For the week ending April 28, warm, dry weather toward the end of the week allowed fieldwork to begin in some areas of the state, according to the National Agricultural Statistics Service, South Dakota Field Office, April 29.
Pastures are beginning to green up following the warm weather and sunshine. Average snow depth across the state was reported at only .2 inch. The spring-like conditions resulted in 1.7 days suitable for fieldwork. Topsoil moisture supplies rated 6 percent very short, 20 percent short, 68 percent adequate, and 6 percent surplus. Subsoil moisture supplies rated 24 percent very short, 46 percent short, 29 percent adequate, and 1 percent surplus. Major agricultural activities during the week included caring for livestock and preparing for spring planting.
Winter wheat condition rated 16 percent very poor, 35 percent poor, 43 percent fair, 6 percent good, and 0 percent excellent. Spring wheat seeding rated 13 percent complete, well behind last year at 96 percent and 56 percent average. Oats seeding rated 30 percent complete, behind 90 percent last year and 52 percent average. Barley seeding, at 14 percent complete, is also well behind 79 percent last year and 39 percent average.
Calving was 77 percent complete and lambing 85 percent complete. Only 9 percent of cattle were reported as moved to pasture. Cattle and calf conditions rated 1 percent very poor, 6 percent poor, 29 percent fair, 57 percent good, and 7 percent excellent. Cattle and calves death loss reported at 6 percent below average, 79 percent average, and 15 percent above average. Sheep and lamb conditions rated 0 percent very poor, 3 percent poor, 18 percent fair, 64 percent good, and 15 percent excellent. Sheep and lambs death loss reported at 2 percent below average, 93 percent average, and 5 percent above average. Pasture and range conditions rated 17 percent very poor, 38 percent poor, 35 percent fair, 10 percent good, and 0 percent excellent. Hay and forage supplies rated 22 percent very short, 34 percent short, 43 percent adequate, and 1 percent surplus. Stock water supplies were 20 percent very short, 29 percent short, 51 percent adequate, and 0 percent surplus.
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