SOUTHWEST of Buckleboo at Pinkawillinie, Paul Schaefer has made the best out of a difficult situation.
In an unusual sight so far from any rivers or oceans, a boat is moored in what the Schaefers have christened 'Melaleuca Lake'.
While the family "only" received 120-160mm in the January storms that battered the region, their land acted as an end point for torrents of raging water, sand and silt from across the district.
Eighty hectares of land is still underwater and the Schaefers have been waterskiing in one paddock where it is still four metres deep in parts.
"There's a massive amount of water still laying around and at the point where it ran into our farm, there'd be hundreds of thousands of tonnes of sand," Mr Schaefer said.
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"We're not sure what to do with that, we might try scrape it into a pile, but most of it is still too wet to do much with.
"The gutters that we can get to, we'll fix, but there's some spots that just aren't worth it yet because of the amount of water laying there.
"We've got a couple of paddocks that we won't crop this year."
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Mr Schaefer said the event, for them, had been a "net positive", despite the large remnants of damage left.
He said they would put some vetch in at Easter time and start on cereals in late April or early May, and were also considering trying canola to capitalise on the full moisture profile.
"We're pretty excited (about the upcoming season) really. It's not going to take much to get everything up and away," he said.
Nitrogen deficiency in soils hammered by January's storm event will make fertiliser purchase decisions even more critical for croppers in the Kimba district this season.
Agsave Merchandise agronomist James Cant, Kimba, received results from more than 300 soil samples across the district on Tuesday and said nitrogen reserves were generally half of what would they would normally be at this time of year.
He said it was particularly evident on lighter soil types where leeching had occurred.
"Rain received in November happened in warm conditions, kickstarted mineralisation and the nitrogen was then in a plant available, but also very mobile state," he said.
"The January storm came and washed that N away because it was in a mobile state unfortunately."
Mr Cant said while urea purchases still stacked up economically with wheat prices at $400 a tonne, there could be a lot of yield left on the table.
"Because of the urea price being so high, farmers are unlikely to feed crops to their maximum potential like they usually would," he said.
"It's a big decision when urea's at $500/t. Now it's at $1600/t so farmers have got an even bigger decision to make."
On a positive note, Mr Cant said he hadn't found "the bottom of the bucket" in the soil profile during testing.
"We just need an opening rain to join it up and we'll be good to go," he said. "There's massive potential out there."
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