Rural Notebook | John Seaman

STACKS ON: Can you identify a Vauxhall, Humber, Simca, Mercury, Anglia or Customline in this tower at a wrecking yard? Photo: SUPPLIED

STACKS ON: Can you identify a Vauxhall, Humber, Simca, Mercury, Anglia or Customline in this tower at a wrecking yard? Photo: SUPPLIED

THERE are a lot of farm families who appreciate the help that is being given to them as they continue to battle through a string of mongrel seasons.

But there are also a lot of farming businesses that don’t want or accept assistance as they are well established, have off-farm assets or cash reserve invested in farm management deposits.

In quite a number of cases it is obviously going to take some years for the owners to return to a sound financial situation.

Much of the support from charities will only really be a token but it is given and received in the typical Australian way – to a mate from your mates.


Country visit

LAST week’s visit to several small country towns gave us a different insight into community drought aid.

Charity outlets told tales of some “farmers”presenting unpaid bills from motor repairers and tyre retailers and expecting each account to be settled by the charity store.

Many comments were made of the value of vouchers instead of goods as the local small businesses need every dollar that can be spent in their shops.

Everyone is really grateful for the kindness of so many people from many parts of the state, especially the school children who have tried so hard to help. The spirit of Australia is very much alive and well.

Nationals meeting

BATHURST branch of the National Party is holding a dinner meeting at Bathurst RSL Club on Tuesday, November 30 with Federal Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources David Littleproud as the guest speaker.

Tickets are $55 each and details can be had from 9299 5811. Bookings must be made by October 25.

Wedded bliss

LAST weekend brought the lovely wedding of Rhyannah Larnach and Michael Mainwaring in Bathurst.

Rhyannah is the only daughter of Bathurst Merino Association president Warwick Larnach and his wife Robynanne.

I’m sure that many readers join me in wishing Rhyannah and Michael every happiness in the years to come.

Ram auction

WE couldn’t resist a visit to a merino ram auction in Western NSW where the hospitality and confidence in the future go hand-in-hand.

A highlight of the sale was a newfound follower of a breeding scheme that is almost 40 years old, and his conversion sounded like the disciples who were involved in the early 1980s.

These ideas have been quietly adopted by a lot of stud breeders and have greatly changed the make and shape of modern merinos.

COLOUR BY NUMBERS: Differing soil types are obvious in this yarding of dusty sheep in a South Australian saleyard. Photo: SUPPLIED

COLOUR BY NUMBERS: Differing soil types are obvious in this yarding of dusty sheep in a South Australian saleyard. Photo: SUPPLIED

To cut or not?

ACROSS many districts the decision to cut near-failed grain crops for hay, hang on and hope for some sort of a harvest or turn grazing animals has to be made immediately.

Baled hay will still be valuable for at least medium term and hungry stock also do well on failed crops, but the decision must be made.

Rain that is forecast for this week (as I write on Monday morning) would change some decisions and make life much easier for young animals and their mothers.

Once again, be extra careful of barber’s pole worm in all classes of sheep. One day soon, every sheep and lamb will be really valuable.

Vaccine decisions

SOME unbelievable lambing percentages in mobs of merino ewes are being claimed and some of them may be true.

Other percentage results tell of real problems with hungry ewes walking away from weak lambs.

The decision to use eartags or Gudair vaccine is being based on cost but I hope that this vaccine will still be used, regardless of the $3 per head cost.

Replacement ewes and young wether weaners are not saleable to restockers in the Central and Southern Tablelands unless they are Gudair vaccinated and carry a Vee ear tag.

Please remember that lambs that are needled by 16 weeks are still approved vaccinates.

Wool report

A SLIGHTLY larger offering this week saw prices ease by around 20c/kg for the full range of merino types.

Crossbreds also lost ground with the fine crossbreds down 60c/kg and the broader crossbreds down 30c/kg.

The northern market indicator finished the week on 2140c/kg, down 22c/kg.

This year continues to be a great year for wool with the northern market indicator around 500c/kg better than 12 months ago, which converts to around $650 extra per bale for most merino wools.

Sales next week will see 34,844 bales on offer nationwide.

Mark Horsburgh, TWG Landmark

Diary dates

  • Saturday, October 13: Trunkey Creek Show.
  • Saturday, October 20: Blink Bonnie Merino Stud, Tarana. Ram auction on -property.
  • Sunday, October 21: Fosterfield Finewools, 32 rams on-property. Some rams will be on display at the Trunkey Creek Show. Phone Scott for details on 0439 179 304.

Laugh lines

ONLY in Australia:

  • Can a pizza get to your house faster than an ambulance.
  • Are there disabled parking places at a skating rink.
  • Do we order double cheeseburgers, large fries and a Diet Coke.
  • Do our banks leave their doors open but chain pens to the desks.
  • Do we buy saveloys in 10 packs and buns in eight packs.


GEORGE and his wife had been married 10 years and the novelty had worn off.

They visited a counsellor who listened to the wife’s complaints for many minutes.

The counsellor then hugged the wife, kissed her passionately and then hugged her again for a long time as George looked on.

“Now my friend,” advised the counsellor, “she needs to have this done at least twice a week.”

George replied: “OK then, I can have her here on Tuesdays and Thursdays.”