Over all drought.

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504RP

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Was wondering what the drought is like across the U.S. ? In my area in the North West part of the state. It appears most farmers was able to cut enough hay for winter. A lot of stock ponds got bad low by the end of last summer and most are eve lower if not completely dry now.

Have two ponds one 1/4 acre pond 12 foot deep spring that is 2 Foot below normal level. My second 1/4 acre pond that was about 7 foot deep is close to dry now. Maybe 1 foot of water in it.

Have noticed a lot of ponds that are next to dry now. And a lot of hay fields that had cattle turned in on them after the last cutting of hay that are grazed down to almost dirt.
 
It is bad here in my part of Kentucky. It has been slightly below normal on temperatures this year and we continued to get rain all year, but each front seemed to be starved for moisture and rains that should have been 1/2 inch or more only delivered a trace or a tenth.
It was dry last winter and very windy with little mud. It did rain some in June and that saved the hay crop from being even worse. My hay is about 2/3 of normal and no fall grazing to amount to anything. I have been feeding some hay since early October.
This has really hurt the bred cow market here this fall and the weigh price just about sets the market. Calves have continued to sell well through it all.
Hard to think about expanding numbers under these conditions. I kept back several heifers to get weaned and their second round of shots, thinking I could either sell them later as feeders or keep them back as cows. Unloaded a lot of cows when the prices were high. If I sell the heifers I will be low on numbers, but that may be my best move this year.
 
Southwest Alabama is the worst but north Alabama isn't far behind . Creeks are dry, ponds are super low and we are feeding hay to one herd already. No rain in sight again this week . I talked to the USDA office in the county. We are considered level 2 drought. We have to be in level 2 for 8 weeks . Only been level 2 for a week . It runs through November 15 so there's no way we qualify for assistance. If we reach level 3 we automatically qualify for assistance . Right now we have enough hay for winter. But we normally don't start feeding till mid to late November.
 
3 years and running for East TN. Everything from temperature to amount of rainfall has been way OFF. 3rd fall with no growth. 2nd year of poor hay yields. Surely 2024 will be better.

My 1 pond, which animals dont use, you can see the bottom all the way across.

We got rain in July and that's about it. The rest we got amounted to very little.

Sure makes the case for grazing management though. It's evident from the road where it is practiced to any degree.
 
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Go to your name top right. click down to account details, then down to location and put in some sort of location, SE TX, , anything that gives a general idea so people know from where you are talking about.
 
Where are you 504RP ? Need to post location in your id
North West Arkansas. I don't know what to think about the weather. I had 30 pairs that I sold last summer because the summer before that was about the same. I just couldn't find hay last summer except for stuff that a Billy goat wouldn't eat for $ 60 a bale. Hated to sell but I just wasn't going through it 2 years in a row.
 
I see a lot of people digging their pond's deeper now that they are dry. Would do that to the one that is dried up on me now but I think it might not hold water at all.

Do know this much I will never have a shallow pond built ever again. Most of these ponds that are drying up is because they were just low swags that had a levy pushed up across the low side of the swag. Some might cover a half acre or more but is only like 5 foot deep.

The one I had built that is 12 foot deep had a lot of shale and clay. No bed rock and was spring fed. Dug several test holes before deciding to build it there but it paid off. And when I am trying to move cows out of that section of pasture to another. They might run and jump in it. But they can't get but about 6 foot from the bank before they have to swim. So all it takes is running up to them with a 4 wheeler making the swim and they are ready to get out and head for that other section of pasture. They don't like to swim for very long. And they deep pond hasn't ever froze over for cows to walk on. Haven't had to worry about one breaking through the ice and drowning.
 
My county has upgraded from Exceptional to Extreme. "Upgrade" is subjective because neighbors within a few miles from us received substantially more rain earlier this summer and almost every spring, creek & pond is dry or dangerously low within the entire county. Producers are having dispersal sales all the time because a lot of wells have run dry and if they're on City water, their bills are upwards of $400 a month. Praying for rain!
 
We are looking pretty good here. A little over a week ago we got two inches of rain, and at the ranch they got about six inches of snow. I'm down about 100 tons of hay for the year, and I contribute that to it being a colder than normal summer, with colder than normal nights. The ponds at the ranch still have a lot of water in them. The cows came back to the farm looking pretty darn good. I have never seen the grass at the ranch look any better.
 
North West Arkansas. I don't know what to think about the weather. I had 30 pairs that I sold last summer because the summer before that was about the same. I just couldn't find hay last summer except for stuff that a Billy goat wouldn't eat for $ 60 a bale. Hated to sell but I just wasn't going through it 2 years in a row.
Put your location on your profile. Click top right...
 
Here in the high desert of the ION 10-12 inches of annual is normal. If it weren't for irrigation we wouldn't get much hay even on a good year. Thanks to some wise people back in the 30's there are dams that capture the spring run off to supply irrigation water. This year has been exceptionally good. Be mid June we were already at 12 inches for the water year (Oct-Oct) Then over a 2 week period in August we got 5 inches. There is still enough green grass in the hills that the cowboys are having a tough time convincing the cows that is is time to head for home.
 
We are in a multi- year drought. We have pretty much been sliding by with water and grass the past few years but we operate very conservatively. Our neighbors are trying to raise cattle on dirt and over priced hay. One turned their nose up at my wcs recommendation then went and paid $90 a round bale for rice stubble.

Wish prices weren't so high so we could really get to the nut cutting.
 
I am probably going to loose the winter pasture I planted.
The rain forecast fizzled.
Lots of empty pastures around here, Crockett had another big sellout this last week.
People are selling their good stuff now.
They are still holding strong on us for next week.

I sprayed a bunch of brush and stuff the last two weeks after the last rain, planted some rye and oats, and have the hay baler on notice for a couple weeks. I'm all in... we will see 😄

We could use some tank water bad.
 
My county has upgraded from Exceptional to Extreme. "Upgrade" is subjective because neighbors within a few miles from us received substantially more rain earlier this summer and almost every spring, creek & pond is dry or dangerously low within the entire county. Producers are having dispersal sales all the time because a lot of wells have run dry and if they're on City water, their bills are upwards of $400 a month. Praying for rain!
Sorry to hear that. Sold some hay to some people in the South East part of Oklahoma a few months ago. They said they wanted my next cutting too. Called them about a week ago and they said they was going to come get it but haven't heard anything from them. Thought maybe they had gotten over the drought and didn't need the hay.
 
We had a very dry spring here that knocked back the spring seedings and the first cut hay was about half of "normal" (been a long time since normal). Then, the sky broke open and rained about an inch every other day from early July till September. In September they turned the spigot off and the normally rainy autumn has been pretty dry. About the opposite of how it normally goes. Getting a little worried that winter is going to be bad. seems like it was like this back in '14-'15 when we got a bunch of weeks down below zero and many days at 20 below. I was out chopping ice holes in the river for the cows to drink 2-3 times a day. Ice was over a foot deep and refroze 3-4" between meals.
 
We had a very dry spring here that knocked back the spring seedings and the first cut hay was about half of "normal" (been a long time since normal). Then, the sky broke open and rained about an inch every other day from early July till September. In September they turned the spigot off and the normally rainy autumn has been pretty dry. About the opposite of how it normally goes. Getting a little worried that winter is going to be bad. seems like it was like this back in '14-'15 when we got a bunch of weeks down below zero and many days at 20 below. I was out chopping ice holes in the river for the cows to drink 2-3 times a day. Ice was over a foot deep and refroze 3-4" between meals.
 

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