Iowa State University Extension has started a series of webinars to offer various options for those farmers facing drought conditions to consider. Extension crop specialist, Joel DeJong, covers northwest Iowa and says they are seeing some similarities with the last drought.”In 2012 we had quite a drought, and in 2012 by this stage of the game, we’d had about 10 inches of rainfall — so we are actually four inches behind what we saw in 2012,” according to De Jong. “But the differences are we started with a soil that is holding a lot more water this year — probably about six inches more than 2012– and in 2012 we had hotter days.” The first seminar was Thursday and the second one is next Thursday, August 6th, and deals with finding animal feed. “Pastures forages, making silage, concerns with nitrates, alternative forages, all those things that become really tough questions for cattle producers when we get short of forage. And that’s going to be the focus of the second one,” DeJong says. The next webinar will deal with handling crops. “Chad Hart extension economist form Iowa state is going to talk about crop marketing and things to think about under the environment we’ve got now versus the big picture of the cropping throughout the country,” DeJong says. “And then a little bit of time on crop insurance considerations. Really highlighting the fact if you have some issues you need to be in conversation with your crop insurance agents to make sure all of that is being taken care of before harvest instead of after.” The webinars are free of charge, but pre-registration is requested. For more information about the times and topics, check the I-S-U Extension website.