Panhandle Research and Extension Center

Pinto beans
Nebraska ranks second in production of dry edible beans; however, this year drought and hail took a toll on dry edible beans in western Nebaska. For those harvests that don't meet the grade for human consumption, livestock feed may be an option.

Incorporating Drought or Hail Stricken Dry Edible Beans in Livestock Feed

August 28, 2019
In some areas of western Nebraska hail and drought took a toll on dry edible beans this year, reducing the feasability of harvesting them for rigorous human consumption standards. Consider these other options for their use.

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Workers examine the site of the smaller of the two tunnel collapses.
Figure 1. Workers examine the site of the smaller of the two tunnel collapses. This week it was determined that the resulting loss of canal irrigation to growers in eastern Wyoming and western Nebraska was an insurable event.

Irrigation Tunnel Collapse Found to be an Insurable Event

August 23, 2019
Today, growers and nearby communities breathed a sigh of relief as the USDA Risk Management Agency announced that the water loss resulting from Goshen/Gering-Ft. Laramie Canal tunnel collapse was an insurable loss.

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Excavation continues above the tunnel collapse. A series of three trench boxes, each 10 feet tall by 20 feet wide by 20 feet long will be dropped down into the space as soil is removed. (Photo courtesy the Goshen Irrigation District)
Figure 1. Excavation continues above the tunnel collapse and on Friday a series of three trench boxes, each 10 feet tall by 20 feet wide by 20 feet long, were droppped down on top of the tunnel to create a safe place for working. (Photo courtesy the Goshen Irrigation District)

Update on Canal Repairs Affecting Growers in Nebraska and Wyoming

August 23, 2019
Work continues to excavate soil above the irrigation tunnel collapse just south of Fort Laramie. A series of trench boxes is being installed to facilitate safe conditions for continued digging. Prospects remain uncertain for restoring water this irrigation season.

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A screen capture from a time-lapse video of dry edible beans without irigation

Some Fields Doing Better Than Expected Without Irrigation, Some Not

August 23, 2019
Time-lapse videos and photos capture the status of crops affected by the loss of irrigation water to growers in the North Platte River Valley in eastern Wyoming and western Nebraska.

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Figure 1. A bird's eye view of the land work to repair the irrigation canal and excavate the collapsed area above the tunnel. (Photos by Rick Preston)

Update: Tunnel Repair Continues 'Round the Clock'

August 16, 2019
Repairs to the Gering-Fort Laramie-Goshen irrigation canal and tunnel are progressing, although it’s still too early to determine when water flow will be restored, growers were told Monday at stakeholder meetings in Nebraska and Wyoming. A photo series helps tell the story of progress.

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Efforts are ongoing to repair the tunnel section of the Goshen/Gering-Fort Laramie Irrigation canal that collapsed July 17. This photo was taken August 8.
Figure 1. Efforts are ongoing to repair the tunnel section of the Goshen/Gering-Fort Laramie Irrigation canal that collapsed July 17. This photo was taken August 8. (Photos by Gary Stone)

Potential Economic Impact of Tunnel Collapse is $89 Million

August 15, 2019
The economic impact of the July 17 tunnel collapse on the Gering-Fort Laramie Canal could climb as high as $89 million if the loss of irrigation water results in a total crop failure, according to a new report issued by University of Wyoming Extension and Nebraska Extension.

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Crop Insurance Question for Those Affected by Canal/Tunnel Collapse

August 9, 2019
As repairs continue on the collapsed tunnel in the Goshen/Gering-Fort Laramie Canal, unanswered questions remain about whether crop insurance will cover crop losses. Until that's determined, farmers in the affected area need to manage their crop as if water will return to the canal.

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UNL High Plains Ag Lab Field Day Aug. 13

August 9, 2019
The Aug. 13 High Plains Ag Lab Field Day will highlight UNL research on dryland crops, especially sunflowers, proso millet, and grain sorghum.

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