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Drought and grasshoppers

Discussion in 'Tractors & Farming' started by bison, Jul 11, 2015.

  1. bison

    bison Well-Known Member

    I'm in a pickle.
    We have a bad drought up here in Northern Alberta, the worst i have seen in 30 years.
    I had 1" of rain since April first. I received 4" rain last week but it is to late for me.
    The pastures never got much growth to start with and are now bare, a zillion grasshoppers competing with the cows took care of that.
    Hay crop the same way,..i got 95 rounds out of 200 acre, one other hay quarter ain't worth cutting,..Grasshoppers beat me to what little was there.
    Hay is not to be had and whats there is trading for $300/ton.

    Looks like my herd of bison is gonna hit the road at months end, i have no feed left to keep them
     
  2. NVW

    NVW Well-Known Member

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    Castor, AB.
    It's dry here as well, you don't have any hay in reserve Simon? 4" rain should get the grass growing again, unless the hoppers are real bad.
     
  3. ak diesel driver

    ak diesel driver 6.5 driver

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    pretty dry here still too. Hang in there guys
     
  4. trouttrooper

    trouttrooper Big Blocks ROCK!!!

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    Caldwell, ID
    Dang that sucks. While it's been very hot here, over 100 degrees for a couple weeks straight, and pretty dry most of the spring and summer our reservoirs are at ok levels. Crops aren't the greatest, but looks like farmers will stay afloat. Too bad you couldn't get hay from here. Shipping cost would be ridiculous.
     
  5. btfarm

    btfarm 330,000 Worth and counting Staff Member Moderator

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    Sandwich, Illinois
    Wow Simon, my sympathy for you. I've got the opposite weather here where it's been so wet there's still 1st cutting hay standing uncut. Glad I'm out of the livestock business
     
  6. tanman_2006

    tanman_2006 Just a farm kid...

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    Feb 15, 2010
    Seiling, Oklahoma
    Wish I could send you some hay! We had a drought buster this year (6yrs at 1/3 of average). Hay can be had for 25/ton
     
  7. ak diesel driver

    ak diesel driver 6.5 driver

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    alaska
    If you do sell off the herd then it would be a great time to come visit as you won't be tied down to the ranch. Your welcome anytime you'd like to come.
     
  8. schiker

    schiker Well-Known Member

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    Pendleton, SC
    Droughts are tough. Some effects are seen years later too. I am not a farmer or rancher but at least I appreciate this bumper sticker....

    Legalize gambling why should farmers have all the fun.
     
    WarWagon likes this.
  9. WarWagon

    WarWagon Well it hits on 7 of 8...

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    AZ
    How far you got to go for reasonably priced hay?
     
  10. bison

    bison Well-Known Member

    I have all of 4 bales left from last year + the 95 i made last week
    The pastures show hint of green here and there again but the grasshoppers are keeping up with it. lots and lots of bare places everywhere.
    In any case there ain't enough grass to sustain the animals

    Thanks Mike and the others that replied.
    I rather have to wet than to dry,.with to wet there's at least plenty grazing.
    I would feel lost without animals on the place.

    been there done that,...not this year though.

    I don't know,..there's nothing to be had under $100/bale in a day's drive.

    It has crossed my mind, but i probably will wean the calves and keep them as there's no market for cow's with calves unless some one is willing to take a chance and buys the whole herd(no way to tell which calf belongs to which cow)which means i have to give him the calves for free.

    Rock and a hard place,..no fun.
     
  11. NVW

    NVW Well-Known Member

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    Castor, AB.
    1400 lb hay bales are going for $200 here, it is actually tempting to sell the hay and the cows. Cows are high priced right now and they may be more reasonable in a year or two.
     
  12. Burning oil

    Burning oil LeroyDiesel.com Vendor

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    Houston
    Thats a tough spot Simon, wish you luck.
     
  13. bison

    bison Well-Known Member

    That'll make revenue Canada more than happy i'm sure :D
     
  14. NVW

    NVW Well-Known Member

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    Castor, AB.
    You haven't heard? They are going to allow ranchers to defer their cattle income if the herd is sold.
     
  15. bison

    bison Well-Known Member

    .
    Yeah, pay taxes on it next year or the year after or defer taxes for one year and pay twice the price you got when you sold to buy a cow back,... either way you loose half.
    There's no deferring the hay sales though,..thatta will be income.
    The CRA will be smiling ear to ear to have them livestock farmers by the balls :D :greedy:
     
  16. BIGR

    BIGR Lucky To Be Here

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    Appalachian Mountains
    Most farmers got the first cutting of hay here, but it has turned off real dry til the past few days. Had some bad storms that have dumped more than 4 inches of rain in the past few days.

    My poor ol front yard had turned brown. A few months ago it was like green carpet and I could not keep up with it.
     
  17. NVW

    NVW Well-Known Member

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    Castor, AB.
    Any updates Simon? We had a fair amount of rain in the last few weeks. Things look a lot brighter now. The green feed crops are good.
     
  18. bison

    bison Well-Known Member

    Leo, We got a bit more rain and the pastures have a bit of growth again as most of the grasshoppers are gone or seem to stay in pockets.
    I sold 95 long yearlings and a hand full of dry cows. Nobody wants the cows with the calves so i am forced to keep them at least til year end before i wean the calves and do the culling.
    The cows are right now on a self feeder on oats( i bought 5000 bushel) so between the grass and the oats i hope to keep them breeding.
    I managed to buy 230 2-3 year old hay bales for $25 a bale and just got done baling up a full section of pea straw (i got 308 bales from that at $30/bale) and i get to bale an other quarter wheat straw ..so that helps but i am still 300 bales short of target to be able to keep all the cows and it appears i am out of luck getting any other grain growers to help a guy out with more pea straw or written off grain crops even when i offered decent money for it.(they just don't seem to want to get bothered,..they rather plow it under)
    I am also in the process of fencing a half section of bush land that has a lot of grass in it and i just cut my last 100 acre hayfield that may yield 30-40 bales. that hay is mostly meadow brome and the hoppers don't seem to like it cause it is all they left.

    So maybe i will be a rancher for an other year or more.LOL
     
    WarWagon likes this.
  19. ak diesel driver

    ak diesel driver 6.5 driver

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    Good to hear that your going to make it thru this tough time.
     
  20. btfarm

    btfarm 330,000 Worth and counting Staff Member Moderator

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    May 12, 2008
    Sandwich, Illinois
    Glad to hear you'll be able to get through this Simon
     

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