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MEAT THE HOGGET FIELD DAY
Morris advocates hogget breeding
Feed focus: Massey University Professor of Animal Science Steve Morris says
there is no magic bullet for getting hogget breeding right but achieving good
mating weights, through feeding, is a major success factor.
Good reasons to lamb hoggets
More lambs produced on-farm within a given year
Higher net income through the sale of more lambs
More efficient use of herbage in spring
An increase in ewe lifetime reproductive performance
An early selection/screening tool
More progeny born on farm and more selection pressure
Potential reduction in generation interval if hogget lambs are selected as
Low and variable reproductive performance
Increased feed requirements during first year of life
The need for adequately sized hoggets at eight months of age
Potential for reduced two-tooth weight
Progeny born to hoggets are often smaller at weaning and of lower value
By DIANE BISHOP
There is no magic bullet for
getting hogget breeding right.
But achieving good mating
weights, through priority feeding,
was a major success factor,
Massey University Professor of
Animal Science Steve Morris said.
Prof Morris, who works in the
International Sheep Research
Centre, said there was huge
potential to lift the hogget lambing
percentage in Southland.
Last season it was 43 percent -- the
same as the national average -- up
from 39 percent the previous year,
but Prof Morris told 150 farmers at
the Beef + Lamb New Zealand
''Meat the Hogget'' field day in the
Pourakino Valley there was huge
potential to lift the result.
An estimated 347,000 ewe hoggets
went to the ram in Southland in
2011, while 621,000 did not, which
resulted in 151,000 lambs being
Nationally, 2 million out of 6.5
million hoggets were mated last
Prof Morris said hogget lambing
went through a revival in the late
1990s and early 2000s but scientific
papers on the subject dated back
''It (hogget lambing) has been
around a long time.
''It's something all farmers should
be thinking seriously about,'' he
Prof Morris said hoggets should
be 30kg on January 1, which
meant a minimum mating weight
of 42kg on May 1 would be easily
''The bigger they are at mating the
more lambs you will get at
He told farmers not to be scared of
getting twin lambs from their
hoggets because in 10 years time it
would be the norm.
However, careful management of
twinning hoggets was required
and early weaning may be
necessary for the hogget to gain
Prof Morris said management
may be extended to growing
He was currently trialling a new
chicory, plantain and white and
red clover mix that was shown to
increase milk production and
increase lamb survival through
''It could be the ideal feed for
hoggets, especially twin-bearing
He recommended the use of teaser
rams for 17 days before the
planned start of mating.
More on lambing hoggets
Tagging costs passed on
By SHAWN McAVINUE
Stock agents are collecting an extra
fee from farmers buying and selling
cattle in Southland so saleyards can
pay for new technology required by
NAIT (National Animal Identifi-
cation and Tracing) scheme.
A Southland farmer said when he
bought cattle at Lorneville saleyard
in Invercargill, he discovered a
''RFID admin fee'' of 75 cents plus
GST per cattle beast.
RFID stands for radio frequency
identification device, a reference to
the new National Animal Identifi-
cation and Tracing ear tags that
became mandatory for cattle in July.
NAIT chief executive Russell Burn-
ard said some saleyards were
charging fees for recording animal
movements to and from sales.
''We respect that they are entitled to
do this, but have asked the industry
to make it clear that these are not
statutory NAIT-imposed fees.''
Lorneville saleyard chairman of
directors Gordon Smith said the
saleyard had extra costs to get ready
for NAIT. The $40,000 NAIT scanner
had to be paid for by someone.
New Zealand Stock and Station
Agents Association chairman Terry
Cairns, a director of the Lorneville
saleyard and owner of South Stock,
said agents were collecting the fee to
cover new technology, labour and
saleyard administration costs.
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