IDAHO FALLS, Idaho - Drought in other states have drastically decreased the size the U.S. cattle herd, but the demand for beef remains the same.
"They still want to have a hamburger, and with lower supply, the price just goes up. And so there's just a low supply, strong demand, and the U.S. cattle market has good prices because of it," said Lance Ellis, University of Idaho extension educator in Fremont County.
Last year, a 600-pound calf would go for $1.65 to $1.75 a pound. This year, one goes for $2 to $2.10 a pound.
This increase is not giving cattle ranchers a larger profit, as cost of production has gone up 10 to 15 percent, said Bob Ellis, a cattle rancher.
"Rent on the least on the least pasture where we run our cattle is up. Price of fuel is up. Operation of vehicles is up. Price of hay is up and we needed more money for our calves."
Although the rain may have negative effects on his crops, Ellis said, "It's a payoff because the rain is excellent where the cattle are at the summer range right now. So things are going good. We can't cry about rain -- we are glad to have it. We just have to learn to work around it so it won't hurt us."