Mt Linton Station genetics manager Hamish Bielski is
leaving to move into an equity partnership. Photo from
Southern Rural Life files.
After seven years, Mt Linton Station genetics manager
Hamish Bielski is walking off the farm feeling he has achieved
his goal of breeding low-input, high-output sheep.
Mr Bielski and his wife Amy have moved to an equity
partnership on a 300ha property near Clydevale, in South
He said he was sad to say goodbye to the place, especially
when it was starting to see the rewards of an extensive
breeding programme involving Texels and Romneys.
''The most successful part of my job was the start of the new
maternal breeding programme, which basically held together
our top Texels. We also bought Romneys and were heading to
stabilise that over the last seven years, coupled with buying
750 of the Tan Bar Romney ewes in 2012.
''In my last two years at the station, I feel as though we
are just starting to gain traction and starting to get there.
It's taken six years to build the foundation.
''It's almost a bit of a shame to go at a time when we are in
a sense starting to see rewards coming through, but it's well
set up to keep the progress going.''
Working at Mt Linton station was the best decision he and Amy
could have made for their careers, despite his having been
sick of genetics when he first started there, after working
at a composite breeding outfit for a year, Mr Bielski said.
''Amy and I had just had a baby girl and I needed a job. It
wasn't really the genetics that excited me, more the
challenge of being on a big station and having new
opportunities. It just happened to be that the genetics was
my job title.
''I'm really stoked with the experience I got there. It's one
of the best moves that Amy and I have done in our careers,
with what we have learnt. The environment that we are in has
been great, and there's been plenty of challenges too - there
always is when you're dealing with a lot of people. It's been
very stimulating. We're sad to leave really.''
And while he would be busy with the equity farming business,
he would continue in the genetics area, operating a
consultancy on the side.
There was huge potential in the genetics side of sheep
farming, as farmers could ensure they got the best return
from their sheep with as little input as possible, Mr Bielski
''The great thing about genetics is that you actually never
achieve any of your goals - they're constantly moving every
year, every mating period, every lambing season.
''You are always looking forward to seeing how much progress
you are making - it's very rewarding.''
The new genetics manager at Mt Linton Station will be Dave
Warburton, who is a vet from Hunterville and will start in
- by Leeana Tamati