Our View (21-8-2018): Aussies in need

IT is fantastic to see so many locals working to help farmers struggling in the throes of drought.

Yorke Peninsula landowners are among the luckiest around.

It can be easy to overlook just how tough others are doing it when, even in what was shaping to be a lean year, local paddocks are now green with life.

But you don’t have to look far past our patch to see the effects of a severe lack of rain.

Northern Eyre Peninsula and much of the Mid North are barren. Rain will no longer salvage those landholders the way it did YP farmers earlier this month.

I recently spoke with Maitland farmer Brendan Moloney, who is organising a hay drive and hoping to send several road trains loaded to the brim to farmers in the eastern states.

There, the cumulative effect of consecutive bone-dry years has left farmers with no growth in the soil and little money to buy in stock feed.

Brendan said the current push to assist those in need was about that classic national value — Aussies helping Aussies.

It seems that sense of mateship has resonated, as more and more people put their hands up to support the cause.

It can be lost amidst the narrative pedalled by some corners of the population, but the vast majority of farmers genuinely care about their stock.

Of course profits are involved, but that just means it is in the best interests of each farmer to ensure their stock is in the top possible condition.

That’s why it is devastating to think about those who are now faced with shooting their starving animals — and through no fault of their own. They are at the mercy of the weather and it has let them down for too long.

Thanks to the efforts of so many people across Australia — and the Yorke Peninsula community characteristically pulling much more than its own weight — the impact of this drought can hopefully be minimised.

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