Minnesota livestock producers could be facing a forage shortage this spring. U of M Extension Service experts say that reports of winter injury and winterkill of alfalfa continue to intensify across parts of southern Minnesota. That’s contributing to an existing shortage caused by two years of drought. The service has begun surveying farmers to get a better grip on the extent of the damage, and producers are examining their options. Many of them will end up purchasing hay or growing some type of emergency crop to feed their animals. The Extension Service website has educational resources for producers with questions about forage supplies. There’s also information on late planting, since many Minnesota farmers faced delays getting into their fields due to late-season snow.
Alfalfa weather damage and emergency forage information: http://www1.extension.umn.edu/agriculture/crops/spring-issues
Late planting information: http://www1.extension.umn.edu/agriculture/crops/late-planting