Waikato farmers face 'serious situation' with drought remaining in parts of region

Farmers across the country have been battling with dry conditions.
Farmers across the country have been battling with dry conditions. Photo credit: File / Getty

Despite getting some good dousings of rain over the past month, parts of Waikato continue to face drought conditions.

Much of the rain missed Hauraki, Coromandel and south Auckland, meaning farmers face a "serious situation" heading into winter, says Federated Farmers.

"The drought is compounded by challenges with pests like crickets and slugs, and we have just not been getting the rainfall we need," said Kevin Robinson, president of Hauraki-Coromandel Federated Farmers.

The conditions mean that farmers have had to use much of their supplementary feed over summer, leaving little - or in some cases, no - reserves left for winter.

Neil Bateup, chairman of the Waikato Rural Support Trust, said pasture growth had fortunately been good for the rest of the region, which had enabled most farmers to be able to recover in time for winter.

"The feed situation remains tight for everyone," said Bateup. "It is imperative everyone has a plan, and continues to review their plan."

He advised farmers to seek advice from their neighbours, farm advisors, accountants and banks. 

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