Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 30 August 2014

Farmers struggle to feed livestock

Farmers have described how they are struggling to cope during the big freeze, with dairy producers having to dispose of milk, and warnings that animals could starve.

Days of sub-zero temperatures have left some farms in remote areas cut off and placed huge strain on supplies for animals.

Many of the farmers attending the Royal Ulster Winter Fair at the King’s Hall in Belfast yesterday said they had been affected in some way by the temperatures.

Nigel Stewart, who is from the Banbridge area, said supplies were being stretched.

“The silage and straw we harvested during the summer is stored in an outbuilding a mile or so from the farm and I haven’t been able to get to it,” he said.

“I’m just hoping we have enough on the farm to last us if this keeps up.”

Meanwhile, Marty McCarron, from Dungannon, said milk was not collected from his farm on Tuesday because of the ice.

“We milked the cows on Monday evening but there was nothing we could do with it because the tanker couldn’t make it up the lane,” he said.

And John Brown, from Ballymena, said frozen pipes were creating difficulties.

“We are wary of the pipes bursting, because that can waste water and cause a lot additional problems,” he said.

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