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Kentucky Livestock Stressed by Drastic Weather Change
Kentucky Ag Connection - 02/25/2020

For the month of February, Kentucky saw above normal temperatures and above normal precipitation. Exceptional rainfall in the first two weeks of the month led to saturated ground and periodic flooding. Precipitation (liq. equ.) for the period totaled 5.03 inches statewide which was 2.07 inches above normal and 170% of normal. Precipitation totals by climate division, West 4.54 inches, Central 5.28 inches, Bluegrass 3.58 inches and East 6.70 inches, which was 1.26, 2.06, 1.03 and 3.92 inches above normal. Temperatures for the period averaged 40 degrees across the state which was 4 degrees warmer than normal. High temperatures averaged from 49 in the West to 51 in the East. Low temperatures averaged from 33 degrees in the West to 33 degrees in the East.

Livestock have been stressed by drastic changes in weather patterns. Excessive precipitation has led to damaged pasture ground in many areas. Despite the adverse weather, livestock have remained in mostly good condition. The current reported livestock condition is 3% very poor, 8% poor, 26% fair, 54% good, and 9% excellent.

Hay supplies have been depleted this year due to a drought at the end of the summer along with a very wet fall and winter. At times, mild temperatures have helped the situation, but in many instances farmers have had to feed a good deal of hay. Supply levels were rated as 14% very short, 35% short, 48% adequate, and 3% adequate.

Winter wheat top dressing has been delayed, however the condition of the crop is mostly good. The winter wheat condition was rated as 1%very poor, 2% poor, 11% fair, 63% good, and 23% excellent. Tobacco stripping is 98% complete at this juncture.

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