Tuesday, 16 June 2020 11:54

Southland aerial compliance inspections begin today

Written by  Staff Reporters
Environment Southland chief executive Rob Phillips. Environment Southland chief executive Rob Phillips.

Environment Southland is wanting to see big improvements on last year’s winter grazing practices as it begins its aerial compliance inspections today.

Today’s flight, weather permitting, is a preliminary one to provide as initial estimation on wintering practice in Southland. Further compliance flights will be undertaken later in late July/August.

Environment Southland chief executive Rob Phillips says last year’s winter grazing practice left a lot to be desired. 

“It was a problem across Southland and I am hoping to see clear improvements this year off the back of a concerted effort with industry organisations to get all farmers up to speed with good practice.”

Last winter Environment Southland undertook three aerial inspections resulting in 68 follow up site visits, letters of concern to a further 88 property owners, six infringements and two prosecution cases. 

A number of others were referred to Environment Southland’s land sustainability team for advice and support on winter grazing.

As part of the council’s effort to turn the situation around, it initiated a hui last year to bring industry organisations together – DairyNZ, Beef + Lamb New Zealand, Federated Farmers, MfE and MPI – to formulate a plan to tackle the problem. They have since provided a range of support to farmers. 

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