Big changes on farm – Trent Guy

Well, since my last blog things on farm have had a bit of a shake-up. Mainly because my 2IC has resigned and finished work on the 30th March due to family health issues and the distance between our farm and the hospital. We wish him and his family all the best for the future.

So we had to sit down and make some big decisions. Should we replace the outgoing staff, or should Aimee to finish up work and come work full time on the farm, and should we rent out the staff accommodation?

With the low forcasted milk price we decided that Aimee would finish up and come work full time on farm but this won’t be without risk……… the dreaded marital spat….. can we work together day in day out…. and we still have to find time for ourselves and most of all the kids.

We have also decided to rent out the 4 bedroom staff house, and as it happens a local who can work some weekends has approached us, so it all seems to be falling into place.

I’ll let you all know in the middle of calving if this has been a wise decision!

Effluent, effluent, effluent

A month or so ago we received a lovely letter from the Northland Regional Council…….. as you guessed it was not one I wished to receive. As it turns out when we put the two farms together and started milking all the cows through one shed it put a slight overload on the existing ponds and effluent system. But, with a few phone calls and a meeting on farm with the lovely compliance team from the regional council we came up with two options:

Option 1: Pipe the effluent from the existing pond down to the ponds at the old cow shed, the cost involved would be 1000m of 90mm effluent pipe and the trenching. Or there was

Option 2: This is to construct a new pond beside the three existing ponds which can hold at least 1912m3, the cost would be a 12 ton digger for approx 5 days.

So after pricing the two options we decided to go with option 2 and we also decided to future proof things a little and expanded the new pond to 3000m3, now all that’s left to do is re-fence the ponds and carry on with the more important stuff of cows grass and milk!

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Rain, but not enough – John van der Goes

Howdy all,

This blog finds us having had the rain we wanted and grass cover starting to improve. To help speed up the increase in cover we have slowed the rotation to around 50 days. We have increased the amount of supplement we’re feeding the cows to cover the decrease in pasture. Unfortunately it looks like the rain I thought we would get this weekend won’t happen so fingers crossed we get some soon.

Our cow condition is still good so hopefully we can milk on to May.

It’s now time to start regrassing the chicory paddocks. This will give me something to do since the ground is still too hard to fence, or do any sort of digging, as I found out when I replaced a water line last week.

I managed to get out for a fish in my kayak last week. The first time since our holiday. Had a great half day fishing at the Kaiaua mussel farms.

Since coming home we have been to more concerts than we have been to in all our life, and it seems to have been full on with other meetings and outings.

Now I need to start thinking ahead about tree planting, when to dry off, getting all the grass seed in as soon as possible, and doing the fencing I was meant to do last winter.