365 days of gratitude

July 24, 2018

Whatever bit or stung me did it quickly and flew away before I knew it had happened.

It wasn’t until the itch started and I noticed a raised, red spot on my arm that I knew it had happened.

The spot wasn’t big but the itch was.

Today I’m grateful for antihistamine.


Word of the day

July 24, 2018

Ontology – the branch of metaphysics dealing with the nature of being; a set of concepts and categories in a subject area or domain that shows their properties and the relations between them; the philosophical study of the nature of being, becoming, existence, or reality; the basic categories of being and their relations.


Rural round-up

July 24, 2018

Crooks beware – Neal Wallace:

Tough new laws for stock rustlers have gained cross-party support and could be law within months.

The Sentencing (Livestock) Rustling Bill initially introduced by the National Party’s Rangitikei MP Ian McKelvie in June last year has since garnered support from all parties and will make the theft of livestock an aggravating factor for sentencing.

That effectively increases the severity of the crime, giving police more options in the charges laid and sentencing by the courts. . .

RMA guidelines concern Federated Farmers – Dene Mackenzie:

Federated Farmers is expressing its concern about new Resource Management Act guidelines released by Environment Minister David Parker.

The guidelines are intended to assist councils in their monitoring and enforcement duties under the Resource Management Act.

Enforcement of the rule of law would always be essential to encourage broader compliance, Mr Parker said.

“This is true in criminal, transport, taxation or environmental law . .

Unintended results of investment curbs – Simon Hartley:

Proposals to curb foreign investment in New Zealand may have unintended repercussions for the horticulture and viticulture sectors around the country.

Instead of curbing foreign ownership, aspects of the proposals could result in foreign owners instead opting to buy more vineyards and land outright, undermining efforts to keep more assets in New Zealand hands.

Crowe Horwath partner and agribusiness specialist Alistair King said the proposed Government restrictions and legislative changes on foreign investment were aimed at reducing the amount of foreign investment in New Zealand’s pristine assets, such as high-country stations and large tracts of land . . .

DairyNZ facility a world first for methane measurement:

A groundbreaking methane research facility in Hamilton has been established at DairyNZ’s Lye Farm. It’s already yielding some interesting results from recent studies and has great potential for further research projects.

Managing and reducing dairy cows’ methane emissions is crucial to the future of sustainable and profitable dairy farming in New Zealand. That’s why, in 2015, DairyNZ worked with a collaborator in the USA to develop a novel system for measuring methane. This equipment, installed at DairyNZ’s Lye Farm research facility two years ago, is a world first and it’s already proving its worth. . .

Methane tools in the pipeline:

Methane inhibitors are looking like one of the most promising tools to reduce New Zealand’s greenhouse gas emissions from agriculture.

Here’s how your DairyNZ Levy is being used alongside other partner funding to contribute to the latest research.

The Pastoral Greenhouse Gas Research Consortium (PGgRc) aims to provide knowledge and tools for New Zealand farmers to mitigate greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.

The consortium works in collaboration with the New Zealand government and it’s partly funded by farmer levies, including DairyNZ and Beef + Lamb New Zealand – two of eight funding partners.

PGgRc general manager Mark Aspin says the two problem greenhouse gases for New Zealand are methane and nitrous oxide. . .

Apiculture New Zealand asks industry to vote on the introduction of a commodity levy:

Apiculture New Zealand (ApiNZ) is now consulting with the apiculture sector on the introduction of a commodity levy to help manage and leverage rapid industry growth.

Chief Executive, Karin Kos, today announced details of the levy at ApiNZ’s National Conference in Blenheim. The ApiNZ management team and Board members will hold eight consultation meetings across the country to speak with honey producers and beekeepers about their involvement in the levy process. . .

Bayer Central Otago Young Viticulturist of the Year 2018 announced:

Congratulations to Annabel Bulk from Felton Road who became the Bayer Central Otago Young Viticulturist of the Year 2018. This is the second consecutive year Bulk has taken out the title as she was also the winner in 2017.

“I put more pressure on myself this year as I was determined to defend the title and go through to the nationals again” says Bulk. Her study and preparation obviously paid off and she is thrilled to represent Central Otago once again in the National Final. . .

Cesnik wins Young Champion Award – Jamie-Lee Oldfield:

Accessing new information isn’t always easy for the latest generation in the sheep and wool industry.

Which is why Young Champion Award winner Lexi Cesnik is so passionate about increasing knowledge transfer, especially among younger participants.

“There is a lot of new technology coming out, and a lot of that work is being done with extension in the private sector, meaning accessing knowledge is not as straight forward for young people in the industry as it has been in the past,” Ms Cesnik said. . .

Farming from the frying pan to the fire this year – Till the Cows Come Home:

April 2018 was a tough month. Every week, we hoped that the rain would stop and each week, the weather forecasters dashed our hopes as fields remained waterlogged, grass grew slowly and livestock lived indoors eating the last of the winter fodder. Many farmers, mostly those on drier land and accustomed to having their livestock out in February and March, ran out of fodder and had to purchase more.

