Record temperatures last month saw water companies advise livestock producers to check regularly for leaks in pipes and troughs and try to pinpoint any areas of low pressure.
Farmers who found themselevs out of water should try to identify the issue first, said Severn Trent catchment management adviser Jodie Rettino. “Think about where the source is, whether it’s localised and if your neighbours are also affected.
“As soon as you’ve established this, get on the phone to your water retailer or wholesaler to advise them of your problem and they will do their best to get water to you. The next step is to minimise non-essential water use.
“Finally, it’s extremely useful to know how much water you use, as if your water company can help, having this information will mean you receive adequate volumes, without wasting the precious resource that could be in need elsewhere.”
The Met Office says there is clear evidence that temperatures are on the rise for good due to climate change.
This means it is important to be prepared for prolonged dry spells in future – including by investing in on-farm infrastructure.
“There is no time like the present to consider how making investments now could result in improved water efficiency and environmental improvements, which in the long term should help prevent shortages and save money.
“A rainwater harvesting system installed this autumn will collect water over the spring that can then be treated on-site to reduce reliance on mains water over the summer, giving you peace of mind during future dry spells.”
Top tips for water efficiency
- Clean water troughs so capacity is not compromised
- Closely monitor for signs of heat stress in livestock
- Locate drinking troughs near the bottom of the field
- Don’t cross connect bore holes with mains water
- Organise a backup storage or water bowser
- Ensure all pumps are serviced and in good order