Farmers and ranchers on handling the cold snap

Local News

PANHANDLE, Texas (KAMR/KCIT) – As this winter system slammed the area, many ranchers and farmers in the area were struggling to keep cattle and livestock alive.

Bill Bandy, a farmer near Panhandle had a newborn calf that was born Tuesday morning in wind chills below zero. He said her ears were frozen solid. He said he brought her into his kitchen to warm up and by Wednesday morning, the calf was back with her mother.

Bandy added that losing livestock can hurt financially.

“If you lose one of these calves, this has been something you have been working for a whole year. You have a calf crop once a year and once they are born, you raise them and sell them. People sell them at different stages. You’ve lost a part of your income you invested a year on,” said Bandy.

Bandy said water, feed, and protection is important for livestock and you can weather the storm a lot better.

He said that him and several others starting preparing for the winter storm a week out by getting supplies ready, such as hay and extra fuel.

“I brought in a bunch of hay to get ready to feed them because we didn’t know how much snow we were going to get and when you have snow cover, the cattle can’t get to the feed when they are out on the pasture or the field when they are grazing,” said Bandy.

Ben Weinheimer, vice president with the Texas Cattle Feeders Association said one positive of this storm was it wasn’t a blizzard.

“If you want to find something good about this cold weather is that while it’s cold, relatively speaking, we’ve had a small amount of snow about six inches of snow. It’s been a very dry snow and while we’ve had some wind, we’ve hadn’t had blizzard-like wind conditions. All of those things work in our favor, work in the favor of the cattle,” said Weinheimer.

Bandy said you learn from experiences like this and the different types of weather that come through on how to adapt.

Bandy said that he is anticipating close to 50 more calves to be born in the next 60 days on his farm.

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