29 Jan 2016

Farmers hopeful Canterbury drought will break

12:02 pm on 29 January 2016

If the weather plays ball in the next two weeks the drought in North Canterbury will be broken, Federated Farmers says.

Just last week, the government extended the official drought period by six months in Canterbury, Marlborough and parts of Otago.

Since then North Canterbury has had 70mm of rain.

That was on top of three weeks of good rainfall that has helped parched fields look green for the first time in more than a year.

North Canterbury Federated Farmers meat and fibre chairperson Dan Hodgen said two weeks with a little bit more rain and without hot dry weather would spell the end of the drought.

"A couple of wee showers through that period and if that dreaded nor-wester and 35 degree days stay away for a couple of weeks, we'll be starting to look in reasonable shape."

For the first time in months farmers were considering buying more stock to replace those they had to sell off to get through the dry period, he said.