Thursday, November 30, 2023

Deer community rally to help flood-hit farmers

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Online auction raises more than $100,000 for those affected by cyclone.
Hawke’s Bay DFA branch chair, Evan Potter said the strategy touches on most areas that need to be addressed, but the ‘devil’s in the detail’.
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An online auction organised by the New Zealand Deer Farmers Association and using PGG Wrightson’s bidr system raised more than $117,000 for cyclone-affected deer farmers. 

The more than 50 auction items included stag semen, fencing gear, accommodation at Lake Ōhau, venison, deer transport, pregnancy testing, CARLA testing, hinds, an elk bull and a fallow buck.

Deer Industry NZ (DINZ) producer manager Lindsay Fung said it was an amazing event.

“Thanks to the team at bidr for hosting the auction and the very generous donors and buyers that made this result possible,” he said.

In addition, donations are being accepted into a DINZ bank account (02-0506-0234007, code Gabrielle).

As the recovery continues Fung is encouraging deer farmers to keep an eye out for their neighbours and friends and make use of the Rural Support Trust if they need to.

“Hills and flats farms, rural and urban communities – none were spared,” Fung said.

“Together with cash donations received there are significant funds to go towards recovery activities for our deer farmers.”

This includes financial assistance such as covering travel costs for fencing teams helping with the replacement of boundary fencing. 

Deer fences are down throughout the worst-hit regions, where drones have been deployed to locate escaped deer, particularly in Hawke’s Bay, but also Gisborne and Northland. 

There have also been many slips impacting rural roads and farm infrastructure. 

Hawke’s Bay NZ Deer Farmers Association members Evan Potter, Richard Hilson, Karen Middelberg and Matt Gibson have co-ordinated services and help for those who need it. Deer farmers have also been involved in flying in supplies, including generators, for the worst-affected farms.