Oklahoma's Latest Farm
And Ranch News

Thursday, April 13, 2023

Opening Day for the 2023 Oklahoma City Farm Show-

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Howdy Neighbors!

Here is your daily Oklahoma farm and ranch news update. 


  • AG Drummond Sues Biden Administration over Threatened Listing of Lesser Prairie Chicken

  • Senator Brent Howard speaks on his Dad’s Legacy as the 2023 Agriculture Achievement Award is presented to the Bob Howard Family

  • Introducing Gage Slagell of the Hydro-Eakly FFA Chapter, Your 2023 Southwest Area Star in Agricultural Placement

  • NCBA Highlights Federal Injunction Stopping WOTUS Rule in Oklahoma and 23 More States

  • Beef Cow Herd Rebuilding Not Likely This Year

  • Bob Funk at Express Ranch To Be Inducted into Hall of Great Westerners Saturday

  • AFR Day at the Capitol Brings together AFR Members and Legislators to Tackle Issues

  • Goodwell, Oklahoma—the “New Death Valley?”

AG Drummond Sues Biden Administration on Threatened Listing of Lesser Prairie Chicken

Attorney General Gentner Drummond and attorneys general from neighboring states joined in a lawsuit against the Biden administration over a U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFW) rule that designates the lesser prairie chicken as endangered or threatened under the Endangered Species Act. The rule took effect last week.

“I will not allow the Biden administration to punish Oklahoma farmers, ranchers and energy producers with this blatant overreach of the federal government,” Drummond said. “This rule truly presents an existential threat for cattle grazing, energy production and other vital aspects of Western Oklahoma’s economy.”

The lawsuit was filed in U.S. District Court in the Western District of Texas by Drummond, Kansas Attorney General Kris Kobach and Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton.

The Oklahoma Cattlemen's Association offered quick reaction to the Attorney General's efforts. “The Oklahoma Cattlemen’s Association (OCA) applauds Attorney General Drummond’s suit against the Biden Administration’s overreach regarding the Lesser Prairie Chicken. Western Oklahoma cattle raisers have done and continue to do a great job preserving and promoting wildlife habitat. OCA appreciates Attorney General Drummond’s commitment to protecting Oklahoma ranchers from these unnecessary, burdensome regulations.”

Click here to read more and listen to KC Sheperd visit with AG Drummond at AFR Day at the Capital
Sponsor Spotlight

Midwest Farm Shows invites you to join them today through Saturday for the 2023 Oklahoma City Farm Show!

Over three hundred exhibitors have all the latest in agriculture with a full line of displays, including tractor, sprayer, tillage, harvest equipment, cattle management products, and more.

Exciting events at this year’s show:

  • Free Coffee & Rolls each morning!
  • Daily $1,000 “SHOWBUCKS” drawing ~ Sponsored by Great Plains Kubota
  • Ride and Drive Spartan Mower giveaway ~Sponsored by Spartan Mowers
  • OSU Extension Seminars — Thursday and Friday at 1:30pm
  • Live Music by Rusty Rierson!

Admission and parking for the event at the OKC Fairgrounds is free!


To learn more about the Oklahoma City Farm Show, click here

Senator Brent Howard speaks on his Dad’s Legacy as the 2023 Agriculture Achievement Award is presented to the Bob Howard Family

During Oklahoma Ag Day at the Capitol, Farm Director KC Sheperd had the chance to visit with Senator Brent Howard, who received the 2023 Agriculture Achievement Award in the place of his late father, Bob Howard.

Howard talks with Sheperd about the legacy his father left behind.

“He set good examples for all of us, and I like to think that the world is a little better just because Bob was in it,” Howard said.

Howard said his father was the fourth generation to work on the family farm in Southwest Oklahoma, where they raise cattle, wheat, and Bermuda grass. Howard said his father’s biggest legacy was his involvement in the community and his service.

“Every board that he seemed to get on, he really put all of his effort in and tried to make that organization, whether it was Oklahoma Cattlemen’s Association, Oklahoma Farm Bureau, the Wheat Growers Association, or even our local church, the best it could be,” Howard said.

Click here to read more and listen to Senator Brent Howard talk with KC Sheperd about the legacy of Bob Howard.

Introducing Gage Slagell of the Hydro-Eakly FFA Chapter, Your 2023 Southwest Area Star in Agricultural Placement

During the month of April, the Radio Oklahoma Ag Network and Oklahoma Farm Report are spotlighting the 17 Area Stars of Oklahoma FFA that are among the highest achievers in the organization.

The stars come from the five areas in four categories- Star in Ag Placement, Star in Agriscience, Star in Agribusiness, and Star in Agricultural Production.

One Star Finalist featured in the coming days from each of the categories will be named the State Star Award Winner during the 97th Oklahoma State FFA Convention coming up on May 2nd and 3rd in Tulsa, Okla.

This week, our coverage of the 2023 Oklahoma FFA Star Award Finalists continues with Ag Placement competitor Gage Slagell of the Hydro-Eakly FFA chapter representing the Southwest Area.

“I work for Triple S Farms in Hydro, Oklahoma, and Triple S Farms is a very diverse SAE program,” Slagell said. “We produce crops like watermelons, sweet potatoes, potatoes, wheat, soybeans, and peanuts. With those crops, some of those crops will be used as organic crops.”

Slagell is grateful for the help he has received with his project, especially from his dad and grandpa.

“They are always constantly pushing me to do better,” Slagell said.

Slagell also participates in livestock judging, trap shooting, and FFA proficiencies.

“These past two or three years, I have been a national finalist for proficiencies, and through that, I have been able to go to (FFA) national convention and just experience that great moment,” Slagell said. “At national convention in 2021, I was named a national champion of diversified crop production. I would say that has been my favorite moment.”

Click here to read more and listen to KC Sheperd talk with Gage Slagell ahead of the 2023 Oklahoma FFA Convention in Tulsa
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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

NCBA Highlights Federal Injunction Stopping WOTUS Rule in Oklahoma and 23 More States

On Wednesday, the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA) praised the decision by a judge in the U.S. District Court for the District of North Dakota to grant a preliminary injunction stopping the Biden administration’s “Waters of the U.S.” (WOTUS) rule from taking effect in 24 states. Combined with a previous ruling in the Southern District of Texas, 26 states across the country are protected from the Biden WOTUS rule. Among the states that now have a stay in place against the Biden WOTUS rule- Oklahoma, Kansas, Missouri and Texas.

The judge in North Dakota is critical in the preliminary injunction released on Wednesday of the Biden Administration's increase in how EPA and the Army Corps can use the significant nexus that first surfaced in the Obama version of the a WOTUS rule and was articulated by Justice Kennedy in the Rapanos case several years back. The quick and dirty definition of Significant Nexus is that a employee of EPA will tell you if your land falls under the WOTUS jurisdiction- literally on a case by case basis and they don't really have to tell you why.


“Once again, the courts have affirmed that the Biden administration’s WOTUS rule is overreaching and harmful to America’s beef farmers and ranchers,” said NCBA President Todd Wilkinson, a South Dakota cattle producer. “Cattle producers in 26 states now have some additional certainty while this rule is being litigated and we are optimistic that the Supreme Court will provide nationwide clarity on the federal government’s proper jurisdiction over water.”

Lots more reaction has flowed in on this latest injunction against the Biden WOTUS rule- click here for reaction from Congressman Frank Lucas- and click here for the comments released on Wednesday by Zippy Duvall and the American Farm Bureau.

Click here to read Oklahoma Attorney General Gentner Drummond's comments on relief granted in suit against EPA over WOTUS rule

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 to listen to our Thursday Farm and Ranch News with KC Sheperd
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Sponsor Spotlight

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Beef Cow Herd Rebuilding Not Likely This Year

In this episode of Beef Buzz, I am featuring comments from Rabobank’s senior beef and cattle market research analyst, Lance Zimmerman of Rabobank, about building back the cowherd and market prices.

“We had record-high liquidation this past year,” Zimmerman said. “We have had an ample number of heifers get shipped off to feed yards instead of staying home at farms and ranches. As a result, we simply need to see the moisture trends turn their tide.”

With tight feed supplies and low pasture inventories, Zimmerman said, high cattle prices still are not enough to cover the feed bill.

“We need to see the calf market rebound and stay at elevated levels,” Zimmerman said. “We need to see moisture conditions not just come and replenish what we lost but have some staying power so that when we are looking across those prairies, they are healthy, green, and vibrant again. When we look at our hay stocks, we have an ample supply to get us through winter and then a little margin on the sides.”

Reaching ideal pasture conditions will take a few years, Zimmerman said, and that needs to happen before the cow herd reaches peak performance levels.

Click here to read more and listen to Lance Zimmerman talk about rebuilding the beef cow herd

Bob Funk at Express Ranch To Be Inducted into Hall of Great Westerners This Saturday

Back in January during the Cattlemen's Congress Supreme Drive- a special announcement was made by Jeff Ewing with National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum- he told the audience that Bob Funk will be officially inducted into the Hall of Great Westerners on April 15th.

Here's the bio from the upcoming induction of Mr. Funk that happens on Saturday.

