More rain than usual a challenge

Last updated 14:05 22/08/2014
Cows
RACHAEL KELLY/Fairfax NZ
TRUDGING THROUGH: Cows wade through mud to get to feed.

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If August feels like one of the wettest in memory - it is.

Forecaster John Law has crunched the statistics and confirmed August is one of the wettest on record.

"Southerly winds this month have driven some very wet weather into Southland," he said.

But the news is better for the second half of the month with drier conditions and more high pressure systems sitting over the south, Law said.

Temperatures should return to more typical late-August levels.

Federated Farmers Southland spokesman Andrew Morrison, a sheep and beef farmer who farms at Waikaka and South Otago, said conditions for farmers have been challenging and he felt for his dairy farming colleagues.

"It's tough for the guys that are calving, they're falling straight on to wet ground," he said.

"It's been a challenging week for all farmers with stock but hey, that's the nature of farming. When you get these events you just have to work through it."

"It's just a really unpleasant experience at the moment, the stock are dirty and it's muddy, and it's just unpleasant."

The real concern was for farmers' mental health and the health and welfare of the animals, he said.

"The thing is no farmer has escaped it. Look out for your neighbours, keep your chin up and keep going."

The wet weather has been at its worst in the west of the province.

In Lumsden, the average monthly rainfall for August between 1983 and 2003 was 62.2mm.

Between August 1-15 this year the northern Southland town received 108.2ml.

Eastern Southland has not escaped the wet weather either.

Gore's average monthly rainfall for August between 1998 and 2003 was 62.6mm.

Between August 1-15 this year it has already had 82.2mm.

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