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Caddo County devastated by drought

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Caddo County, Okla_When it comes destructive weather in Oklahoma, not many places have experienced it worse than Caddo County has over the past few years. It's been declared a federal disaster area nine times since 2007, making it one of the nation's most ill-fated locations.

However, out of all the tornadoes, ice storms and floods that have hit the area, farmers and ranchers say nothing has been more crippling than the seemingly never-ending drought.

One cattleman, Phil Perryman, said he's had a lot of time to get used to the lack of rain in Oklahoma.

"I guess we get accustomed to it, not that you get accustomed to dry weather," Perryman said.

He recalled a time when the weather around the Caddo County area took another extreme turn.

Perryman said, "Back in 2007 we had a flood, 15 inches in one weekend, so that effects you're annual rainfall, but it doesn't effect your distribution."

Perryman has lived on a cattle ranch for a little over 20 years, but that livelihood is being threatened by the drought.

"We've gone through some good times and bad times and probably the last two to three years, it's really been rough."

It's been so bad, he's had to sell  50 of his cattle just to maintain the other 50 he has left, but he isn't letting that stop him from doing what he says he was born to do.

"Don't let anybody kid you, agriculture is a business there is no doubt about that it's also a way of life, when you talk about the family farm there's some emotion involved in that," said Perryman.

He's using a few tricks of the trade to help maintain his remaining live stock.

"Moisture control on your pasture is important, that way the weeds don't take some of the moisture that you do get and in drought situation wheat control is very important," Perryman said.

Wheat producer Bryan Vail said, Tuesday morning's rainfall, although needed, wasn't enough to make up for how much they're lacking.

"We got a little bit about half an inch or so, that'll keep the wheat crop alive about another month or so, but it's going to take a lot more to finish this crop," Vail said.

He says until mother nature offers some more relief, he'll continue to rely on his 10 year method of "no till farming" to keep his crop fresh.

"You just don't cultivate the ground," Vail said, "You control your wheat and through spring you just try to keep residue on the ground, keep it covered, that conserves moisture."

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