(KXNET) — Ranchers are encouraged to make a plan to move livestock and feed to higher ground due to flood risks across the state.

Currently, portions of the Souris River show a minor to moderate spring flooding risk, while the Red River Basin is at a moderate to major risk of flooding combined with the risk of overland flooding as a result of the snowpack across the state, this means that livestock and feed supplies on the lower ground are in danger.

Floodwaters can rise quickly, which can cut off livestock’s access to food and water.

Moving feed also comes with risks though, because moving hay bales can result in hay loss.

The NDSU extension services encourage producers to have accessible storage facilities and an adequate supply of feed.

While all areas won’t experience flooding, mud could still be an issue on farms and ranches. Mud can reduce the insulation of livestock coats, increase energy requirements, and increase the risk of health issues like foot rot. It could also chill or trap newborn calves and lambs, as well as carry pathogens that can affect calves and lambs by direct contact or through contact with dirty udders.

Ways to reduce muddy conditions include the following:

  • Scraping lots to maintain a slope away from the feed bunk
  • Reshaping mounds for quick drainage
  • Moving livestock to temporary feeding areas with adequate draining