Increased sustainable stocking rate by 60% from 667 to over
The starting stocking rate was 25 kg live weight/ha. It took six years to achieve a stocking rate of 40 kg/ha and 15 years to achieve 45 kg/ha.
Unlike in previous droughts, the farm persisted during the 2019 drought with the entire core herd intact and stocked at 29 kg/ ha. At this time, many other farmers had to sell everything.
The diversity of plants has increased and the animals utilise the palatable bush, forbs and legumes, which results in good animal performance and fi nancial returns.
The farm is a now an enjoyable, low stress operation with stable and harmonious staff relations.
Minimal supplementation (molasses, urea and phosphate) is provided (only when needed), which saves enormously on costs.
Annual budgets are calculated for ongoing selective bush- thinning operations by hand, especially in the kalk areas.
Hendrik Botha’s vision in 1986 was to address bush encroachment
while focusing on good rangeland and livestock management,
and increasing the stocking rate to over 40 kg/ha and production
per annum to 18 kg/ha. Realising this long-term vision took careful
planning, diligence and ongoing hard work.