The cows were indoors for months on end this winter. Every day of April was boring and repetitive, feeding cows, scraping and liming cubicles, trying to empty slurry tanks by a foot or so on a dry day, waiting for the weather to take up so we could get on with the spring jobs. Even when the rain stopped and the sun shone on the occasional day, the land was still too wet to withstand the weight of cows. On sunny mornings, the cows stopped and looked at me in disbelief as I directed them towards their cubicle shed, before they walked in unwillingly and begrudgingly. I didn’t know who to feel more sorry for – the cows or the farmers. . .


Wool best to beat perma-stink

July 24, 2018

Scientists have proved what wool fans know – merino wool is the best fabric to beat the perma-stink:

When Rachel McQueen’s husband was training for a marathon, she noticed the smell emanating from his running clothes was much stronger and lingered longer in his polyester tops than if he had run in a merino wool top.

“I was repulsed,” said the textile scientist. Even freshly laundered, her husband’s running tops still stunk. “The smell was as strong as if they had just been worn and I realized you can get perma-stink.”

McQueen, who has made it her mission to find the causes of perma-stink, conducted a study in which she compared the relationship between and different fabrics. She had male volunteers wear test T-shirts, which had swatches of polyester, cotton and stitched to the underarm regions. They wore the shirts for two consecutive days and then the swatches were removed for testing. Smell tests using sensors were conducted on each after one day, seven days and 28 days of storage.

“Polyester was by the far the most odorous,” she said. “Wool was the least smelly, and cotton was low to medium.”

The chemical odour-binding sites within fibres are key in determining the stink level, so McQueen focused her attention on the chemical makeup of fibres and how it affects odour retention.

She found that wool and cotton are hydrophilic and absorb more water than polyester.

“Wool is a fibre with an amorphous structure,” explained McQueen. “It has open spaces and is more porous than a synthetic fibre, so it can absorb a lot of sweat.”

That means that if odour molecules are trapped within wool or cotton, we can’t smell them as readily as we can with polyester, which has fewer chemical odour-binding sites.

To keep perma-stink at bay while being active, McQueen suggests the following:

Choose fabrics that have higher cotton or wool content.

“People are generally attuned to their own body odour. If you’re concerned, go with natural fibres,” said McQueen.

Wool went out of fashion, but the development of machine washable merino brought it back and its popularity has been enhanced by its environmental credentials.

Concerns over tiny particles of plastic from synthetic clothing getting to the ocean in washing water is turning the tide back to natural fabrics.

It’s a rare day when I don’t wear at least one layer of merino, it’s my preferred choice for exercising and I always wear it when travelling.

It’s warm when it’s cold, cool when it’s hot and, as science has proved, it’s the best to beat the perma-stink.


Where are the willing workers ?

July 24, 2018

Dairying has revitalised North Otago.

It gives better cash flow than traditional sheep and beef farming, and needs more and younger workers.

However, in spite of pay rates well above what young people with few if any qualifications could expect elsewhere, it is difficult to recruit and retain blood staff.

When the local market can’t supply willing workers, farmers and sharemilkers turn to immigrants.

Getting short-term staff isn’t hard. There are plenty of young people touring on visas which allow them to take up temporary work and most of them work well.

But getting good staff for longer term work is hard and this isn’t a problem confined to New Zealand as the tweet below shows.

 

The problem isn’t confined to farming either.

Employers in hospitality have similar problems and visitors from overseas told us they rarely had locals serving them when they ate out.

In spite of all these employers needing staff, the number of people on benefits increased in June for the first time since 2010, and the number of those being sanctioned fell.

It looks like the willing workers are coming from other countries and the unwilling ones are Finding it easier to get and retain benefits.


Quote of the day

July 24, 2018
The most difficult thing is the decision to act, the rest is merely tenacity. The fears are paper tigers. You can do anything you decide to do. You can act to change and control your life; and the procedure , the process is its own reward. –  Amelia Earhart

July 24 in history

July 24, 2018

1132 Battle of Nocera between Ranulf II of Alife and Roger II of Sicily.

1148  Louis VII of France  laid siege to Damascus during the Second Crusade.

1411  Battle of Harlaw, one of the bloodiest battles in Scotland.

1487  Citizens of Leeuwarden, Netherlands struck against ban on foreign beer.

1534  French explorer Jacques Cartier planted a cross on the Gaspé Peninsula and took possession of the territory in the name of Francis I of France.

1567  Mary, Queen of Scots, was forced to abdicate and replaced by her 1-year-old son James VI.

1701  Antoine de la Mothe Cadillac founded the trading post at Fort Pontchartrain, which later became the city of Detroit, Michigan.

1715 A Spanish treasure fleet of 10 ships under Admiral Ubilla left Havana  for Spain.

1725 John Newton, English cleric and hymnist, was born (d. 1807).

1783 Simón Bolívar, South American liberator, was born (d. 1830).
1802 Alexandre Dumas, père, French writer, was born (d. 1870).

