Farmers welcome rain

Ian and Sue Haslingden of Bombala were weeks away from hand feeding cattle on their property and were overjoyed when the rains started. 

“The summer has been very hot and dry, it’s been very precarious,” Mr Haslingden said. 

“We were about two or three weeks away from hand feed so this rain comes as a great relief.” 

Mr Haslingden has been measuring the rainfall and over three days last week his property received 

32 millimetres of rain.

“It’s been great, we are starting to see some of the clovers shooting through, we are seeing the first few leaves sprout with the autumn rain,” he said. 

“It will be great for the sheep especially.” 

The Haslingdens have approximately 8000 head of sheep on their property and 220 head of cattle.

While they are not expecting sheep prices to change with the rain they are   hoping cattle prices will improve. 

“I don’t think sheep prices will change that much, they are pretty consistent at the moment,” said Mr Haslingden.

“I’ve heard that cattle prices are expected to jump.” 

In recent weeks Mr Haslingden  took many of his cattle to market because of the condition they had faced over the summer. 

“That was a disappointing sale and the summer hasn’t been too bad but we did have to sell some of our cattle,” he said. 

“Hopefully at the upcoming calf sales in April we will be able to sell some calves and get a good price.” 

Widespread rain across Australia’s  cattle fattening regions has created a spectacular turnaround in prices, with returns up more than 20 cents a kilograms in Casino.

Delegate has seen the least amount of rainfall in the region but farmers are pleased to see something in time for autumn. 

Delegate Station’s Peter Jefferys said the few days of rain has been sorely needed. 

“The rain is magnificent,” Mr Jefferys said. 

“We’ve had 27 millimetres in the last few days which is not nearly as much as some of the other areas but its good to see all the same.” 

“This summer in Delegate it has been very dry and in February we only had 11 millimetres,” he said. 

Delegate Station has a diverse range of cattle, sheep and crops and will benefit from the rainfall. 

“Delegate Station is a little different from other farms in the region because we have not only cattle and sheep, but also a large crop of winter wheat and canola,” he said. 

“The rain will be a boost for the crops, it will improve stored moisture in the crops.

“ The rain is a good start for autumn but we certainly want some more. 

Cattle prices have picked up a bit but they are not nearly as good as they have been historically. 

The Bureau of Meteorology reported 28 millimetres of rainfall last Wednesday night.

The total rainfall for February was only 26 millimetres.

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