Ayrshires pet pastime in a busy life

Kelly Bavin, of Tussock Creek, is the new Dairy Women’s Network regional leader for southern...
Kelly Bavin, of Tussock Creek, is the new Dairy Women’s Network regional leader for southern Southland.PHOTO: BROOKLYNN BAVIN
Kelly Bavin loves her cows.

More specifically, the Dairy Women’s Network regional leader for southern Southland has a passion for Ayrshires.

Mrs Bavin and husband Jono have the Highrise Ayrshire stud and Mrs Bavin likes them so much she has been breeding them for about six years.

The couple are 50/50 sharemilkers for Blair and Rachel Evans and run 500 cows on a 176ha milking platform at Tussock Creek in Southland, with a production target of 230,000kgMS.

She has 12 registered Ayrshire cows running with the main herd.

"I keep all the heifers and would like to improve on that number. I just like them, as they are something different."

She works alongside Mr Bavin on the farm as well as being responsible for calf rearing, looking after 140 calves this year.

The couple have two children, Jacob (11) and Brooklynn (14), who may become a dairy farmer.

"Although that is much of an unknown. We will support them if that is what they want to do."

Mrs Bavin was asked to become a regional leader for southern Southland earlier this year.

"A couple of friends were doing it for DWN and they roped me into it. I am quite excited about it, getting to meet new people."

The network provides leadership training for the role.

Covid-19 has limited her involvement in workshops or meetings, although that is starting to change.

She recently helped at Nait and calving workshops.

"As a regional leader I am also a port of call for anybody wanting to talk to someone about the dairy industry or the network.

"The network also provides friendship and support and we are always looking for new members."

Mrs and Mrs Bavin were named the 2015 Southland/Otago Sharemilker and Equity Farmer of the Year as well as winning several merit awards.

Originally from a sheep and beef background, she met Mr Bavin while studying dairy farming at Telford.

From there they started working on a dairy farm on the Taieri in 2006 before moving to a lower-order position in Tapanui.

They progressed to the sharemilking job at Tussock Creek in 2011, where they have been ever since.

Mrs Bavin also sits on the Southland TBfree committee.


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