4 Nov 2010

High country farmers get weather relief for lambing

1:29 pm on 4 November 2010

High country farmers have been making the most of the run of settled weather after a rough start to lambing and calving.

Their season is later than lowland areas and it's generally well into October before they start their lambing and calving.

Most escaped the worst of the September snow storms that caused heavy stock losses in the southern South Island and Central North island.

After some initial heavy lamb losses, high country farmers are generally expecting a reasonable outcome to the season.

One central North Island station spoken to by Radio New Zealand is expecting a lambing percentage of 120% to almost 140%.

But Donald Aubrey, who farms in the Peel Forest area of inland Canterbury, says the sustained spell of cold, stormy weather that continued into last month still caught them at the start of lambing.

He says the difficult spring conditions means fewer lambs will be processed this season than last, which was the lowest since 1965.