South Otago couple Darrell and Julie Wendelgeist must be
doing something right.
The dairy farmers, who own a 175 hectare farm with 450 cows,
have the best rising 1-year-old heifers in the South Island,
after winning the Royal A&P Society's South Island dairy
on-farm heifer competition.
While the Wendelgeists usually entered the regional
competition every year, this was the first time they had
achieved so well, Mrs Wendelgeist said.
''I guess it means we are probably doing something right. As
a calf rearer, you sort of every year look at your calves and
think, `can I do better?' Something must be working, and it's
that old adage of 'if it's not broken, don't fix it'.''
The couple ensured their focus was on genetics of the animals
and keeping calves well-fed, with the help of automatic calf
''The calves don't go out of the shed until they are 100kg
and then we continue feeding them grain until they are 6
''They need food to grow and if you look after them, they'll
look after you.''
They have just started showing their calves at A&P shows
this year, winning the South Otago A&P Society's calf
class on their first showing.
''My son really got into it when we were at the show - it's
''It's nice seeing your animals out there with everyone
''It's great to talk to like-minded people at the shows and
listen to other people's opinions on things.''
- by Leeana Tamati