TeenAg skills day in Feilding attracts large turnout

Posted by on 19 August 2019 | Comments

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Feilding has hosted an event testing the agricultural skills of high school students from across the lower North Island.

Almost 130 teenagers from New Plymouth, Masterton, Palmerston North and Feilding took part in the TeenAg competition at the dairy farm owned by Feilding High School last Friday.

Students tackled a range of modules including fencing, tractor and quad bike safety, working dog health, wool handling and equipment identification.

They also had to correctly identify real animal organs, such as a liver, kidneys and heart.

“Our aim is to try and keep the event as practical, engaging and as hands-on as possible,” said Feilding High School teacher Kain Nixon.

The event was organised by a senior leadership group of the school’s TeenAg club, which is the largest in New Zealand.

It’s designed to encourage students to develop their theoretical and practical agricultural skills.

“Agri-sports is a great way to get students excited about the career opportunities in the agri-food sector, both on and off the farm,” said Kain.

Students from Spotswood College, Feilding High School, Palmerston North Boys’ High School and Rathkeale College competed in teams of four.

It gave those keen to compete in next year’s FMG Junior Young Farmer of the Year regional finals a chance to hone their skills.

“It’s been a huge help. It’s made me realise I need to improve my knowledge of wool and fibre and work on my fencing skills,” said Feilding High School student Scott Harrigan.

“I’ve learned a fair bit about grains, seeds and cropping as a result of the competition.”

Scott was part of the winning team which won the senior division for the second year in a row.

His teammates were Lachie Crafar, Josh Devane and Oliver Boerjan.

“We’re pretty happy and excited to have won the event again. We’re all good mates and we work well together,” said Scott.

Eddie Harris, Hamish Shaw, Alex Wyeth and Jock Burke from Rathkeale College took out the junior division of the competition. 

The event at Feilding High School wouldn’t have been possible without the support of local businesses that ran the modules.

They were H&T Agronomics, Carrfields, TRC Tractors, City Honda, Landbased Training, David Skiffington from Ceres Agri Know How, Primary ITO, DeLaval, Beef + Lamb New Zealand, Totally Vets Feilding and Year 12 students Jack Duffy and Fraser Carroll.