Agriculture

South Dakota Farmers, Ranchers Get Some Drought Relief

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (AP) – Rain has brought South Dakota farmers and ranchers some relief from the drought. The U.S. Department of Agriculture says rain and cooler temperatures last week brought drought relief to parts of South Dakota. But rainfall totals varied widely and left some areas with little to no precipitation. Moisture conditions remain short to very short for…

Recent Rain Provides Drought Relief

Statewide Drought Conditions Decreased Six Percent In The Last Week

MITCHELL, S.D. — South Dakota is feeling some relief thanks to some recent rain. The drought across the state is starting to improve. The most recent U.S. Drought Monitor reports that there was a six percent decrease in dry conditions. 91.8 percent of the state in under some form of drought condition, as opposed to 97.2 percent last week. Farmer…

Minnehaha County Commission Approves New Feedlot Ordinance

Trims Distance Requirements Between CAFOs and Residential Buildings

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. — Larger CAFO’s, or concentrated animal feeding operations, may get closer to home in Minnehaha County. The Minnehaha County Commission voted unanimously to update their two decades-old zoning ordinance. It trims the minimum setback requirement between feeding lots and residential buildings. For example, the old ordinance required Class A feeding lots, meaning lots with 2000 or more…

Drought Hay Donation Lottery Program Now Offered In 3 States

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) – A hay donation lottery program set up in North Dakota to help drought-stricken ranchers is being expanded to producers in South Dakota and Montana. The effort was launched last week by North Dakota’s Agriculture Department , North Dakota State University and the Michigan-based nonprofit Ag Community Relief. Officials set up a site near the NDSU campus…

Concerns Arise With Possible Regulation Changes To CAFO’s

MINNEHAHA, Co. – Policies may change for farmers who build indoor livestock operations in Minnehaha County. Tuesday, commissioners are expected to vote on the distance between these operations and other buildings, like where you work, or worship. The proposal is concerning a grassroots conservation group that claims these livestock farms are harmful to people’s health. It’s a lengthy name: concentrated…

Brown County Soybean Crops Damaged by Drifting Herbicide

ABERDEEN, S.D. (AP) – Some Brown County farmers are complaining to the state that their soybean crops have been damaged by a drifting herbicide. South Dakota State University Extension specialist Gared Shaffer says the herbicide in question kills broad-leafed weeds but also can damage or kill legumes. State Agriculture Department Agronomy Services Manager Tom Gere says the agency is investigating…

Slight Drought Improvement This Week

More Drought Relief In Sight!

August 1, 2017 Drought Monitor ReportThis summer has been a rough one for farmers across the Rushmore State as drought has ramped up during the hottest months of the year. Week after week we have seen drought continue to expand and worsen across our area, but for the second week in a row, our drought conditions have stalled or slightly…

Daugaard: Buffer Strip Property Tax Incentives Available

PIERRE, S.D. (AP) – Gov. Dennis Daugaard’s office says South Dakota residents have until October to apply for tax incentives meant to encourage people to install buffer strips between agricultural land and waterways. The new law offers property tax breaks for land turned into buffer strips of vegetation to help trap fertilizer, pesticides and sediment before they reach water. Supporters…

MN Lifts Travel Restrictions To Help SD Farmers During Drought

Executive order in effect for the next two weeks

It’s now easier for Minnesota farmers and ranchers to lend a hand to those struggling in South Dakota and North Dakota during the drought. Governor Mark Dayton has issued an executive order making it easier for people to donate hay to ranchers and farmers across state lines.  Executive Order 17-05 lifts road and vehicle restrictions for Minnesota farmers and ranchers. …

Extreme Drought Conditions Expand Across South Dakota

15% of South Dakota Under Extreme Drought Conditions... Part Of Possible Long Term Area

The bad news continues for corn and soybean farmers across the South Dakota; the drought conditions have worsened across central portions of the state with now 15% of South Dakota underneath extreme drought conditions. The latest data from the Drought Mitigation Center shows a small area of extreme drought conditions developing in south parts of the Missouri River Valley. Drought…

July 25-26 Rain Totals

Some Impressive Rain Totals From Tuesday's Storms

Some impressive rainfall reports coming in from storms that rolled through our area Tuesday afternoon and overnight into Wednesday. Some very heavy rain fell across southern and eastern South Dakota. Below is a list of totals that we have received from the National Weather Service offices in Aberdeen, Sioux Falls, and Rapid City. If you don’t see your town, that…

ASK BRANDON: Why Are Some Hailstones Spiky?

The Science Behind How Hailstones Are Formed

  Facebook Photo: Kristen Dunn – Watertown, SD – July 11, 2017 Facebook Comment: Kristen Dunn: “I’m intrigued by the shape of the top one. Isn’t hail normally round?” ______________________________ Great question! In short, the answer is no. But in order to get to why, we need to break down the science of how hail is formed! Hail can come…

Evapotranspiration – A Fancy Word For Corn Sweat

A Big Word Caused By Something On A Molecular Level

On a hot, sunny day in the middle of the Summer have you ever stopped and noticed how muggy it feels outside? Like instead of living in the Northern Plains, you’re living somewhere tropical but… there’s no ocean around. So what’s causing it to feel like that? Look around, chances are, especially if you’re in the Northern Plains, you’re surrounded…

USGS Helps Create New Drought Monitor, Looks At Faster Moving Conditions

South Dakota and much of the Northern Great Plains are going through a drought; conditions that developed strong and fast. While federal and state agencies rely on the U.S. Drought Monitor to manage those conditions, the US. Geological Survey’s Center is developing a new system to help them see and respond to changes faster. “We see dryer conditions later in…

Hutterite Colony By Stratford Plans To Grow Swine Facility

STRATFORD, S.D. (AP) – A Hutterite colony near Stratford is planning to expand its swine operation. The American News reports that an application has been submitted to grow the animal feeding operation by 2,400 head of swine to a total of nearly 10,000 head. The state Department of Environment and Natural Resources says in a public notice that the facility…