Arkansas ranchers already dealing with a pandemic, now face a winter storm

KNWA

“It’s just a challenging time right now.”

BENTONVILLE, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) — Local ranchers who are already dealing with a pandemic, are now facing a winter storm.

When COVID-19 hit, the biggest challenge ranchers faced was trying to get meat processed.

We have overcome that now in the last few months.

WILL HANNA, HANNA FAMILY RANCH

Now the biggest challenge is dealing with these dangerously low temperatures.

It’s been one thing after another hasn’t it?

WILL HANNA, HANNA FAMILY RANCH

Will Hanna is the co-owner of the Hanna Family Ranch in Bentonville.

Out of his nearly 200 sheep, 75 of them are lambs.

Hanna says the adults can weather through this storm.

“When we see livestock out, that’s nature,” he said. “They’ve acclimated to it pretty quickly and they’re actually just fine.”

The sheep are a lot heartier than we think, we all tend to humanize them.

WILL HANNA, HANNA FAMILY RANCH

When it comes to the babies though, it’s a different story.

“A lot of challenges with the cold,” he said. “Water freezes, pipes freeze, the hoses I fill the water tanks with freeze,” Hanna said.

Since this is his livelihood, Hanna has rolled with the punches.

To help the livestock through the winter, he’s added heat lamps in the barn and is giving them more food to boost their metabolism to help keep them warm.

“This is a business,” Hanna said. “These animals are our responsibility and we take that very seriously, so we do what we have to do to keep them healthy.”

Somebody, somewhere, like me and Mrs. Hanna, is standing in the snow to make sure that product gets into the stores.

WILL HANNA, HANNA FAMILY RANCH

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