Disaster Aid

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Robin Auldridge shakes out a handful of "stems" from a hay bale on his farm in Blythe, Ga. Because of the lack of sunshine this year, the hay is very dry and hard, resulting in half as much protein. JON-MICHAEL SULLIVANSTAFF
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Robin Auldridge holds two pieces of hay gathered from different times this year at his farm in Blythe, Ga. The bottom piece was collected after recent sunshine and contains more protein while the top is just a "stem" and contains little protein due to lack of sunshine. Richmond County, along with nearby Screven and Burke counties, were included in a recent disaster area designation by U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack that also encompassed 36 South Carolina counties. JON-MICHAEL SULLIVANSTAFF
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Because of the lack of sunshine this year, the hay from Robin Auldridge's 40 acres is very dry and hard, resulting in about half as much protein. JON-MICHAEL SULLIVANSTAFF
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Robin Auldridge looks over his cotton crop, which he says should have grown several feet higher but has not due to lack of sunshine on his farm in Blythe, Ga. "If they don't have energy, they don't produce and UV is one of the things that makes everything work," Auldridge said. JON-MICHAEL SULLIVANSTAFF
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A gully runs through farmer Robin Auldridge's cotton crop in Blythe, Ga. JON-MICHAEL SULLIVANSTAFF
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Farmer Robin Auldridge said his cotton crop should have grown several feet higher but has not due to lack of sunshine on his farm in Blythe, Ga. "If they don't have energy, they don't produce and UV is one of the things that makes everything work," Auldridge said. JON-MICHAEL SULLIVANSTAFF
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Robin Auldridge shows what a handful of hay collected after recent sunshine looks like in comparison to the "stems" of hard hay that he gathered earlier in the year. JON-MICHAEL SULLIVANSTAFF
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Robin Auldridge shows what a handful of hay collected after recent sunshine looks like in comparison to the "stems" of hard hay that he gathered earlier in the year. Richmond County, along with nearby Screven and Burke counties, were included in a recent disaster area designation by U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack that also encompassed 36 South Carolina counties. JON-MICHAEL SULLIVANSTAFF
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Because of the lack of sunshine this year, the hay from Robin Auldridge's 40 acres is very dry and hard, resulting in about half as much protein. JON-MICHAEL SULLIVANSTAFF
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Robin Auldridge cuts open a piece of cotton, which is producing but not at the rate that it should due to lack of sun. JON-MICHAEL SULLIVANSTAFF
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Robin Auldridge feeds the beef cattle on D & R Farms in Blythe, Ga. JON-MICHAEL SULLIVANSTAFF
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Robin Auldridge also raises beef cattle on D & R Farms in Blythe, Ga. JON-MICHAEL SULLIVANSTAFF
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Robin Auldridge said lack of sunshine caused leaves along the top of his pecan trees to die prematurely. Those trees have seen new growth after weeks of sunshine. Richmond County, along with nearby Screven and Burke counties, were included in a recent disaster area designation by U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack that also encompassed 36 South Carolina counties. JON-MICHAEL SULLIVANSTAFF
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Farmer Robin Auldridge takes a phone call while walking by his pecan trees on his property in Blythe, Ga. Auldridge estimates he'll gather a third of the typical pecan crop from the 250 acres. Richmond County, along with nearby Screven and Burke counties, were included in a recent disaster area designation by U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack that also encompassed 36 South Carolina counties. JON-MICHAEL SULLIVANSTAFF
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Farmer Robin Auldridge gathers several pecans from the ground that fell prematurely due to mildew, which he calls "the scab", on his property in Blythe, Ga. Auldridge estimates he'll gather a third of the typical pecan crop from the 250 acres. "Here's my pecan crop right here," Auldridge said as he gathered ruined pecans from the ground. JON-MICHAEL SULLIVANSTAFF
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Farmer Robin Auldridge shows several pecans with mildew, which he calls "the scab", on his property in Blythe, Ga. Auldridge estimates he'll gather a third of the typical pecan crop from the 250 acres. "Here's my pecan crop right here," Auldridge said as he gathered ruined pecans from the ground. JON-MICHAEL SULLIVANSTAFF
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Robin Auldridge added about 0,000 worth of equipment, including extra tires to increase floatation, for his combine in an effort to gather crops because of the increased amount of rain earlier this year. JON-MICHAEL SULLIVANSTAFF
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Robin Auldridge added about 0,000 worth of equipment, including extra tires to increase floatation, for his combine in an effort to gather crops because of the increased amount of rain earlier this year. JON-MICHAEL SULLIVANSTAFF
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Robin Auldridge also raises beef cattle on D & R Farms in Blythe, Ga. JON-MICHAEL SULLIVANSTAFF
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Robin Auldridge feeds the beef cattle on D & R Farms in Blythe, Ga. JON-MICHAEL SULLIVANSTAFF
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Robin Auldridge also raises beef cattle on D & R Farms in Blythe, Ga. JON-MICHAEL SULLIVANSTAFF
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Robin Auldridge feeds the beef cattle on D & R Farms in Blythe, Ga. JON-MICHAEL SULLIVANSTAFF

Description

Robin Auldridge, a farmer in Blythe, Ga., talks about how heavy rain and lack of sunshine has affected his crops. Richmond County, along with nearby Screven and Burke counties, were included in a recent disaster area designation by U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack that also encompassed 36 South Carolina counties. JON-MICHAEL SULLIVAN/STAFF

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