Oklahoma's Latest Farm
And Ranch News

Thursday, March 23, 2023

Howdy Neighbors!

Here is your daily Oklahoma farm and ranch news update. 


  • Federal Funds Granted to Oklahoma for Wildfire Fuels Mitigation

  • Looking Back on Years of the Oklahoma Youth Expo with Larry Peck

  • OYE Coverage Correction

  • David Weaber Advises Ranchers to Capitalize on Quality Genetics When Herd Rebuilding Comes

  • Over 135 Organizations Call for Farm and Food Business Technical Assistance in the Farm Bill

  • BQA Low-Stress Cattle Handling Principles

  • Southern Plains Perspective: Random Climate Smart Agriculture Thoughts and Stories

  • Chainsaw safety is vital during storm cleanup

  • Rain Making System Headed Our Way- Just Not for the Driest Areas of Oklahoma

Federal Funds Granted to Oklahoma for Wildfire Fuels Mitigation

Oklahoma is the recipient of more than $134,000 in federal grant money awarded to reduce the risk of catastrophic wildfire. The funds are part of nearly $200 million announced by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service that will benefit 22 states and seven tribes, as part of the Community Wildfire Defense Grant program. The grants will help communities, tribes, non-profit organizations, and state forestry agencies plan for and mitigate wildfire risks as the nation faces an ongoing wildfire crisis.

The city of Davis, OK will receive $134,477 to complete 9 projects on 1,500 acres as part of the Turner Falls Natural Wildland Restoration Project. The money will be used to reduce the threat of wildfire through the removal of ground and cedar fuel as well as the creation of firebreaks to enable firefighter access in areas with little to no current equipment access.

Oklahoma Forestry Services is the state’s lead wildland firefighting agency. For more information on these Federal monies coming our way- click here for the details.

Sponsor Spotlight

Union Mutual was chartered in 1938 to write property and casualty insurance in the state of Oklahoma. Over the years, Union Mutual has maintained the attitude that started the company and continue to be that company that understands Oklahomans’ insurance needs when they contact any member of the UMIC team.


That’s 83 years of protecting rural Oklahomans, providing town and country, poultry house and legacy rural actual cash value policies.


With over 80 years of experience and 300 agents in all 77 Oklahoma Counties to serve you, it’s time to take a good hard look at Union Mutual Insurance Company.


For the agent nearest you, go to unionmutualic.com or give them a call at 405 286-7703.


Looking Back on Years of the Spring Stock Show in OKC with Larry Peck

Ahead of the Oklahoma Youth Expo’s grand drive last week, I caught up with the owner of Ag Youth Magazine, Larry Peck. We talked about the evolution of the Oklahoma City 4-H and FFA Junior Livestock Show from the 70s and 80s to the brief experiment of the Spring Fair to the establishment of the Oklahoma Youth Expo in the past two decades.

Peck first talked about how much the show industry has grown over the last decade. Peck has been coming to livestock shows in Oklahoma City since 1971, he added.

The Oklahoma Youth Expo has been able to flourish over the years, Peck said, thanks to great leadership, volunteer support, sponsors and more. Through making the youth a priority, Peck added, the show has come a long way.

At the first OYE, Peck said there were only three photographers for the championship drives. At the 2023 Grand Drive, Peck said the show had over 30 photographers ready to cover the event.

“It is just amazing where we have come from the old days of the spring fair, or the Oklahoma City fat livestock show,” Peck said.

One of those amazing developments had Peck playing "matchmaker" between the early group of Goat enthusiasts and the Expo- helping find the startup funding to add the fourth species to the OYE lineup.

After receiving a call from a friend asking how to have a goat show at OYE, Peck talked to a few people to see what needed to be done- he helped connect the players- and the result- a successful addition to the ten day world's largest junior livestock show.

Click here to read more and listen to Ron and Larry Peck reminisce about the spring livestock show scene in OKC 

OYE Coverage Correction

It's been brought to our attention that we needed to update one of the sponsor listings from the OYE Sale of Champions from last Friday.

We had listed a couple of buyers for the Grand Champion Market Barrow owned by Brigham Bunt of Ringwood 4-H. The barrow was bought for $30,000- and it was a single buyer- not a group that purchased Bunt's barrow. The buyer who bought the 2023 Grand Barrow is Westgate Market Developers.

