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Sheep returns for South Canterbury, New Zealand in 1884 and 1885

The modern 'Appendices' (AJHR), annual reports of government department presented to Parliament, do not have the vast amount of genealogical material which is in the 19th century version. The 'Return of sheepowners' appeared in the Appendices from about the 1878 to the 1920s. The sheepowners are listed alphabetically within their counties. 

Wanganui Chronicle, 20 June 1902, Page 7
Is it an advantage to the husbandman to breed out the horns of our cattle and merino sheep? Formerly a strong objection was raised against breeding cattle that "lacked the glory of the brow," but practical cattle farmers and dairymen, who keep cattle for profit, and not as a fashion, are now greatly in favour of animals that are polled or have been dehorned. There is no- occasion at the present day to advocate breeding out the horns of our dairy cows and fattening steers, the mischief "wrought by the horns where cattle are brought close together as at feeding stations, in railway tracks, and in the milking yards, is too pronounced to render that necessary. There is a strong prejudice among some sheep farmers in favour of retaining the merino ram's horns. Why, I have never been able to ascertain. The ram's horns are not handsome, they are a source of great danger when rams fight; they are a severe drain on the young ram's constitution at a critical time of his existence, and to crown all, they are not of any commercial benefit. I have observed for many years past that merino rams that are born polled almost invariably develop a better frame than is the case with the horned merino rams of the same age in the same flock. The late Mr A. Stewart, an able expert in merino sheep, and a close observer, told me that the result of his experience tallied with mine. I know that the hornless merino rams that have come under my notice in Australia were regarded by their owners as excellent sires. It is a noteworthy fact that in the polled races of cattle there is no loss of virility, and such cattle have been bred for very many generations. Indeed, in courage and fighting qualities the polled bulls and oxen are fully on a par with the homed ones. While quite ready to fight if necessary, the polled cattle are said to be of a much more pacific disposition than homed cattle.

Pleasant Point lambs 19 August 2011, by M.T. 

South Canterbury NZGenWeb Project