Drought conditions across eastern New Mexico are making this a difficult year for farmers and ranchers. Alfalfa crops are down and there's not as much wheat. Cattle growers say it's costing more to move herds to better grazing areas because of the widespread drought.
"Just about any place in agriculture you can talk about, it's critical," says farmer Gene Massey in an interview with the Portales News-Tribune.
Wesley Grau farms and raises registered Charolais breeding cattle in northern Curry County. He says the drought is costing him an extra $10,000 to $20,000/month, most of it for feed.
Moving livestock to better grazing areas means higher fuel costs. Cattle growers are also picking up extra costs from pumping water for livestock tanks because grasses don't contain enough moisture.
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