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North Texas Farmers Welcome Hay Donations

TERRELL (CBSDFW.COM) - Experts believe the North Texas could be killing off wildlife. Officials with the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department believe if dry conditions continue through the winter and spring many adult animals will die. If there are no adult animals there is no animal reproduction.

Many North Texas farmers are fighting to survive the drought and keep their animals alive. Friday, a local group got some help from the north.

Bales of hay, donated from farmers in Indiana, were handed out to farms and ranchers in Terrell.

"The cows are hungry and it's dry as a potter house," said rancher Erick Turner.

Looking across Turner's sprawling ranch -- it's clear just how brutal the summer drought has been. "The drought has been tremendously bad," he said.

Turner's parched pasture in Terrell is home to about 40 head of cattle and they're all hungry. But, food is hard to find and even sprigs of grass are sparse.

Turner said his animals, "Want something to eat. We don't have grass, but we're hustling to make it work."

When bales of hay were handed out for free on Friday Turner loaded up his trailer.

Besides Turner, some 200 other ranchers and farmers happily hay that only cost them a little time.

While Turner and the other farmers are grateful for the donation of five round bales or 50 square bales per person, they realize the hay won't be enough to get their animals through the winter.

Turner thinks it will last, "Maybe two weeks, three weeks… not long. It won't go far, but we'll use what we got."

According to the Texas AgriLife Extension Service, agricultural losses in the state have already topped $5 billion.

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