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Farming running deep in Blackler's veins - 3rd Jul 2018

Farming running deep in Blackler's veins A article written about Kent, Barbara & Eddie Blackler clients of ours published in the recent Business Rural paper.. well worth a read.

Eddie (Paul) Blackler works in partnership with his parents Kent and Barbara on their 1300 hectare farm near Roxburgh, Central Otago.
The farm is on rolling terrain which extends from 200 metres to 900 metres above sea-level.
The main-stay of activity is the flock of 2500 merino ewes, grown for their excellent quality wool contracted out to sell to suppliers of merino clothing.  The farm also carries 130 Hereford cattle.
Paul enjoys his life shepherding and has also completed a seeding season (2016) in Western Australia.  He says the unique qualities Merino wool offers the clothing industry makes it a cut above the rest.
“I was away hunting over the weekend and the conditions went from being very cold to quite hot.  The great thing about merino fibre is that it breathes, so you keep comfortably warm in the cold and remain comfortable even in very hot weather,” Eddie explains.
All the lambs produced stay on the farm for their first winter and are shorn as hoggets in September.  The replacement ewe hoggets are classed out before shearing, with the remaining cull ewe and wether hoggets finished to a prime weight of 44 kgs sold at the spring market.  Eddie says there are some key characteristics that contribute to a high-value merino ewe.
“She should have a good frame, able to walk well on her feet, shear a quality fleece of wool ( 18 micron), produce a lamb every year and look after it.  As far as our flock is concerned we’re definitely heading in the right direction to have well-built ewes throughout the whole flock.”
Each year about 550 new ewes are introduced into the flock, replacing the old-girls who have been productive for 6 seasons.
When Rural South spoke with Eddie, he had been back on the farm for 8 months.  Prior to this, the operation was run by his father.
“We do everything ourselves, all the tractor work, the cultivation, drilling 200ha annually.  I have been shepherding all my working life and it’s a great life.  There’s always something to do.”
Maintaining a property the size of their farm is a major consumer of time.  Some of the farm’s fences Eddies says are 100 years old and in recent years all new cattle yards and a new wool shed have been erected.
Eddie has recently competed in the Otago/Southern Region Young Farmer of the Year event.  He says the experience offered opportunities to rub shoulders with a new and passionate group of young farmers who carry strong ideals into their farming and believe in the industry they work in.
The herd of 130 Hereford graze the hill blocks.  Depending on the value of the calves they are either sold after weaning or are carried through to 2 ½ years old.
“We’re in a fairly dry corner and if we dry out too much will drop our cow numbers back to 80 or less.”
Eddie says the farm has enjoyed an incredible Autumn with grass only just beginning to slow up in May.  Winter can often be fairly tough and frosts are a regular occurrence.
This year has been a good one for other reasons too.   Eddie applied for a scholarship from the Otago Merino Association and was successful.  After sending in a cover letter about his farming and himself, he was shortlisted for interviewing by six people from the industry.
“They asked my opinion on the state of the Merino sheep and wool industry.”
The scholarship provided him with a three week visit to Australia and he says the experience was very valuable.
“It’s called the PGG Wrightson Monaro Scholarship.”
Recipients travel to the Monaro region (NSW Australia) which runs from Canberra south.
“You get to visit a number of different sheep farming operations.”
He says the experience of seeing and talking about so many varied approaches to farming was extremely valuable.


Welcome back to the Muster 2018 - 7th Feb 2018

Welcome back to the Muster 2018 Our first Muster for 2018.. and we are covering the Southern Field Days... you dont want to miss these Field Day DEALS! Click hear to listen to what we have to offer at Waimumu 

December Muster with Murray - 5th Dec 2017

December Muster with Murray December is here & its our last Muster for the year... click here to listen 
We wish everyone a safe & happy festive season and look forward to having you all back listening to the Muster in 2018. 

2017 Gore District Community Awards - 7th Nov 2017

What a fantastic night we had on Friday at the Gore District Community Awards. 
We were honored to be able to bring back the Environment Award this year, a big thank you goes out to those who entered and the schools for getting in behind it. 
Congratulations to the Pomahaka Water Care Group on winning the 2017 Mainland Minerals Environment Award and runner up to the Gore Pakeke Lions Club, both well deserving groups. 

We look forward to next year already and seeing this category grow

Spring Muster with Murray Cockburn - 3rd Oct 2017

Spring Muster with Murray Cockburn Last week we had our Environment Southland hearing for the Land & Water Plan. Click here to have a listen to what Murray & Andy had to say about it. 

Glenquoich Station - The Evans - 5th Sep 2017

Glenquoich Station - The Evans A fantastic write up in the Business Rural on our clients the Evans family at Glenquoich Station.
Grab your self a copy its a must read!

The September Muster - 5th Sep 2017

The September Muster Dont miss out on our first Muster for Spring! Click here to listen to Murray talk about the upcoming Mainland Minerals Environment Award.. 

Mainland Minerals History - 1st Sep 2017

Mainland Minerals History

Mainland Minerals History

In the late 1940’s a man by the name of Brown Trotter bucked the trend, and turned the fertiliser industry on its head. Running a 200ha sheep operation in Fairlie, he was able to transform an underperforming farm and produce the healthiest, and heaviest stock in the region.
Coincidently, along side this Fergus Hickey, animal nutritionist for Wonder Distributors (est. 1938 which later became Mainland Minerals) had been researching and finding similar           conclusions. In particular, that a high amount of animal ailments seemed to be due to indiscriminate use of phosphate topdressing.  
In 1932 Mr Trotter began following common fertilising practises, top dressing with superphosphate and lime annually. By 1944 his stock were anything but wonderful with low weights, and ill thrift. After researching solutions and years of trial and error Mr Trotter started top dressing his pastures with trace minerals. Soon he had the best Lamb weights in the region, and had friends and neighbours following suit.
Although he was mocked and ridiculed in the press and by professionals that didn’t see eye to eye, he pushed forward ignoring the negativity and the “science” at the time, in favour of the results that couldn’t be argued with.
The focus at Mainland Minerals is to use trace minerals to benefit stock health and help finish stock faster at better weights. They also include the right amount of major nutrients to ensure any limitations are covered, and use sustainable products to help maintain farms for the generations to come.
Fine Lime and EM (effective microbes) stimulate soil biological activity, healthier soil is able to make nutrient more plant available and reduce nutrient losses.

If you’re keen to find out what Mainland Minerals can do for you, don’t talk to John down the road, give them a call, and get it from the horses mouth!

    3 Stratford Street
    New Zealand
    PO Box 81
    New Zealand
0800 433 787 or 03 208 3004

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