Harvest is in it's final stages in most areas of Saskatchewan, and that includes the RM of Brock.

According to Reeve Paul Cameron, producers in the region are nearly finished. Although a little canola, corn and soybeans still have yet to be plucked, most of the cereals are put away.

"I think probably 80 to 85 percent of the farmers should be wrapping things up right now," he said.

While rain has finally made a return to the area, albeit it a rather untimely one with harvest underway, Cameron noted that his locality missed the soaking that some other spots had received.

"We haven't had a whole lot of moisture since about the 2nd week in June. Then in the last couple of weeks we've only got maybe, at most, half an inch of rain. Our soil conditions, moisture wise, have been just adequate, so I was surprised at how well some of the crops did turn out."

He added that that half inch did slow some of the producers in the fields, and the following cloudy and cool weather hasn't helped dry things out. But, he's optimistic that they will be back at it soon.

Damage wise, heat seems to have been the primary culprit. 

"We had one of our hottest summers on record, and of course that really affected a lot of the crops that were planted in our area."

Those in the RM of Brock that have everything in the bin are now busy desiccating their fields and preparing for a possible early snow.

While crop producers saw some lesser yields due to the heat, wind and lack of moisture, cattle producers have had further concerns with the conditions.

"The rain didn't really help the pasture grasses. Any type of moisture we can get for the livestock producers is a benefit, but the grass was pretty dry, and I don't believe the protein was there."

Cameron noted that the poor quality and quantity of hay and feed for the livestock this season could have some significant impacts come next year.

"I know some producers that were getting just under half a bale an acre, and some that were getting a bale and a half. It does vary, and depending on what that rain does early in the spring, it's going to put some pressure on."

It appears that a lot of livestock farmers will be stretched thin, with not a lot of extra feed on hand by the snow melts.

"They could go to a feed mill and try to get some type of pallet, but of course that gives a big added expense on the bottom line. I know a lot of producers have sold their calves already, and some are taking them to the auction mart in the near future."

He added, however, that we could see a lot of snow and a wet spring, thus changing things. He does expect that farmers will be cutting down on the animals they have to feed via some heavier culling. 

 

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