Mother Nature turned the tables this year in Kansas as eastern Kansas cattle producers dealt with diminished grass for their livestock while central and western regions of the Sunflower State flourished with pastures nourished by abundant rain.
In southeastern Kansas, Jim DeGeer, veteran cattleman from Neosho County, says a long, cool spring delayed native grasses (used for summer grazing) from taking off and growing like they normally do. And when it finally did warm up, conditions were so dry, these grasses never had the opportunity to grow.
Our pastures were extremely short all summer, DeGeer says. I know the guys who cut prairie hay throughout our regions and they told me production amounted to only a third to one-half the normal output.