Are you prepared to be gone from your operation for a month? Given the current situation and forecast for the number of people that will contract COVID-19 to some degree; farmers and ranchers need to be prepared make contingency plans.

“Farmers and ranchers are the toughest guys and gals I know,” said Heather Gessner, SDSU Extension Livestock Business Management Field Specialist. “However, no matter what we think, we are not bullet proof and COVID-19 may strike our homes and families. We need to have a plan.”

Gessner suggests considering others who would be able to take your place, in the case of illness, for a day, a week or up to a month of time. Additionally, it will be helpful to make a list for that person of daily tasks, activities and detailed suggestions on how things need to be done.

A list of daily tasks and activities to consider might include:

• Feed rations and location of needed supplements.

• Lists of cows or ewes due within the week and/or month.

• Medications that need to be repeated.

• A record of cows in calving pens to be paired up.

• Water sources – if a well or pipeline, indicate where the shutoffs are.

• Where and how to make the “trick” engine, starter, PTO, or other mechanical devices work.

• Which bins need to be checked for grain quality and how the fans work.

See full story in this week’s Leader-Courier.