The Woodward News

Local News

June 12, 2013

Hay situation a little better

Woodward, Okla. — LAVERNE – This time last year, cattlemen were edgy at best about whether or not they would have enough hay to purchase, no matter how high the price got.

In April of last year, trading was at a near standstill, according to the Oklahoma Hay Report and if you ask some local ranchers, like A.R. Plain of Laverne, things were pretty awful.

“You know, last year was a bad, bad, bad deal,” Plain said. “If you had cattle, whether you had one head or a thousand, you had too many.”

Anyone buying hay might have agreed.

A year ago, a round bale of good quality alfalfa was bringing on average $250-$290 per round bales. In some cases the price was up to $325, according to the Oklahoma Hay Report. And it only got worse as the summer heated up and fields dried up or were eaten down to the dirt.

This year, the same hay has come out of the clouds but is still hovering at up to $190 per ton for good to premium alfalfa, according to the latest Oklahoma Hay Report.  

Plain and others in the region are slightly more optimistic, although they know any real improvement is still years away.

“Well, at least we have had a little rain and things are trying to green up a little,” Plain said. “So we have a little better shot at having some hay this year over last year. "But honestly, it will take about three years before things get back to normal. There is still a lot of brown pasture out there.”

Local hay producer and custom baler, Brant Mcatee agrees with Plain.

“I think if you don’t have any hay and you need to buy it, I’d be buying it now,” Mcatee said. “I put up some wheat hay this year and it barely made one bale an acre and that is sub par.”

While conditions have improved somewhat, Mcatee agrees with Plain, it’s not time to celebrate.

“Even though there was the rain, most guys would normally be on their second cutting and because of the freeze, are just now getting in their first cutting,” Mcatee said. “If normally these guys get five cuttings, this year, they will probably get only four.”

While alfalfa hay has dropped in price, good quality round bales of grass are holding the price line.

This year a good round bale of grass is fetching $90-$105 per ton. In April last year, the price averaged $80 to $90 per ton, but increased sharply through the year as supplies diminished, according to the hay report.

“This year, since they finally got the moisture to put it in, some guys are buying some of the feed grass seed, like hay grazer and sorghum and things like that,” Mcatee said. “They should be able to have enough moisture to get a cutting or maybe even two this year.”

Text Only
Local News
  • Commissioners to act on agreements

    Lawn care will be the focus of action at the Woodward City Commission meeting Monday, April 21 at 7 p.m. in City Hall.

    April 20, 2014

  • Disaster assistance charity organizing

    The 2012 Woodward tornado did more than just destroy a significant part of Woodward, in an ironic way it helped create a springboard for some who recognized a need for a different kind of disaster assistance.

    April 20, 2014

  • Area school calendars

    School activities for April 21-26

    April 20, 2014

  • Several blood drives coming up

    Local blood donors will have a number of opportunities in the coming weeks to make a life saving donation of blood.

    April 20, 2014

  • Free Financial Fitness Kits available from OSCPA

    April is National Financial Capability Month and the Oklahoma Jump$tart Coalition is observing it's 10th annual Jump$tart Your Money Week, April 20-26.

    April 20, 2014

  • Filing period set for conservation boards

    Woodward County agricultural producer Jerry Hunter is mainly a cattleman.

    April 18, 2014

  • Policy amendment on county agenda

    County Commissioners will approve a new amendment to the Woodward County Employees Personnel Policy Book Monday at the regularly scheduled meeting.

    April 18, 2014

  • Easter services

    A roundup of Easter programs being held by local churches.

    April 17, 2014

  • Western Plains recognized as Certified Healthy Business

    Western Plains Youth and Family Services in Woodward is one of the organizations selected by the Certified Healthy Oklahoma program as a Certified Healthy Business.

    April 17, 2014

  • Sod House Museum hosting program

    Dr. Eric J. Schmaltz, associate history professor at Northwestern Oklahoma State University in Alva, will be at the Sod House Museum Saturday, April 26 to present an overview and presentation on “Germans from Russia in South America: New Research Frontiers."

    April 17, 2014

Business Marquee
AP Video
Raw: Fire Engulfs Tower Block in China Ocean Drones Making Waves in Research World Breakfast Foods Are Getting Pricier Raw: Ferry Captain Received Medical Treatment Hundreds Gather for Denver Pot Rally on Easter Transcript Reveals Confusion in Ferry Evacuation Raw: More Than 100,000 Gather for Easter Sunday Raw: Greeks Celebrate Easter With "Rocket War" Police Question Captain, Crew on Ferry Disaster Raw: Orthodox Christians Observe Easter Rite Raw: Four French Journalists Freed From Syria

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.