Australia's most populous state is now entirely in drought


We've been sweltering in the heatwave here in the United Kingdom but spare a thought for our cousins Down Under, where a drought is now in full swing.

A herd of thirsty cows swarmed a water truck in Australia, drone footage of the event shows.

Farmers are among the hardest hit by the drought, which is the driest and most widespread in the state since 1965.

"Farmers are getting out left, right and centre".

"No-one likes doing that".

"It might just be that they need you to offer them an ear - let them talk through what is happening to them". "You turn up here because you've got to turn up".

The Australian Bureau of Meteorology announced that the summer in Australia was the second warmest ever, while the autumn was then the among driest and warmest ever recorded.

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The Australian state of New South Wales has been declared entirely in drought.

New South Wales officials released figures on Wednesday showing that every part of the state is affected, with nearly one-quarter classified as being in "intense drought".

Some exhausted graziers spend hours each day hand-feeding their stock because the ground is too dry for grass to grow. They are now allowed to shoot kangaroos that graze on land that would otherwise be used for cows.

The drought, likely intensified by a dry winter, has made it extremely hard for many farmers in the region to feed and give water to livestock, as well as keep crops alive, according to the BBC.

"If we don't manage this situation, we will start to see tens of thousands of kangaroos starving and suffering, ultimately leading to a major animal welfare crisis", he added.

Agriculture contributes more than US$11bn to the state's economy annually and employs about 77,000 people.

A crippling drought is ravaging vast tracts of Australia's pastoral heartland, decimating herds and putting desperate farmers under intense financial and emotional strain, with little relief in sight.