are mainly for cattle, hogs and lambs. The wholesale manufacturing business, located at 1724 N. Overland Trail, and the retail store in Laporte gross about $500,000 to $1 million annually, Treiber said.
"In show animals, you have an intensive production situation where you are pushing them to the max. It˜s real important that every mouthful of feed the animal eats for that entire production period should be the same and palatable to the animal. That˜s probably where we shine, because we˜re small and able to control quality and consistency," Treiber said.

CSU’s agent in Weld County retires after 32 years

GREELEY — Before he retired Sept. 30 as director of the Colorado State University Cooperative Extension office in Weld County, Curt Probert recalled some of the significant changes he has experienced during 32 years as an agricultural extension agent.
"To begin with, computerization has made up-to-date information more readily and rapidly accessible to both ourselves and our clients," Probert said. "That˜s been good."
That˜s especially true because the role of the county extension office is to provide research-based information to the public in matters of agronomy, livestock, horticulture, nutrition, family life and…

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