Adrian J. Polansky, State Executive Director of the Kansas Farm Service Agency (FSA) announced today that emergency haying and grazing of Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) acreage has been approved for 66 counties in Kansas effective Tuesday, July 16.
The Kansas FSA State Committee used their authority with the D2 Severe drought designations on the U.S. Drought Monitor Map to authorize the following counties once the primary nesting and brood rearing season concludes on July 15:
Barber, Barton, Butler, Chase, Cheyenne, Clark, Comanche, Cowley, Decatur, Edwards, Elk, Ellis, Ellsworth, Finney, Ford, Gove, Graham, Grant, Gray, Greeley, Greenwood, Hamilton, Harper, Harvey, Haskell, Hodgeman, Jewell, Kearny, Kingman, Kiowa, Lane, Lincoln, Logan, Marion, McPherson, Meade, Mitchell, Morris, Morton, Ness, Norton, Osborne, Pawnee, Phillips, Pratt, Rawlins, Reno, Republic, Rice, Rooks, Rush, Russell, Scott, Sedgwick, Seward, Sheridan, Sherman, Smith, Stafford, Stanton, Stevens, Sumner, Thomas, Trego, Wallaceand Wichita.
“This authorization provides relief for many Kansas livestock producers who have suffered through severe drought conditions,” Polansky said. “The drought has depleted hay supplies and affected the growth of hay and pasture in parts of Kansas. Many livestock producers cannot maintain their current herds without implementation of CRP emergency haying and grazing.”
Due to multiple years of drought and concerns for long term negative impacts to the sustainability of the grass, the Kansas FSA State Committee determined that all 2013 emergency haying and grazing activities will be limited to specific acreage that was not utilized for haying or grazing in 2011 and 2012. This includes all prior 2011 or 2012 grazing or haying activity under emergency or managed practices. An exception is available in areas where adequate moisture conditions have permitted sufficient cover growth and vigor which justifies future use as determined on a county or area basis within the county. Local officials will be making the initial exception decision by July 16.
Current CRP enrollment in Kansas is 2.3 million acres. The haying and grazing acreage utilized in 2011 and 2012 plus ineligible continuous CRP acreage totals 950,000 acres. This leaves a balance of over 1.3 million CRP acres to be used for haying and grazing in 2013 in addition to the acreage meeting the adequate moisture exception described above.