1814  War of 1812: General Phineas Riall advanced toward the Niagara River to halt Jacob Brown’s American invaders.

1823  Slavery was abolished in Chile.

1832  Benjamin Bonneville led  the first wagon train across the Rocky Mountains by using Wyoming’s South Pass.

1847  After 17 months of travel, Brigham Young led 148 Mormon pioneers into Salt Lake Valley, resulting in the establishment of Salt Lake City.

1864  American Civil War: Battle of Kernstown – Confederate General Jubal Anderson Early defeated Union troops led by General George Crook in an effort to keep them out of the Shenandoah Valley.

1866  Reconstruction: Tennessee became the first U.S. State to be readmitted to the Union following the American Civil War.

1874 Oswald Chambers, Scottish minister and writer, was born (d. 1917).

1895  Robert Graves, English author, was born  (d. 1985).

1897 Amelia Earhart, American aviator, was born (disappeared 1937).

1901  O. Henry was released from prison after serving three years for embezzlement from a bank.

1911  Hiram Bingham III re-discovered Machu Picchu, “the Lost City of the Incas”.

1912 – Essie Summers, New Zealand author, was born (d. 1998).

1915  The passenger ship S.S. Eastland capsised in central Chicago, with the loss of 845 lives.

1923  The Treaty of Lausanne, settling the boundaries of modern Turkey, was signed.

1927  The Menin Gate war memorial is unveiled at Ypres.

1929  The Kellogg-Briand Pact, renouncing war as an instrument of foreign policy went  into effect.

1931  A fire at a home for the elderly in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania killed 48 people.

1935  The world’s first children’s railway opened in Tbilisi, USSR.

1935   The dust bowl heat wave reached its peak, sending temperatures to 109°F (44°C) in Chicago and 104°F (40°C) in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

1937 Alabama dropped rape charges against the so-called “Scottsboro Boys“.

1938 First ascent of the Eiger north face.

1943 World War II: Operation Gomorrah began: British and Canadian aeroplanes bombed Hamburg by night, those of the Americans by day.

1950 Cape Canaveral Air Force Station began operations with the launch of a Bumper rocket.

1959  At the opening of the American National Exhibition in Moscow, U.S. Vice President Richard Nixon and Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev have a “Kitchen Debate“.

1966 Michael Pelkey and Brian Schubert made the first BASE jump from El Capitan. Both came out with broken bones.

1967  During an official state visit to Canada, French President Charles de Gaulle declared to a crowd of over 100,000 in Montreal: Vive le Québec libre! (“Long live free Quebec!”). The statement, interpreted as support for Quebec independence, delighted many Quebecers but angered the Canadian government and many English Canadians.

1969 Jennifer Lopez, American actress and singer, was born.

1969  Apollo 11 splashed down safely in the Pacific Ocean.

1972 Bugojno group was caught by Yugoslav security forces.

1974 Watergate scandal: the United States Supreme Court unanimously ruled that President Richard Nixon did not have the authority to withhold subpoenaed White House tapes and they order him to surrender the tapes to the Watergate special prosecutor.

1974 After the Turkish invasion of Cyprus the Greek military junta collapsed and democracy was restored.

1977  End of a four day Libyan-Egyptian War.

1982 Anna Paquin, Canadian-born New Zealand actress, was born.

Anna Paquin Comic-Con 2012.jpg

1982  Heavy rain caused a mudslide that destroyed  a bridge at Nagasaki,Japan, killing 299.

1990  Iraqi forces started massing on the Kuwait-Iraq border.

1998  Russell Eugene Weston Jr. burst into the United States Capitol and opened fire killing two police officers.

2000 Private Leonard Manning became New Zealand’s first combat death since the Vietnam War when he was killed in Timor-Leste.

New Zealand soldier killed in Timor-Leste

2001 – Simeon Saxe-Coburg-Gotha, the last Tsar of Bulgaria when he was a child, was sworn in as Prime Minister of Bulgaria, becoming the first monarch in history to regain political power through democratic election to a different office.

2001 Bandaranaike Airport attack was carried out by 14 Tamil Tiger commandos, all died in this attack. They destroyed 11 Aircrafts (mostly military) and damaged 15, there are no civilian casualties.

2005 Lance Armstrong won his seventh consecutive Tour de France.

2007  Libya freed all six of the Medics in the HIV trial in Libya.

2009 – The MV Arctic Sea, reportedly carrying a cargo of timber, was allegedly hijacked in the North Sea by pirates, but much speculation remains as to the actual cargo and events.

2011 – Digital switchover was completed in 44 of the 47 prefectures of Japan, with Iwate, Miyagi, and Fukushima television stations terminating analog broadcasting operations later as a result of the Tohoku earthquake.

2013 – A high-speed train derailed in Spain rounding a curve with an 80 km/h (50 mph) speed limit at 190 km/h (120 mph), killing 78 passengers.

2014 – Air Algérie Flight 5017 lost contact with air traffic controllers 50 minutes after takeoff. It was travelling between Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso and Algiers with 116 people on board. The wreckage was later found in Mali.

Sourced from NZ History Online & Wikipedia


%d bloggers like this: