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Farmers rejoice as rain arrives

HAPPY DAYS: Alloway farmer Dean Cayley was thrilled to wake up to over 100mm of rain in the gauge on Tuesday morning.
HAPPY DAYS: Alloway farmer Dean Cayley was thrilled to wake up to over 100mm of rain in the gauge on Tuesday morning. Max Fleet BUNDEAN

MANY farmers across the Bundaberg region are grinning ear to ear today as they welcome much-needed rain for their water-deprived crops.

It was a glorious start to the year for growers as the sound of raindrops hitting their fields meant more productivity, increased profitability and a slight easing of irrigation costs.

Alloway peanut and cane farmer Dean Cayley said he couldn't have asked for a better start to 2016.

"The weather bureau predicted 90mm to 100mm for us and it was spot on," he said.

Bundaberg watermelon and cane farmer Keith Martens said the 80mm of rain he received yesterday was great for his crops.

"It can be the making of our crops,"

"If it clears up now and then rains again in a week or two we will be over the moon."

Bundaberg Canegrowers chairman Allan Dingle said he received 6mm of rain on Monday, 195mm on Monday night and 62mm yesterday morning.

"Ideally if we received 75mm this week and another 75mm next week that would be perfect," he said.

"But we seem to get these events where we go from famine to feast.

"I think generally across the region most people had reasonable rainfall."

Bundaberg Fruit and Vegetable Growers executive officer Peter Hockings said there were some growers in the region who would be in the middle of harvest, for whom the rain would be an inconvenience.

"It is unfortunate in horticulture you can't get the timing right for everyone.

"But the long term benefits are far superior," he said.

Topics:  drought, farmers, rain



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