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Sunday 31 August 2014

Showers on way after happy farmers make hay

Majella O'Sullivan

Published 25/06/2014 | 02:30

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Nelus O'Connor (on right) of Nelus O'Connor Agri Contractors at work on the farm of Timmy Kennelly from Moyvane, Co Kerry. Photo: Domnick Walsh
Nelus O'Connor (on right) of Nelus O'Connor Agri Contractors at work on the farm of Timmy Kennelly from Moyvane, Co Kerry. Photo: Domnick Walsh

THE fine spell is due to break today but one group that won't be complaining is the country's farmers who have been making hay while the sun shines.

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Contractors were hoping to have the first cut silage completed last night and say a few showers would be welcome.

The high pressure that has dominated will be replaced by Atlantic weather systems bringing showers, some of them heavy, for the rest of the week.

Met Eireann's Joan Blackburn said the areas that have enjoyed the best of the sunshine in the south and west will experience more showery weather.

"Tomorrow there is a system moving in from the west bringing rain over Munster, some of it heavy but this could peter out again especially in the northern half of the country," she said.

Farmers have been buoyed by the fine weather, and are in a far better place than they were this time last year, with an abundance of good-quality fodder.

North Kerry-based contractor Neilus O'Connor's working day has begun at 6am and ended at midnight for the past two weeks.

He said: "This time last year, we hadn't a bale made. This year we've done between 5,500 and 6,000.

"We've cut in fields this year that we could not even get into for the previous four years it was so wet and we're getting nice quality silage."

In the height of the fodder crisis last year hay was commanding prices of up to €50 per bale. This year, the price of the bales has more than halved and is costing just €25/bale or less.

Irish Independent

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