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A color-coded precipitation probability map of the United States. The majority of South Dakota is predicted to have wetter than average precipitation, with the highest likelihood being in the southwest corner of the state. For a complete description, call SDSU Extension at 605-688-6729.

May 2020 Climate Outlook

On April 16, NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center released their climate outlook for May and the coming three-month period of May through July. There is a lot of uncertainty in the temperature outlook for the next one-to-three months in the Northern Plains Region.

A small black bug with tan margins on the wings. This insect is resting on a grass seed head.

Drought Conditions Magnifying Impact of Black Grass Bugs

With much of South Dakota continuing to experience moderate-to-extreme drought conditions, black grass bugs could become a concern in some areas. Large populations of black grass bugs can cause severe damage to pasture.

Herd of black-beef cattle being moved in drought-stressed rangeland.

Trigger Dates: Critical Decisions for Drought Management

Having a drought plan in place ensures that you can overcome the inhibitions surrounding a drought response, the basis of which is figuring out trigger dates.

hereford beef cattle drinking at dam during drought.

Hot Days Ahead and the Need for Water

Hot summer days are still ahead, and we need to account for water. The amount of water a cow requires varies depending on a variety of factors, including environmental temperature, lactation status and weight.

Winter wheat field with extreme soil erosion due to drought.

Impacts of Drought on Soil, Water, Forage and Livestock Grazing Systems

Grazing systems are complex, because soil, water, forage and livestock components are interconnected and affect each other. Producers can put themselves back in the driver’s seat by developing annual systems-level grazing plans for favorable and unfavorable situations.

Indoor trade show exhibition at state fairgrounds.

Attending World Pork Expo? Consider Biosecurity

The World Pork Expo will return to the Iowa State Fair June 9–11, 2021. Pork producers and production employees must always be vigilant about biosecurity, especially when visiting industry events.

Hereford heifers feeding from trough during drought.

Livestock Tools for Managing Through Drought

As drought conditions continue, ranchers are faced with making some difficult decisions. South Dakota State University Extension offers multiple tools and resources that can be used to help make the best management decisions for your operation.

Black angus bull at pasture with two cows in the background.

Reproductive Injuries in Bulls on Pasture

While reproductive injuries in bulls might not occur every year in a given cow-calf operation, they’re one of the most-common reasons bulls are examined by veterinarians during the breeding season.

A green cut alfalfa field dries as the sun sets.

Forage Resources for South Dakota Farmers and Ranchers

Producers often have difficulties locating fellow producers to buy, sell or rent forages and grazing acres too. South Dakota now has two widely recognized, free resources to aid in these connections.

Group of black angus calves in a pen under summer heat.

Vaccinating Early-Weaned Beef Calves

In most years, pre-weaning vaccinations are a task completed in early fall. However, in dry years, poor pasture conditions forcing producers to wean calves early may push up that timeline.