Soybean aphids and a late July storm have left many fields with lower than predicted yields as harvest kicks in.
A storm on July 31 left many farmers between the South Dakota border and Hanley Falls left with damaged crops.
Alan Velde of rural Hanley Falls said Wednesday his crops were severely damaged in that storm.
"Things aren't looking very good at all this fall," said Velde.
Velde has about 500 acres of soybeans he is harvesting this season and said there is a large loss in yields.
"We're seeing tremendous bushel loss," said Velde. "From what I've seen on the yield monitor in my combine is from a low of 1 bushel per acre to a high of 14 or 15 bushels per acre."
Velde said a historic average for soybeans has been about 50 bushels per acre. This year he is seeing as little as a single bushel per acre.
"We're seeing a lot of single bushel yields here north of Hanley Falls where I farm for soybeans," said Velde.
Jodi DeJong-Hughes, educator for the University of Minnesota Extension, said fields throughout the storm's path have been showing yields around 5 bushels per acre.
"The area that got hit from South Dakota into Clara City where there was spots of hail or drought issues, those yields aren't looking good," said DeJong-Hughes.
Doug Albin, a farmer near Clarkfield, said he is preparing to harvest corn within the next few days.
Albin said he isn't expecting to get strong yields out of this years soybean crop.
"I'm thinking this isn't going to be any good any way I cut it," Albin said for yields following the storm damage.
Albin said for some fields in the region, 50 bushels an acre for soybeans was predicted, but many are falling short of the mark.
"This is a little short of what we had hoped it would be," said Albin. "I guess this is just the way that it is."
DeJong-Hughes said the summer storm isn't the only factor in this year's lower yields.
This summer saw a large soybean aphid infestation in the region.
"We didn't have a lot of over-wintering so we thought it could be an OK year, but temperatures weren't that hot and their reproduction rates were huge," said DeJong-Hughes. "The ones that came in from the south were here for a long time."
Velde said he was working to protect his crops with a second treatment to eliminate soybean aphids when the storm struck.
"It's from a combination of the wind, the hail and the aphid problem we had this summer," said Velde. "Those farmers that chose to spray for aphids have more of a yield loss.
"At the time it was the only choice to do because the aphids were chewing the crop up," said Velde. "A week after I had sprayed all our acres for aphids, we got hit by the hail storm."
Velde said this year's crop damage is a good example of the need for federal crop insurance.
"This is the reason we have federal crop insurance," said Velde. "Our input costs are so high, I can't afford the risk, I have to offset it with federal crop insurance."