24 Feb 2012

Heavy rain in Otago welcomed by farmers

6:28 am on 24 February 2012

Heavy rainfall across the bottom half of the South Island has been welcomed by farmers in the clutches of a dry spell.

On Thursday afternoon, the Otago Regional Council issued a flood warning saying most rivers in the region would peak by Friday morning.

That came as MetService issued a heavy rain warning for southern and western parts of the South Island over the next 48 hours.

Federated Farmers' Otago president Michael Lord, who farms on the Taieri plain, says the rain has been gratefully received.

He says for the greater Otago region the rain is probably good news.

David Rose, a Southland farmer, says he's had as much rain in the past day as the whole of the month so far.

He says that's welcome, but he would be concerned if it continued for another 24 hours.

MetService also had heavy rainfall warnings in place overnight for the Westland Ranges and eastern Bay of Plenty.