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We all know that it’s what’s inside that counts, but in respect to animal feed, taking time to look at what’s on the outside of the bag can help to avoid potentially costly animal performance or health issues. Let’s look at some of key elements given on a bag label for example, NRM Chick Starter […]

While forage is the most important part of any equine diet, the increased calorie needs of performing and breeding horses often means that pasture and hay alone probably will not provide enough energy for work and weight maintenance. Typically, this energy deficit is met through the inclusion of grains. Grains provide starch and are a […]

Laying chickens are popping up in urban areas all over New Zealand, as people realise that keeping a small flock of chickens does not require a huge outdoor space or a large time commitment. Becoming an advocate for poultry amongst your urban family and friends can help to break down the rural-urban divide. At the […]

Some of the 175,000 or so lifestyle blocks in New Zealand could form part of a stratified, integrated system of red meat production if more lifestylers opted to raise young stock. Commercial dairy farmers with infant cattle, sheep and goats would really like to find more productive homes for their male offspring and surplus females. […]

Growing interest in goats and increasing feed options through the NRM feed range have justified the development of the NRM Goat Nutrition Guide which is now available online at www.nrm.co.nz/lifestyle. Unashamedly detailed, the guide has been written with both commercial and lifestyle goat keeping in mind. This excellent reference material can be read cover to […]

Located on the outskirts of Christchurch, Perry and Jackie McConnachie lease their farm from The Isaac Conservation and Wildlife Trust. It’s their fourth season on-farm and with only 160 cows on the property, there’s a big focus on optimum production. The herd are all brought in. The McConnachies don’t breed replacements, instead using beef bulls […]

Pastures change from being in a vegetative (growing) state in spring, to increasing in maturity and entering a reproductive phase in summer. This brings a decrease in plant nutrients (energy and protein) and decreased digestibility of pasture. Cattle and sheep get hit with a double whammy as plants mature. Digestibility drops, which decreases both the […]

If you do the basics well, raising your own laying chickens can be relatively simple and if you get it right, your flock will reward you generously. There are three golden rules to chick rearing. Firstly, ensure that the correct feed and clean water is supplied with sufficient feeder and drinker space for the birds. […]

Poorly designed and inadequately maintained calf sheds will compromise animal health and put added pressure on calf rearers. A bit of thought and planning now can make life a lot easier come the spring.   From bedding to guttering, cleaning to lighting – here’s a checklist to get you started. Make sure your sheds are […]

No matter the size of your property, the short days of winter are a critical time to safeguard both your pastures and livestock for the productive time of spring. With poor growing conditions around the country rationing and feeding according to need is likely to be more important to lifestylers with grazing livestock this winter […]