It has been a week since the historic bomb cyclone blizzard, brought rain and snow to areas of the Panhandle and eastern Wyoming.
The blizzard dropped anywhere from 10 to 12 inches with the wind creating drifts up to 6ft or more. Cattle losses are still yet to be tallied, but where some ranchers or feedlots lost a handful of cattle or calves, others have lost in the hundreds.
“Now we’re dealing with the melting snow and road damages, we have some flood advisories out, as we have minor flooding,” said Nan Gould Emergency 23 Dawes County management coordinator.
The melting snow is keeping livestock producers on their toes, trying to keep cattle and new calves secure and dry.
“We are fighting some pneumonia (cases) post-storm, we’ve had several sunny days, so it’s helped some bounce back, but diligence is going to be important there’s a lot of stressed animals out there,” said Becky Funk veterinarian at the Rushville Veterinary Clinic
The quickly melting snow is creating small lakes in some pens and open fields where the cattle are looking to bed.
“It’s a mess with all the mud for cattle to try to find dry places to lay and to get feed moved around in the mud,” Funk said.
While the snow is creating problems for livestock producers, farmers have welcomed the moisture.
“We’re fairly lucky around here,” said Scott Sterkel grain division manager at Farmers Coop in Hemingford. “It could have been worse, there is a lot of snow with refrozen water on the fields, but I don’t think we’ll have any huge delays around here.”
Winter wheat is the only crop in the ground at this time and Sterkel said, it’s hard to gauge any damage to the crop just yet.
“You almost have to wait for it to come out of dormancy to see what happens,” he said. “We’ll probably have some winter kill, some valleys will probably wash out when it (snow) starts melting. Right now, it’s too early to tell.
A chance of moisture is in the forecast again for Friday, March 22, with temperatures expected to stay in the 50s.
Rain is also scheduled for the eastern part of Nebraska where flooding has swallowed up farms and ranches.
KNEB and the Nebraska Broadcasters Association will conduct the “#NebraskaStrong Drive for Flood Relief” with the American Red Cross March 22. Stay tuned for more information on how you can help.