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Farm Basics

Tuberculosis in cattle

Tuberculosis is an important zoonotic disease that spreads slowly in animal populations.

How to reverse soil degradation on your farm

Livestock producers, particularly in arid climates, are struggling to remain profitable. Soil degradation and declining stocking rates have been identified as some of the main reasons for this decline. Colin Nott, a regenerative agricultural consultant from Namibia, spoke to Annelie Coleman.

Producing cashmere

Cashmere is one of the finest fibres in the world and is considerably warmer than wool. Products made from this fibre are in great demand, especially in Western countries.

Boost productivity with heifers

The replacement heifer is the foundation of a productive cow herd. Its selection and development can greatly affect the profitability of the farm through its genetics, future performance and longevity.

Thorn tree leaves: a nutritious grain substitute in pig feed

Smallholder pig production in Southern Africa is constrained by feed shortages and the demand for grains to feed the ever-growing human population. This makes it important to identify alternative feedstuffs for pigs.

Tackling a widespread pig zoonosis

Diseases that spread from animals to humans are a serious health risk. One such disease, associated with pigs, is a particular problem in rural South Africa, says Dr Caryn Shacklock of Afrivet.

Regenerative farming for livestock farmers

Faced with increasing financial and ecological pressure, livestock farmers have no other option but to become more sustainable and resilient. Fortunately, explains independent agricultural consultant Dr Louis du Pisani, the solution can be found in well-managed veld, which also contributes directly to the health of the earth.

Getting to know earthworms

More than 2 000 species of earthworm have been identified worldwide and there are 300 known species in South Africa.

Beware of these avocado diseases

Phytophthora root rot, stem canker, anthracnose and Cercospora spot are the diseases most likely to attack avocado trees in South Africa.

Growing cucumbers

Cucumbers make an excellent and refreshing addition to salads, especially during summer months. So why not grow your own?

The importance of breeding seasons and good male genetics

Two factors are crucial to successful livestock production: choosing the right rams or bulls, and planning breeding so that offspring are born at the optimal time of the year.

Health and safety do’s and don’ts for farmers

Navigating your way through the numerous rules and regulations of workplace health and safety can seem a daunting prospect, but labour consultants are there to guide you. Jeandré van der Walt spoke to a number of experts in the occupational health and safety industry about the key aspects of farmworker safety.

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