Sask. snow brings end to cattle grazing season after tough year marked by drought

'The snow is definitely a double-edged sword for us,' says Adrienne Ivey


Colleen Silverthorn, CBC News (Canada)

Nov 16, 2021


Drought-stricken ranchers struggling to provide enough feed and water for their cattle hope Tuesday's snowstorm brings moisture to their parched land, even if it means an end to fall grazing.


"The snow is definitely a double-edged sword for us, because we went into fall so dry we are welcoming any and all moisture. Even if it comes in the form of snow because that gives us hope for next year," said Adrienne Ivey, who runs a mixed farm with her husband near Ituna, about 134 kilometres northeast of Regina.


Ivey said this summer's drought dried up sloughs and dugouts on their land, but also allowed the cattle to remain out to pasture to graze instead of consuming expensive feed.


"There's been a lot of extended fall grazing happening and definitely snow cover makes that more difficult now they have to dig through the snow to get to the grass," Ivey said.


Much of Saskatchewan was under winter storm and wind warnings Tuesday.


According to Environment and Climate Change Canada, parts of the province could receive up to 35 centimetres of snow and experience winds of up to 100 kilometres per hour.


For farmers who watched their crops wither and dugouts dry out under the searing summer heat, the promise of any moisture is welcome news...


more, including precip map