Cattle in Nebraska feedlot DarcyMaulsby/iStock/Thinkstock.

N&H TOPLINE: Drylotting cows an option during drought

Utilizing drylots allow ranchers to hold on to productive cows until pasture conditions improve; develop heat stress management plans for feedlots before hot and humid conditions arrive.

Feeding cattle in a drylot rather than range or pasture may be a viable alternative for livestock producers dealing with drought conditions this year, said Warren Rusche, South Dakota State University Extension beef feedlot management associate.

"If drought conditions become severe enough that productive cows must be removed from pastures — or never sent to grass at all — making the best decision becomes much more complex," Rusche said. "Feeding (cow/calf) pairs in a drylo

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