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Santa Rosa County Ag Suffers Loss from Floods this Week

A flooded field in Santa Rosa County, FL.  Photo by Mike Donahoe.

A flooded field in Santa Rosa County, FL. Photo by Mike Donahoe.

Initial surveys by Extension Agriculture Agents and USDA personnel revealed significant damage to agricultural interests in Santa Rosa County from this week’s flood. Rainfall throughout the county was highly variable ranging from 6 to 20+ inches during the April 29-30 event. Fortunately, amounts in the northern half of the county, where most of the agriculture production occurs, were generally on the lower end of the scale. However, we have had several large rain events during the month of April with over 18 inches recorded in the northern ag sector of the county since April 4.

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This Santa Rosa field suffered significant erosion caused by recent rains and subsequent flooding. Photo by Mike Donahoe.

Below is a list of Santa Rosa County Ag Loss estimates:

  • Total acres of farmland affected: 55,000 acres.
  • Wheat – 1,153 acres planted and affected with 35% yield loss.
  • Oats – 70 acres planted and affected with 35% loss.
  • Corn – 700 acres planted and affected with 10% loss.
  • Grass (Hay) – 1,500 acres planted and affected with 40% loss.
  • Vegetables – 350 acres affected with 10% loss.
  • Yield loses on cotton and peanuts are anticipated due to delayed planting up to 3 to 4 weeks. Fields will have to dry out and many will have to be reworked to repair soil erosion damage before planting can occur.
  • Farm Structures (i.e. dams, silos, etc.) – 5 affected at $ 50,000 loss.
  • Land Damages (i.e. erosion, gullying, etc.)  10,000 acres affected – $ 750,000 loss.
  • Estimated percent of total agricultural losses covered by insurance – 7.5%.

These initial estimates will be included with the USDA FSA County Emergency Board report. More information will be provided as it becomes available.

PG

Author: Michael Donahoe – mcd@ufl.edu

Michael Donahoe is the County Extension Director in Santa Rosa County. His educational program focuses on agronomic crop production with primarly responsibilities in integrated pest management and cotton production.

Michael Donahoe

Permanent link to this article: http://okaloosa.ifas.ufl.edu/newsletters/2014/05/03/santa-rosa-county-ag-suffers-loss-from-floods-this-week/