Farmer reckons big flood brewing
The rain gauge told the story - a story that made Kingsdown farmer Neil Barton wonder whether South Canterbury was in for a flood to rival 1986.
At 8.30 yesterday morning the farm rain gauge showed 12mm. Three hours later that figure had increased to 36.6mm.
Mr Barton's family moved on to the property 50 years ago, and he has been farming it since 1978. Rarely during that time has he experienced rain like he has in the past couple of weeks, and certainly not two events so close together.
By mid-morning, he said it was starting to look like the 1986 flood that caused extensive damage in Pleasant Point and Temuka. He said if the rain continued, the region could be in for a major flood.
By mid-morning Mr Barton and David Blissett had fed out to the 900 ewes and 300 hoggets on the property.
"They are pretty uncomfortable," he said of the stock, but he was confident as long as he could get on to the sodden paddocks to feed out, the stock would be all right.
Mr Barton was just thankful he was not due to start lambing for another couple of weeks, and last summer's favourable growing conditions meant there was plenty of baleage available to feed out.
Nor was he complaining about the rain, after the dry conditions of recent months.
Lambs born on Gordon Chamber's Beaconsfield Rd property yesterday were destined for a trailer ride back to a dry farm shed.
Mr Chambers is about 20 per cent through lambing, and by mid-morning had only come across one dead lamb.
For him yesterday's rain was worse than a week earlier because he was that much further into lambing.
The paddocks were also that much wetter as they were still sodden from last week's 90mm, 24-hour rainfall, when it started raining on Tuesday night.
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