Word of the day

March 5, 2015

Jow – the ringing, tolling, stroke or sound of a bell; to ring a bell.


Rural round-up

March 5, 2015

What drought really means for New Zealand: Jacqueline Rowarth:

As we head into another drier-than-normal season, New Zealand needs to put more thought into water management.

Urban rain and rural rain are different. The quality is the same – drops of water that, in New Zealand, fall out of the sky relatively pure – but interpretation of the quantity is very different.

Urban rain stops barbecues, dampens the washing on the line, and slows the traffic as though rain had never been experienced before. It interrupts activities for humans, but makes little difference to the ability of plants to grow, rivers to flow or dams to fill.

Rural rain does all three. Rural rain soaks into the ground. It reaches roots and allows the micro-organisms to function. When there is rain in sufficient quantity, primary production, and hence the export economy, flourishes. . .

Stead’s mission to help farmers – Sally Rae:

Angela Stead knows how to cook a good lamb roast.

Beef and Lamb New Zealand’s new extension manager for the central South Island not only has a passion for farming, she is also a trained chef.

Miss Stead started work last month, having returned from Australia where she had been working in the dairy industry and was looking forward to a new challenge. . .

ANZCO share sale bid:

ANZCO Foods founder and chairman Sir Graeme Harrison aims to reduce his shareholding in the company, while Japan’s Itoham Foods is looking to increase its stake.

Itoham Foods would increase its shareholding from 48.3% to 65% if its purchase offer was accepted by other shareholders and approved by the Overseas Investment Office.

In issuing notice to the Tokyo Stock Exchange, Itoham said it would buy 9,882,113 shares of ANZCO stock in cash transactions of just over $40 million. ANZCO has annual sales revenue of $1.3 billion. . .

Try the Dutch approach to dairy and use barns – Aalt Dijkhuizen:

New Zealand and the Netherlands are world leaders in dairy.

New Zealand has developed a unique, extensive dairy system with a low cost price. The Netherlands has gained a reputation for highly productive and efficient dairy farming using the latest technologies. Can the two countries develop systems that will satisfy growing demand while being more environmentally sustainable?

The global context of agriculture and food is changing dramatically.

Demand from fast-growing economies in Asia is expected to double over the next decades and there will be increasing scarcity of raw materials and land. To be leaders in green dairy New Zealand and the Netherlands should work together and learn from each other – and make the boat go much faster. . .

Culverden farmer elected to Beef +Lamb NZ board:

Culverden farmer Phil Smith has been elected as the farmer director to represent sheep and beef farmers in the Beef + Lamb New Zealand Northern South Island electorate.

Smith received 6916 weighted votes and Nigel Harwood of Takaka received 5749 weighted votes in the recent election.

Beef + Lamb NZ returning officer Warwick Lampp said the voting return percentage for Northern South Island was 25.88%, being 795 returned voting papers. . .

Farmers disappointed by restrictions in proposed drone rules - Karl Plume and P.J. Huffstutter:

U.S. farmers hoping to use drones to locate lost livestock or monitor trouble spots in their fields were disappointed by what they say are overly restrictive commercial drone rules proposed Sunday by the Federal Aviation Administration. 

Two of the long-awaited draft rules were singled out for particular criticism: a requirement that pilots remain in visual contact with their drones at all times and a height restriction that limits the crafts to flying no more than 500 feet above ground.  These constraints, farmers and drone operators say, would limit a drone’s range – and consequently its usefulness.

    Leading drone makers PrecisionHawk and Trimble Navigation Limited (TRMB.O), farm data services firms, including ones run by Monsanto (MON.N) and FarmLogs, and even some federal lawmakers are saying the proposed rules could delay the development of drone-assisted agriculture in the United States if they are finalized as currently written.

The FAA said farmers can address the line-of-sight limitation by placing spotters to track a drone’s pilot. . .


Thursday’s quiz

March 5, 2015

Whoops, the week has run away with me so I’ll leave the questions to you.

Anyone who stumps everyone will win a virtual case of black boy peaches.

You don’ t have to follow my usual formula.


A+

March 5, 2015

A+ in this general knowledge quiz, with a couple of lucky guesses.


Little can’t afford to stand back in Northland

March 5, 2015

Should Labour noble its Northland candidate, Willow-Jean Prime, in the hope it’s supporters vote for Winston Peters?

Not if its leader Andrew Little wants a look-in in the news for the next three and a half weeks.

The campaign will be short and sharp but Little can’t afford to have Peters hogging the headlines for the best part of a month while Prime hides in the shadows and he looks irrelevant.

National’s Mark Osborne will be taking nothing for granted even though he is the most likely to win.

With or without Peters in the race, Labour won’t win the seat.

But Little can’t afford to stand back in Northland.

