From 1993 to 2013, the stocking rate increased continuously
from 3.2 kg/ha to 12 kg/ha (200 cattle, 120 sheep, 100 goats),
before the 2013-2019 drought period began.
The stocking rate decreased to 5 kg/ha during the 2013-2019 drought period. However, the core goat and cattle herds survived this seven-year drought (the worst since 1930) and are recovering fast. Herd building is underway. In all previous extended droughts, the stocking rate decreased to zero and a restart was necessary.
Bare patches have started to close over and perennial grasses (Bloubuff el and Anthephora spp.) are returning.
Since 2000, a natural die-back of several encroaching woody species is occurring, including Acacia refi ciens, Terminalia prun- ioides and Dichrostachys cinerea; however, Colophospermum mopane appears to remain unaff ected.
Predator issues have been addressed by herding small stock during the day and kraaling them every night. Calves are kraaled for four months every night.
Frank and Katrin Bockmühl run the family farm in the dry north western part of Namibia on a part-time basis. Farming here requires a determined mindset. Regenerating the soil landscape is the guiding principle, but when there is no rain, there is no growth.