Farmers’ Diaries: Tanki Mokwena

African Farming found out what seven farmers are currently doing on their farms.

CATTLE: Tanki Mokwena, Brits, North West

I head the Obaro beef farmer development programme, which trains and supports 200 smallholder beef farmers in North West, Limpopo and parts of Mpumalanga.

Summer calving has already started and will continue until March. We’re doing external-parasite control of the early calves. We use Taktic or Bayticol for everything from lice to ticks.

We also control internal parasites, especially milk tapeworm and roundworm, with Prodose Blue or Eradiworm + Tape. These prevent any worms’ eggs that might be present in the animal from hatching.

We also provide vitamins, especially vitamins A and E, and trace minerals by giving the calves either Bovimin, Pro-Vit A or Multimin. These help with growth as well as strengthening their immune systems. The older calves are being dehorned. We also give the four- to fivemonth-old heifers Brucella S19, and the young bull calves headed for the feedlot or to be sold as feedlot weaners are given growth hormones.

To help maintain optimal production and reproduction on the green pastures, we give the rest of the herd phosphate licks – P6, Voermol Phosphate Block or Molatek Foslick.

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