Extreme weather is an ever-present hazard for cattle in Texas. Nonetheless, the La Niña-related drought that hit the Panhandle in 2011 was one for the record books. By the end of the summer, 82% of the state’s pastureland was rated as in very poor condition. The size of Texas’ cattle herd had dropped year-over-year by roughly 10% to start 2012. Beef plants were closed and prices soared. What’s more, cattle numbers have yet to fully recover even though only 3% of the state’s pastureland is currently in very poor condition.