Let the good times roll on

UPGRADE: Better returns to beef producers are providing funds to invest in modern cattle handling facilities.
UPGRADE: Better returns to beef producers are providing funds to invest in modern cattle handling facilities.

SEVERAL weeks of sunny skies have dried some of our surface wet spots but great care is still  needed if planning to use vehicles or machinery in the paddock.

Most of us can’t remember pastoral conditions this good since the 1950s but we realise that this won’t last indefinitely and a long look at possible risks is probably a sound business plan.

A few thoughts to assist the operation:

  • Don’t overstock present pastures as standing feed is always of value during summer/autumn.
  • Keep a keen eye on worm levels, feet problems, lice control and condition of young cattle and sheep.
  • When mark and mulesing lambs, be sure to use TriSolfen and a fly repellent.
  • Don’t put poll and horned rams with mobs of breeding ewes. The polls usually lose the fights that are often fatal.

The good and bad

WHILE the majority of farmers statewide have benefited from the lovely spring season, and many are looking towards extra good grain and fodder crops, we should pause a moment to think of others who face real problems;

  • Many hectares of grain and pulse crops have been drowned by flood waters and water logged paddocks.
  • Some reported losses to bloat in cattle have been horrendous and even small numbers of death account for very big dollars.
  • Outbreaks of virulent footrot are heart breaking, very time consuming and involve really big costs, regardless of eradication strategies.
EARLY LEARNER: A young farmer is pictured learning some valuable stock skills with his family’s highland cattle.

EARLY LEARNER: A young farmer is pictured learning some valuable stock skills with his family’s highland cattle.

Price is right

LAST week’s excellent sale at auction of the premium Molong property, “Copper Hill” has set a new price level for quality holdings that very rarely come to market.

While executives who have benefited greatly from the urban property boom in Sydney and some coastal areas are putting price pressures on rural properties, they are also providing a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for retiring age farming couples to exit their industry.

The usual farmer’s comment “but what would I do at the coast?” is relevant, but the same problem arises with every business retiree and we all must accept the reality – we’ve had too many birthdays.

Please think carefully as the excellent terms of trade that we have at present don’t usually last for very long.

Bonnie old time

THE “Blink Bonnie” merino stud at Tarana conducted its annual sale of hogget rams and surplus sheep last Saturday.

The top priced ram at $2200 went to Steve Messner and family, volume buyer was Grant Toole with 10 rams and the sale averaged $1008 per head.

A nice line of one-year-old wethers off shears was bought by Col McPhee for $88 and 1.5-year-old merino ewes brought $120 to Tony Millbank.

Down to business

THE general shortage of workers who are willing and capable for jobs in rural industry has never been more serious and the bumbling approach to the backpacker workforce has added to the problem.

A couple of business cards on a rural supplies counter were of real interest.

Tom Windsor rural provides a worker who will fence, weed spray, do livestock work and general farm work on a contract basis.

Phone 0428 745314 or visit www.facebook.com/Tom Windsor Rural.

A second card for backyard shearing tells of a capable young local shearer who will shear sheep, goats or alpacas in Bathurst and surrounding areas. Phone 0422 174 382.

On the Facebook page, Backyard Shearing, there are numerous tributes to shearer Andrew Parkes – “the sheep whisperer”.

Cowra calling

SEVERAL prime lamb breeders tell me that they bypass CTLX yards and consign lambs to the weekly Cowra market.

The business that I’ve been involved with at CTLX has always been very acceptable, especially for store lambs and two-score mutton that were often a problem in former days at Bathurst yards.

Since the opening of a new regional exchange near Yass, producers from as far as Delegate now have the Yass option as opposed to Wagga or CTLX.

Producers from our district must be pleased with the modern facility at Carcoar even though it adds a fair bit to transport costs.

Wool report

THE wool market had a very positive week for all merino categories, rising 30-40c/kg, while the XB wools lost between 10-15c/kg.

The northern market indicator finished the week on 1359c/kg, up 18c/kg.

The fine wools are slowly getting dearer every week with tthe 17 micron wools now at their highest level since 2011.

Unfortunately, though, super and ultra-fine wools are still not reaching their traditional values.

There is only about 1000c/kg clean in value from 14.5 micron to 17 micron whereas 10 years ago 14.5 micron wools were bringing around 13,000c/kg clean and a good 17 micron was worth around 2000c/kg clean.

There just doesn’t seem to be the demand for the ultra-fines at the present time.

Sales next week will see 36,259 bales on offer nationwide

Mark Horsburgh, TWG Landmark

Diary dates

  • Sunday, October 23: Fosterfield Finewools, 42 hogget rams at Dunkeld at noon. Phone Scott 6337 3843.
  • Wednesday, November 2: Windy Hill Poll Dorsets, 70 flock rams at Carcoar. Phone Chris. 0409 455 368.
  • Saturday, November 5: Mount Bathurst poll dorsets, 70 young rams at 270 Dog Rocks Road, Black Springs. Phone Greg 6335 8284.

Laugh lines

A SHEEP cockie is trying to make friends outside of Facebook, using the same principles.

He strolled down William Street telling everyone what he has eaten, how he feels, what he did last night and what he’ll do today and with whom.

He gives them photos of his family, his dog, his garden, at lunch and in front of landmarks.

He listens to their conversations, gives them “thumbs up” and tells them he likes them. 

Just like on Facebook he now has four followers – two policemen, a psychiatrist and a doctor.


GEORGE was supermarket shopping with his long-suffering wife and he slipped a slab of VB into the trolley.

She objected and George pleaded “they’re on special for $34, love” but they left the trolley.

His wife popped a package of face creams in and George objected strongly.

She said: “But this product will make me look beautiful, dearest.”

George replied: “So will 24 tins of VB, and at half the price.”