From Colorado Public Radio (Carol McKinley):
As the state’s second extreme drought in three years grips Southeastern Colorado, some farmers are struggling to pay their bills. Parched grazing land means ranchers must buy grain to feed their cattle. With that added expense, many have been forced to sell off their animals at low prices.
Bruce Fickenschure, who oversees the southeast part of Colorado for the Colorado State University Extension, said coronavirus provided a one-two punch for those who depended on outside income.
As side jobs in small towns dried up so did that extra income…
Colorado’s latest drought started May 5. According to Colorado Water Conservancy Board Director Becky Mitchell, there’s a heightened level of concern since “drought affects agriculture, outdoor recreation and tourism.”
Nearly the entire state, 95 percent, is in some level of drought and close to half of all Coloradans live in the affected areas. Forty of Colorado’s sixty-four counties are in severe to extreme drought.