Wet weather creates tough conditions for farmers and their cattle

LOMA, Colo.(KKCO/KJCT)-- Our recent rains have taken a toll on livestock farmers in the Grand Valley.

Farmers tell us cows can deal with the cold, but mud can be deadly for newborn calves.

"They can’t get up and get to their mother and if you don't find them and get them picked up in a couple hours they just die,” said Rees Potter, Manager, Western Slope Cattleman’s Livestock Auction.

Our wetter weather has created a muddy mess for local farmers. Cows constantly standing in it and in pools of standing water.

“It’s good to have the moisture but it is challenging,” said Potter.

"They don't lay down in the mud…we tried to dig trenches so it will drain,” said Robert Collins, cow farmer.

Over at the Cattleman’s Livestock Auction, they’re working overtime to ensure all their cows are properly taken care of.

"They don't settle, they can't lay down, it’s wet, we can't keep up with it. We are doing everything we can to keep the pens dry and chip and it’s not just us, the other producers in the valley too, it’s just difficult and it’s mainly just the moisture,” said Potter.

They say it’s taking a toll on supplies and labor.

"The labor cost is a huge factor because it takes twice as much and it’s just overwhelming and exhausting to get through this,” said Potter.

Travel has been halted due to extreme winter weather on the Front Range.

"Our transportation goes up we can’t get cattle out of here, like today we can’t get to Denver, we can’t get anywhere east, all of these cattle are standing, waiting to go east,” said Potter.

They’ve created dirt mounds or hills in some pastures so that the ground dries quicker. Luckily, no cows have died at the Cattleman’s.

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