THE country's peak body for rodeos and campdrafts is enjoying the highest event turnout it's seen since before the pandemic, despite the threat of foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) entering Australia.
Australian Bushmen's Campdraft and Rodeo Association (ABCRA) executive officer Craig Young told ACM it's full steam ahead for competitors and spectators, despite one committee pulling the pin.
It comes after Warialda Campdraft organisers made the decision to cancel their draft because of "last minute low cattle availability due to the FMD concern".
Mr Young said he doesn't believe other committees hold the same concerns, but if FMD was to enter Australia, it would be a very different story.
"At this stage FMD is not in Australia, it is not a problem to Australia, and should not be a hindrance to or a problem in regards to running events," he said.
"Notwithstanding Warialda... I've had very little or no contact from committees in relation to FMD and the impact that it could have on our events.
"We've got a massive amount of events booked up over the next number of months, and they're all running, the only thing that has been stopping them a bit, has been wet weather."
While urging a sense of calm, Mr Young said the association takes the FMD threat incredibly seriously, with stringent plans in place should the disease reach Australian shores.
"Certainly government authorities, the Department of Primary Industries, Department of Agriculture and Animals Australia, are working their way through those things," he said.
"If it does arrive, there's going to be biosecurity measures instigated immediately by the appropriate authorities, of which the ABCRA will fully support to ensure FMD is eradicated out of Australia as soon as it possibly can."
Equine events across the region are enjoying record numbers post COVID, despite persistent wet weather making logistics difficult.
Organisers expect a strong turnout for the Tamworth Show Rodeo and Campdraft on September 3 and 4.
"We will be running 12 campdrafts in the next two weekends alone and there'll be eight rodeos run in that same time period," Mr Young said.
"It's been very pleasing to see that the events are starting to come back to pre-COVID activity and support.
"We've been fortunate that the flooding in particular on the coastal region has been in the winter where traditionally they don't run many campdrafts, so their campdrafts will start in spring."
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