June 1st was the official start of the Atlantic Hurricane season. NOAA has predicted that we could be in store for another active hurricane season this year. On our website, GriffinFertilizer.com, we have already published two online articles sharing tips from UF/IFAS on getting your farm or ranch ready. Make sure to go online and click on our blog page for more details, but below I’ve included a summary to help get your to-do list started and be prepared in the event of another big storm.
- Create a paper list with contact information for everyone:
– Extended family
– Farm Service Agency Office
– Insurance provider
– Utility Company – Report downed power lines and power outages so your farm can be added to their response list.
UF/IFAS County Extension Offices
– The local Sheriff’s Office, and the number for their Agriculture Unit
- Be prepared to lose power for a week or more. The following tips are word-for-word recommendations from the UF/IFAS guide:
– Order fuel to top off farm fuel tanks for tractors and equipment, as well as family vehicles. Fuel deliveries may be disrupted following the storm. Local gas stations may not be open for several days after the storm passes.
– Purchase batteries for flashlights and lanterns. Have enough flashlights ready for each employee.
– Stock up on feed for animals receiving supplemental feeds. Don’t forget the cats and dog food. Have enough hay, feed and health care supplies on hand for one to two weeks. Feed stores may not be open for business for a week or more after a storm.
– Move animals to pastures with ponds so well-filled water troughs are not the only source of water.
– For operations that rely on electric fencing, have a generator ready to keep the fence hot, or at least move animals to interior pastures so they have multiple fences to help keep them in.
UF/IFAS also makes thorough observations on how to be prepared for high winds and flooding, which you can also read about on our website. Stay tuned for next edition, and we’ll cover more on this topic.
This Column is sponsored by Griffin Fertilizer Co.
BIO: Mike Roberts is the Vice President of the Frostproof, Fla.-based Griffin Fertilizer Co. Roberts joined the company in November 2011. He has spent the majority of his career in the fertilizer/agchem industry. Roberts earned a Bachelor of Science degree in citrus production from Florida Southern College in Lakeland. He is currently the chairman of the Florida Fertilizer & Agrichemical Association. For more information, visit griffinfertilizer.com.