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BUSH FIRES.

■«■■■ *■■ MORE DAMAGE IN THE WAIRARAPA. [Bt Telegbaph.— Special to The Post.] MASTERTON, This Day. The atmosphere of Masterton was very unpleasant yesterday afternoon in consequence of a fresh breeze from the Tararua slopes bringing in its course the blinding and suffocating smoke of a big bush fire/ which raged in the Maungatarera Valley. The fire- burnt fiercely in the Kaituna district, especially in the vicinity of the schoolhouse. A large tract of grass country was devastated. Smoke all through the district was almost blinding, and to those who had to bear the brunt of the firefighting it made their task little short of torture. Other losses are reported, most serious being the destruction of two , small bridges which were built by the settlers over Black Creek. CARTEBTON, This Day. C. Arccus's hou&V at Dalofield was destroyed by bush Fira yesterday. A barn and shed containing over twenty tons of feed belonging. to C. Sayers wa3 also destroyed. It was insured for £30. fBT TELEGRAPH.— TRKSS AS3OCI4.TXOK.] REEFTON, 29th February. Bush fires on Progress-road are getting serious. The town manual fire engine and brigade went out -]a6t night and succeeded in saving several houses and buildings. There is no sign of rain. EKETAHUNA, 28th February. During the week a settler in the Eketahuna district had fifty sheep roasted by log fires. The fires in the district are still smouldering, and every fresh wind causes them to spread., NIREAHA, 28th February. Fires are still raging in the Nireaha district. The gale on Thursday fanned the smouldering fires to a great extent. The Nireaha Hall, which is being used as a temporary school house, was in danger, and a watch had to be kept. The Mangainoka River is dry in parts, a thing which has never, been heard of before. * ' '' ' GRASS SEED FOR THE SETTLERS. ! ACTION OF- THE GOVERNMENT. Acting under instructions from the Government, the Lands Department is purchasing large quantities of grass seed for supply to the sufferers by the bush and grass fires. The assistance of officers of the Agricultural Department has been secured in order to prevent fraud in the quality of the seed supplied by the dealers. The examination is a microscopic one only — there being no time for the germination of samples. Every care is being taken to ensure the seed being of uniform quality. In cases where for special reasons settlers desire a particular mixture, it has been arranged that they may be supplied by the merchant with j whom they usually deal, but samples of tho mixtures must be approved by the department. This will ensuro promptness, and will distribute the purchases more than if the sufferers " had to wait till they could get their seed from one or two dealers in the large centres. In explanation of the method being followed, the Minister said if a farmer in a backblock district had suffered from fire, and there was a seed merchant ho usually dealt with, and who knew his mixture, the Government officer on being satisfied on ,all points, could authorise Iho settler to purchase the seed — certain safeguards being taken — and the account would be forwarded to the department. If, howovcr, the farmer proferred it, the Government would supply him with the seed direct. "As one who is acquainted with the buying of seeds myself," said Ihe Minister, "I know the difficulty of ! one general mixture satisfying a number of farmers. Very few -farmers adopt the same mixture. The damage done has been extensive, though perhaps not quite so extensive, I am happy to say, as one would believe from reading the papers. In the South Island the damage has been small, comparatively speaking. Tho lion, gentleman added, "that throughout the North Island there were some very unfortunate cases. AH cases will be carefully examined," concluded the Hon. M'Nnb. "The supply of seed will be immediate, as far as we can do so with the lnrge quantity required. The terms to tho settlor will depend on the extent of his position financially. In cases where complete repayment has to bo made, the terms will be liberal. In all cases time is saved by the sufferers applying direct to tho Commissioner of Crown Lands in their district. 1 ' '

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Permanent link to this item

http://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/newspapers/EP19080302.2.14

Bibliographic details

BUSH FIRES., Evening Post, Volume LXXV, Issue 52, 2 March 1908

Word Count
706

BUSH FIRES. Evening Post, Volume LXXV, Issue 52, 2 March 1908

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