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Month: June 2019

Mortimer believes he will be dropped

Mortimer believes he will be dropped

HE’S BACK: Orange’s Daniel Mortimer started for the Roosters in their win over the Rabbitohs on Monday night. Photo: GETTY IMAGESDANIEL Mortimer is not expecting to be in the Roosters’ 17-man squad for their round two NRL clash against the Panthers on Sunday.
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This is despite helping the Roosters to a dramatic come-from-behind 24-20 win over the Rabbitohs on Monday night.

Mortimer was called into the Roosters’ starting line up on Monday morning after captain Braith Anasta was ruled out with a back injury.

The Orange product started the game at five-eighth and also picked up the kicking duties.

The 22-year-old kicked four goals from his four attempts and also made 27 tackles.

Still, he doesn’t expect to be on the field on Sunday when the Roosters play Penrith.

“I doubt I’ll play again this weekend,” Mortimer said.

“I think they want to stick with pretty much the same side. Braith will be back so I think I’ll be 18th man.”

But Mortimer isn’t too worried about that.

He was thrilled to make his return to the NRL after Parramatta relegated him to Wentworth Cup duties for the 2011 season.

“It was good to run out in the NRL again. I felt like I was debuting again,” Mortimer said.

He was originally going to be the 18th man on Monday but Roosters coach Brian Smith called him on Monday morning to tell him he’d be starting at No.6.

He was also handed the kicking duties.

“I was probably more nervous about kicking than playing,” he laughed.

Mortimer conceded the Roosters were lucky to down the Rabbitohs.

“We didn’t play as well as we did in the trials,” he said.

“The Bunnies played well. They smashed it up the middle quite a bit. We did well to hang on.

“Then we scored those late tries to get over them. The boys were pretty rapt to win.

“We probably didn’t deserve to win but we’ll take it.”

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Rot sets in for grape growers

Rot sets in for grape growers

CRUSHING LOSS: Miles Butler, from Missouri, picks out the bird-pecked and brown fruit from the chardonnay grapes at Canobolas-Smith Wines. The vineyard has experienced extensive crop losses due to excessive rain and bird infestation. Photo: MARK LOGAN 0306mlgrapes1HEAVY rainfall across Orange recently has crushed the hopes of many vignerons with extensive crop losses due to water-laden soil.
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Orange recorded 161.6 millimetres of rainfall in just eight days recently with grapes now splitting and subject to infection and mould.

“It’s probably happened at the worst time for grape growers,” Angullong Vineyard owner Ben Crossing said.

“Grapes take up moisture and it transfers up into the berries and they split.”

Mr Crossing said once grapes split they were more susceptible to infection and he estimates he has lost around 20 per cent of his crop.

“It could easily be more than that, it’s quite significant that sort of rain,” he said.

Mr Crossing was thankful Angullong had harvested most of its white varieties prior to the rain, however he is expecting heavy losses in the red varieties.

“It’s be a bit of a salvage operation for the reds,” he said.

It’s the second rain-sodden year for vignerons, Mr Crossing said. The vineyard lost 500 tonnes of grapes due to rain this time last year.

Brangayne of Orange owner David Hoskins said excess moisture in grapes led to reduced sugar levels and flavour.

Infection has become a problem in split grapes across the vineyard, according to Mr Hoskins.

“A few split berries in a bunch can ruin the whole lot … the rot will spread very quickly across the vineyard,” he said.

“We haven’t seen a rainfall event like this in the past and we’re expecting the worst.”

Canobolas-Smith Wines owner Murray Smith said cases of botrytis had led to a drawn-out harvesting process with pickers having to avoid infected grapes.

“It’s making the picking process a lot more expensive,” he said.

Mr Smith said excess rains had also brought a larger bird population to his vineyard. The birds are eating the grapes that are not suffering from infection.

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Pet shops praise new puppy laws

Pet shops praise new puppy laws

RESPONSIBLE SALE: Mullion Produce Pets and Saddlery’s pet shop manager Tegan Boucher says she supports the Pet Industry Association of Australia’s plan to outlaw puppy farming. Photo: JUDE KEOGH 0306puppy3ORANGE pet shops have welcomed the introduction of new regulations designed to help eradicate puppy farms.
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Set to be introduced in October, the guidelines allow pet shop members of the Pet Industry Association of Australia (PIAA) to only sell puppies from accredited breeders while also committing to re-house abandoned or surrendered dogs.

Mullion Produce Pets and Saddlery pet shop manager Tegan Boucher said while the store wasn’t a member of the PIAA, it supported its code of conduct.

“I think it’s very important to know a dog’s history and know about the temperament of its parents and know what type of environment it’s grown up in,” she said.

