Word of the day

August 25, 2016

Omniana – pieces of information concerning everything; a miscellaneous collection of scraps of information on different topics, often in written form; thoughts or scraps of information about all or many kinds of things, especially a collection of notes, jottings, or short pieces of writing on all or many kinds of subjects.


Rural round-up

August 25, 2016

Is it normal to tie a cow to a tractor?:

When a concerned citizen saw a cow chained to a tractor in Southland, they thought it was odd enough to ring police about.

But instead of being an animal welfare issue, the case turned out to be a common(ish) farming practice.

It was Sunday afternoon when the police station phone rang – the caller having just seen the bovine suspended in its field along Gore’s Waikaka Rd. Officers were told the animal couldn’t get food or water, and the owner was nowhere to be seen.

The matter was referred to animal control.

Though what looked like cruelty was in fact the opposite, the farmer says – insisting it’s a life-saving measure. . . 

Forestry industry must remain vigilant about health and safety:

WorkSafe New Zealand says the latest forestry death in Hawkes Bay is a sad reminder to the industry of the need to remain vigilant about health and safety.

Monday’s death follows three earlier confirmed forestry fatalities so far this year, and is the second death in the Pohakura Forest.

“It is obviously concerning to see two deaths in the one forest within a matter of months. Any deaths are a tragedy for family, friends and co-workers and the wider community,” says WorkSafe’s chief executive Gordon MacDonald. . . 

Picton predator-free group targets less than 5 per cent pests by 2020 – Mike Watson:

A Picton group that pre-empted the Government’s predator-free push by 12 months plans to create a line of defence surrounding the entire town.

Volunteer group Picton Dawn Chorus has already started setting 150 traps, or a trap every 100 metres, on public walkways in the town’s Victoria Domain to kill rats, stoats and possums.

The next step is to set more than 700 traps in private gardens and outlying coastal and bush areas, eventually covering an expected 2000 hectares. . . 

Videos Highlight Sustainable Deer Farming:

NZ Landcare Trust has been working with deer farmers to capture examples of excellent sustainable land and water management from around the country. This information has been distilled into fifteen short videos that are now available to view online. The final five videos from Waikato and Southland join the ten previously released (Hawke’s Bay and Canterbury) to create an informative video based resource.

NZ Landcare Trust’s Regional Coordinator Janet Gregory said, “I’d like to thank the deer farmers who welcomed us onto their properties. They have taken the time to share some of the good management practices that they have put in place on their respective properties, demonstrating a proactive approach to addressing issues around the environment and water quality.” . . 

Interest in dairy sheep builds :

The dairy sheep industry is gaining traction as a viable alternative to traditional land uses, say rural property experts.

As the ability to convert to dairying faces greater challenges on environmental and economic fronts, the option of leaving the land as a milking sheep unit is coming into focus for farmers in regions like Southland and central North Island.

Invercargill-based Bayleys rural consultant Hayden McCallum says his patch of New Zealand’s rural landscape offers some significant opportunities for milking sheep, given its well established sheep sector and strong pastoral property base. . . 

Farm life in Taradise – Brad Markham:

Have you ever slipped your hand inside a cow having difficulty calving, felt two large front feet, and thought ‘I’m going to need a lot of lube to get this one out’? I’ve had to deliver a few monster calves this winter. Several were almost half my body weight. I often joke that semen from a certain bull with a reputation for producing huge calves, should come with a complementary container of lube. . . 

Image may contain: cloud, sky, text and outdoor


Thursday’s quiz

August 25, 2016

Anyone is welcome to pose the questions and if you stump everyone in doing so you’ll win a virtual bunch of daphne.


Fonterra forecast up 50c

August 25, 2016

Fonterra has increased its forecast milk payout by 50 cents to $4.75 per kilo of milk solids.

In an email to shareholders, chair John Wilson said:

The forecast earnings per share is 50 – 60 cents and therefore at this stage in the season, budget on a forecast cash payout of $5.15.
Current global milk prices remain at unrealistically low levels, but have started to improve as global demand and supply continue to rebalance.
Milk production in the EU is now in decline and our New Zealand milk collection at this early stage is around 4 per cent lower for the year to date.
We have seen prices increase in recent GDT events. However, the high NZD/USD exchange rate is offsetting some of these gains.
We expect the market to be volatile over the coming months and will continue to keep our forecast updated as we move into the season.

With the forecast dividend on top of the increased forecast payout, the total will be above break-even for the majority of farmers but the sensible ones will continue to very cautious.


Antony Jay 20.4.30 – 21.8.16

August 25, 2016

Writing genius Antony Jay has died.

His name is probably not familiar, but his work included Yes Minister and its sequel Yes Prime Minister..

He penned the 1980s BBC television series, starring Paul Eddington and Sir Nigel Hawthorne, with Jonathan Lynn.

Sir Antony’s career began in the BBC’s current affairs department where he was a founding member of the Tonight team.

He later scripted the documentaries Royal Family and Elizabeth R: A Year in the Life of the Queen, after which he was appointed Commander of the Royal Victorian Order for personal services to the Royal Family.

