Drought Impacting California Cattle Industry | NBC 7 San Diego

The impact of California's drought on San Diego County

Drought Impacting California Cattle Industry



    (Published Tuesday, Feb. 4, 2014)

    The California cattle industry also is being affected by the drought.

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    In the Bay Area, cattle ranchers are having to shell out thousands of dollars to feed their herds, who don't have access to the grass they are used to with a lack of rain.

    Justin Fields, a cattle rancher, has to feed his 500 cattle hay so they can survive. But he's also wondering if he can survive the growing costs of having to purchase 175 tons of hay this season -- a huge expense that cost him nearly $50,000.

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    (Published Thursday, July 3, 2014)

    In addition, a water hole on his property is bone dry and covered with grass.

    The cows have been drinking from another spring, but Fields said if rain doesn't come soon he may be forced to shell out more money to haul in water.

    San Diego Growers Ready for Rain

    Fields was forced to sell some of his herd to offset the additional costs.

    "We've sold some of our yearling cattle already," he said. "We are pretty much doing anything necessary."