The number of cattle in large Kansas feedlots as of Dec. 1 dropped another 2 percent from Nov. 1 and are down 8 percent from Dec. 1 of 2011.
It was the lowest December inventory in 17 years, at 2.15 million head.
Cattle farmers have sold off sizable parts of their herds because the drought has driven up costs.
Placements during November totaled 355,000 head, down 5 percent from November 2011 and down 7 percent from October 2012 placements.
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The percent of November placements by weight was: under 600 pounds, 20 percent; 600-699 pounds, 25 percent; 700-799 pounds, 30 percent; and 800 pounds or heavier, 25 percent.
Marketings during November totaled 390,000 head, down 1 percent from November 2011, but up 7 percent from October 2012.