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Sunday, 17 March 2013

16th March 2012 – The Hazards of NZ farming

As I said in one of my earlier posts New Zealand is currently in the midst of a drought. Though feed is short the sheep at Wairakaia are still in very good condition Sandra, Rob, Bruce and Joe are very forward looking and use triggers to progressively unroll their drought strategy to reduce the impact of drought on their business.

Happy looking sheep despite the drought
This morning I helped Sandra and Rob to feed reject squash to their sheep. This is a cheap food source to help supplement the dwindling pasture reserves.

Heading out to feed the sheep with a load of Squash
In the afternoon Bruce, gave me a guided tour around their property.  The farm is situated in an area that is quite hilly. The livestock graze the hill country while the cropping is saved for the flatter, fertile, deeper soils in the valley floor.  The fragile hill country is easily eroded and subject to landslips from time to time. To alleviate this revegetation of the most erodable land classes has occurred.  I was given a close look a some of the problems associated with erosion when during my farm tour the ute slipped into a difficult to see rut.

Sweetcorn for seed

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