NZ Dairy Summer 2021

| 21 nzdairy DAIRY PEOPLE » Ben Burmeister Herd split after tough spring • from page 20 He is aware that the herd has a disproportionately larger number of older cows, given the severe culling that has occured in the past two seasons for other issues. “We continue to cull on somatic cell count levels.” Given where Awhi Farm is located, John says there is a shortage of skilled dairy service support, such as electricians who understand how milking sheds work, water pump specialists. The farm is also particularly wet, with a black solidified lavatype rock running under the pasture between .5m – 1m deep, making drainage in wet weather impossible. “To ease this issue, we have dug down and found a whole lot of culverts to help with drainage.” This year, due to a tough Spring, John has split the herd into two, one with the heifers and light cows which he milks just once a day, to retain condition. The production goal this season is 400km/MS per cow. Asked whether he plans to hang up his farming boots John says he can’t see that happening. “My head needs to be engaged, so it’s better I keep working at something I really enjoy.” Breeding quality stock a Lockhart tradition Richard Loader The story of the Lockhart Jersey Stud goes back to the ‘30s when Albert Burmeister established it on a dairy farm in the little farming locality of Taikorea in the Manawatu. A leader in genetics for his time, in 1938 Albert bred Lockhart Golden Laddie number 968 one of the first bulls bought by the forerunner to LIC. In 1951 Albert made the decision to buy a dairy farm in Taranaki, along with the tough call to hold a dispersal sale of all his pedigree jersey cows, which was attended by many keen buyers. That might have been the end of the Lockhart Jersey Stud had it not been for an outbreak of TB in Taranaki in the ‘60s when Albert had to cull 27 of his dairy cows. Not to be deterred, Albert went to the farmers who had bought his pedigree jerseys cows and bought the granddaughters of those cows, re-establishing the Lockhart Stud. Today both farm and stud are in the caring hands of Albert’s great-grandson Ben Burmeister. Located in the settlement of Warea, the 115-hectare farm is long and skinny and each Burmeister generation has added value to the property while continuing the passion for milking jersey cows and the Lockhart stud. “My grandfather always used to say you can’t make a farmer, they are born,” says Ben. “I suppose I was born a farmer and that’s what I enjoy. It’s not always easy but I wouldn’t do anything else. My grandfather was one of the first stud breeders to start using AI and we started doing embryo work twenty years ago when that first came out. That really pushed the genetics forward.” Normally buying semen from one overseas bull each year, Ben is currently using a Danish bull but in the past he’s used genetics from Canada. “I’m looking for high production, and fertility is massive here. We’re a low cost system on this farm and sometimes feed can be limited depending on the season. They need to be a high fertility bull so the cow gets in calf easily and can produce at the same time. I don’t like milking anything too small.” For the last six or seven years the Burmeisters have held an on-farm bull sale with 50 to 60 yearlings sold and a handful of two year olds. Buyers are mainly from the North Island looking to reduce their bobby calves and use good quality genetics. Through the AB companies, Lockhart genetics have also been exported to countries including South America, Africa and into Europe. This season Lockhart OI Joel was the top BW bull in New Zealand. Born in 2016 he now takes pride of place in LIC’s Premier Sires team. “LIC has a bull team with eight to ten Jersey bulls and they have ‘bull of the day’ so he will be on every few days. He already has a few daughters that have been proven. I’m pretty stoked to get a bull up there. I’m proud of all our cows really. We have always been forward thinking to get where we have.” Lockhart Wins Pamy is a half sister to Lockhart Ol Joel, the top BW bull in New Zealand in September The next generation of Lockhart Jersey bulls (above) will be up for sale next September. Lockhart Lt Coastal was marketed by CRV Ambreed in 2019 and 2020. NZ Farmers Livestock and Livestock Specialist, Bryan Goodin are proud to be associated with Ben Burmeister. He is a valued client, and we ĂƌĞ ĚĞůŝŐŚƚĞĚ ǁŝƚŚ ŚŝƐ ĞīŽƌƚƐ ĂŶĚ ĂĐŚŝĞǀĞŵĞŶƚƐ͘ ƚ E &ĂƌŵĞƌƐ >ŝǀĞƐƚŽĐŬ ǁĞ ĂƌĞ ĐŽŵŵŝƩĞĚ ƚŽ ǁŽƌŬŝŶŐ ǁŝƚŚ ĨĂƌŵĞƌƐ ĨŽƌ ĨĂƌŵĞƌƐ͘ Our new app provides you with access to online livestock trading and the ability to view / download your credit notes and invoices at your convenience on your mobile device. Talk with Bryan today - 027 531 8511. SEA BREEZE CONTRACTING LTD PH. 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