FOWL WEATHER: Kyle Wotton from Tabalan in New South Wales sold 40 layers at the Warwick Pig and Calf Sale. The family farm is too dry to support his egg business.
FOWL WEATHER: Kyle Wotton from Tabalan in New South Wales sold 40 layers at the Warwick Pig and Calf Sale. The family farm is too dry to support his egg business. Michael Nolan

Drought forces teenage chook farmer to sell his flock

TIMES are tough for 19-year-old egg farmer Kyle Wotton.

The drought hit his Tabulam farm hard and he decided to close his business.

Mr Wotton does not have enough water for his 3000 layers so the chooks with some productive life left will be sold. The rest - more than 2000 - will be destroyed.

"They have finished laying so it is time to get rid of them," he said.

"It'd be wrong to try to sell them to somebody else."

Mr Wotton and his grandfather made the 200km drive north to sell 40 of his birds at the Warwick Pig and Calf Sale yesterday. They were snapped up faster than the auctioneers expected.

 

He also sold 16 weaner pigs.

It was a bitter-sweet sale for the young man who started his egg business when he was 15 years old, two years before the drought really started to bite.

But age is on his side and Mr Wotton felt upbeat.

"When you've got pigs, sheep and cows to keep alive you don't have a choice," he said.

"The chooks have come to the end of their natural cycle so you just got to cop what you get.

"I'll get back into eggs when the drought breaks," Mr Wotton said.



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