Texas Drought Losses Estimated at $5.2B

    A buoy sits high and dry at Benbrook Lake in Benbrook, Texas, Tuesday, Aug. 16, 2011.  As the summer months and heat wears on, extreme drought conditions continue throughout the state will little chance of rain in the coming days to offer relief for this reservoir south of Fort Worth and other lakes in the state.

    LM Otero / AP Photo

    The Texas drought that has devastated the state for the past 10 months has cost the agriculture industry some $5.2 billion in livestock and crop losses, officials estimated Wednesday. Officials said more animals than usual are being sent to auction because there's less food for them to graze on, which will mean fewer animals down the road, and then prices will go up because they will be more in demand—meaning it will take years for the industry to recoup its losses. The record-breaking drought has hit states from Louisiana to New Mexico but has been particularly severe in Texas, the nation's second-biggest agriculture state.

    Read it at Associated Press