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Wet conditions delay winter wheat grazing

stocker cattle prices require risk management
Some producers may be able to stock wheat pastures heavier this fall.

“Stocker budgets for winter grazing still look quite favorable, unless grazing delays stretch out too long and cut excessively the days available for winter grazing,” says Derrell Peel, Extension livestock marketing specialist at Oklahoma State University, in his weekly market comments.
 
Peel explains precipitation in Oklahoma for the past month is the second most on record (187% of normal); the most all time in the last 90 days.
 
“Producers may, in fact, be looking to stock a bit heavier than usual with potential for better than average wheat forage production this winter,” Peel says.
 
At the same time, the bountiful moisture is delaying some planting and development.
 
According to the most recent USDA Crop Progress report (week ending Oct. 22), 72% of winter wheat is planted, which is 1% less than last year and 5% less than the average; 53% has emerged, which is 3% less than last year and 5% less than the average.
 
“For the first time in many years, turnout for wheat grazing is likely to be delayed by excess moisture across many regions of the state,” Peel explains. “Some wheat that was planted early is getting close to being ready to graze, but some producers have struggled to get cattle ready for grazing. Wet, sloppy conditions make health challenges worse and producers have backed off of purchases recently. Some cattle sellers have also had difficulty gathering and getting cattle to market.”

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