Rain damage to be clearer this week

Farmers in the Eyre Peninsula region will find out the extent of their crop damage from last week’s weather on Thursday and Friday.

Farmers in the region have been reaping canola and bean crops while waiting for their grain crops – barley and wheat – to dry.

We’re still waiting for the moisture content to decrease...

Agronomist Mark Habner

Landmark Cummins Ag Services agronomist Mark Habner said the grains must be dried out in order to be stored, and until the grains had reached the required moisture content the extent of the damage from the rain would not be known.

“We’re still waiting for the moisture content to decrease before reaping, so we don’t know the damage done by the rains in the previous two weeks,” Mr Habner said.

Grains Research and Development Corporation is warning storing over-moist grain could create ideal conditions for insect and mould damage.

Mr Habner said Eyre Peninsula farmers did not store wet grain as they had an export market – such as the middle east.

However, PCB consulting grain storage specialist Peter Botta said farmers may need to consider storage of moist crops and procedures to dry grain following recent rainfall patterns.

He said grain could usually withstand one big rainfall over a harvest season but multiple rain events put the grain at risk of sprouting and germinating.