British Columbia Flood “Dairy Resilience Test”, Association says


Farmers in southern British Columbia are gathering to save livestock as part of the Fraser Valley remains underwater from catastrophic floods, members of the state’s dairy farms association said. increase.

Holger Schwichtenberg, president of the BC Dairy Association, said it was not yet known how many farmers were working to move the milking cows, but in such situations they helped drive the animals out of the field. Ask for.

He said 25 to 30 cows had been shipped to his own farm in Agassiz on Tuesday from another farm in Fraser Valley, east of Vancouver.

“This is an example of the industry coming together when things are really ugly,” says Schwichtenberg. “We are doing our best in the situation we are handed over, which is a tough situation.”

The movement of livestock is time consuming and stressful for the animals and people involved.

“You have a truck, you have a neighbor, you have a pickup truck or someone who has something to carry a cow, and you start moving them up high or you We prepared to remove them from the site, “said Schwitchtenberg.

Abbotsford Mayor Henry Brown elaborated on some of the livestock rescue efforts taking place in the Fraser Valley community at a press conference where he announced an order to evacuate 1,100 homes in the Sumas Prairie area.

Brown said on Tuesday that he witnessed residents using powerboats to carry cattle from a flooded barn. He said people were putting calves in boats and trying to trample cold water to prevent animals from being left behind.

“They want to protect their animals. Many will give their lives for them,” Brown told reporters.

“It’s heartbreaking to see what’s happening to those farmers.”

The mayor also said he was concerned that livestock feed could be in short supply.

“There are thousands of cows in the prairie.”

Schwitchtenberg said he hadn’t heard about the loss of animals yet, but said the floods this week have put a strain on the industry, which has been still upset since the miserable summer.

“We had a long, hot summer. Unless there was a continuous impact of irrigation and COVID, the growing season was very poor, and now we are in this situation,” he said. ..

“It’s testing the resilience of dairy workers, it’s for sure.”

Brittany Hobson

Canadian press

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