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Young Country

From concrete jungle to great outdoors

Howdy folks,

My name is Josh James Marcotte and as it turns out, I will be writing a few stories about some of the stuff I get up to now and then. 

First off let me tell you a bit about myself and how I ended up being a hunter/gatherer.

I live on the West Coast of the South Island. In the summer I own/operate a whitewater rafting company specialising in multi day fishing and hunting trips, I spend the Autumns hunting hard out and the winters trapping possums and living in a tent way back in the hills, as well as doing the odd bit of gold fossicking and whitebaiting.

Being married with 2 boys (4 and 7) keeps me fairly busy when im not gallavanting around in the hills.

In May this year I made a tahr hunting video and posted it on youtube.  A few people thought it wasn’t too shabby so I decided to make a few more videos about the Kiwi lifestyle - hunting and fishing and general mucking around. This led to a fair bit of interest from a heap of different people and someone suggested I should get my own TV show, problem is I first need to get on TV to get sponsors but to get the funds to get on TV I need sponsors to cough up the $$$ required. Go figure...

So I thought what the heck, I will keep making videos and see what happens.

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From dark days to bright future

Richard Fitzgerald laughed when a younger, new staff member said he’d been with Young Farmers “since the very beginning”.

Until recently, he had worked for Young Farmers for 11 years – a far cry from the 20+ years he has been involved and a further cry from the 80+ years since the former Federation of Young Farmers Clubs and Country Girls.

But he’s okay with the misinterpretation because it is a new look Young Farmers that views the world today.

Young Farmers had a huge decline in membership through the 1980s and 90s until it was literally only months away from folding completely.

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Consider your dog

Conserve your dog’s energy for when you really need it. They are not robots but living creatures that get tired. These tips will help your dog’s performance.

Don’t shut a gate then ask your dog to jump it; all you have to do is let him through before closing it. This saves his energy and doesn’t risk a tired dog accidentally breaking a leg.

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Down the policy road

Kimberly Crewther has cut a track through the dairy industry at the policy level, travelling, juggling three children and pumping out policy and strategy papers as she went.

Not bad for the Heretaunga (Upper Hutt) College student whose teachers suggested she study business or a bachelor of arts or journalism degree – basically anything other than agriculture.

But Kimberly knew what she wanted so set off to Massey to study a bachelor of applied science with endorsements in agriculture and international agriculture.

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From dole to dairying

It’s too easy to write off someone on the dole, Paul Devening has learnt at Tectra.

The outfit known for wool training has also spent several years in dairying, taking jobseekers sourced from the Ministry of Social Development (MSD).

No longer is the organisation just “wool, wool, wool”, programme manager Devening says.

Together Tectra and MSD put people into classrooms and on to farms around the country.

This year has started with eight courses, in Kaikohe, Whakatane, Te Awamutu, Rotorua, New Plymouth, Palmerston North, Timaru and Invercargill.

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Land leasing lessons

Getting started farming in your own right can be a challenge and leasing is a great first option. Rebecca Harper investigates how it works and what you need to know about leasing.

David Skiffington has five lease blocks and has developed his own philosophy and system for leasing, building up to a viable farm business for him and his young family.

He got his first lease block in 2008 and is now leasing land from four Maori trusts and one private landowner in Manawatu, with about 100 hectares all up.

David is dead set against paying market price for a block. “I feel like the market rate is often set by the guy next door who has an advantage. Market price is set at a price where not much is economic.”

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Sibling sense

There’s an old saying that life is a challenge, not a competition but Allen, 20, and Robert, 19, Gregory would more than likely disagree.

Sibling rivalry, one-upmanship – call it what you like – has driven the brothers to notch up a similar and impressive list of TeenAg, Young Farmer, stock judging and academic achievements.

Allen, a third-year Lincoln University AgSci student, sums up their achievements and brotherly rivalry simply: “I do stuff and then he has to do it.”

Robert, a second year Lincoln University AgCom student, butts in saying he usually manages to do whatever better.

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No guarantees with dogs

Your new dog has a different home and owner so he will be confused and possibly scared – this is to be expected so allow him time to adjust.

This could take anything from a couple of days to a couple of months, possibly never – it does happen. Dogs are living creatures with a highly intelligent brain. They are not a programmed electrical device that if you do the correct steps they will respond in a given way.

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Made by Mandy

There are no shortcuts in the making of Mandy’s Horseradish Sauce.

It is hands-on every step of the way with the production team of Mandy Steel, her mother Shelley and staff members Amber and Amy spending most of their time hand-peeling the gnarled root that is horseradish.

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