Subject: Fodder drive story for Huon News from Stephanie
Fodder donations from the Huon Valley turned up in truck loads, utes, trailers and even vans at the Ranelagh Showground last week following a call for help to assist fire affected areas of the State.
The call came from Huon Agricultural Society president Lisa Plohl and Vice-president Stephanie Clark after the Tasman Peninsula was overcome with flames. Lisa said that with such a good hay season in the valley, many people could spare some feed but she was overcome with the local generosity that was presented at the fodder collection days
Fodder stores have now been created at the Ranelagh Showground, Royal Hobart Showground and Pembroke Park at Sorell where surplus hay, small animal feed and other needs can be called upon as they are required. The initial rush to get feed to starving and stray stock has been filled with many Huon Valley residents taking fodder direct to Pembroke Park last week to catch the twice daily convoys into the fire affected regions.
Roger Scales, at Woodbridge, donated 20 round bales which were freighted by Mason’s Transport. Numerous locals also took float loads of square bales, with several returning to the Huon with horses from the fire affected regions.
Pembroke co-ordinators Gabbi Bresnehan and Rebecca White sent truckloads of feed straight to farmers in need, whilst other small operators with contacts on the ground, such as HAS vice-president Stephanie Clark, drove their own trucks into the region and delivered directly to small holdings. “When you see the damage first hand and know the people affected it really hits home how lucky we are,” Stephanie said.
However, she warned Huon Valley residents not to be complacent. The valley is very dry now following on from last week’s hot, windy weather and there is more fire weather forecast. “Traditionally our hottest time is February-March, so we are far from in the clear,” she said.
The two Huon Agricultural Society fodder collection days resulted in 570 square and 12 round bales of hay donated, 36 big bags of feed (sheep, pony and chook pellets plus dog biscuits), miscellaneous small bags of bird seed and guinea pig food; 90 tins of dog and cat food, numerous buckets, work gloves, horse gear, rope, electric fencing, toiletries, rural fencing, a water trough and tank, even a calf feeder together with $310 in donations and proceeds from the sausage sizzles. The electric fencing was made into small holding packs and these, together with most of the bagged feed, assorted goods and half the hay have been delivered to the Tasman Peninsula region.
Also delivered was a set of portable sheep yards and loading ramp, thanks to Highfield Industries, of Deloraine. Highfield Industries loaned the yards to HAS for use at the Huon Show in November and they were awaiting return or sale until a call for help from committee saw them redirected for fire assistance. The yards were delivered on Thursday direct to Will King’s property at Dunalley were they are in high demand.
Lisa said the remaining fodder at the Ranelagh Showground would be assigned to areas most in need as HAS was advised and, with another 1300 square bales in private sheds around the Huon Valley pledged to HAS for fire relief plus 36 round bales, there was a good reserve to call on.
Lisa said she wanted to thank all those who donated – whether direct or through HAS. “The response was fantastic, it was really uplifting to see the Huon Valley’s generosity,” she said.
“Whilst we don’t plan on holding another collection day this month, as other crews will fill the gap, we have been asked to do a hay run to the Ouse area at the end of the week. “We will also continue to co-ordinate fodder donations from the Huon, so anyone wanting to donate can still do so by contacting me or John Marshall directly.”