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No. 32 (September 1960)
– 42 –

FIELD DAY AT PANGURU

The Broadwood Young Farmers' Club on Tuesday, 22nd June 1960, in Panguru, a Maori centre on the Hokianga harbour, with the object of forming a Young Farmers' Club there.

Education, or lack of it, is felt to be one of the causes of the recent wave of residents leaving the area and their farms to live in the cities. The main aim was to provide an insight into the animal disorders that these isolated farmers can provide to their stock without attention of a Veterinary Surgeon. The Veterinary Surgeon giving demonstrations was Mr H. Harris of the Kaitaia Co-operative Dairy Company.

The demonstrations started with footrot in cows. After the loss in production from cows suffering from footrot was explained the importance of keeping the cow's feet in good condition was realised and demonstrated on how, and how far to cut.

The discussion went to bloat and udder complaints, and it was pointed out that in cases of mastitis it was at least as important to massage the udder well and frequently with hot water and soap or salt as to use the available powerful antibiotics. After a short demonstration on T.B. and T.B. testing, the Veterinary Surgeon gave a demonstration on calving difficulties using a day old calf and the pelvis of a horse, so that everybody could see the manipulations that were carried out to rectify abnormal positions. After lunch the Veterinary Surgeon conducted a post mortem on a young sheep for worms and made those present realise the tremendous number of worms present in the various places and organs. External symptoms were discussed and the drenching of calves and yearlings demonstrated. There was a short demonstration on vaccination for various diseases, the treatment of milk fever, and the throwing of cattle for treatment concluded a very successful day where a great number of officials were also present. Apart from the local farmers, also present were Messrs T. Brassey and M. Edwards, Maori Affairs farm supervisors. Mr H. Rogers, Maori Welfare Officer, Kaikohe, Hokianga Country Councillor Mr R. Proctor and the Press from Whangarei, all of whom showed great interest, but the main achievement of the day was the practical experience gained by the local farmers on treating their own stock when a Veterinary Surgeon is over 50 miles away over roads so poor that they have to be seen to be believed. This is a handicap that the Maori farmers from Panguru are well aware of and are trying to cope with as well as local difficulties that cannot yet be solved.