Bay of Plenty flood assistance

Bay of Plenty farmers are worried it will be months before their farms are back to normal. Many have been forced to move their stock off their farms because of flooding that has hit the region following a low which flooded Edgecumbe, and Cyclone Cook.

An estimated 5000 animals were moved.

Federated Farmers regional president Darryl Jensen said farmers from as far away as Palmerston North have been bringing pumps to the area to help.

“There was three guys that drove tractors from Palmerston North to here, to come up and help with tractor operated pumps, but otherwise all the others has been pumps put on the back of trucks and carted in.

“There’s one farmer who had close to 15 pumps on his property pumping the water out.”

Mr Jensen said it could take months before the stock can return, but it would be crucial to remove water from the land so the stock, many of which were pregnant, could return.

“That water has to get off the properties, needs to dry out so we can get on the land to do what we can.

“In a lot of instances it’ll be helicopter or aerial fertilising and grass seeding because it’s just too physically wet to get any big machinery on to do anything with it.”

Darryl Jensen says farmers from as far away as Palmerston North have brought pumps to the area in support.

The government announced a support package for flood-affected farmers, providing tax assistance and help from task force green teams and the regional Rural Support Trust.