For flood resources go to: https://beeflambnz.com/search?term=Flood
For information on managing in the dry go to:
To contact the Rural Support Trust ph 0800 787 254 or go to http://www.rural-support.org.nz/
While some farmers are coping with sodden, flood-damaged pastures and infrastructure, others are watching soil moisture levels plummet as a low-pressure system caused weather chaos over much of the country last week.
Beef + Lamb New Zealand’s General Manager South Island John Ladley says farmers on both sides of the South Island are having to make decisions about the short and long-term management of stock and people.
He says people are the most important asset on any farm and ensuring the safety and well-being of everyone is of utmost importance, beyond that, farmers need to consider what their priorities are and work through them in a logical way.
After a flood, this starts with checking stock, securing fences and ensuring stock have access to fresh water.
“Farmers also need to remember there are a lot of people, organisations and agencies who are willing to assist, whether it be finding stock feed, grazing or emotional support, the help is there for anyone who asks for it. “
John says Beef + Lamb New Zealand has a number of resources available to help farmers through the decision-making process following a flood.
A flood recovery fact sheet will help prioritise tasks in the immediate aftermath of a flood event and provides guidance about what needs to be done in the weeks and months following a flood, particularly where farmers are dealing with silt.
Similarly, timely decision-making is also critical when farmers are dealing with increasingly dry conditions and B+LNZ has a web-page dedicated to drought management with links to a range of resources.
John says the resources include a fact sheet outlining strategies to manage and mitigate the effects of drought, coping with stress on the farm and advice on feed requirements and animal welfare during the dry period.
“Tools such as early weaning, body condition scoring and feed budgets will help farmers make the most efficient and effective use of limited feed resources.”
Protecting the future performance of capital breeding stock should be a priority and management strategies put in place to minimise any production losses in subsequent years.