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Published February 21, 2012, 07:41 PM

Farmers Encouraged to Get Crop Insurance With Drier-than-average Winter

DEVILS LAKE, ND (WDAZ-TV) - Meteorologists with the National Weather Service say both North Dakota and Minnesota should experience drought conditions this spring.

By: Adam Ladwig, WDAZ

DEVILS LAKE, ND (WDAZ-TV) - Meteorologists with the National Weather Service say both North Dakota and Minnesota should experience drought conditions this spring.

Experts are encouraging farmers to hedge their bets with crop insurance.

Even with a potential drought on the horizon, local agriculture experts say a lack of water could be the last thing some farmers are worrying about.

In recent years, farmers have had to worry about excess water destroying their crops.

"But that certainly can change and we did see a bit of that this past growing season, not as wet as we have been, and certainly this winter has proven to be a lack of moisture," Benson County NDSU Extension Agent Scott Knoke said.

Knoke recommends that all farmers get crop insurance in case drought conditions affect crops.

"I would think it's pretty common practice to protect your investment on the farm these days and any chance that you have to protect the operating costs that you have," Knoke said.

The wet weather in years past might also help reduce drought damages. North Dakota Crop Commissioner Doug Goehring says if we have to experience a drought, now is the time. Knoke agrees, but says water could still pose dangers, even in a dry year.

"That could certainly change with one event. We get a couple inch rain and we're right back to where we started with a wet mess," Knoke said. "I would just encourage folks to protect themselves the best they can."

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