Drew is a former copywriter, teacher and ad man. He is a current wannabe "farmer" on small block south of Auckland. Tackling the big issues on the farm from randy bulls to water tanks, Drew is a relatively keen man, who loves to moan about how much fun a lifestyle block can be. Advice, feedback and of course abuse, are all readily accepted.
Whatever option you have in mind for the pigs on your farm, we’ve put together a few things you need to be aware of before you get started.
Hens are a funny lot. Not so much the ‘ha ha’ type funny, like a quirky rural blog might hope to be. No, more of a ‘gee, you’re a bit of weirdo ain’t ya’ type funny.
The drovers of New Zealand are your typically understated kiwi over achievers. For most of us, moving any kind of animal a mere number of metres would be difficult enough. The hundreds of thousands of stock moved up and down the length of the country every year was just another day on the job for a drover.
On Saturday our first ever farm animal, Scramble the hen, met with a wee ax-cident.
The wind that took about 80 or so trees from the pine block next door, also blew apart the neighbours chicken coop. It was then I had a brilliant idea. I should steal that.
From the title of today’s blog you may already have an idea of what it is about. On my property was a chicken coop. It then became a woodshed. Then a garden. Then… well, hmm.
Like in Return of the Jedi, I returned to my chicken coop that I started yesterday…ok, well sorta yesterday. Things take time in the country.
RD4 The First Time has to deal with some unwanted guests... the New Zealand cattle tick, and chicken mites.
How to add value to your home | RD4 - A rural blog
Rural broadband...yeah, it aint.
The final blog about chickens | RD4 - A rural blog
The Rural reviews How to Catch Fish and Where: The Complete Kiwi Beginner's Guide, by Mike Rendle.
"Look beyond familiar horizons to experience the amazing diversity of New Zealand's many landscapes."
RD4 The First Time looks and Timms traps vs the traditional firearm for possum control on your rural property.
Rural supplies, not to your door | RD4 The First Time
We review the new and revised Field Guide to the Birds of New Zealand.
I was a just a wee boy in 1987 when the All Blacks were crowned World Cup Champions. My dad and I sat on the half way line right next to the old player’s tunnel at Eden Park.
The Rural reviews Walking the Waitakere Ranges, by Alison Dench & Lee-Anne Parore, a must have for anybody keen on the great outdoors and the wonder of the Waitakeres.
RD4 The First Time needs a fence and quickly learns that rural contractors are a different breed from those in the city.
Attracted instantly to the entry entitled “The Death Ray”, I thought why read on? We invented a death ray, we are New Zealand! Lets take over the world!
Books and the internet are great for finding out what you need to do, but even with all the fantastic things you find here, it still helps to have someone tell you how to do it.
There were over 30,000 injuries on farms or agricultural locations reported in 2013. I’m more concerned with the billion other not so severe injuries, i.e. chicken wire scratches.
Anyone who lives on a rural block will see the title of this book and say one of two things; Yuss! Or ‘rubbish’. I kind of have to favour the first option.
Picking livestock for my lifestyle block has proved to be a difficult process thanks to all the naysayers.
The Rural reviews Farm, Fork, Food: A Year of Spectacular Recipes Inspired by Black Cat Farm, by Eric Skokan. This cookbook is filled with healthy, organic and edible recipes for those who wish to be a bit more Adventurous in the Kitchen.
After some trouble with the dreaded hawthorn bush, I've decided to deal the final trump card: fire. If only it would stop raining...
RD4 The First Time blogger discusses his experiences on lighting fire to kill the dreaded hawthorn bush. Or rather, his experiences on how NOT to light a fire.
There are lots of things that just don’t happen in the city. One new one for me is wandering sheep. It would be fair to say that a stray lamb never once did walk into my property and hang out for the night when I was living in the city. Definitely not two either.
Gubbeen farm in Ireland is famous for it’s cheese. Each chapter in this book gives you an extensive farm tour, followed by a selection of recipes related to the tour. An extra bonus is that the book also helps you rear your animals better and gives you a little gardening advice to help grow the best produce.
A zeetagger comes to rescue our blogger. This week's blog from RD4 The First time.