Click here for our updated story on the 2023 Sale of Champions.

David Weaber Advises Ranchers to Capitalize on Quality Genetics When Herd Rebuilding Comes

In this episode of Beef Buzz, I am visiting with senior animal protein research analyst at Terrain, David Weaber, about strategy for rebuilding the cow herd once the drought comes to an end.

Launched in November of 2022, Terrain is a source of agricultural industry analysis farmers and ranchers in the United States. Terrain was established by American AgCredit, Farm Credit Services of America and Frontier Farm Credit.

“We have been waiting a long time to get rid of La Niña, and it looks like she is finally maybe on her way out the door,” Weaber said. “That is great news for cow-calf producers that have been under this pressure from drought conditions for the last, some of them, three or four years.”

That loss of cattle, Weaber said, has been reflected in the cattle inventory report. Around 2.8 million beef cows have been subtracted from the herd, Weaber added, since 2019.

“We had record beef production in 2022, but that is because we have been pushing all these heifers off ranches and not retaining them, and they are showing up going through feed yards,” Weaber said. “We get a little bit of rain, and we are going to pull those out. They are going to go back to the beef cow herd.”

Click here to read more and listen to Ron and David Weaber talk about rebuilding the nation’s cowherd
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For our farmers who have either- always have had cotton on their farms- or those who have more recently have added the fiber crop to their operations- we have a daily report heard on several of our Radio Stations- It's Called Cotton Talk!

Click on the Button below to listen to our most recent report
Click here for our Latest Cotton Talk- Hosted by KC Sheperd

Over 135 Organizations Call for Farm and Food Business Technical Assistance in the Farm Bill

American Farmland Trust (AFT), the Agricultural Viability Alliance, and a national coalition of agricultural organizations, service providers, non-profits, businesses, lending institutions, and government entities,sent a letter to leadership of the House and Senate Agriculture Committees calling for dedicated funding for business technical assistance and farm viability in the upcoming Farm Bill. 

“As you begin the process of developing a new Farm Bill,” the letter, signed by over 135 organizations, writes, “[we] urge you to include dedicated funding for one-to-one business technical assistance for small and midsized farm and food businesses. These investments in farm viability are critical to achieving a more just, secure, resilient food supply chain, growing our rural economies, and helping farmers and food businesses weather periods of uncertainty, high input costs, and market disruptions.” 

 “Congress begins work on a new Farm Bill at a time when the agricultural economy and food system face a number of urgent, overlapping challenges,” said Tim Fink, Policy Director for AFT. “From historic inequities and systemic barriers for underserved producers, to rising input costs and vanishing margins, to generational transfer of farmland – business technical assistance has proven an effective and cost-efficient way of addressing these challenges and building capacity on the ground.”  

The call for dedicated Farm Bill funding builds on work that AFT, in partnership with the Agricultural Viability Alliance (the Alliance), began in 2021 requesting USDA to set aside a portion of Coronavirus relief funding for one-to-one business technical assistance. More than 110 organizations joined AFT and the Alliance in urging USDA to prioritize this type of technical assistance to small and mid-sized farm and food businesses. In addition, 50 Members of Congress similarly encouraged USDA to support business technical assistance. USDA responded to this request with its establishment of two new initiatives: the Farm Service Agency’s Increasing Land, Capital, and Market Access Program, and the Agricultural Marketing Service’s Regional Food Business Centers. 

Click here to read more about groups calling for Farm and Food Business Technical Assistance in the Farm Bill

We invite you to listen to us on great radio stations across the region on the Radio Oklahoma Ag Network weekdays-

if you missed this morning's Farm News - or you are in an area where you can't hear it- click below for this morning's Farm news from Ron Hays and KC Sheperd on RON.
Click here for the Thursday morning Farm and Ranch News with KC Sheperd
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Sponsor Spotlight

Midwest Farm Shows is proud to produce the two best Farm Shows in the State of Oklahoma annually- the Tulsa Farm Show each December and the Oklahoma City Farm Show each April. 


They would like to thank all of you who participated in their 2022 Tulsa City Farm Show. 


Up next will be the Oklahoma City’s premier spring agricultural and ranching event with returns to the State Fair Park April 13-14-15, 2023.


