Heat wave threatens Kansas livestock, farm crops

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WICHITA, Kan. (AP) - A heat wave engulfing Kansas for the next few days is threatening cattle in the state's feedlots while further stressing crops already struggling with drought conditions.

Feedlot owners are making preparations to cope with triple-digit temperatures expected across much of the state.

In the northeastern town of Muscotah, feedlot owner Terry Handke says the heat index for livestock is expected to reach emergency levels on Thursday and into the weekend.

His operation is preparing by removing all manure, so that workers can wet the cattle down to lower the temperature in pens. He'll also be feeding the bulk of his daily rations in late afternoon.

Kansas farmers expect the heat to cause some yield losses to spring-planted crops, such as corn.

Copyright 2011 The Associated Press.

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