Yes Minister, which ran for three series between 1980 and 1984, followed the travails of MP James Hacker, minister for administrative affairs, and his battles against unflappable Whitehall civil servant Sir Humphrey Appleby.

The subsequent Yes, Prime Minister, broadcast for two seasons between 1986 and 1988, portrayed Hacker’s life after he entered 10 Downing Street. Then Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher was known to be a great fan of the series. . . 

I don’t think they’re making documentaries comedy like this now and both politics and entertainment is the poorer for it.


Quote of the day

August 25, 2016

The more you try to be interested in other people, the more you find out about yourself – Thea Astley who was born on this day in 1925.


August 25 in history

August 25, 2016

1248 The Dutch city of Ommen received city rights and fortification rights from Otto III, the Archbishop of Utrecht.

1530 Tsar Ivan IV of Russia – Ivan the Terrible – was born (d. 1584)

1537 The Honourable Artillery Company, the oldest surviving regiment in the British Army and the second most senior, was formed.

1580  Battle of Alcântara. Spain defeated Portugal.

1609  Galileo Galilei demonstrated his first telescope to Venetian lawmakers.

1724 George Stubbs, British painter, was born (d. 1806).

1758 Seven Years’ War: Frederick II of Prussia defeated the Russian army at the Battle of Zorndorf.

1768 James Cook began his first voyage.

1817  – Marie-Eugénie de Jésus, French nun and saint, founded the Religious of the Assumption, was born (d. 1898).

1825 Uruguay declared its independence from Brazil.

1830 The Belgian Revolution began.

1835  The New York Sun perpetrated the Great Moon Hoax.

1894  Shibasaburo Kitasato discoversedthe infectious agent of the bubonic plague and published his findings in The Lancet.

1898  700 Greeks and 15 Englishmen are killed by the Turks in Heraklion, Greece.

1900 Hans Adolf Krebs, German physician and biochemist; Nobel Prize laureate, was born (d. 1981).

1910 – Dorothea Tanning, American painter, sculptor, and poet, was born (d. 2012).

1910  Yellow Cab was founded.

1912 The Kuomintang, the Chinese nationalist party, was founded.

1916 – Private Frank Hughes was killed by a firing squad in Hallencourt, northern France, the first New Zealand soldier to be executed.

First New Zealand soldier executed

1916 The United States National Park Service  was created.

1918 Leonard Bernstein, American conductor and composer, was born (d. 1990).

1920 Polish-Soviet War: Battle of Warsaw,  ended.

1920 – Captain Euan Dickson completed the first air crossing of Cook Strait, flying a 110-hp Le Rhone Avro from Christchurch to Upper Hutt and carrying the first air mail between the South and North Islands.

First flight across Cook Strait

1921  The first skirmishes of the Battle of Blair Mountain.

1925 – Thea Astley, Australian journalist and author, was born (d. 2004).

1930 Sean Connery, Scottish actor, was born.

1930 Bruce Allpress, New Zealand actor, was born.

1933 The Diexi earthquake struck Mao County, Sichuan, China and killed 9,000 people.

1938 Frederick Forsyth, English author, was born.

1942 World War II: Battle of Milne Bay, Papua New Guinea.

1944 Paris was liberated by the Allies.

1945  Supporters of the Communist Party of China killed Baptist missionary John Birch, regarded by some of the American right as the first victim of the Cold War.

1946 Charles Ghigna (Father Goose), American poet and children’s author, was born.

1948 Three people died and 80 were injured when a tornado hit Frankton on the outskirts of Hamilton.

Killer twister hits Frankton

1948 – The House Un-American Activities Committee held its first-ever televised congressional hearing: “Confrontation Day” between Whittaker Chambers and Alger Hiss.

1949 Martin Amis, English novelist, was born.

1949  Gene Simmons, Israeli-born musician (Kiss), was born.

1950  President Harry Truman ordered the US Army to seize control of the nation’s railroads to avert a strike.

1954 Elvis Costello, English musician, was born.

1961 Billy Ray Cyrus, American singer and actor, was born.

1970 Claudia Schiffer, German model, was born.

198  Tadeusz Mazowiecki was chosen as the first non-communist Prime Minister in Central and Eastern Europe.

1989  Voyager 2 spacecraft made its closest approach to Neptune, the outermost planet in the Solar System.

1989  Mayumi Moriyama became Japan’s first female cabinet secretary.

1991  Belarus declared its independence from the Soviet Union.

1991 – The Battle of Vukovar began.

1997  Egon Krenz, the former East German leader, was convicted of a shoot-to-kill policy at the Berlin Wall.

2003  The Tli Cho land claims agreement was signed between the Dogrib First Nations and the Canadian federal government in Rae-Edzo (now called Behchoko).

2012 – Voyager 1 spacecraft entered interstellar space becoming the first man-made object to do so.

2013 – 6 people died and 22 were injured when a train derailed in Huimanguillo, Tabasco, Mexico.

Sourced from NZ History Online & Wikipedia


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