Check out the link to the YouTube video "God Made a Farmer" the voice is that of the late Paul Harvey. Paul Harvey's voice was on rural radio stations every weekday with news and commentary and he always knew "The Rest of the Story". As a kid I grew up listening to him at noon nearly every day that we didn't have school. I borrowed this from another Nebraska Farmer and blogger. The link to the blog is also above the pictures are from their farm in NorthEastern Ne. I felt that this slide show and poem needed to be re-shared this year as we could all use a little reminding why "God made Farmers" and reminding that we were chosen for this job not because it is always easy, but because we have the ability to figure out some way to produce food for others even when Mother Nature gives it her best to stop us. Maybe some day Mother Nature will realize that no matter what she throws at us Farmers we will figure out someway to make it all work.
Usually major and minor things that effect those of us out here in the middle of now where don't make the news in the big cities. Heck it usually doesn't even make our "local" news. This year everybody in the US has probably heard that we are experiencing one of the worst droughts in history and it has been compared to the drought in the 1980's and I have even heard some meteorologist comparing this drought during the dirty 30's. For those that don't get to see first hand what extremely high temperatures, strong hot winds, and no rain for nearly 12 months will do to our pastures, fields, and livestock let me tell you it is heartbreaking and it has not been a real fun year. The past few months I doubt there isn't a single farmer in the US that has not been on their knees many times praying for better days and I bet there has definitely been a lot of tears of sadness shed over current situation and the unknown future.
|Over the past few months much like the majority of major food producing states, Nebraska has moved from abnormally dry to what the experts call "Exceptionally Dry". In other words we went from "not too bad" to it is sooo dry that the jack rabbits have to pack a lunch just to make it across the section (1 section = 640 acres = 1 square mile)|
|Irrigation water running down the row of corn. This is the last drink of water the corn will see before it is harvested.|
Due to the lack of spring rains the stock dam (a pond that catches and holds run off from spring rainstorms) that cattle drink from was bone dry by early June. There is only 1 windmill in that pasture and it has not been able to keep up.
So we took 2 extra tanks out and about every other day since June we hauled 1700 gallons of water to fill the extra tanks. We had windmill problems at another pasture late June and July (when it was the hottest) and had to haul water to that pasture too for a while. Normally we check the cattle 1-2 times a week, this year we have been checking them every other day which has meant extra time spent driving to the 3 pastures to make sure the cattle had plenty of water to drink and that they were not experiencing too much heat stress.
|A sigh of relief when you drive to the windmill and find 2 FULL tanks of water. This is only enough water to last this group of cows 2 days if the wind doesn't blow (to keep filling the tanks) when it is 100+ degrees.|