The R12 061 600 recently achieved at the annual Ezemvelo KwaZulu-Natal Wildlife Game Auction was an excellent result, which clearly demonstrated buyers’ faith in the quality of the provincial conservation organisation’s game, as well as the professional manner in which it’s captured and handled by Ezemvelo’s Game Capture Unit.
Speaking after the auction at the Sibaya Casino and Entertainment Kingdom north of Durban, CEO Khulani Mkhize announced that the 2008 auction was a resounding success, with every one of the 227 lots sold to buyers from all over South Africa.
“We believe that the high quality of our game is significant in keeping the genetic make-up of our buyers’ own stocks good,” Mkhize said. “And in the interests of biodiversity conservation, this means that our auction is contributing positively to
maintaining the quality of South Africa’s wild game stocks on private land.”
In a speech prior to the auction the chairperson of the KZN Nature Conservation Board, Dr Patrick Sokhela, reminded the public that the auction’s primary role was a game management tool, which provided a means to remove excess animals from the conservation areas, while also generating valuable income for the organisation.
“KZN Wildlife is mindful of the benefit to its finances as a result of this sale,” Dr Sokhela explained. “However, the auction should never be seen as just a means of generating income. It must remain a tool in the management of game numbers.
My colleagues from the provincial Treasury agree with me that a more transparent method of disposing of surplus provincial assets cannot be found.”
Some of the game on sale included white rhinos, giraffes and hippos, as well as more diminutive species such as red duikers, warthogs and dassies. The top price for a white rhino was R530 000 for a cow and calf together, while dassies went for a maximum of R450 each and hippos for R18 250 each. The average price for a white rhino was R252 973. – Lloyd Phillips
Wool takes a knock
The market finished softer WITH THE Merino indicator down 5% compared to a fortnight ago, to close at R61,53/kg (clean). According to Ona Viljoen of Cape Wools, “This brings local prices more in line with Australia, where prices have been
trending downward over the past weeks, tracking softer demand in certain sectors of the textile pipeline.”
James de Jager, wool manager at Cape Mohair and Wool (CMW) agrees. “This trend is caused by subdued yarn prices, record lows in consumer confidence, effluent crackdowns in Chinese mills and low orders towards the end of the season,” he said. “But good combing qualities enjoyed strong competition, while shorter and inferior qualities were under pressure, selling up to 6% cheaper. Wool from the traditional communal areas in the former Transkei and Ciskei was also well-supported.”
Superfine wools, 18 micron and finer, were in sellers’ favour and the highest price obtained by a CMW client was for four bales AH, 18,3 micron, from Zeiss Jordaan Merinos, which sold for R65,70/kg De Jager says Australian wool producers are reluctant to sell to a falling market and the resultant limited supply should keep
the market steady. “With only two sales to the end of the season, buyers have to fill existing orders,” De Jager said.
The rand was 1% weaker against the US dollar at R7,61, but gained 5% against the euro to trade at R11,75. Prices fell across the board, with poor quality significantly discounted. The offering of 13 538 bales was slightly bigger than at the previous
sale when it totalled 11 868 bales. A sales percentage of 96% was obtained.
Major buyers were Modiano (4 112 bales), Standard Wool SA (2 257 bales), Chargeurs Wool (1 871 bales) and Stucken (1 737 bales). Average price movements for AWEX-type fleeces, MF4 and MF5 of 70mm and 80mm were as follows: 19 microns fell 3,4% at R81,87/kg, 20 microns were down 3,1% at R69,18/kg, 21 microns were 3% cheaper at R63,66/kg, 22 microns shed 4,7% at R60,56/kg and 23 microns were 5,1% cheaper at R58,91/kg.There were no quotes for 24 and 25 microns due to insufficient quantities in these categories. – Roelof Bezuidenhout
EC pork producers allowed to restock
THE VETERINARY SERVICES OF THE agriculture department in the Eastern Cape have given pig owners whose animals were culled during the 2005 swine fever
outbreak the go-ahead to restock.
But department spokesperson Mthobeli Mxotwa stressed that only pig owners who have since built departmentally approved pigsties to help protect their animals from contracting diseases are allowed to restock.
The department has already built 23 demonstration pigsties at the homesteads of various farmers chosen by villagers. Officials are also advising people how to build these themselves.“We will be conducting regular inspections to ensure that pigsties conforming to the standards we have set out are being built by pig owners,“ Mxotwa said. “Pigs will not be allowed to roam in the villages.”
During the swine fever outbreak in the province, 492 000 pigs had to be culled to prevent the spread of the disease – an operation which cost the government over R700 million. Some R249 million has already been paid out to pig owners whose pigs were culled.
Over R71 million is still outstanding for 30 000 claims, which, according to the department, will be paid out as soon as finance has been received from the national Treasury. – Peter Mashala