RD4 The First Time discusses how to get rid of farm pests, including possums, rats, feral cats, and the neighbours.
Living on a farm is awesome, but not all of us can make a living from it. If you don't make a living from your block, then you may be familiar with the problem of the rural commute.
The trouble starts when you let your town dog who's used to chasing birds around the park run around your massive new lifestyle block. Yes, my dog ate the neighbours chicken.
RD4 The First Time's leaf sliders, that were supposed to create less work by not having to clean the water tank, created a whole slew of problems.
Review | The Moon and Farmer McPhee by Margaret Mahy
What strikes me about this book is the true wonder the author has for trees. Had this been the 60’s you would easily label Dr Noel Kingsbury as a tree hugging hippy. Nowadays he far surpasses that notion; he can only be described as being thoroughly enamoured with trees.
It’s been an age since I blogged about how shit rural broadband is. My word, it is bad. But why? Why is it so bad? There are Amazonian tribes, as yet undiscovered by man and who haven’t even seen a computer that get larger data allowances than me.
As you may know I live on a small rural holding in the south of this so called ‘super’ city. We have lower rates, but we have to pay someone to come get our trash. Our recycling on the other hand…well, it seems no one wants it.
Easy answer is ‘it depends on the neighbour’. Followers of my blog would agree that helping the 1990’s house music fan neighbours on one side of my house would be a waste of time. Other neighbours, not so much.
I feel I am quite justified in my continued dissertation on the ‘art’ of trapping things. Most things I attempt on my block are purely in the face of complete ignorance and for the most part I get a successful result due to the mere fact that I really had no expectation of the actual result.
So my last blog described my soft side. My heart was on display and I was enamoured by those ‘possum eyes’ that only a possum can give you. Well, in a complete flip flop on my possum killing policy, I shot one last night…in fact, to really flip things over, I actually shot two.
A huge aspect of being a farmer involves fences. I think I’ve previously alluded to the fact that without fences you are not really a farmer.
My water tank arrived two weeks ago. It's still not hooked up. Water... who needs that anyway?
A constant source of pride for a New Zealand man is his lawn. For some gents it is a constant source of time burgling. Living in the country has pushed my lawn size and time cost up somewhat...
This blog should not be seen as a guide to Fieldays 2014, not even close. This is merely what I’m going to be doing in order to get as many free things as possible and not get suckered in to buying something I don't need.
Photography books are always great ‘coffee table’ books, but while View from the Road fits into that category if you only sat this book on a table it would be like buying a painting just to fill up some space on the wall.
Could RD4 The First Time finally have real rural broadband? Read on to find out...
The struggle to get rural broadband continues for this new lifestyle blocker.
Like most people that have ever used a phone, they’ve had a moan about their ‘provider’. I’m no exception to that rule. But I will however give credit where credit is due, and not just because they gave me credit where credit was definitely due.
This is an apology, not to Vodafone but to you the reader. Feels nice to get an apology. Last post I said I’d get on to the farming. But the fun with Vodafone and broadband continues. Hence the apology. To you. Not Vodafone.
The tank. Craned in place, well done to Auckland Cranes. However, there is a big ‘pull your bloody head in’ for the plumber I had been chatting too.
RD4 The First Time - when you resign from your job, what's the first thing you should do? Buy a lifestyle block, of course.
Up until recently, I’ve never found myself at the other end of the water supply issue. After a week of solid rain, I am beginning to notice new swimming pools where there never used to be swimming pools. Lakes where there never were lakes and a lot more ducks than usual.
The crowning achievement of any collector is when they complete the ‘set’. When you finally have all the bits you need, all the pieces of the puzzle, all two hundred issues of that magazine...
CRV Ambreed is helping dairy farmers beef up their bottom lines with the option of using dairy beef genetics for tail-end mating.Posted in Livestock
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Riparian areas, or waterway margins, are the strip of land that runs alongside waterways. If you have any waterways on your land, managing your riparian areas is something to consider.Posted in How To
Introducing Luggage Leash, the easy-to-use, bluetooth GPS tracking device that assists in preventing your luggage from being lost or stolen.Posted in Country Living