As Christmas approaches, I have been struck with the remarkable talent of our local craftspeople and the fantastic produce this country has. I am amazed at how so many have adapted their businesses.
We are making every effort to use local retailers for our shopping needs. These are the businesses that have been through so much and hopefully with everyone’s backing can bounce back in 2021. These are the businesses that have always supported the local teams and sponsored prizes for raffles – now we must return that support. We are also mindful of those businesses that are struggling or continue to be closed and the families behind them, for whom Christmas may not be so bright. We hope that positive news of the arrival of the vaccines will provide some hope for those struggling.
Meanwhile, I plan to scan the first of the ewes this week. These were housed last week and don’t know how lucky they are to have been inside, especially as the temperatures have taken a drop in recent days. These ones are due to lamb before the end of February. The Central Progeny Testing (CPT) ewes will be scanned in early January, with all the repeat ewes scanned before the end of the month. While some of the ewes are housed, the others are still outside grazing forage rape.
It also makes moving fences easier as the ewes can be locked in the shed while I move wires
This year is one of the rare occasions that I can give them access to a shed for shelter.
It has made giving them silage while on forage rape easier as I don’t have to carry bales to ring feeders in the field. It also makes moving fences easier as the ewes can be locked in the shed while I move wires without the chance of them breaking forward on me.
As the grazing year has finished, I have been going over the field production figures and comparing them to what they produced over the previous years. This, in conjunction with current soil sample results, helps me identify fields that might require nutrients or reseeding.
At first glance you would argue there is something major wrong with this
It is interesting to see the variation in grass production between fields, with some producing as much as 14t plus and others only slightly more than 5t. At first glance you would argue there is something major wrong with this. But on further examination the field with the lower production is directly beside the yard and is often used for holding stock overnight before they head back to their respective grazing fields or before going through the handling unit or left in there for a period of time while they are receiving treatments. This only highlights how beneficial the rest period between grazings is for grass to grow to its optimum. I will take some more soil samples early next year to keep these as up to date as possible and to complete a fertiliser plan for the grazing season.
While we look forward to being able to see our families, we are mindful that the dangers surrounding COVID-19 are still ever present
With all that has gone on this year we have been putting extra effort in to brighten up the place, with Christmas lights set up outside to make things a little more special for the kids and possibly ourselves. I think we have been getting into the Christmas spirit earlier and we are hopeful for a happy, albeit scaled down, Christmas. While we look forward to being able to see our families, we are mindful that the dangers surrounding COVID-19 are still ever present and hope that everyone continues to take care. I would like to take this opportunity to wish you all a very happy and safe Christmas.