This program plan was written collaboratively by Laura Edwards and Roger Gates (former SDSU Extension Rangeland Management Specialist).
Over the last five years, a high degree of climatic variability has affected South Dakota producers. "Managing Drought Risk on Ranches”, a guidebook developed recently by University of Nebraska’s National Drought Mitigation Center, has provided a toolkit in which producers can better manage and plan for drought impacts and climate variability. This guidebook will serve as a baseline for a workshop series. Topics from the guidebook that will be addressed in the workshop include: monitoring climatic conditions, holistic range management for water resources and forage production, insurance options such as the Pasture, Range, Forage Rainfall Index insurance, and others. Attention will be placed on both opportunities and challenges not just with drought, but also with many weather and climate events such as blizzards, floods, heat and cold.
In response to the demonstrated need for current management information, up to four workshops are proposed. Approximately 80-100 producers will acquire the tools and resources to create a drought risk management plan that is specific to their operation, with assistance from experts in range management, economics and insurance, and climatology.