Rural round-up

January 9, 2018

Stock killed apparently for ‘target practice’ – John Lewis:

Five farmers are livid after nine sheep, two cattle beasts, a cow and a bull were shot on their properties for what appears to be nothing more than “target practice”.

Taieri farmer James Adam said he went to check his stock in Otokia-Kuri Bush Rd yesterday morning and found two of his beef cows shot dead.

Another farmer’s cow was shot and killed on a nearby property in Akatore Rd, south of Taieri Mouth.The night before, a third farmer found five of his sheep shot dead nearby on Takitakitoa Rd. . .

Lake Opuha works around the clock to keep up with irrigation demand – Pat Deavoll:

South Canterbury’s Lake Opuha is getting a workout this summer with an “almost unprecedented” swing in December weather ramping up irrigation demand.

Opuha Water Limited executive officer Tony McCormick said the shift from extremely wet to extremely dry had resulted in a rapid increase in irrigation from “virtually zero” in early November to nearly 100 per cent four weeks later.

“The sudden dry conditions affected lake storage and required special efforts from our ops team to get the scheme up to full capacity in a short time,” he said. . .

Norsewood fabulous place to farm and garden, says land owner Lyn McConchie – Christine McKay:

It’s quite possible Norsewood is one of the best places in the Tararua to be a farmer or a gardener, local weather watcher Lyn McConchie says.

“The average annual rainfall on my farm in upper Norsewood for the past six years (2012 to 2017) has been 1293mm. In that period the lowest rainfall was 1207mm in 2015 and the highest has been 1428 in 2017,” Ms McConchie said.

“Despite other areas around – such as the Takapau Plains – having poor rainfall, we have not.” . . 

 

Oxford Farming Conference Union Debate 2018  “This House believes that by 2100 eating meat will be a thing of the past” – Seconding AGAINST the motion – Emily Retledge:

Mister President, thank you for the opportunity to speak to the House on this motion.

Ladies and Gentlemen, as informed and conscientious members of the agricultural industry, I do not doubt for a second that you will vote wisely and reject this motion. The slippery rhetoric of the liberal elite will not wash with you. We have no sympathy for the Proponents or the extremist behaviour they inspire. Their cause is lost here today.

However, I would like to take this opportunity to challenge your thinking on WHY we must reject this motion and also I would like to be so bold as to give you some inspiration as to HOW we can continue to “meat” the expectations of society for years to come. . . 

In Nigeria farming needs and rewards creative agripreneurs – Chibuike Emmanuel:

I never expected to become a catfish farmer, though I’m not all surprised that I wound up in agriculture. I’ve always been around farms—so it was natural that I’d make it my life’s work here in Nigeria.

Unfortunately, many of Africa’s young people don’t recognize the same opportunity. Many don’t know how to get started. Lots think that it’s old fashioned. Others worry about the challenges of finance and infrastructure.

Yet we all see the need: Farmers are the key to Africa’s economic emancipation. We have an enormous amount of arable land, a large youth population, and a lot of catching up to do—untapped potential to feed a hungry world, if we’re willing to work hard and take up new technologies. . .


Rural round-up

December 27, 2017

More than 100 people help farming family after tragedy – Andrew Owen:

About 40 shearers and a support crew of more than 60 helped a farming family complete one of the biggest tasks of the year, days after a tragic accident cost the lives of their son and his friend.

Craig “Yopp” Murphy, 31, and his mate Jason Payne, 34, died on December 9 when their ute rolled on a remote, privately-owned farm in Kohuratahi, in the Whangamomona Valley, about 76 kilometres inland from Stratford.

Craig Murphy’s funeral took place on Saturday, December 16, and four days later more than 100 people got to work helping his bereaved parents, Whangamomona Valley farmers Dan and Kathy Murphy, shear their 3400 sheep for free, a task that needed to be finished at the peak of the season before Christmas. . .

Hunter Downs scheme meets share target – Daniel Birchfield:

The 12,000ha Hunter Downs irrigation scheme is to go ahead, after the required number of shares were sold.

Hunter Downs Water Ltd, the company behind the proposal to use water from the Waitaki River on land towards Timaru, held its annual meeting on December 14, when it was expected a decision would be made on whether to proceed or return funds to those who had already made the commitment to take water.

After a delay of several days, Hunter Downs Water Ltd chairman Andrew Fraser announced yesterday the company had “secured sufficient farmer uptake to now enable it to proceed” and finalise the funding structure and contractual arrangements to start construction, which was likely to be early next year. . .

New trapping project already successful – Louise Scott:

A pest control operation to protect native birds in the Rees-Dart River delta is proving successful just one month in.

Glenorchy local Russell Varcoe has built and set four new trapping lines as part of the Routeburn Dart Wildlife Trust’s Braided River Project.

That includes 601 traps — of which 574 had been placed by last Friday.

It is hoped the project will protect five species classified by the Department of Conservation as either endangered or threatened: wrybills, black-fronted terns, banded dotterels, black-billed gulls and black stilts . .

Leading questions: Synlait Milk founder and chief executive John Penno:

Business leaders discuss the year just gone and what will affect them in 2018. Today: Synlait Milk founder and chief executive John Penno.

What is 2018 looking like for your business?

2017 was very busy – after opening a new infant formula blending and packaging facility in Auckland, and nearing capacity at our Dunsandel site, we are entering 2018 looking to build an infant formula manufacturing site somewhere in the upper North Island.

We’ll also be constructing a $125 million world-class milk packaging plant in Dunsandel to supply fresh milk and cream to South Island families through our new partnership with Foodstuffs South Island. . . 

 

 

Rain on Christmas wish-list as drought conditions become critical in outback Queensland – Eric Barker:

With less than half the average rainfall across many parts of western Queensland this year, rain is top of the Christmas wish-list for most graziers.

While widespread winter rain in 2016 lifted spirits, most of central and south-west Queensland has been officially drought declared for the past four years.

Grazier and Blackall Tambo Shire Mayor Andrew Martin said most of the area had been suffering below-average wet seasons before the drought declarations. . .


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