A small herd waits for a handout of cattle cake, a high-protein food pellet, at B&L Red Angus. Joe Wertz/StateImpact Oklahoma
The American West appears to be moving east. New research shows the line on the map that divides the North American continent into arid Western regions and humid Eastern regions is shifting, with profound implications for American agriculture.
In western Oklahoma, farmers like Benji White and his wife, Lori, have become ranchers.
The Whites run 550 head on about 5,000 acres at B&L Red Angus, the family's seedstock and commercial ranching outfit near the town of Putnam in western Oklahoma. The Whites used to grow wheat and other grains, but they've stopped farming to expand the ranching business.
"Farming is kind of a one-shot deal," said Benji White. "If you don't get rain, where we're completely dry-land, you lose everything. Crop insurance doesn't really pay for all the expenses."
In today’s Water Works, brought to you by AquiMax, maximizing soil moisture can be an integral part of general water management strategies. As energy and water rates are substantial components of the overall cost of production, implementing various techniques that can help reduce usage can be extremely valuable for growers.Read more