Good day to all of you our readers, clients and friends from all of us here at RH RANCHING this lovely hot and windy last day of August 2018. We are blessed to report that we had a windy August and that should herald a good rainy season.
We had three cold fronts reach us this month with resulting good snow falls on a lot of the mountains in the Western Cape, Eastern Cape as well as in KZN and the southern regions of the Northern Cape. These fronts delivered 29mm of rain to us, which was greatly appreciated and has caused the grass to green up and start to come away. In another two to three weeks’ time we will have our stock on green grass!
A huge Hi! To all of our clients and friends as well as to those of you who are reading one of our News Letters for the very first time. We hope that you not only enjoy reading this our latest News Letter but enjoy visiting our website. Should you have any questions, suggestions or ideas regarding our website or our operation RH Ranching as a whole we would love to hear from you?
Once again Caleb, Fana and myself along with six hounds, the terrier “Spring” and Caleb’s young AfriCanis pup “Bhubesi” headed up to the Drakensberg mountains where the three provinces of the Freestate, Mpumalanga and Kwa-Zulu Natal meet in order to conduct a Caracal and Serval hunt for one of my good friends Kotie Herholdt of Shikra Safari’s Polish clients. We had a lovely five days together with lots of leg numbing steep climbs as we pursued our quarry. The client and his wife left a very happy couple and have re-booked another safari in October 2018; way to go Kotie.
These hunts where I am accompanied by our special son Caleb are excellent times and opportunities of growth for Caleb’s leadership abilities and he is proving to be an absolute blessing in camp as well as in the hunting Field.
Good day every one, I trust that all of you that will read this month's newsletter are fit and well and that this newsletter will not only let you know what is up in our lives but that you will get something of value out of this newsletter. Enjoy the read!
Well the winter has arrived with us already having experiencing several good cold fronts. Now in South Africa with the arrival of the cold weather arrives the hunting season. Our second youngest son Falcon kicked this year's season off with a nice bow hunted Springbuck ram in the Queenstown area of the Eastern Cape on the property of an old friend of ours, whilst hunting with an old Cedara friend of his Tommy Jauffret of Mauritius.
Falcon and His Springbuck
Falcon and Tommy with Tommy's Eastern Cape Kudu
Good day every one, all of us here at RH Ranching trust that this month's News Letter finds you guys all fit and well! The Lord has been good to us and we are all in good health.
This month no rain / precipitation fell on any of the ground that we run our operation on, this is not that all unusual for June. Historically we can expect some rain in the month of July. This will be really good for the dry land oats that has been planted in order to give our in foal mares (which are all due to foal at the end of September 2018) a good bite of green feed or the last month of pregnancy. This has been done in order to ensure strong healthy foals at birth and for the mares to have a good strong supply of milk to kick the foals off on (excuse the pun).
Over all we have had a very good but busy month, with the 2018 Pietermaritzburg Royal Show ending and all the catch up work there after plus our youngest son Caleb, myself, Fana (the huntsman) and five hounds plus a terrier called Spring and Caleb's AfriCanis pup Bhubesi headed to Mpumalanga to follow up on a wounded stock killing Leopard. The cat had a very light flesh wound to its right lower front leg from a badly placed shot.
It happened to be an on heat female that was traveling in the company of a big tom. The tom caught and killed a big Common Reedbuck doe or them which they completely devoured bar the skin, paunch, hooves and skull. So we made the decision to pull the hounds off the trail and let her live and hopefully turn to eating duikers etc again.
Below is a photo from a few years ago of another Leopard tom that our eldest son Jesse, myself and our hounds Lynx, Bobcat and Loafer were involved in the recovery of.
A whole year has flown past yet again! The year 2017 was a trying year for a great many people around the world with numerous armed conflicts continuing unabated and many more flaring up, an increase in the number and ferocity of natural disasters all around the globe and a great deal of instability in many financial sectors as well as a rise in criminal activity worldwide. These events have also led to a worldwide increase in the number of refugees of one sort or another. These factors all lead to stress in us as human beings as well in the production of food for the earths growing population.
Well the school and Varsity holidays are upon us and it has been such a blessing for Robyn and I to have all of our children and our grandson Damon coming and going throughout the month. The house has been a veritable railway station!
Big congratulations are due to our youngest daughter Ashleigh on doing so well in Grade 11 and now heading into her final year of school. Then we are as equally proud of Seth and Falcon who have just joined their oldest brother Jesse and me as becoming old Cedarian boys after completing their Diplomas in Agriculture at Cedara College of Agriculture.
Now I see only two ways we as farmers can cope with the stress and uncertainty created by the above factors and they are in order of importance –
- That we turn from being self-centred and confess our sins before the one and only name that can save us and that is the name of the Lord of lords and King of kings, Jesus Christ and invite Him into our hearts and ask Him to be the Lord and Saviour of our lives. By being God centred we can then rely on Him to lead us through these perilous times and not have to rely on ourselves.
- We need to adjust our farming practices to farm with nature and not against nature. By this I mean that we need to learn to adapt to the changing climatic conditions as well as the ever increasing cost of agricultural inputs; by farming with the type of livestock and production systems that allow us to make the best possible profit whilst protecting our farms / ranches resources in a sustainable way for the generations to come.
Fairly good rains have fallen across the summer rainfall regions and Cape Town was even blessed with some rain this month, for this we thank our lord Jesus. More follow up rains are needed as is some decent heat units in order to get the growth rates up especially for the stockmen who farm in the cold mountainous regions as early frosts are the norm and not the exception.
Our rainfall for the raining season 01/09/2017 to 31/08/2018 is as follows:-
September 2017 -- 21.0 mm
October 2017 -- 88.0 mm
November 2017 -- 101.0 mm
December 2017 -- 89.0 mm
Total for 2017/18 to date 290.0 mm