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Drought relief: Noem signs order allowing mowing in ditches

June 29, 2021 GMT

PIERRE, S.D. (AP) — A state of emergency order signed Tuesday by South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem will allow producers to begin mowing ditches for hay.

A Department of Transportation rule prohibits mowing ditches in eastern South Dakota until mid-summer primarily to provide cover for pheasant chicks. Noem said the mild winter and early spring has put most of the pheasant hatch “well behind us.”

Reports for the upcoming pheasant hunting season “look fantastic,” Noem said.

“Growing up on the family ranch, I know how difficult it can be to feed cattle during dry times,” Noem said “This increased flexibility will allow producers to immediately gain access to hay for their livestock.”