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a dried up watering hole on the open prairie

Protect Livestock with Water Testing

May 04, 2021

South Dakota State University Extension is offering on-site livestock water testing service at all SDSU Extension Regional Extension Centers and several SDSU Extension County Offices throughout the state.

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.

Rancher surveying pasture in an offroad vehicle.

Use Caution When Fall Spraying Noxious Weeds in Pastures To Avoid Harming Desirable Plants

Noxious weed control is often a long-term process. In some cases, chemical application may be deemed necessary, but it should always be considered in the context of appropriate management and an integrated best management framework.

A yearling heifer grazes on Canada thistle after a mid-October snowfall.

Plan Now to Control Weeds With Grazing Next Season

Livestock will graze Canada goldenrod, Canada thistle and perennial sow thistle. At certain times of the year, these plants have crude protein, total digestible nutrients, and invitro dry matter digestibility concentrations similar to alfalfa and other common forages.

A large, yellow automatic cattle waterer installed in a feedlot.

Water: The Unappreciated Nutrient

Water intake is strongly linked to feed intake, so any factors that cause cattle to drink less will lead to reduced feed intake and consequently reduced performance.

man holding a small pile of soil in his hands

X-Ray Scanning Confirms Soil Health Benefits from Conservation Practices

Summary report of X-ray scanning confirms soil health benefits from conservation practices.

Field with field peas and blue sky with fluffy white clouds

Weed Control: Pulse Crops

Weed competition can cause significant yield reduction in pulse crops. Pulse crops are weak competitors with weeds, therefore planning an effective weed control program is one of the keys to profitable production.

Field with field peas and blue sky with fluffy white clouds

Production and Utilization of Field Peas in South Dakota

Guide to field pea production and utilization in South Dakota

Color-coded map of the United States showing the one-month temperature outlook for April 2021.

April 2021 Climate Update

As we look at March in the rear-view mirror, we look ahead to April and the potential for rain to return to South Dakota to reduce drought concerns across the state.

Small group of cattle near a water tank in a rangeland area.

Water Quality

While producers have long acknowledged that access to water makes the difference between a profitable or unsuccessful operation, they are beginning to understand that water quality may be as important as water quantity.