The livestock industries are a major contributor to the economy of the northeastern United States. Climate models predict increased average maximum temperatures, days with temperatures exceeding 25 °C, and higher annual precipitation in the Northeast. These environmental changes combined with increased atmospheric CO2 concentration are expected to either increase or decrease forage productivity depending on the crop, and may decrease protein content and forage digestibility. Winter damage to sensitive forage species may also increase. Predicted temperature increases are expected to reduce fertility in dairy cattle and heat stress-induced inflammation may limit energy available for productive functions.
Hristov, A.N.; Degaetano, A.T.; Rotz, C.A.; Hoberg, E.; Skinner, R.H.; Felix, T.; Li, H.; Patterson, P.H.; Roth, G.; Hall, M.; Ott, T.L.; Baumgard, L.H.; Staniar, W.; Hulet, R.M.; Dell, C.J.; Brito, A.F.; Hollinger, D.Y. 2018. Climate change effects on livestock in the Northeast US and strategies for adaptation. Climatic Change. 146(1-2): 33-45. DOI 10.1007/s10584-017-2023-z