'Unique' Focus For Livestock Drought Management Workshop

December drought management meetings set for eastern region of state.

Published on: Oct 18, 2012

What is being billed as a "powerful and informative workshop" on drought management in the Colorado livestock industry during December will be offered free to the industry.

Ranchers who would like to know as much as two months ahead of time whether their stock would run out of grass need spend only a day and a half at the Dec. 11-12 sessions to find out, says Natural Resource Conservation Service Rangeland Management Specialist Julie Elliott.

The session, billed as a "comprehensive" Managing Drought Workshop, will be held in Wray, Colo.

Drought takes its toll  on the eastern Colorado range where little vegetation can be found for livestock grazing.
Drought takes its toll on the eastern Colorado range where little vegetation can be found for livestock grazing.

"Whether you own rangeland and cattle, or you are a landlord who leases your range, or you are the one  with the cows leasing the range, this workshop is for you," she says. "Come learn a totally unique approach to drought management that has never been available before."

The workshop begins on the afternoon of the 11th with a separate section that evening and one the following day. The Dec. 11 focus will be on the thought processes of  drought and the Calf_Cost_Cow-Q-lator spreadsheet.

This spreadsheet predicts profit or loss given certain conditions such as hay prices, how much hay is fed, calf weaning size, calf prices, and more variables crunched in the computer.

Attendees will go through the worksheet and fill in the best and worst case prices and conditions and learn the profit estimate, she explains.

The spreadsheet is available free on line.

After a free dinner, the workshop series will continue with an introduction to web resources. Guest speaker Pat Reece will introduce all of these resources and explain why ranchers should know how to use the websites to gain valuable information vital to making informed drought plan decisions.

On the 12th, the class will learn about drought indicators, plant drought responses, and drought planning. Lessons will include what is needed to know answers to vital questions such as:

•How much moisture is needed?

•How many animals can be run in the summer?

•When can decisions be made?

The workshops will run from 9 a.m. through 3:30 p.m. Ranchers may attend all or parts of the seminar sponsored by the Yuma County Conservation District and NRCS.

For more information, call Elliott at (970) 332-3172, Ext. 3.