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Preview: Country Life

RNZ: Country Life

Country Life takes you down country roads to meet ordinary people achieving their dreams. We live in a beautiful country...


Magnificent Murphy's Camp

Fri, 21 Oct 2016 21:36:00 +1300

Just west of Matata on the sweeping Bay of Plenty coastline you'll find an old-fashioned Kiwi camping ground that's been in the same family for 51 years.

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Dazzling Daffodils

Fri, 21 Oct 2016 21:25:00 +1300

Clandon Daffodils grows more than a million stems of daffodils each year. The classic yellow daffodil is always a top seller but there are hundreds of other commercial varieties and hundreds more seen only at flower shows.

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Triplets in Triplicate

Fri, 21 Oct 2016 21:17:00 +1300

Wellsford farmer Gordon Levet didn't take much notice of one of his cows - until she started producing triplets.

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Regional Wrap

Fri, 21 Oct 2016 21:09:00 +1300

It's been mild around the North Island, early maize is popping up and the weather's improved for general tractor work on paddocks. In the South Island wonderful rain has fallen in drought hit North Canterbury, although aquifers are still not replenished.

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Supported Scholar - Georgina Lyndsay

Fri, 21 Oct 2016 21:05:00 +1300

Georgina Lyndsay is CRV Ambreed's Scholarship winner for 2016.The scholarship was established in 2010 to support and encourage Lincoln and Massey students with interests in animal husbandry, animal genetics, farm management and environmental sustainability to work in New Zealand's dairy industry.

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Global worming

Fri, 14 Oct 2016 21:36:00 +1300

Orchard waste from around Central Otago feeds millions of composting worms at Robbie Dick's worm farm in Cromwell. The worms convert tonnes of edible waste into castings manure, an organic compost ideal for growing plants, and are also sold to plumbers for composting toilets.

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Mussel farming In Marlborough

Fri, 14 Oct 2016 21:20:00 +1300

John Young is one of New Zealand's pioneer mussel farmers. He's the head of Marlborough Sounds based business Clearwater Mussels, which operates a mix of company-owned, and shareholder-owned farms throughout the Sounds and further afield in Tasman and Golden Bays. A boat ride through the Marlborough Sounds with him is a journey through an ancient seascape he knows like the back of his hand.

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Regional Wrap

Fri, 14 Oct 2016 21:13:00 +1300

It's felt like summer on the east coast of the North Island this week, but farmers are still squelching around in paddocks over much of the island. In the south, farmers are getting crops in and lambs are being tailed.

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A Strong Start for Farmstrong

Fri, 14 Oct 2016 21:05:00 +1300

The rural well-being programme Farmstrong is proving a hit with farmers. More than a thousand people are visiting its website each week.

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For the Love of Animals

Fri, 07 Oct 2016 21:36:00 +1300

Shawn Bishop happily admits she's dotty about animals. Her husband Michael Dixon agrees. Shawn and Michael have set up an animal sanctuary for abused, unwanted and neglected farm animals on their property an hour north of Auckland. They've found homes for thousands of battery hens, scores of baby goats and have a resident pig who was once tied to and towed behind a car, but now is showered with love .

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The Back Country

Fri, 07 Oct 2016 21:32:00 +1300

The Country Life webpage is showcasing a series of classic country clips from Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision. This week's film looks at gorse. Last week featured the inventor of the post hole borer, Ron Lister. Beth Clayton has won a DVD of the New Zealand feature movie Mahana for emailing in with his name.

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The Ready Money Trail

Fri, 07 Oct 2016 21:20:00 +1300

A new walkway has recently opened in the Cheviot Hills Reserve in North Canterbury. The project has been a labour of love for a group of local volunteers led by retired sheep farmer David Anderson.

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Regional Wrap

Fri, 07 Oct 2016 21:13:00 +1300

It's been exceptionally wet in most North Island areas this week, from Auckland south through the central regions, streams are overflowing. In the South Island cropping farmers are able to get tractor work completed and seeds in.

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Mink farming in Canada

Fri, 07 Oct 2016 21:05:00 +1300

Walt Freeman is a mink farmer in Ontario Canada.

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Catch the Wind

Fri, 30 Sep 2016 21:38:00 +1300

Warren Bryant and three of his farming neighbours are behind the Mill Creek windfarm in Wellington's Ohariu Valley - a 26 turbine scheme that started harvesting some the capital's world class wind - back in 2014.

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Jane Paul talks about The Back Country series

Fri, 30 Sep 2016 21:22:00 +1300

Jane Paul is the community programme co-ordinator at Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision.

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Beautiful Brahmans

Fri, 30 Sep 2016 21:14:00 +1300

Vanessa Corry is New Zealand's only registered breeder of Brahman Cattle. The huge, floppy-eared, loose skinned animals also have a hump and Vanessa's often been asked if they are camels or wildebeests. There are, in fact, more Brahman cattle in the world than any other breed of cattle. They can withstand hot temperatures and can be found out grazing and putting on weight in the heat of the day, when other breeds are seeking shelter.

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Regional Wrap

Fri, 30 Sep 2016 21:05:00 +1300

Soils are completely saturated in parts of the North Island - but on the west coast of the South, it's been dry.

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Meat Bryan Harris

Fri, 23 Sep 2016 21:38:00 +1200

A love of meat runs in the Harris family. The family opened its first butchery in Cheviot, North Canterbury 60 years ago. These days Harris Meats is an independent abattoir and meat processing business employing 45 staff. The family has a farm which supplies the abattoir with sheep and cattle year round.