Now is the ideal time to contact the Midwest Farm Show Office at 507-437-7969 and book space at the 2023 Oklahoma City Farm Show.  To learn more about the Oklahoma City Farm Show, click here

BQA Low-Stress Cattle Handling Principles

On this edition of Cow-Calf Corner, Bob LeValley, Oklahoma Beef Quality Assurance Coordinator, talks about Beef Quality Assurance principles.

Cattle producers have long recognized and fulfilled the need to properly care for livestock. Sound care and handling practices, based on years of experience and research are known to impact the well-being of cattle, individual animal health and herd productivity. Cattle are raised in very diverse environments and geographic locations. One specific set of production practices will not work for all cattle producers, but, personal experience, Beef Quality Assurance program principles, and professional judgement serve as valuable resources for proper animal handling and care. Animal behavior knowledge will facilitate proper animal handling to the benefit of both the handler and the livestock.

Knowledge of vision characteristics of cattle will help direct movement. Due to the location of their eyes, cattle have a wide-angle field of vision in excess of 300 degrees. This means they have a narrow blind spot which is directly behind them. They can see some colors and can distinguish between individuals/objects based on shape. Cattle have a tendency to move from dark areas to lighter areas, provided the light is not glaring. Shadows can often appear extreme to cattle. 

Click here to read more from Bob LeValley on Beef Quality Assurance principles

Southern Plains Perspective: Random Climate Smart Agriculture Thoughts and Stories

There is a new blog post out at the Southern Plains Perspective. Read Below!

This past week, the USDA Southern Plains Climate Hub had a booth at the 3I farm show in Dodge City, Kansas. I was there with my Daughter Madeleine manning the booth.

Because of this, I’m taking a little different approach to the blog this week and highlighting a few climate smart/soil health/conservation type articles that I have come across this week during breaks at the booth.

First, if you live in the southern plains (or follow this blog), you know how dry it has been in Kansas, Oklahoma, and Texas. With dry weather, exposed soil, and high winds, you have the recipe for dust in the air. It’s important that producers understand what they can do to control erosion and hold their soil in place. This is the situation described in a news story from Lubbock, Texas, titled ‘West Texas farmers use cover crops, clodding to fight soil erosion.’ It’s a great piece about how good land treatment practices can help address this serious natural resource issue.

Click here to read the full blog post from the Southern Plains Perspective

Chainsaw safety is vital during storm cleanup

If there’s one thing Oklahomans know about, it’s the process of cleaning up after a storm. Some of that cleanup will require the use of a chainsaw for felled trees and other debris.

Ryan DesantisOklahoma State University Extension forestry specialist, said it’s important to keep chainsaw safety techniques in mind when cleaning up after a storm or doing any other type of chainsaw work.

There are several types of chainsaws on the market, including gas-powered, electric and battery-powered.

“No matter what type of saw a person is operating, safety is important. A battery-powered saw is just as powerful as a gas-powered saw,” Desantis said. “One of the biggest safety concerns when operating a saw is kickback. The operator should wear a helmet with a visor to help protect their head. Also, position your body in a way that if kickback occurs, the saw won’t hit your body.”

Kickback occurs when the rotating chain hits a solid object or the chain is pinched in a cut. This can force the saw backward, resulting in serious injury. To prevent kickback, keep the saw moving at a fast speed when entering or leaving a cut. Also, keep the chain properly sharpened.

Click here to read more from OSU on Chainsaw Safety

Rain in the Oklahoma Forecast- But Not Where It's Needed Most

The Tulsa National Weather Service graphic above shows where the rain is mostly likely to be later today- into tonight and early tomorrow- in in parts of eastern Oklahoma. Those counties that have the best rain forecast are the counties now mostly out of drought. Two to three inches of rain could fall in the tan and darker areas shown.

The parts of Oklahoma that continue to suffer from the on going drought have limited chances of rainfall from this latest rain making system headed toward Oklahoma- the graphic below from the Norman National Weather Service office shows most of the state from I-35 west will be left high and dry.

Check out the latest post from State Climatologist Gary McManus on Wednesday that offers a little more color commentary about the system that will be affecting Oklahoma soon
Let's Check The Markets!
OKC West is our Market Links Sponsor- they sell cattle three days a week- Cows on Mondays, Stockers on Tuesday and Feeders on Wednesday- Call 405-262-8800 to learn more.
Today's First Look:
Ron on RON Markets as heard on K101  
mornings with cash and futures reviewed- includes where the Cash Cattle market stands, the latest Feeder Cattle Markets Etc.
Hear Today's First Look

Wholesale Boxed Beef Prices were mixed- Choice Beef was up $1.38 and Select Beef was down $1.73 on Wednesday 03/22/2023.

Click on the Button below for the latest report from USDA Market News

Boxed Beef Report

Oklahoma National Stockyards had 12,000 head on Monday- their first day of trade for 2021..

According to USDA Market News- Compared to last week: Feeder steers sold steady to 3.00 higher. Feeder heifers suitable for grazing under 700 lbs traded 1.00-3.00 higher,

over 3.00-4.00 lower. Demand moderate for feeders. Flesh conditions continue to be an issue and buyers are being very picky. Steer calves

sold 2.00-4.00 higher. Heifer calves under 500 lbs sold 2.00-4.00 lower, over 500 fully steady. Demand moderate to good.

Meanwhile- Manager Bill Barnhart of OKC West offered these additional thoughts on the market's Facebook page- "The market was unevenly steady this week at the auction. Lighter numbers and plenty of demand makes for a good market. Cattle feeders however are being cautious. The rally in fat cattle has seemed to have stalled for the time being even though slaughter is down and harvest weights are shrinking. The packers are showing their clout by keeping a lid on prices. Too few cattle are traded on the open market anymore. One sale worth noting from Wednesdays action, Harvey Farms sold 209 fancy black angus steers weighing #838 @ 190.50."

Click below for the complete closing report.

OKC West in El Reno Market Report from 3/21 and 3/22/2023
Each afternoon we are posting a recap of that day's markets as analyzed by Justin Lewis of KIS futuresclick below for the latest update on the Livestock and Grain Futures Trade..
Click Here to Listen to Justin's Commentary From 03/22/2023
Okla Cash Grain:  
Daily Oklahoma Cash Grain Prices- as reported by the Oklahoma Dept. of Agriculture- The report available after the close of the Futures Trade for that day.
Read  Cash Grains Report from 03/22/2023
Our Daily Market Wrapup from the Radio Oklahoma Ag Network - analyzing the Futures Markets for that trading day- as reported by KC Sheperd.
Click to Listen to Our Weekday Wrap with KC
Slaughter Cattle Recap: 
The National Daily Slaughter Cattle Summary- as prepared by the USDA Market News
Read Report
TCFA Feedlot Recap:  
Finally, here is the Daily Volume and Price Summary from the Texas Cattle Feeders Association.
Read Report
Our Oklahoma Farm Report Team!!!!
Ron Hays, Senior Farm/Ranch Broadcaster and Editor
KC Sheperd, Farm Director and Editor

Dave Lanning, Markets and Production

Reagan Calk, Farm News and Email Editor

Pam Arterburn, Calendar and Template Manager

Rural Oklahoma is full of some of the greatest success stories throughout the entire state and is a big reason why Oklahoma is on track to become a top 10 state. 

The Road to Rural Prosperity dives into these stories, bringing you stories covering rural life, agriculture, energy, healthcare, tourism, and politics affecting rural America. 

The Road to Rural Prosperity is here to tell stories about rural America, for rural America.

Since the legalization of Medical Marijuana in Oklahoma with State Question 788- criminals have flocked to the state to set up illegal grow houses because of cheap permits, cheap land and lax rules allowing them to get into the business of growing marijuana in Oklahoma- supposedly for the in state Medical Marijuana market.

Ron Hays talks with Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics spokesman Mark Woodward about how these enterprises have invaded Oklahoma- the magnitude of the current problem and how the state is pushing back on thousands of bad people who have set up shop in the state- with the hope to reduce the number of these operations dramatically in the days to come. It's a huge problem all across rural Oklahoma but Woodward believes progress is being made to reign in these illegal marijuana farms.

Search for Road to Rural Prosperity and subscribe on your favorite Podcast platform.

To hear this podcast, you can click here or tap below:

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We also appreciate our Market Links Sponsor - OKC West Livestock! 

We invite you to check out our website at the link below too that includes an archive of these daily emails, audio reports and top farm news story links from around the globe.
Head to Our Website OklahomaFarmReport.Com
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KC Sheperd
Farm Director
Radio Oklahoma Ag Network


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Ron Hays
Senior Farm/Ranch Broadcaster
Radio Oklahoma Ag Network

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