Severe drought impacting farmers in Southeastern Wisconsin

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WISCONSIN (CBS 58) -- Southeast Wisconsin farmers are struggling right now, as a lack of rain has put the area in a severe drought.

Anxiety from the drought extends beyond those who make a living off their corn and soybean crops. Those who use their crops to feed their animals are especially worried.

Mighty Grand Dairy has over 1,000 mouths to feed.

'We have one field -- two fields of corn where there's still seed laying in the ground that hasn't even germinated because it's laying in dry soil,” said Chad Daniels of Mighty Grand Dairy, LLC in Union Grove.

Chad Daniels took us for a ride in his tractor.

“'It's scary to dig down six inches and find dry dirt,” said Daniels, pointing out trouble spots along the way.

"You can see the really light green patches of corn. Their leaves are all curled and what that's doing is the corn plant's natural instinct to curl its leaves to preserve moisture,” he said.

Unlike cash crops that can file an insurance claim if the season fails to produce, Daniels' dairy farm cannot.

“They aren't completely gone yet, but they're on their way,” said Jim Waldron of Performance Planting.

Jim Waldron sells corn and soybean seeds and planter technology.

“'These are the bulk seed boxes. When we sell large amounts of seed, this is an option,” he said.

Waldron is also losing out due to the drought, because farmers aren't buying what they don't need.

“We joke about doing rain dances or purposely washing your car or any sort of thing to help provoke the rain. If farmers have access to irrigation systems, they have been running their butts off to keep them going and keep their crop alive and happy and then that incurs a lot more expense,” Waldron said.

Farmers say they need some significant rainfall in the next week or two. 

The U.S. Drought Monitor has weekly updated conditions they put out each Thursday.

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