New Mexico cattle ranchers pummeled by ongoing drought


By Robert Nott, Santa Fe New Mexican (NM)

Sep 7, 2021


State Sen. Pat Woods saw a lot of it over this past year — cows culled from a herd and sent to the slaughterhouse because their owners couldn’t afford to feed them anymore.


“It was awfully dry,” said the longtime rancher and Republican lawmaker from Broadview, a ranching community about 30 miles north of Clovis. “They were forecasting it would never rain again and it was going to be such a tough year that a lot of ranchers didn’t want to put their money into the cow.”


The drought strikes again — and its effects are having a significant impact on the state’s cattle ranching industry, according to a new report from the New Mexico State University Department of Animal and Range Sciences.


The report, which was presented to Woods and other members of the interim Water and Natural Resources Committee on Tuesday, laid out in stark terms how drought conditions are hurting ranchers.


Some climate experts have called the drought enveloping the southwestern part of the country one of the worst in centuries. As of last Thursday...