A traditional New Zealand farm
About the farm
Our farm is is an authentic, traditional sheep and beef farm on 347 hectares of green, rolling countryside near Fairlie. We are an ordinary Kiwi farming family who enjoy sharing our New Zealand farming practices, as well as the challenges, and opportunities that farm life provides.
We refer to our farm as a ‘grass factory’. We supply the land with nutrients that it needs to grow grass plus other feed crops that we grow to their maximum potential depending on the climatic conditions. The natural grasses are then eaten by our animals, and converted into wool, lamb, and beef for the local and international markets.
On the farm, our sheep and cattle are left to graze in their dedicated fields or paddocks, which are rotated on a regular basis, so that the highly nutritious grasses in the fields have time to re-establish between grazings. With constant grazing over successive seasons, pastures become weakened, and need to be replaced at regular intervals, usually about every 8 to 10 years.
If you wish to achieve a high production from your animals, it is similar to a healthy lifestyle in humans. We need a natural environment with good food and water and animals are just the same. On our rolling countryside, our animals have shelter from the sun and cold winds by plantings of trees and native species, and every field has reticulated fresh water.
We run a breed of sheep called the Romney, which originated in England and is most suited to our similar climate. In a normal season, we run about 2,500 sheep, plus about 260 cattle. We use a breed of dog called a huntaway. These black and tan dogs are bred in New Zealand and are good all-rounders in the fields, and sheep yards for sorting and shifting the sheep. Our huntaways are the hardest working unpaid employees working on our property, saving us countless hours – if they’re listening to our commands!
Most seasons we will have a variety of orphaned lambs or calves needing our care and intervention due to birthing issues, or misadventure for example. These animals go on to become long-term pets and family friends on our farm.