New to Dunedin and to Lifestyle blocks

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1 year 3 months ago #554393 by Newbie54
Hi,
My husband and I escaped Auckland about 18 months ago for Dunedin. We have now purchased a 2 ha block ( about 50% gorse!) and will be living completely off the grid.
Currently our only animals are a German Shepherd, two cats and wild rabbits :)
Hoping to contact people and get advice as we are hoping to get a few sheep shortly who hopefully will make a dent in some of the weeds.

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1 year 3 months ago #554396 by LongRidge
Welcome to the Good Life :-)
Sheep do not do well on weeds and long grass. The weeds are there because the chemicals in the soil are in the wrong proportions for good pasture and are more correct for what is there. Plants (and every living thing) need chemicals to live and thrive, be the chemicals natural or "artificial". Plants need simpler chemicals than animals. Gorse is an indication that the soil is low in sulphate and nitrate, and a bit low in phosphate.
Goats will do much better than sheep, but they need good shelter, and are much more fragile health-wise than sheep.
What do you want the sheep for? After 30 years we no longer do lambing because it is so traumatic and stressful, so our 30 sheep are pets that will make us a fortune from their wool. One of us does not like killing and eating her pets, so they have not gone overseas yet.
Before the sheep that you buy get off the transporter, ensure they have been drenched against worms.

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1 year 3 months ago #554398 by Newbie54
Thanks for the reply they are not weeds I probably should have been clearer the paddocks are just overgrown with grass and I think buttercup.the last owner had horses in them which we have been told is why they are patchy.we do not want to breed the sheep or kill them we just want them to eat the grass.were looking at goats also but the fencing is a bit low I think for them.

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1 year 3 months ago #554402 by tonybaker
take it east there! Your best bet is to befriend a neighbour who has a few cows and get them to chew down the "weeds" (the cows, not the neighbours!) Weeds are perfectly nutritious for some animals, and you will find that they know what to eat and what to leave alone, unless they are near to starving of course.
My advice would be to get some Dorper or Wiltshire sheep, they thrive on rougher pasture. For 2 hectaresand for longer term grazing I would get two ewes and a ram, and don't worry about leaving the ram in all year round, I have been doing this for 30 years and have not had any issues. Don't let any horses or llamas come back. Goats are a nightmare unless you really know what you are doing.
Don't overthink it, just make sure the boundary fences are good, preferably sheep netting, and that you have a good water supply.
Plant some tree lucerne for shelter and feed and you will be right.

5 acres, Ferguson 35X and implements, Hanmay pto shredder, BMW Z3, Countax ride on mower, chooks, Dorper and Wiltshire sheep. Bosky wood burning central heating stove and radiators. Retro caravan. Growing our own food and preserving it. Small vineyard, crap wine. :)

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1 year 3 months ago #554417 by StephHarmon

tonybaker wrote: take it east there! Your best bet is to befriend a neighbour who has a few cows and get them to chew down the "weeds" (the cows, not the neighbours!) Weeds are perfectly nutritious for some animals, and you will find that they know what to eat and what to leave alone, unless they are near to starving of course.
My advice would be to get some Dorper or Wiltshire sheep, they thrive on rougher pasture. For 2 hectaresand for longer term grazing I would get two ewes and a ram, and don't worry about leaving the ram in all year round, I have been doing this for 30 years and have not had any issues. Don't let any horses or llamas come back. Goats are a nightmare unless you really know what you are doing.
Don't overthink it, just make sure the boundary fences are good, preferably sheep netting, and that you have a good water supply.
Plant some tree lucerne for shelter and feed and you will be right.

I agree, neighbor's cows would be a great start. Gradually add animals in to help them though.

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