Because of imminent flooding along the Missouri River, the South Dakota Department of Agriculture encourages farmers and ranchers to take some basic precautions.

Now that livestock are out in pastures, ranchers should frequently monitor pastures that are vulnerable to river flooding and have plans in place to move livestock to higher ground, if needed. Feed sources should also be monitored and moved to higher ground, if necessary.

Producers who may have ag inputs, such as seed, pesticide and fertilizer products in storage, should move those products off the floor or to an area protected from flood waters and away from drains. Diking or sandbagging in those areas may be needed.

Ag inputs that are stored in bulk tanks, such as fuel, fertilizer or pesticides, should also be protected from potential flooding. Producers should lock and protect valves and secure empty storage tanks to prevent movement or damage by flood waters.

Walt Bones, South Dakota Secretary of Agriculture, advises farmers and ranchers to plan for the worst and hope for the best. He also reminds producers and others in rural areas that rural roads may be flooded or soft due to the wet conditions and that alternate routes may be necessary.