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Wildfires and Drought Cause Texas Agriculture Industry Suffer in 2011

According to reports, during 2011 Texas wildfires burned thousands of miles of fencing, over 1,500 heads of livestock, and sections of pasture nearly twice as long as Delaware. Sources say the states agriculture sector was already suffering from the effects of a crippling drought and now is dealing with wildfires on a daily basis.

According to an economist with the Texas Agriculture Service, the Texas agriculture industry has suffered over 152 million dollars in damages from wildfires as of September 19, 2011. Reportedly, most of that total stems from the 5,965 miles of fences and other infrastructure that was burned. The Agriculture Service estimates that over 3 million acres of pasture were scorched. Further, the state estimates that Texas drought has cost over 5.2 billion dollars in lost crops and livestock. Reportedly, timber losses have also been considerable in East Texas where over 97 million dollars’ worth of timber has burned since wildfire season began.

Reportedly, since wildfire season started on Nov. 15, 2010, firefighters have responded to 23,519 fires. According to the Texas Forest Service, the wildfire danger would continue through fall and possibly into winter. Sources say that below average moisture and above average temperatures are to blame.