Subscribe to The Weekly e-newsletter

News, views and advice delivered to your inbox every Friday. Covering producer case studies, industry news, market updates, on-farm tools and more, this e-newsletter is your one-stop shop for the latest in the red meat industry.

Sign up
Back to Research & Development

Flood information for livestock producers

The below directory has been compiled for producers affected by flood conditions. It includes a list of alert services, relevant contacts and support as well as resources for managing and recovering from flood.

Alert services

Australian national warnings summary
See current weather warnings in each state.
Australian rainfall and river conditions
Regional rainfall and river level updates   
Emergency updates by location 
Search for digital and radio emergency updates based on your location.
Floods and storms: current situation
Information for producers
Current information on floods and storms in NSW, including current animal safe places.

Key contacts

For emergency support during or after a flood or storm
P: 132 500
Qld web app
Customer service and support for people and businesses (including primary producers) recovering from flood
13 77 88
Translation services: 13 14 50
For assistance with emergency livestock movements
Urgent road access via NHVR Access Manager, Rochelle Mottlee
P: 0437 644 453
To make transport operators aware of emergency circumstances in your area:
LBRCA, Bec Coleman
P: 0432 336 718
LRTAQ, Laney O’Neil
P: 0447 349 214
ALRTA, Mat Munro
P: 0421 082 489
NSW Agricultural and Animal Services hotline
For emergency fodder, water and animal welfare assistance in NSW
1800 814 647
Queensland vet hotline
For emergency animal welfare assistance in Queensland
1800 621 918
Lifeline Australia
24-hour mental health support for people experiencing distress
13 11 14
NFF Farm Hub
A hub of resources for farm business assistance
For emergency animal welfare assistance in Victoria
1800 226 226


Dealing with flood

Farm and livestock management resources

For producers and advisors dealing with flooding, the following resources provide guidance for managing the wellbeing, handling and movement of livestock.

Flood recovery

Careful management can help minimise impacts on productivity when a flood event occurs. Knowing the signs of pasture damage, parasites and disease that occur during and after flood events can make recovery faster and more effective.

  • Recent rain may cause an increase in flies. Flystrike, particularly body-strike, can be caused by wet wool and dermatitis and after a flood sheep should be monitored daily.
  • Cattle ticks thrive in warm and humid conditions, which can lead to tick fever after floods or major rain events in Northern Australia.
    Floods provide ideal conditions for several species of gastrointestinal
  • worms to flourish. Effective worm control is needed to reduce parasite burdens in both sheep and cattle. Use worm testing tools such as worm egg counts (WEC), larval cultures or the Haemonchus dipstick to develop targeted drenching and grazing programs.
  • Clostridial diseases, such as blackleg and pulpy kidney can increase due to bacteria commonly found in contaminated water and soil. Ensure all livestock vaccinations are up-to-date.

  • Investigate sheep lameness, as virulent footrot often occurs in wet and warm conditions.

  • Watch for symptoms of three day sickness and Akabane as populations of biting insects such as mosquitoes increases.

Additional considerations are outlined in the Queensland Government livestock diseases following floods factsheet.


The effect of flooding is dependent on the flow and temperature of water, soil type, depth and duration of flooding, the health and type of plant species and the amount of silt or debris deposited. These factors will determine if pastures successfully recover, or if pastures will need to be resown.

Pastures not tolerant to waterlogging:

  • lucerne
  • cocksfoot
  • veldt
  • italian ryegrass
  • medic.

Susceptible to waterlogging:

  • ryegrass and clover pastures.

Tolerant pastures:

Post-flood actions

To ensure animal health and welfare after a flood:

  • Keep livestock away from areas that have been spoilt with floodwater from stockyards or other areas that had a high build-up of manure and urine.
  • Monitor lactating cows and ewes as environmental mastitis is caused by mud and bacteria.
  • Inspect hay and grain for water damage or toxic mould growth as pasteurellosis, salmonellosis and botulism are bacterial diseases caused by ingesting contaminated feed or water that may become more prevalent after a flood.
  • Implement a weed control program and restrict livestock from areas where toxic plants may be present.
  • If livestock show signs of ill-thrift or illness, seek immediate advice from veterinarians or DPI animal health officers.
  • If it is necessary to humanely kill livestock to prevent suffering, follow this guide from Business Queensland: Humane killing of injured livestock
  • Check fences and ensure they are stock-proof to enable biosecurity to be managed and protected.

Financial and other assistance

ATO support

The ATO has special considerations and support in place for businesses affected by flooding. They can assist in a range of ways, including offering more time to lodge and pay, or reissuing tax documents or records. For more information, visit with disasters or phone 1800 806 218.

Australian Government support

The Australian Government Disaster Recovery Payment (AGDRP) and Disaster Recovery Allowance (DRA) are available to people in eligible Local Government Areas affected by flooding.

The Disaster Recovery Payment is available for people who have been seriously injured, have lost their homes or whose homes have been directly damaged, whose major assets have been directly damaged or are the immediate family members of a person who has died as a direct result of the storms and floods.

The Disaster Recovery Allowance (DRA) provides income support payments to employees, primary producers and sole traders who can demonstrate they have experienced a loss of income as a direct result of the storms and floods.

Further information can be found on the Australian Government’s Disaster Assist website.

NSW support
NT support
  • General recovery information is available via SecureNT

QLD support
SA support
TAS support
VIC support
WA support