NSW drought: Bathurst rainfall was not enough: Farmers | Photos, pictures

GREY skies over the Bathurst region may have delivered 9.8 millimetres of rain across the long weekend, but grazier Geoff Rayner says it was nowhere near the amount farmers need.

The Central Tablelands is in the grips of a drought, with 59.4 per cent of the region declared in drought, while the remaining 40.6 per cent is at the onset of drought.

With well below average rainfall so far this year, farmers and stock right across the region are doing it tough.

Geoff and Robyn Rayner, owners of Pomanara Merino Stud in Sallys Flat north of Bathurst, have been hand-feeding their sheep and cattle for months.

Their property received 8mm of rain on the weekend and Mr Rayner said it had left a slight “green tinge” in some of the paddocks.

“It’s changed the colour a little bit. It’s got a green tinge which is better than looking at brown dirt,” he said.

“If we can get some decent rain into the subsoil we know we’ll get a better spring and better growth.”

However, with warm, dry weather predicted to continue this winter the couple have already begun destocking their property.

“We’ve got rid of what we normally sell, which is our older stock, but we’ve gone a bit harder than that,” Mr Rayner said.

“We’ll probably sell off a few more wethers.

“We’ve already sold of 80 per cent of our cattle.”

Blue skies will continue across much of the week, with a very slight chance of rain on Tuesday and Saturday.

Where to go for help

  • Lifeline 13 11 14
  • MensLine Australia 1300 78 99 78
  • Rural Adversity Mental Health Program, www.ramhp.com.au

Drought assistance in NSW

THE DroughtHub website states that it provides a one-stop online destination for information on a vast range of services and support available to primary producers, their families and communities to prepare for and manage drought conditions.

“The NSW Government is committed to working closely with farmers, industry and stakeholders and has delivered a $300 million drought package to ensure NSW is better prepared for future drought conditions,” it reads.

“DPI makes every attempt to ensure the information supplied is current, however the individual circumstances of DroughtHub users should be taken into account when considering the linked service.”