If you watched the news at all during the last week or so, you probably saw images from Colorado’s historic flooding. It’s heartbreaking to look at, especially because, in many instances, the flooded areas haven’t seen flooding in so long that many weren’t prepared.
Of course, it’s tough for homeowners dealing with massive damage and loss, but many people forget about farmers and ranchers who are not only potentially dealing with the loss of their homes, but also the loss of the livestock and livelihood.
From my past life as an account executive at an advertising agency, I know several farmers and ranchers out west – and a couple in Colorado. One such acquaintance is Kevin Ochsner, host of RFD TV’s Cattlemen to Cattlemen.
I met Kevin a couple of times working on segments for Cattleman and Cattleman. He’s a good guy and a good rancher and, in the case of the below news clip, is just one example of the lengths to which farmers and ranchers will go to protect – and rescue – their livestock in severe weather.
To watch the video and read the story about Ochsner and his family, visit http://denver.cbslocal.com/video?autoStart=true&topVideoCatNo=default&clipId=9308963.
Ochsner isn’t the only rancher working around the clock to pull his animals onto dry land. IFB’s Alan Jarand spoke Robyn Sherer, director of communications for the Colorado Farm Bureau. She said this fall’s flooding will have a tremendous impact on agriculture in the state, as pastures and fields in Boulder and Weld Counties – and several others – are all under water.
“Producers are facing washed out roads and bridges,” Sherer said. “Infrastructure is completely destroyed and many don’t have ways in and out. And it’s affecting a large area. There are 17 counties across the state with flooding and 14 of those have been declared disaster by the governor. (as of Sept. 17)
“We haven’t had any reports of lost livestock, but we know there are some,” Sherer added. “We don’t know what those numbers are yet, but Colorado ranchers and farmers have worked very hard to get their livestock out if they could.”
In the wake of the disaster, Colorado Farm Bureau has set up a disaster fund. To donate, visit coloradofarmbureau.com/disasterfund. Those wishing to donate may send cash or check by mail, or provide a donation online. The Colorado Farm Bureau will donate 100 percent of the money raised toward aiding farmers and ranchers that are in the affected flood area.