Rowe to the res­cue

The Advocate (Perth) - - FRONT PAGE - Bruce Hunt

CHITTERING Val­ley farmer Mur­ray Rowe came to the res­cue of his flock of sheep and baby lambs aboard a most un­usual res­cue craft – his old wind rush cata­ma­ran. The re­cent down­pours had dumped 150mm of wa­ter into the Brock­man River which runs through his farm, turn­ing the low­est land into a waist-high lake.

Mr Rowe, a Su­bi­aco phar­ma­cist, coun­cil­lor and for­mer deputy mayor from Dalkeith, had gone to the farm to check his cat­tle – all were safe on the higher ground – but dis­cov­ered his sheep and three sets of twin lambs ma­rooned on an is­land sur­rounded by the fast-mov­ing tor­rent of the swollen river.

“Lift­ing the adult sheep on to the cata­ma­ran was quite dif­fi­cult,” the 64-year-old said.

“First I had to catch them, tie their legs”, and with help from his friend Michael Byrne, “prop

up the fence so I could carry them un­der. It was not that sim­ple though as their wool was sat­u­rated mak­ing them very heavy.

“My beef cat­tle are the busi­ness side of the farm; the sheep are re­ally just lawn mow­ers keep­ing down the grass in the or­chard.

“But they still had to be res­cued. The soak­ing wet young lambs would have died from ex­po­sure if left trapped on the is­land.

“This is the third time since I’ve owned the farm that it has flooded to this ex­tent, al­though not quite as bad as the last time 22 years ago.”

Pic­ture: Bruce Hunt

The good shep­herd: Mur­ray Rowe with a res­cued lamb.

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