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Beef Buzz News


Nebraska Cattlemen Struggling with 2012 Drought Conditions

Wed, 25 Jul 2012 05:51:23 CDT

Nebraska Cattlemen Struggling with 2012 Drought Conditions After the southern plains was ravaged by drought in 2011, similar stories that were unfolding last year in Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico and southern Kansas are happening to the north and east of the 2011 drought epicenter. One big cattle state that is struggling is Nebraska. The Executive Director of the Nebraska Cattlemen's Association is Michael Kelsey, a native Oklahoman who served for a short time as the Executive Director of the Oklahoma Beef Council before taking the position in Nebraska about six years ago.


The stories are familiar that Kelsey related to us as we talked with him in Denver at the Summer Cattle Industry Conference this week- grass resources about gone in much of the state, feeding hay much earlier than normal and ponds drying up. It has resulted in many calves that would have stayed on pasture for another couple of months to head to market early- and is starting to force cattlemen to liquidate at least some of their mama cows. Kelsey says anecodatal evidence suggests beef cow culling is happening, but exact numbers are still being tabulated as in some cases, ranchers have simply moved parts of their herd to other locations where some grass is still available while others have been forced to liquidate at least some of their least productive animals.


The likely smaller US Corn crop is also have its impact on one feed stuff that many feedlots in the north have grown to rely upon- dried distillers grains. Kelsey says many ethanol plants have halted production, with the difference this year being they have not given any indication as to when they might crank up production once again, which most years would be announced. Stocks of DDGs are running low- and that may force feedlots to switch away from this feedstuff to very expensive corn or perhaps milo.


The Beef Buzz is a regular feature heard on radio stations around the region on the Radio Oklahoma Network- but is also a regular audio feature found on this website as well. Click on the LISTEN BAR below for today's show- and check out our archives for older Beef Buzz shows covering the gamut of the beef cattle industry today.



   
   


Ron Hays Beef Buzzes with Michael Kelsey of the Nebraska Cattlemen about drought conditions in 2012.
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