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The prolonged drought is changing operational strategies at Tomera Ranch in Battle Mountain and other ranches in northeastern Nevada.

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Drought drying up Northern Nevada ranchers’ pocketbooks

The prolonged drought across the West is drying up profits for Northern Nevada ranchers. Last fall, Battle Mountain rancher Pete Tomera spent more than $300,000 on hay to feed his herd of 1,800-plus head of cattle. Tomera Ranch hasn’t bought any additional feed yet this year but it has spent tens of thousands of dollars moving cattle off federal land in Lander County and hauling water to animals kept on private rangelands. Tomera also spent more than $80,000 this spring building 16 miles of fence to keep his animals from moving onto federally protected rangeland.

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