Australia cattle giant warns of 'extreme losses' from floods

SYDNEY (AFP) – Australia’s largest cattle company has warned of “extreme losses” after record-breaking floods, as producers said more than 300,000 cows were drowned or washed away in the vast continent’s northeast.

After more than five years of drought, heavy rains over an almost two-week period turned dusty and parched land in Queensland state into vast swathes of mud that bogged down already weakened cattle.

Australian Agricultural Company Ltd (AACo) said Monday (Feb 11) that four of its properties were “severely impacted” after “unprecedented levels of flooding” in the region, with “extreme losses” forecast for one 30,000-head station.

Around half of Australia’s 25-million strong cattle herd are bred in Queensland, with an estimated one in 40 animals killed in the disaster. read more