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Ranchers pray for rain in drought-hit California

Published on Feb 6, 2014 3:42 PM
 
California rancher Nathan Carver drops off bails of hay to feed his herd of beef cattle at the ranch his family has owned for five generations on dirt-brown fields on the outskirts of Delano, in California's Central Valley, on Feb 3, 2014. Californian rancher Nathan Carver squints as he surveys the parched fields where his family has raised cattle for five generations. -- PHOTO: AFP

DELANO, United States (AFP) - Californian rancher Nathan Carver squints as he surveys the parched fields where his family has raised cattle for five generations.

Normally, they would be covered in lush green grass. But the western US state's worst drought in decades has reduced the land to a moonscape, leaving the 55-year-old father-of-four praying for rain.

"My grandparents tell of the Dust Bowl years in the late 30s when it was very bad and dry with dust storms blowing. But this is as bad as we have ever seen it in my lifetime," he told AFP.

Governor Jerry Brown last month declared a state of emergency due to what could be the worst drought in a century for California including its ultra-fertile Central Valley.

 
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