Responding to an extremely wet winter and start to spring

April Flooding
Roderick Low

The deluge of wet weather throughout Scotland this winter and the start of spring is having adverse effects on the agricultural sector. With a wetter than average spring come issues with lambing, calving, flooding and general farm management.

Scotland’s Farm Advisory Service (FAS), funded by the Scottish Government, collates a number of resources that should help you to navigate this challenging period. They have been compiled into a dedicated webpage, which can be accessed here.

For specific enquiries or for more information about your options, phone the FAS advice line on 0300 323 0161 or email

The Advice Line is open between 9 am and 5 pm Monday to Friday, or you can email anytime.  It can provide up to 30 minutes of free advice, from a consultant, on a range of issues including technical and practical advice about coping with the wet weather.

Advice covers topics such as.

  • Lambing - Whether your existing systems are under pressure due to the wet conditions, or you're having to adapt to new things such as lambing indoors for the first time, we have put together this pack of materials to help.
  • Calving and Calf Survival - FAS has produced a range of relevant resources that will be helpful for both suckled calf and dairy calf producers who are calving now.
  • Cattle Turnout and Grazing - These resources are aimed at both dairy and beef producers and include advice about dealing with wet conditions in the grazing platform, and minimising the risk of grass staggers at turnout.
  • Forage Production and Storage - Some farmers are running out of forage, or have found their forage stocks flooded, whilst others are concerned about the impact the wet spring will have on their ability to conserve enough forage for winter 24/25. These resources will help.
  • Bedding - Advice about managing and reducing straw usage, and the opportunities to use other bedding materials.
  • Managing Slurries and Manures - The waterlogged conditions mean it's more important than ever to carry out risk assessment before spreading manures and slurries.
  • Forward Planning for Higher Rainfalls - As higher rainfall events become more common, some farmers may find this a useful time to consider longer term strategies, and these resources are a good starting point.

It is important to #KeepTalking #AreEweOkay

If you or someone you know is finding this to be a difficult time, RSABI provides practical, emotional and financial support to all people involved in the Scottish agricultural industry. Their team are friendly, professional and all support is offered in confidence. They support people of all ages, including those affected by illness, accident, bereavement and those struggling with their mental wellbeing.

You are not alone. If you are struggling, call their helpline for support at 0808 1234 555

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