What is a typical stalk rental rate for 50- to 125-bushel dryland corn stalks in which the renter builds and/or fixes the fence? Many of these fields will have to have water hauled to them.

The best scenario is to rent a stalk field that is already fenced, has good water and is close enough to drive rather than haul the cows. Keep in mind the cost to hay cows is some where between 75- cents to $1 per cow, per day. Traditionally we have rented stalks for 15-cents, but this year they will cost us 25-cents. We build the power fence and set up the tank for water; the owner provides water. The Platte Valley from Kearney to Ogallala has traditionally rented stalks for more than Eastern Nebraska because they are less available. Rents there have been equivalent to 25- to 30-cents. This year the scarcity of stalks in the dry areas would be expected to drive up rental rates. Per acre rental rates favor the landowner since payment is made regardless of how many days are used. Generally, the rate is $6 to $8 dollars per acre , but sometimes stalks have been rented for $5. If a producer got 30 days of grazing per acre and paid $8, then the rate would work out to be 26-cents per cow, per day; or for 45 days of grazing , the cost becomes 17-cents per cow, per day. Where pivots of cornstalks are rented , the rate is generally $800 to $1,000 for the circle (130 acres) or about $6 to $7.70 per acre. In conclusion, there is no standard rental rate for cornstalks, but it does pay to do some competitive shopping.