Southern Riverina soaked in best autumn break since 2003SOPHIE BURGE April 16, 2014 3:55am
Last week’s soaking rain was a gift from above for the local region, with the autumn break one of the best seen in the southern Riverina for more than a decade.
Although the downpour did halt rice harvesting for a couple of days, it was a small price to pay as farmers can now prepare with confidence for what is shaping up as an excellent winter cropping season.
Finley agricultural consultant and agronomist John Lacy said he measured 73.5mm in Finley last week, saying the timing and soaking nature of the rain made it the best autumn break in many years.
Finley farmer Jack Hawkins, who recorded 60mm at his property, said although the rain brought with it a few challenges for the rice harvest, he said the ‘‘good definitely outweighs the bad’’.
‘‘It means I’ve now got a good soil moisture profile which will be very good for the winter cropping program.
‘‘Any irrigated pastures and livestock production have also benefited significantly from the last two falls. I could safely say I won’t be using any more irrigation water, so more than 10 per cent of that water will be carried over (to next season).’’
The official Bureau of Meteorology site located at Tocumwal Airport recorded 77.8mm of rain since last Wednesday, taking April’s total to 91.8mm. Last year Tocumwal only received 4.7mm in April.
Finley’s rainfall records show it was the best April drop in a decade, with 51mm recorded in 2003 and 46mm in 1998, while Berrigan’s April records show it had 44mm in 2006 and 88mm in 1998.
Gordon and Phyllis Ball said they recorded 49 ‘‘very nice’’ millimetres of rain on their Mayrung property, which they said sets them up for a great winter cropping program.
Donald Henderson from Blighty got 52mm, while local farmer Andrew Burge, off the Lower Tocumwal Rd, recorded 70mm in his rain gauge.
Mr Lacy said water saved or bought for watering up canola and pre-irrigating wheat, barley and faba beans can now be carried over into next watering season.
‘‘If the weather is not too drying there should still be good sowing moisture for wheat starting from April 25.
‘‘It’s great to have some subsoil moisture but I suspect it may not be deeper than the 45cm we had last year, depending on how much rain you had, so further rain in early to mid May would be a great follow up to get us through winter.
‘‘There’s a great opportunity to get canola sowing out of the way and then get back to rice harvest .
The SAM Foundation has received a further philanthropic contribution of $1 million towards the new Shepparton Art Museum.
The Yarrawonga Pigeons scored a 20 point victory over the Myrtleford Saints at the JC Lowe Oval in Yarrawonga on Saturday.
The Aboriginal and wider community is mourning the death of revered Bangerang Aboriginal elder, Uncle John ‘‘Sandy’’ Atkinson.
Two people have been arrested and thousands of dollars in drugs and property found in a major raid in Corop early Monday.
FOUR Rochester residents did more than their bit for women’s cancers mid last month when they trekked 60km around Melbourne to raise funds for the Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre.
Tongala Football Club lost to Rumbalara in the Murray Netball League on Saturday by 14 points.
Four generations of Comi girls this Mother's Day
Berrigan Shire councillor Daryll Morris says he has been sickened by some of the vitriol and personal attacks to surface since the council’s proposal to redevelop Finley’s Memorial Hall and School of Arts site was revealed in October last year.
DESPITE criticism from within the community over a perceived lack of use, the O’Keefe Rail Trail has enjoyed good traffic over the past couple of weeks, with more to come.
Members of a Cobram social group have encouraged women to become a part of community groups, committees and boards.
School fundraises for student with leukaemia.
Fonterra suppliers are reeling after the announcement of a big cut in the milk price from $5.60/kg to $5 for the full current year.
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