The Bay of Plenty Rural Support Trust is well connected within rural networks across farming, horticulture, and forestry, as well as local government agencies.

We are well-placed to get things done that could be difficult for you alone. We can:

Help during an adverse weather event

We are directly linked to local civil defence and can provide you with information and assist you in getting emergency and on-going help, whether its movement of stock, financial support, labour or other needs.

Facilitate conversations

Our coordinator can help you negotiate your options for managing finances, debt and creditors. We can also facilitate assistance from Work and Income and farm management consultancy.

Support during personal difficulties

Rural life can be challenging and stressful. Stress can be caused by many factors that can build up; from relationships to the weather. Sometimes all that is needed is someone neutral to listen. Our coordinators are experienced in helping people find options to manage rural challenges and can refer you to a professional for services like counselling, financial and farm management, or alternatively provide a mentor with a rural background in your specific sector with whom to talk.

News & Alerts

Keeping an eye on Cyclone Hola

Monday, March 12, 2018

Author: Terri Anderson

https://twitter.com/twitter/statuses/972915753044201472

NIWA: With Hola passing offshore today, its strongest winds will too!

NIWA's high resolution modelling indicates some gusts to 70 km/h for: eastern Northland, Great Barrier Island, the Coromandel, coastal Bay of Plenty, & Gisborne Ranges, then a bit gusty in Auckland tonight.

 

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Early dry classified as medium-scale adverse event

Minister for Agriculture and Rural Communities Damien O’Connor today announced the fast-growing drought in parts of the lower North Island would be classified as a medium-scale adverse event.

Saturday, December 23, 2017

Author: Terri Anderson

https://www.beehive.govt.nz/release/early-dry-declared-adverse-event

Minister for Agriculture and Rural Communities Damien O’Connor today announced the fast-growing drought in parts of the lower North Island would be classified as a medium-scale adverse event. 

The affected areas include Taranaki region and western parts of the Manawatu-Whanganui and Wellington regions. 

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One of these things is not like the other

It’s easy to see if there’s a flood or an earthquake, but drought’s an odd one to call. When does a dry spell become a drought?

Friday, December 08, 2017

Author: Terri Anderson

It’s easy to see if there’s a flood or an earthquake, but drought’s an odd one to call. When does a dry spell become a drought?

Dry spells and droughts are part of life for many farmers across New Zealand. Farmers monitor their local conditions, plan for dry weather, and make tough decisions early.

MPI doesn’t declare droughts, but help to identify if the impacts of a drought on the primary sector should be classified as a medium- or large-scale adverse event, under the criteria in the Primary Sector Recovery Policy.  

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Dry summer support

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Author: Marcia

The NIWA drought index measures dry conditions across the country. Their hotspot watch helps identify areas that are getting dry each week.

Like all adverse events, a drought is classified as either localised, medium-scale or large-scale.

What farmers need to do now

Don’t hold out for rain as a reason to delay any decisions you need to make. Make plans and decisions in light of current conditions and warm temperatures driving high evapotranspiration. It will take significant rainfall to slow down or reverse the dry conditions. 

That it is so dry so early in the season may further limit your options, or create uncertainty, such as decisions on which animals to sell or cull.

In many locations stock feed in the form of hay and silage is lower than normal due to the wet winter and spring. You need to understand your local situation and factor these delays in your planning.

Tips from farmers who have managed their way through past dry spells:

  •  Review the technical information from your industry bodies on managing in dry weather.
  • Do a feed budget.
  • Make a plan and set trigger points to make decisions or take action: Dates, stock condition, feed availability; Once a day milking, drying off, culling early.  Ensure relevant contract partners agree with the plan. When those points or times hit, enact your plan.
  • Keep an eye on climate predictions and soil moisture levels, especially on your own farm as it can vary from your neighbours’. (NIWA is useful).
  • Use water efficiently and plan for water restrictions. Check irrigation consents for any triggers that will require you to make changes to usage.
  • Ensure bores are well maintained and make contingency plans in case supply fails.
  • Look after your animals and regularly check their condition.
  • Make decisions for slaughter well in advance and book space in time (since killing space may be in high demand in your area)
  • Be vigilant on very hot days. Animals cannot be left for much time with no shade or access to water.
  • Be aware of increased risk of fire and take precautions
  • Talk to your bank, accountants and other advisors, seek their advice, and ask for help if you need it.        
  • Your Rural Support Trust is here to help. If you need to get pointed in the right direction for advice or information, are concerned about a friend, a neighbour, a worker…. or just need a private chat, their services are free & confidential. Call 0800 RURAL HELP (0800 787 254) or visit www.rural-support.org.nz.

This document will give you some tips and tricks for mitigating the dry hot summer conditions.

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