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Though some areas such as East Texas have had some drought relief hay supplies remain low and the outlook for a wet fall is not good according to a Texas AampM AgriLife Extension Service expert
<p> Though some areas, such as East Texas, have had some drought relief, hay supplies remain low and the outlook for a wet fall is not good, according to a Texas A&amp;M AgriLife Extension Service expert.</p>

Can you risk chasing moisture with higher stocking rate?

With 85 percent of Texas under drought status, cattle producers should be cautious about stocking rates, says a Texas AgriLife Extension forge specialist.

Livestock producers who are considering planting winter forages or rebuilding herds at this time in hopes it may rain should not “chase the moisture.” That’s the advice of a Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service.

With 85 percent of the state still under drought conditions, and climatologists predicting the drought may continue or worsen in the coming months, it’s wishful thinking that there may be enough rain for winter forages to emerge, much less maintain growth, said Dr. Larry Redmon, AgriLife Extension state forage specialist, College Station.

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“I would certainly give heed to these drought monitors and forecasts, and would ask producers that wherever they are with their stocking rates right now to keep them or even consider further culling,” Redmon said.

Climatologists predict a droughty fall for much of the state, but the long-range forecasts are for five or more years of continued drought.

Read more about livestock management during drought and other weather-related stories here.


More articles of interest:

Drought, feed costs influence livestock markets in 2013

Cattle producers young and old should plan accordingly for drought

Much of state’s warm-season grass pastures still drought damaged

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