These hay fields may know something we don’t: how to save the Colorado River

Timothy hay, a native to Colorado which feeds thousands of cattle in the Upper Colorado River Basin, and other hay species are being closely watched this year as part of a far-reaching $1 million science experiment, one designed to see if ranchers can take water off of hay fields and successfully measure how much was removed, how much evaporated, and how much was used by plants. They also need to know how reducing their irrigation in this fashion affects the nutritional value of the hay.