Livestock Forage Disaster Program Will Pay Producers for Drought Grazing Loss in 2012 and 2013

May 2014

photo of cattle in pastureOn April 15, 2014, the sign-up for Livestock Disaster Assistance began under the 2014 Farm Bill. The re-authorized disaster assistance programs will retroactively cover losses from 2012 and 2013.

The Livestock Forage Disaster Program (LFP) will assist producers with grazing losses to drought occurring during the normal grazing period since Oct. 1, 2011. LFP also will compensate for grazing losses caused by fires during the normal grazing period on federally managed land. The normal grazing period for counties in the Panhandle and North Central Sandhills is from May 1 through Oct. 27. Signup for 2012, 2013 and 2014 disasters goes until January 30, 2015.

Drought payments will be equal to 60 percent of the feed cost for up to five months. All counties in the Nebraska Panhandle and North Central Sandhills qualify for at least four months of payments under most classifications of grazing. Fire payments will be equal to 50 percent of the monthly feed costs for the days prohibited from grazing, with a 180-day maximum payment.

Eligible livestock must have been owned or purchased during the 60 days prior to the beginning date for a qualifying drought or fire. Eligible livestock may also have been sold or otherwise disposed of due to drought condition during the current production year, or one or both of the two proceeding production years.

Non-eligible livestock include livestock under 500 pounds, wild free-roaming animals, recreational animals (pleasure, hunting, pets, roping or for show) or livestock that were or would have been in a feedlot on the beginning date of the qualifying drought or fire as a part of the normal business operation of the producer. Irrigated pastures are not eligible for LFP assistance.

To find out more information about eligibility and reporting losses contact your local FSA office.

To view a webinar with examples of how the program works see the Livestock Forage Disaster Webinar.

Livestock Disaster Program Checklist

  • Make an appointment at your FSA Office
  • Have all of your documentation organized
  • Payments limited to $125,000 per person per year


  • Sign up for assistance between April 15, 2014, and Jan. 30th 2015.
  • Drought payments are 60 percent of feed costs for up to five months.
  • Payments for fires on federal managed land will be 50 percent of monthly feed costs up to 180 days.

Jessica Johnson
Extension Educator - Ag Economics
UNL Panhandle Research and Extension Center