Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Ngunis in the Prince Albert Valley

- John Southern -

Auctions are dangerous places. Before I knew it, I had purchased the second Nguni cow on sale and by the end a small herd - by my standards anyway. Now, all eleven, including a bull, are at Kredouw Farm at the end of the Prince Albert Valley and they appear to be happy there. Perhaps you will be able to see them as you fly by on your way to Oudtshoorn.

Ngunis are an ancient African cattle breed making them hardy and adaptable. They calve easily in the openare protective of their calves. They are low intensity feeders able to feeda variety of landscapes; in other words,"low maintenance cattle".

A study by the University of Fort Hare found that Ngunis have a better growth performance than other breeds under limited grazing conditions. According to the study, they have a capacity to retain nutritionally-related metabolites in blood during difficult times. The cattle have a high resistance to ticks, tick-borne diseases, and internal parasites. They are docile and less stressed than other breeds. The finding also states that Nguni meat has a better flavour, equal to exotic breeds.

There is an Nguni Breeders Association and all Nguni cattle and their breeders are required to be registered through the South AfricanBook. Records need to be kept and regular inspections applied for.

There are Nguni cattle clubsover South Africa, which hold regular auctions. I purchased my Ngunis in Grahamstown where six breeders from the Eastern Cape Nguni Club put upof their cattle for sale .They claim that they breed tough cattle in the area from the rugged sour veldt of the Amatola Mountains to the coastal plains.

Please contact us on 023 5411 101 or 072 4032651 should you wish to come and see the herd.

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