NDSU extension advice in the drought

Published: Apr. 7, 2021 at 5:55 PM CDT
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BISMARCK, N.D. (KFYR) - The NDSU extension says this year was the driest on record for the October through March months.

For ranchers like Kevin Hansen, it’s a new level of drought.

“This is the first year in my 35 years of ranching that we haven’t had any runoff to speak of whatsoever, so it’s really dry out here,” said Hansen. An NDSU Extension Agent that even those with water left could run into problems with high levels of dissolved solids because of the dry weather.

“You might not notice. You might not have all of your cattle die, but they can decrease in performance over time and if the levels get high enough they are fatal. It is toxic,” said Paige Brummond, Ag and Natural Resources agent.

They recommend ranchers get their water sources tested as soon as possible.

Everyone is holding out hope that rain arrives in the next month. “We’re concerned about moisture and it’s going to be a long haul from here on out for us to get enough rainfall,” said Hansen.

Brummond also recommended farmers ease up a little on fertilizer this year to put less stress on struggling crops.

NDSU Extension will be holding monthly webinars to keep farmers and ranchers updated and answer any questions that come up. The next one is on April 29. Click here to go to the NDSU Extension drought page to find out more and sign up.

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