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Cattle Killed in New South Wales Fire

10 January 2013

AUSTRALIA - Around 10,000 head of livestock have been killed in fires across 37 local government areas following an extremely warm period of weather.

Cooler weather has aided fire fighters in combatting the blaze but recovery will require national effort, Prime Minister Julia Gillard said.

Mrs Gillard added that government is responding by forming an assistance grant scheme to help farmer- as well as the public- rebuild and replace items of importance.

Transport freight subsidies of up to 50 per cent on the carriage of livestock and fodder are available to help primary producers to a maximum of AUS$15,000 per annum.

The grants come from joint federal-state funding , announced on Wednesday. All primary producers are to be provided with loans up to AUS$130,000, subject to criteria eligibility, to help businesses in desperate situations.

New South Wales Minister for Agriculture, Katrina Hodgkinson told ABCRural that her family farm has been badly effected by fires.

"It was a dreadful night, I've got to say we've been up all night, we know that we've lost thousands of head of sheep.

“And of course this is one of our most beautiful primary producing areas, and a lot of stud breeders live in this particular area, so that is an absolute tragedy," said Katrina Hodgkinson.

Weather presenter Magdalena Rose spoke to ITV News calling the firest one of the most widespread and persistent heatwaves in history' with the highest temperature reaching 43 degrees celsius.

She added that some fires have even been started deliberately, with three teens in New South Wales being charged over allegedly starting fires.

TheCattleSite News Desk



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