Flood recovery takes time, don't rush decisions

Hunter Local Land Services is urging flood affected producers across the Mid Coast and Hunter to take the time to access resources and assistance to help make considered decisions as they recover from recent major flooding in our region.
More than 750 properties across the region were impacted by flooding during March, affecting livestock, pastures, infrastructure, homes and businesses.

Hunter Local Land Services District Vet Dr Lyndell Stone said assistance is available including government recovery grants, property planning, agricultural, agronomy, livestock and land rehabilitation information. Now is the time to make inquiries and considered decisions, to set yourself back up.

“Recovering from a natural disaster can be complex, please take the time now to gather information and seek help to assist you in making the best decisions for your property, business and livestock,” said Dr Lyndell Stone.

“The team at Hunter Local Land Services and other government agencies are here to help you, during this rebuilding period.

“We are working closely with local support networks to tailor our advice and care to meet the needs of local producers and property owners.”

A flood recovery workshop is being held at Club Taree, next Tuesday 27 April, 10am-12noon. It will focus on assisting producers to understand the financial support and grants available to assist their recovery and offering practical advice on pasture recovery and livestock health management.

Dr Lyndell Stone says management of livestock nutrition coming into winter is a priority.

“When it comes to managing the health and wellbeing of your livestock, we can assist with information on feed testing and fodder budgeting to help manage the nutritional needs of your herd over winter,” said Lyndell.

“Your local district vet team and our livestock and pastures officers are keen to help and can create a personalised fodder budget for the coming seasons.

“Please be aware donated fodder has been of variable quality, and we can help you assess the quality of this feed and whether it is suitable for your stock needs.”

Traditionally on the Mid Coast, winter and spring is a feed gap period, which could be further exacerbated this year by pasture loss in the floods.

“If you ensure strategic supplementary feeding is in place, cattle can still flourish during this period, which is where a proper feed budget can help you,” enthused Dr Stone.

“Where possible now is a great time to plant seed for winter and spring pastures, we are already seeing a good response in areas where producers have managed to get some winter feed in.”

When it comes to rehabilitation of your property the Hunter Local Land Services team is here to help.

There has been significant impacts to riverbanks and waterways across the region, which will require long term repair.

“Landholders can reduce erosion on their properties by fencing off waterways and keeping stock away from the bank edge and out of the riparian zone,” said Rye Gollan, Senior Land Services Officer.

“Revegetation with a variety of native species to widen and support the riparian zone is vital for the long term recovery of riverbanks and gullies, as pasture grasses alone do little to protect soils in floods.

“These measures will help ensure the long term resilience of river banks, flood plains, and gullies to erosion impacts in future flood events.”

We are here to offer advice for landholders on managing erosion, so do not hesitate to reach out for assistance.

“Hunter Local Land Services staff can assist you with assessing and making a plan to repair priority riparian areas on your property, especially when it comes to weed management and replacing vegetation in these areas,” said Rye.

Landholders who may wish to register for the Flood Recovery Workshop at Taree are asked to register via this link: https://hunterlls.wufoo.com/forms/flood-recovery-workshop-taree/

You can contact Hunter Local Land Services for support and advice for your recovery by calling 1300 795 299.

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