Ranchers Want to Help South Dakota Community - KULR-8 Television, Billings, MT

Ranchers Want to Help South Dakota Community

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BILLINGS -

Local ranchers want to help their neighbors after hearing thousands of livestock are dead in South Dakota, after 31 inches of snow fell in Rapid City last week.

According to the non-profit organization, Citizens for Balanced Use, 6,000 ranchers were affected, and lost more than 100,000 livestock.

Secretary and Treasurer of the Phillips County Livestock Association, Mark Manoukian, says a lot of the cows were still in there summer and fall pastures when the storm hit.

"And then the wind and snow and colder temperatures came along, and those animals began to get hypothermic," Manoukian said.

The President of Ranch Barthelmess, Leo Berthelmess, said it's not surprising most ranchers do not have cattle insurance.

"When we checked into it those programs we couldn't afford to protect ourselves from those kinds of things," Barthelmess said.

Barthelmess also said 100 head of cattle, or a 100 head of calves, can be up to a $100,000 loss, which is why he plans on donating to the South Dakota community.

"My brother and I are going to donate several animals to the cause, and I'm sure there's other ranchers in the store of Montana," Barthelmess said.

Barthelmess also said this kind of event can put ranchers out of business.

The organization, Citizens for Balanced Use, is accepting donations, which will be sent to those affected in South Dakota.

Donations are tax deductible. I you want to help, e-mail Kerry White at pcextn@mtintouch.net.