He and the party won’t want their candidate to come a distant third if they’re to look like they have a chance of leading a government in 2017.


March 5 in history

March 5, 2015

1046 Naser Khosrow began the seven-year Middle Eastern journey which he will later describe in his book Safarnama.

1133 – King Henry II of England, was born (d. 1189).

1324  King David II of Scotland, was born (d. 1371).

1326 Louis I of Hungary, was born (d. 1382).

1496 King Henry VI  issued letters patent to John Cabot and his sons, authorising them to explore unknown lands.

1766 Antonio de Ulloa, the first Spanish governor of Louisiana arrived in New Orleans.

1770 Boston Massacre: Five Americans, were killed by British troops.

1784 Thomas Townshend, 1st Viscount Sydney was named President of the Board of Trade.

1824 First Burmese War: The British officially declare war on Burma.

1830 The outbreak of the Girls’ War  at Kororareka.

Outbreak of the Girls' War at Kororāreka

1836 Samuel Colt made the first production-model revolver, the .34-caliber.

1850 The Britannia Bridge across the Menai Strait between the Isle of Anglesey and the mainland of Wales opened.

1860 Parma, Tuscany, Modena and Romagna voted in referenda to join the Kingdom of Sardinia.

1868  A court of impeachment was organized in the United States Senate to hear charges against President Andrew Johnson.

1868 – Mefistofele, an opera by Arrigo Boito receives its première performance at La Scala.

1872  George Westinghouse patented the air brake.

1904 Nikola Tesla, in Electrical World and Engineer, described the process of the ball lightning formation.

1908  Sir Rex Harrison, English actor, was born  (d. 1990).

1912 Italian forces were the first to use airships for military purposes, using them for reconnaissance behind Turkish lines.

1933 President Franklin D. Roosevelt declared a “bank holiday”, closing all U.S. banks and freezing all financial transactions.

1936 Canaan Banana, first President of Zimbabwe, was born (d. 2003).

1937 Olusẹgun Ọbasanjọ, President of Nigeria, was born.

1940 Members of Soviet politburo signed an order for the execution of 25,700 Polish intelligentsia, including 14,700 Polish POWs, known also as the Katyn massacre.

1942 Felipe González, Prime Minister of Spain, was born.

1943 First flight of Gloster Meteor jet aircraft in the United Kingdom.

1946 Winston Churchill used the phrase “Iron Curtain” in his speech at Westminster College, Missouri.

1946 Hungarian Communists and Social Democrats co-founded the Left Bloc.

1948 Elaine Paige, English singer and actress, was born.

1949 The Jharkhand Party was founded in India.

1952  – Alan Clark, English keyboardist (Dire Straits), was born.

1958 The Explorer 2 spacecraft launched and failed to reach Earth orbit.

1960 The Aquatic Ape Hypothesis originated when Alister Hardy publicly announced his idea that ape-human divergence may have been due to a coastal phase.

1962 Charlie and Craig Reid, Scottish musicians (The Proclaimers), were born.

1965 March Intifada: A Leftist uprising erupts in Bahrain against British colonial presence.

1966 BOAC Flight 911 crashed on Mount Fuji  killing 124.

1970 John Frusciante, American musician (Red Hot Chili Peppers), was born.

1970 The Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty went into effect after ratification by 43 nations.

1973 Donald DeFreeze, the future Symbionese Liberation Army leader, escaped from Vacaville Prison.

1974 Yom Kippur War: Israeli forces withdrew from the west bank of the Suez Canal.

1975 First meeting of the Homebrew Computer Club

1978 The Landsat 3 was launched from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California.

1979 Soviet probes Venera 11, Venera 12 and the American solar satellite Helios 2 were hit by “off the scale” gamma rays leading to the discovery of soft gamma repeaters.

1979 – Voyager 1‘s closest approach to Jupiter, 172,000 miles.

1982 Daniel Carter, New Zealand rugby player, was born.

1982 Venera 14, a Soviet satellite, arrived at Venus.

1984 –  6,000 Miners in the United Kingdom began their historic strike at Cortonwood Colliery.

1999 Paul Okalik was elected first Premier of Nunavut.

2001 In Mecca, 35 Muslim pilgrims were crushed to death during the annual Hajj pilgrimage.

2003 17 Israeli civilians were killed by a Hamas suicide bomb in the Haifa bus 37 massacre.

2012 – Invisible Children launched the Stop Kony campaign with the release of Kony 2012.

2012 – At least two people were killed and six injured after a shooting in a hair salon in Bucharest, Romania.

 

Sourced from NZ History Online & Wikipedia


Word of the day

March 4, 2015

Exculpate - declare or show that someone is not guilty of wrongdoing; clear from alleged fault or guilt; free from blame; vindicate.


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