Bob Funk Sr. has been in the staffing industry since 1965, beginning his career at a national firm in Seattle before moving to Oklahoma, where he founded Express Employment Professionals in 1971. As Founder, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Funk led Express on a trajectory of success that grew the business into one of the nation’s largest privately held staffing companies. Today, Express puts more than a half million people to work each year and records more than $3 billion in annual sales. As president and chief executive officer of Express Employment Professionals – Oklahoma, Funk also operates one of the largest and most productive Express franchises with more than 50 offices in Oklahoma, Texas, Arkansas, and Kansas.

Funk’s talent for excellence in business extends beyond the staffing industry. As owner of Express Ranches, he produces some of the nation’s finest stock of Angus and Hereford cattle and is the largest Angus genetic seedstock producer in America. Express Ranches is also home to Funk’s collection of championship-winning Clydesdales and Percherons, which compete in horse shows across the U.S. and Canada each year.

Click here to read more about Bob Funk

AFR Day at the Capitol Brings together AFR Members and Legislators to Tackle Issues

Farm Director KC Sheperd caught up with American Farmers and Ranchers President Scott Blubaugh at AFR Day at the Oklahoma Capitol and talked about this year’s event and the issues covered.

“We do this once a year, our legislative day, where we bring the members in from all 77 counties to come up here, talk to their legislators, the senators, the reps here, and other elected officials, and let them know what is on their mind,” Blubaugh said.

This event has grown over the last few years, Blubaugh said, and AFR membership enjoys the chance to attend AFR Day at the Capitol.

“It really helps us get our policies passed into law, or in many cases, we are trying to defeat a bill that is bad legislation that would hurt our membership and folks in the country,”

Blubaugh said. “So, this is a big deal. It really makes these senators and representatives realize what a big organization American Farmers and Ranchers is and that our membership is big, and we are all over the state.”

It is special for AFR membership to come out and have their voices heard, Blubaugh said, as it makes a big difference.

Click here to read more and listen to KC Sheperd talk with Scott Blubaugh at AFR Day at the Capitol.

Goodwell, Oklahoma—the “New Death Valley?”

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

That’s quite a headline.   Let me answer that question; Goodwell is not becoming the “New Death Valley.” That said, it is really, REALLY, REALLY dry in Texas County in the Oklahoma Panhandle.

It’s now been over 221 days since Goodwell has received a quarter of an inch or more of rain. This comes after Goodwell set the record for all-time lowest annual precipitation in the entire State of Oklahoma total with 6.48 inches in 2022.  According to the drought monitor that was released last Thursday, Goodwell has now received a whopping 0.6 inches through March 31 in 2023.

All of this was pointed out to me by Oklahoma State Climatologist Gary McManus last week (I interviewed Gary for our podcast—you can listen to him here). Gary suggested that I take a look at the mesonet record for Goodwell (if you have never checked out the Oklahoma mesonet, you should, including subscribing to Gary’s daily mesonet ticker). I believe his direct quote to me was, “The rain numbers in Goodwell? They’re like Death Valley.”

Obviously, there was a bit of hyperbole in what Gary was saying…but not much. Death Valley has had .96 inches of rain in 2023.  Goodwell has had .63. 

So far in 2023, Goodwell, Oklahoma is dryer than Death Valley.

Click here to read the full blog post from the Southern Plains Perspective
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 $3.38 and Select Beef was down 23 cents on Wednesday 04/12/2023.

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

Boxed Beef Report

OKC West in El Reno had 6,937 head of cattle this week in their calf and yearling sales April 11 and 12.

USDA Market News Reports: Compared to last week: Feeder steers sold 6.00-9.00 higher. Feeder heifers over 700 lbs traded 4.00-9.00 higher, heifers under 700 lbs suitable for grazing 10.00-20.00 higher. Steer and heifer calves sold 4.00-8.00 higher, instances as much as 12.00 higher. Demand very good.

Quality plain to average, few attractive.

Bill Barnhart, Manager of OKC West adds these comments from the market's Facebook page: "Up, up, and away at the auction this week. 5.00-10.00 higher from an already impressive market last week. Some grazing type cattle were up 10.00-15.00. Earlier today packers were bidding 175 in the south and 180 in the north. Finally we are seeing strong competition from the packers on the limited number of finished cattle.

Competition works in the marketplace just as it does every week at the auction. Many believe packers will throttle back on the kills to try and suppress the market. That could be problematic with grilling season here. The next few weeks will be interesting."

Click below for the complete closing report.

OKC West in El Reno- Calf and Yearling Sale Results for April 11-12, 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 04/12/2023
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 04/12/2023
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:

Listen to Episode 85 with Ron Hays talking Criminals in Oklahoma Growing Marijuana with Mark Woodward of the Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics
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