Watch mates farmers told – Kerrie Waterworth:
Otago farmers are being asked ”to keep an eye on their partners and neighbours” as the stress from the drought, or what has been termed a medium-scale adverse weather event, continues.
Otago Federated Farmers president Phill Hunt said the rain last week was a big boost to the farming community but ”it’s not over yet”.
”The rain and the cooler temperatures have been very welcome; in particular the rain has filled up a lot of dams both for stock water and for irrigation.”
”People who have put infrastructure in for irrigation have been staring down the barrel of not being able to use it; a very expensive clothes line is how it was described to me by one farmer.” . .
Two more farms infected with Mycoplasma bovis:
The number of properties with the cattle disease Mycoplasma bovis has risen, with 23 farms now infected.
The latest properties are in Southland and the Waitaki District.
First found in South Canterbury in July last year the disease is now spread from Southland to Hawke’s Bay.
The Ministry for Primary Industries has 38 farms in lockdown and said it was still aiming to eradicate the disease. . .
Friendship and farming for Hugh Abbiss and Patrick Crawshaw in Takapau – Kate Taylor:
Central Hawke’s Bay friends and workmates, Patrick Crawshaw and Hugh Abbiss, will become rivals in the East Coast Young Farmer of the Year on February 17. Kate Taylor reports.
The temperature has been higher than 30 degrees all week, so it’s no surprise to catch Central Hawke’s Bay farmers Hugh Abbiss and Patrick Crawshaw taking the chance to work inside in the shade.
They’re working out feed budgets and stock movements for the next two months as the above average Hawke’s Bay summer has given them an abundance of feed.
The pair work for Foley Farming, where the make-up of the staff is a bit different to most – with four staff, all aged under 30 and three with university degrees. . .
New take on use of coarse, strong wool for commercial purposes – Annette Lambly:
A Northland farming couple are hoping to add value to the wool they shear from the family flock by creating high value, decorative and functional architectural products which includes a natural wall covering.
Sarah Hewlett and her husband Chris Coffey run Hewlett Point, a sheep and beef farm near Mata around 25 kilometres south east of Whangarei.
Their two young sons are the seventh generation to live on the family farm. . .
Motion-sensor cameras on farms – Alexia Johnston:
Farmers are turning to hunting technology to protect stock from thieves.
While Parliament is debating a proposed law that would impose harsher penalties on stock rustlers, property owners are already taking steps to protect their stock.
Hunting and Fishing New Zealand Timaru owner Alister Jones said a ”huge” percentage of his sales were now going towards farmers who wanted to protect their land and property.
Previously, sales of motion sensor cameras, also known as game cameras, were predominantly made to hunters who wanted to monitor and catch animals such as deer. . .
Irrigation an essential tool for Canterbury farmers – Sonita Chandar:
Wet spring conditions followed by a hot dry summer is creating havoc for a Canterbury Dairy farmer
A Canterbury farmer wants whoever flicked the fine weather switch on, to switch it back to rain for a while.
Robin Hornblow and fiancée Kirstie Austin are farm managers on Willsden Farm Ltd, a 306ha farm at Te Pirita – one of several owned by the Camden Group.
This is their first season on this farm and so far, the weather has not been kind. . .
Warning over rising facial eczema spore counts:
Farmers are being warned to keep a close eye on their stock as facial eczema spore counts rise around the country.
Spore counts are trending upwards in Northland, Waikato, Bay of Plenty, Taranaki, East Coast and the lower North Island, as well as in Tasman and on the West Coast.
Facial eczema affects cattle, sheep, goats and deer and can result in liver and skin damage, which can severely affect an animal, seriously reduce production and can in worst cases cause death.
It is estimated that production losses caused by the disease are around $200m annually in this country. . .
Autogrow opens virtual innovation community:
Autogrow has opened a virtual agtech and science lab and are inviting indoor ag developers, growers and enthusiasts to join in building a dynamic and innovative community.
Following on from the launch of their Jelly SDK, APIs and Autogrow Cloud platform last year, the Autogrow Lab was set up as a collaborative environment for continued research and development of control systems for indoor agriculture.
“The industry is a fragmented hardware landscape with software and data technology being introduced into the mix. Our goal is to bring much of that together in an open platform, add in the science of plant biology and create a space for discussion, invention and pushing the boundaries,” explains Chief Technology Officer Jeffrey Law. . .