No Current Drought in Oklahoma Versus Fifty Percent Drought Coverage a Year Ago- Heat is the Problem- Listen to a Conversation on Beef Cattle and Heat StressThu, 18 Jul 2019 09:52:42 CDT
Oklahoma and much of the middle part of the country is facing dangerously hot conditions for the next few days- but we remain in pretty good shape as far as soil moisture is concerned- based on the latest Drought Monitor Map for Oklahoma- see above- only .24% of Oklahoma is abnormally dry- that down in Jackson County. You compare that to a year ago when just over half of Oklahoma was in Drought- and things remain favorable for farmers and ranchers in the state- at least for those that were able to get their crops planted this spring.
The hot weather that is coming is a big concern- especially for folks who are trying to get field work done in the heat of the day, as well as for livestock outside exposed to the sun. Take a look at the graphic below of the US map and the heat warning and watches that are in place for the next few days.
With all this heat, if you are a cattle producer, you may want to listen to a conversation that Eric Atkinson of Kansas State had this week with Dr. A J Tarpoff about dealing with excessive heat as it relates to your beef cattle herd. Dr. Tarpoff covers the measures that cattle producers can take to abate the heat stress on their stock during extended stretches of excessively hot weather: the water requirements of individual animals under heat duress and he also refers producers to a very useful on-line index from the Weather Data Library at K-State that reports and forecasts stressful livestock heat conditions. In addition, he suggests adjustments in feedstuffs and time of feeding that can lessen the heat load on cattle. Also, the use of sprinklers and bedding to cool cattle pens; and employing various kinds of temporary shade for cooling.
You can listen to that conversation by clicking on the LISTEN BAR at the bottom of this story.
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