Peel: Poor Pasture Conditions, Low Hay Stocks and Drought
Drought conditions continue to be historically bad for this time of year and recent USDA data confirms that the situation is critical for the beef cattle industry. USDA reports pasture and range conditions from May through October and the initial reports this year show that U.S. pasture conditions are the worst ever for May in data back to 1995 with 44 percent of pastures reported in poor and very poor condition. Among the worst state conditions are Arizona (90 percent poor to very poor), North Dakota (75 percent), Utah (71 percent) and New Mexico (65 percent). Regional aggregations compiled by the Livestock Marketing Information Center show the West region (AZ, CA, ID, NM, NV, OR, UT, WA) with 51 percent of pastures in poor to very poor condition. The Great Plains region (CO, KS, MT, NE, ND, SD, WY) has 43 percent of pastures in poor to very poor condition. The Southern Plains (OK, TX) has 29 percent of pastures in poor to very poor condition.
WSDA Drought Information