Livestock and Forages
With the dry, sunny weather that prevails through-out the harvest season, our region is well suited for the production of forages.
About 45 percent of the cropland is pasture and about 45 percent is forages cut for hay. The various types of hay produced include alfalfa, grass clover, small grain, oats with miscellaneous legumes, native grasses, and other hay types. Over the past 25 years, the acreage in hay production has fluctuated from a high of almost 31,000 acres in 1965, to a low of 14,000 in 1977. Yields in alfalfa production have steadily increased over the past 25 years from 2.5 ton/acre average to 4.2 ton/acre average. Since 1980 there has been a steady increase in the number of acres of irrigated hay pastures.