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Wagyu grower eyes juicy foreign markets

Fri, 23 Sep 2016 21:22:00 +1200

An update on how the more specialist meat breed Wagyu is doing in New Zealand. Wagyu is a traditional Japanese breed which is known for its fat-marbled meat. Firstlight Foods, the only commercial scale producer of Wagyu beef in New Zealand, says export markets are wanting more grass-fed beef, rather than grain fed beef, and it's keen to see dairy farmers use wagyu genetics over some of their dairy herd to produce a high value calf.

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Bleeding Blighters

Fri, 23 Sep 2016 21:14:00 +1200

Five hundred barber's pole worms can kill a sheep. They suck so much of the animal's blood that when you cut its throat, it doesn't bleed. Sheep farmer Gordon Levet has spent a lifetime breeding sheep to be resistant to the parasite. He's recently been honoured for his work.

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Regional Wrap

Fri, 23 Sep 2016 21:05:00 +1200

Welcome rain has been falling in coastal Wairarapa and crops are going in in Canterbury.

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Zipping Along

Fri, 16 Sep 2016 21:38:00 +1200

Ziplining through native bush is fun for the tourists and beneficial for the flora and fauna. Canopy Tours is into its fourth year of operation and visitors have been so excited by the pest control work being carried out in the Mamaku Forest that they've donated over 30 thousand dollars, unsolicited, towards the programme. Birds are returning to the area and one of the guides says people are remembering the bush as much as the zip lining.

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A Tripp Down Memory Lane

Fri, 16 Sep 2016 21:22:00 +1200

Tony Tripp has created a museum dedicated to rural memorabilia on Snowdon Station where he has been farming since 1961. In one of the sheds is a 1929 Bentley with a tow bar that Lucy Wills, the previous owner, used for feeding out hay to sheep on the 2200 hectare high country property in Canterbury.

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The Lichfield Giant

Fri, 16 Sep 2016 21:14:00 +1200

Milk has just started flowing into one of the two largest milk driers in the world at Fonterra's Lichfield plant in South Waikato. It's the same size as a drier at Darfield in Canterbury. The 50 metre high drier can make 720 metric tonnes of milk powder a day.

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Regional Wrap

Fri, 16 Sep 2016 21:08:00 +1200

Warm and moist conditions in the North Island are pushing grass growth, and asparagus along, while in the South Island arable farmers have been preparing ground and sowing spring cereals.

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Young Winemaker of the Year

Fri, 16 Sep 2016 21:05:00 +1200

Jordan Hogg from Seresin Estate in Marlborough is the Tonnellerie de Mercurey NZ Young Winemaker 2016.

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Clear the board

Fri, 09 Sep 2016 21:36:00 +1200

Dave Te Kapa's shearing gang is pre-lamb shearing 1000 ewes a day at Snowdon Station in the Canterbury high country. Snowdon's owners, Roy Veronese and Annabel Tripp operate a Perendale stud alongside their commercial sheep and beef operation and focus on maximising stock production while, at the same time, farming sustainably.

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Bread of heaven in the Bay

Fri, 09 Sep 2016 21:22:00 +1200

Setting up an artisan bake house on a small rural property with a babbling brook has been a dream of Maurice Lees' for a decade or more. It's been a reality for just under two years. He's making specialty sourdough bread in Manawahe, Bay of Plenty. His bake house was built by a local Bavarian builder incorporating windows he's lovingly collected and brought back from the UK. The wooden front door comes from Paris, circa 1890. The sourdough fermentation process takes about 36 hours. The bread's baked in an oven with a stone bottom and sold to various local outlets and markets.

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Bugging Bees

Fri, 09 Sep 2016 21:14:00 +1200

Huw Evans logs into his beehives in Italy and the UK from where ever he is in the world. He can tell whether the bees have made honey, whether the queen's laying eggs or whether someone's pushed the hive over on their way home from the pub.

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Regional Wrap

Fri, 09 Sep 2016 21:05:00 +1200

Lamb deaths are expected following this week's cold snap which has brought snow and bitterly cold conditions to North and South Island hill country.

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Whareroa Farm

Fri, 02 Sep 2016 21:33:00 +1200

On weekends and on summer evenings, the carpark at Whareroa Farm on the Kapiti Coast is full. Mountain bikers, walkers and families enjoy the farm. However, ten years ago it was about to be subdivided and would have been lost to the community had locals not rallied to save it. It's a piece of land with a rich history. In World War II, Whareora was home to Camp McKay - a training camp for American soldiers. Recently a heritage walk has been opened on the farm to look back at a time when 5,000 marines lived there.

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A Preference for Permaculture

Fri, 02 Sep 2016 21:18:00 +1200

Andrew Martin has swapped the high life for a life in which he tries to life as self sufficiently as possible on a small block in the western Bay of Plenty.

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Regional Wrap

Fri, 02 Sep 2016 21:10:00 +1200

The price of indoor tomatoes has shot up and early stone fruit trees are in flower in the north of the South Island.

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Whitebaiter Murray Arnt

Fri, 02 Sep 2016 21:05:00 +1200

78 year old Murray Arnt has been whitebaiting every season since he was six. He's never missed a beat. This season he's perched on a narrow plank beside the Tarawera River in Bay of Plenty, with his pure bred Sydney Silky Jackie for company.

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