Several reports circulating on the internet claim that 3000 head of cattle have sadly lost their lives as a result of heat stress. However, greater damage has been suggested based on the data obtained from farmers and livestock experts.
We are not embedding the video here due to its disturbing visuals, but Kansas State officials stated on Tuesday that the confirmed death toll of the cows is ‘at least 2000.’
Based on the data obtained by livestock experts, DTN has reported that the “current heat wave blazing through Kansas feedlots has killed an estimated 10,000 head of fat cattle,” as of Tuesday (June 14).
While the exact number of succumbed cows in Kansas hasn’t been revealed, reports with varied counts are making rounds on the internet. Some even use the term ‘head of cattle’, so it is important for you to know its meaning.
Fauna Facts explain: “A head of cattle is a way of describing a group of cattle according to how many individual cattle are in the group, which is usually a ranch or farm. For example, if a farmer says he has a 140 head of cattle herd, his herd of cattle contains 140 cows.”
A.J. Tarpoff, who works with Kansas State University Extension, says when there is a “perfect storm” of too much heat without any chance for nighttime cooling, cattle can trap heat and die from the stress.
And, Drew Lerner, the president of World Weather Inc, told Reuters: “It’s going to be oppressively hot and stressful for the animals. You can’t say, ‘Oh I checked them three days ago. When it gets hot, you’ve got to be out every day, making sure that their water is maintained.”