The persistent drought throughout 2012 has created a shortage of cattle, which has pushed sale prices up a bit from this time last year. The lack of rain and ground moisture led to limited supplies of hay and other cattle feed.

Silvia Christen with the South Dakota Stock Growers Association says they have seen drastic increases in the prices for older cows as they come to market, while calf prices have remained steady from last year.

Christen says the decline in herd numbers across the region has created more demand for cattle which has driven up the price.

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