Early intervention can reduce issues before they become unmanageable

If you or someone you know in the Otago rural community needs help, contact the Trust Administrator or one of our Coordinators:

0800 RURAL HELP (0800 787 254)

Andrea Ludemann

Phone: (03) 437 1544
Mobile: (027) 65 96 800
Email: andrea@banarachfarm.co.nz

Alternatively, you may complete our contact form.

Our People

Pat Macauley - Otago Rural Support TrustPat Macaulay

Coordinator

Pat was brought up on a sheep farm in the hills of West Otago. Pat's main career after leaving school was cooking for Dad and the boys, she then went to work for an advertising agency in Dunedin and moved into media planning. Marriage in the early 70's led her to the Strath Taieri on a sheep and beef property where farming in drought was a regular occurrence. Pat's background in the agriculture industry, and a National Diploma in Agribusiness Management have enabled Pat to assist and support Rural families in times of need.

T: 03 484 7006 | M: 027 201 6921 | E: pat.macaulay@outlook.com

Lindsay Purvis

Coordinator

Lindsay was brought up on a coastal North Otago farm. After completing his plumbing apprenticeship, marriage to Bev saw them complete the obligatory five years as a married couple in South Canterbury. The opportunity to purchase their own farm presented itself in 1979, which they converted to deer.  Dry land farming throughout the 80’s proved character building and the decision to sell and move on came in 1993 with the purchase of their Tourist Complex in Omarama, which they have sold after 24 years. 

Lindsay’s farming background and life skills gained by his ability to change his direction see him well-qualified to help other families make some important decisions for the way forward.
 
T: 03 438 9630 | M: 027 438 9630 | E: purvis@xtra.co.nz 

Board of Trustees

  • Gavan Herlihy
    Chairperson
    Ranfurly
  • Keith Cleave
    Trustee
    Kurow
  • Grant Bradfield
    Trustee
    Catlins
  • Laurie Ruddenklau
    Trustee
    Oamaru
  • Avis Rishworth
    Trustee
    Lawrence
  • Mike Lord
    Trustee
    Taieri
  • Richard Burdon
    Trustee
    Wanaka
  • Joanne Paterson
    Trustee
    Ranfurly
  • Tom Pinckney
    Trustee
    Cromwell
  • Maryanne Kane
    Trustee
    Gore

News & Alerts

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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Minister O'Connor's update on dry conditions

https://www.beehive.govt.nz/release/govt-closely-watching-dry-conditions

Thursday, December 21, 2017

Author: Terri Anderson

Farmers and growers in very dry regions around the country are urged to make plans to get through a summer that has turned hot and dry sooner than usual.

Minister for Agriculture and Rural Communities Damien O’Connor said today that the latest information from NIWA and industry bodies makes it clear that while farmers are generally coping through this early dry spell, rain over the next few weeks cannot be relied upon.

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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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