Drought conditions in southern Iowa earlier this summer depleted hay production and cut into already low supplies after dry conditions in 2017.

Though cattle farmers in the counties rated as “extreme drought” are eligible for some financial assistance through the livestock forage program, they’re still worried, Iowa State University (ISU) specialists say.

“The obvious lack of hay production locally has producers using what little hay they have to satisfy the nutritional needs of the herd,” said Patrick Wall, ISU Extension beef specialist.

Dry conditions last year reduced carry-over stocks of hay, Wall notes.

“Many producers stack ...