Poultry producers lose stock in Australian floods
Recent floods in Queensland, Australia have caused, and are still causing, extreme destruction and damage, the cost of which is yet to be fully calculated. It is now emerging that poultry producers have also been affected.
More than 1,000 prime laying chickens were killed when the water came through Emerald Egg Farm, located just 25 metres from the Gascoyne River bank.
Owner Annette Wright says her only hope for boosting production before the high season starts in April is to source new chickens.
"Basically our only option would be to try and source some pullets, which are female chickens that are 16 to 17 weeks old and about to lay their first eggs.
"We may be able to get those from Perth if someone has some excess in the system, but that's just a guess." She estimates production has been down by 1,000 eggs each day since December 20.
Flood damaging is now extending to the southern state of Victoria. A central Victorian poultry producer says about 300,000 chickens drowned when sheds at its Serpentine farm were flooded on Saturday.
Hazledene's Chicken's Vicki Gaudion estimates the loss will cost the company up to $5 million. Gaudion says it only took an hour to flood the sheds.
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