TAZEWELL (WATE) – Claiborne County farmers have been dealing with the recent ice and snow and now flooding. This is usually only a trickle of water but the weather has made it very difficult to get around the farm.
Chris Coffman has been a farmer all of his life. His farm has 300 acres and around 50 cows.
“It’s been rough, real rough. Just the snow getting to the farms, getting the cattle fed, checking on the newborn calves,” said Coffman.
Coffman’s farm has lost two calves to the elements, and have had to work hard to save several others.
“We’ve had to take a few home to get warmed up,” said Coffman, “get some milk in them and bring them back the next day so they would be alright.”
Each loss of life is a financial loss for Coffman.
“If you lose a calf right now that’s fall crop and that’s $1000 a head or more,” said the farmer, adding that each loss is a big hit because it is money their farm depends on.
This weather also means the spring grass won’t back as soon, so Coffman will have to buy more hay than usual.
“This flooding has been a mess. It causes hazards. Cattle get stuck in the mud and get it on their udders. The calves can get ecoli from that and you can get sickness there,” said Coffman.