Federated Farmers put call out to Southland to help flood-stricken farms in Taieri plains
Federated Farmers have put out a call to Southland farmers to take in-milk cows from flood-stricken farmers in Taieri Plains.
The organisation is putting together a list of south Otago and Southland farmers who would be able to take stock if required.
"Due to the recent floods on the Taieri Plains, there may be a need to relocate 'in milk' cows in the next few weeks until conditions return to normal."
Southland Federated Farmers president Allan Baird said no cows had been moved yet but the organisation was preparing in case the cows needed to be shifted.
* Taieri still drying out weeks after flood
At this time of year, it would be tough for the Southland dairy industry to help, but farmers might have enough feed to add maybe 10 cows to their herd and absorb it, Baird said.
The Taieri Plains pasture would be silt laden and very soft and it would probably take about three or four weeks for paddocks to recover, he said.
The only issue Baird could see was that August was a tough month for farmers with cold soil temperatures and damp conditions hindering grass growth on Southland farms.
Some cows may still be calving on wintering blocks, Baird said.
"They've got to go into a milking herd."
Southland Federated Farmers dairy chairman Graeme McKenzie in situations where farmers were facing adverse events Federated Farmers would try to open a feed line to see if supplementary feed could be sent through to affected farmers.
When the Kaikoura was hit by the 4.4 magnitude earthquake in August 2016 some farmers who were unable to milk cows sent them to other farms who could take them in, McKenzie said.
It was just a case of putting farmers in touch with other farmers who could help out, he said.