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Iowa Farmers Helping Feed North Texas Livestock

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ALVARADO (CBSDFW.COM) – Walking through her farm, Denise Reiling sees only patches of grass.  “Normally this is so thick and green,” she said.

The alpacas she raises have relied on hay to survive the long, dry summer, but even that is scarce.
“We’re lucky that we have this,” she said, pointing to a mound of hay.  “We have to buy out of state just to get it.”

Reiling’s hay is coming all the way from Colorado, and it’s not cheap.  “It definitely costs us to keep them fed like this – and normally they’d just be eating our own grass,” said Reiling.

In nearby Alvarado, though, pastor Jesus Escamilla says, some farmers can no longer afford hay, and they’re watching their livestock starve.

From the fertile fields of Iowa, though, relief is on its way.  “We’ve been fortunate here,” says Duaine Davis, a farmer in the town of Luana, Iowa.  He and his neighbors are bundling hay for their counterparts in Alvarado.

“I thought we could donate this to our future friends in Texas,” said Chad Davis, who’s also sacrificing some bales of hay.

After all, back in 2008, when Iowa farms flooded, volunteers from North Texas helped them get back on their feet.  “I think it’s just something you do to help each other out,” said Reiling, who is also helping her neighbors with any hay she can spare.

For her, it comes as no surprise to see such generosity.  “I think it’s just kind of a farmer thing,” she said.

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