Bad NV Pine Nut Harvest Forecast at BLM Auction

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ELY, Nev. (AP) - Lingering drought has commercial pine nut gatherers betting on a bad crop in Nevada this year.

The Bureau of Land Management says it raised only $2,100 at its annual pinion pine nut auction in Ely on Tuesday - down from more than $35,000 in 2011.

Commercial bidders speculating on the size of the crop bid the same 25 cents per pound they did last year in the Ely and Elko districts. But they predict a harvest of only 8,400 pounds just a fraction of last year's 144,500 pounds.

There's no guarantee they'll be able to harvest even that much.

Commercial harvesters must allow the public to pick nuts within the sale area for personal use. The first 25 pounds per person are free. Anything more costs 25 cents a pound.