Conservation staff are hunting a stoat that has breached a native wildlife sanctuary’s $2 million fence.
The centre’s conservation manager, Elton Smith, said a ranger spotted the stoat’s footprints in the snow last week.
“Experts confirmed the worst case scenario that it was in fact a stoat,” he said. . .
Primary Industries Minister Nathan Guy has announced $8.8 million in funding grants over four years to help councils tackle hill country erosion.
“We’ve seen the serious damage that erosion has caused after the severe storm in the Whanganui, Rangitikei and Taranaki regions, both economically and environmentally,” says Mr Guy.
“This funding round is timely, given that $4.7 million out of the total $8.8 million is going towards the Horizons Regional Council. This covers the Whanganui and Manawatu regions which have been badly affected by flooding and landslides.” . .
Getting the right TPP deal – Nigel Sitrling:
Farming leaders say they will not be bounced into accepting a poor deal in the Trans-Pacific Partnership and the Government should walk away from the talks if they do not deliver significant improvements in access to overseas markets for this country’s major exports.
After several times looking like it might fail in recent weeks the 12-country negotiation took a sizable step forward yesterday when the United States Senate finally passed legislation giving President Barack Obama authority to negotiate trade deals on behalf of Congress.
The so-called Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) bill was passed 60-34 and is now ready to be signed into law by Obama in a move expected to clear the way for countries in the TPP talks to bring six years of talks to a close. . .
The bigger picture is progress – Rick Powdrell:
My November address to council had a theme of change. This is a topic our wider industry regularly focuses on, but concentrates on the big macro burning issues often without giving credit to the many progressive changes being made.
I don’t need to highlight the on farm productivity gains made in recent years to this council. Our progressive farmers have adopted practices and technology to significantly lift the performance of their stock and the quality of the product to the end consumer.
At the same time the meat companies have been adopting modern technologies to improve the throughput performance of their plants. . .
Life membership takes Elliot by surprise – Sally Rae:
When Mike Elliot was presented with life membership of Otago Federated Farmers, he said it took him by complete surprise.
”It certainly blew my socks off. It was totally unexpected; just brilliant,” the 66 year old South Otago farmer said.
Mr Elliot first became involved with the rural lobby organisation in the early 1980s, attending Clinton branch meetings. In those days, the branch system in the organisation was very strong.
He later became chairman of the dairy section of Otago Federated Farmers and served as national senior vice president of the section. He was also a former provincial president. . .
Disappointment with ORC over wilding trees – John Gibb:
Otago Regional Council member Gerry Eckhoff says it is ”regrettable” the council has earmarked no funding to support community groups, including those in Central Otago, battling to remove wilding trees.
At an ORC meeting this week Cr Eckhoff, who lives near Alexandra, voted for the ORC’s amended long-term plan (LTP) overall.
But he voiced concern that no money was being provided to support community groups undertaking good work in tackling the growing wilding pine ”disaster”. . .
Federated Farmers new Arable Industry Group Chairperson Guy Wigley says some “minor changes” has the arable sector on a secure footing for the forseeable future.
The industry group held its AGM in Wellington today with council elections and confirmed it’s name change from Federated Farmers’ Grain and Seeds Industry Group to the Federated Farmers’ Arable Industry Group. . .
Federated Farmers’ Dairy Industry Group has announced changes to its national executive this afternoon.
At the industry’s national council in Wellington there were two new delegates elected with one retiring.
Marlborough dairy chair Wayne Langford was elected vice chair to the national executive, while Mid Canterbury dairy chair Jesse Chan-Dorman was appointed to the executive. . .