Ms Boucher said Mullion Produce had very strict rules about where it sourced its pets from and was even strict about who the animals were sold to.

She said potential puppy buyers were even asked questions designed to see if they were suitable for dog ownership.

The questions cover everything from the person’s ability to pay vet bills to how much time they’re able to spend walking and caring for their dog.

“I’ve refused to sell to a few people,” Ms Boucher said.

Having worked in the pet shop and boarding kennel industry for some time Ms Boucher said she’d seen the “nasty” results of puppy farming.

Orange Pet Barn manager Jonathan Cantrill said he was also against puppy farming and supported the PIAA initiative.

“A lot of the puppies we sell are not from puppy farms, just from people whose dogs have had a litter because they haven’t desexed their dog,” he said.

“As long as the dogs haven’t been mistreated I don’t see a problem.”

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Forbes braces for major flood peak

Forbes braces for major flood peak

INUNDATED(above): The swollen Lachlan River spreads out over cropping and grazing country upstream from Forbes. This photo was taken by SES officers at 2pm on Sunday.EVACUATION orders for a major flood peak are expected to be rolled out around Forbes from today.
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The flood peak is predicted to hit Forbes between tomorrow night and Thursday morning at a height of 10.65 metres at the Iron Bridge – equivalent to the August 1990 floods.

“There are procedures in place for evacuation warnings to get people out of their homes,” Forbes State Emergency Service (SES) controller Robert Walshaw said.

“People should be preparing themselves for the flood now. The people who were here in 1990 know who was affected. Those who got their feet wet then will get their feet wet again.”

Although evacuation warnings for areas in the north, south, south-west and eastern residential areas were released on Sunday, Mr Walshaw said residents must not confuse a warning with an evacuation order.

The warnings rolled out on Sunday were to give residents time to prepare for an evacuation.

By 3.30pm yesterday afternoon all primary and secondary schools in Forbes were closed until further notice.

Two men rescued from floodwaters in two days

At about 10am on Sunday a man was rescued from rising waters 45km east of Forbes on the Cowra Road.

The driver entered the floodwaters and became trapped, with the water level reaching the vehicle’s doors.

The rescue helicopter and Forbes and Gooloogong SES crews responded to the incident.

On arrival at the scene they found the driver had managed to climb onto the roof of the vehicle.

At 12.20pm yesterday Forbes SES together with Forbes police were called to a second incident where a vehicle had entered floodwaters.

The male driver attempted to dodge debris on Old Grenfell Road and ended up just off the edge of the road.

Forbes SES deputy controller Jordon L’Estrange urged residents to use commonsense near floodwater.

“Do not walk, drive or enter floodwater,” he said.

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BAD PATCH: Repairing potholes council’s never-ending challenge

BAD PATCH: Repairing potholes council’s never-ending challenge

WORK WATCH: Orange City Council general manager Garry Styles and mayor John Davis inspect work to patch potholes in Coronation Drive caused by recent rain. Photo: JUDE KEOGH 0305potholeWORK to repair Orange’s roads is a never-ending challenge for Orange City Council according to mayor John Davis.
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“It’s a bit like painting the Sydney Harbour Bridge, you’re sort of chasing your tail,” he said.

“We’ll never have them [the roads] fixed. They’ll never be brand new and we’ll never have them perfect.”

Cr Davis and general manager Garry Styles inspected work to repair potholes in Coronation Drive yesterday, just one of the many roads that took a battering from recent wet weather.

Cr Davis said patching work around town would not survive ongoing downpours and was only a temporary measure to fix the roads.

“We’ll certainly do a lot of patching,” he said.

“There’s potholes on good roads … however I don’t think anyone would begrudge the rain.”

Before the wet weather, the council began a $3.1million program of road repairs six months ago.

Since December, $2 million has been spent on patching and resurfacing an area equivalent to 60 city blocks.

Mr Styles said wet weather may mean minor delays to work on the Northern Distributor Road.

“We might have to look at hot mix instead of some of the bitumen seal,” he said.

“It would certainly add a bit to the price but fortunately we’ve sealed a fair bit of it already so its unlikely to be a huge impact.”

Scheduled roadwork will be prioritised to take the storm damage into account.

“The contractors will be hard to come by and the weather forecast for the next month is certainly not suitable for doing major works,” Cr Davis said.

“We’ve got to make sure we spend the money wisely in the best places.”

Council crews began work to patch potholes on the weekend, using about 12 tonnes of ‘cold-mix’ since last week.

Rain has delayed work in Endsleigh and Lone Pine Avenues while work in Moulder, Anson, Prince and Byng streets has been completed.

Details and locations of potholes and potential road problems can be reported to the council’s customer hotline on 1300 650 511, or by email to [email protected]

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