Hawaii Drought, Record Temperatures Hurting Maui Ranchers

July 7, 2015 11:39 AM
Hawaii Drought, Record Temperatures Hurting Maui Ranchers

Record-setting heat and severe drought are hurting Leeward region ranchers on Maui and their cattle herds.

Hawaii News Now reports that 1,500 cattle grazed on the southern slopes of Haleakala five years ago, but only 1,300 do now.

Kaupo Ranch manager Bobby Ferreira says some cattle will be moved to pastureland being leased from another ranch as there isn't enough dry food to feed his herd.

The ranch is a partner in a grass-fed beef processing business called Maui Cattle Company, but now the ranch is sending most of its animals to the mainland for final feeding.

The National Weather Service says El Nino conditions will likely lead to a wet summer and a dry winter, which could worsen already brown leeward pastures.

Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

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