ROCKFORD (WIFR) -- It’s no secret this year’s drought has caused a drastic change in the corn crop this year, but some farmers in Winnebago County are more optimistic than they were back in July. In the peak of the drought, farmers were concerned that their yields this season would be less than 50 percent of what is in their fields. On top of such a loss, they were also uneasy about how much of their fields they would be able to cut down and use for feed because they feared nitrates could still be in the crop.
“With an extreme drought the plants will suck the nitrate out of the ground and into the bottom of the plant which can make them toxic for the cattle that eat them. Fortunately, for us that hasn't been a big of an issue this year. With the rain we got through August the plants have been able to hold on without needing to do that," said John Mitchell, a Winnebago County Farmer.
Even though rains have been more consistent this month, there are still some farmers, especially in northern Stephenson County, that may have to look outside of their fields to find feed for their livestock this winter.