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Recent precipitation provides some relief to ag workers, much more needed

Hearings were held Wednesday with the four major meat packers, highlighting alleged unfair prices in the cattle market.
Published: Apr. 28, 2022 at 5:27 PM MDT
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BELLE FOURCHE, S.D. (KEVN) - Last week’s moisture was welcomed by many in the area, and it even helped improve drought conditions in parts of western South Dakota, but area ranchers are only cautiously optimistic.

Area ranchers welcomed the moisture, and say this most recent storm are making them feel better about raising crops and cattle this year. However, the South Dakota Grassland Coalition is warning ag producers to plan ahead.

Francois Barnaud, a rancher outside of Belle Fourche, says he know the impact that sever drought can have on cattle production.

”The dams were going dry,” Barnaud said. “So, even if you had grass, you couldn’t run it there anyways, and so for me, personally, the effect was that I had to sell half my heard of cows, which is a big loss.”

A rangeland management specialist with the Natural Resources Conservation Service says up 150% of normal rainfall would be needed in May and June to get back to normal.

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