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Musters

How do Musters run?

Musters are held four times a year or as need be given prevailing weather conditions.
 

The Trust and Common Herdspeople organise and supervise the muster. Cattle are herded to either of the cattle yards at each end of the Common where health and NLIS protocols are checked.
 

The Common Herdspeople ride horseback at a muster. The involvement of other riders is at the discretion of the Herdspeople in consultation with the Trust. The safety and welfare of stock is the priority. Mustering is not a leisure activity.


As a courtesy and to enable safe planning of the muster any volunteers who are keen to attend are asked to either call the Herdspeople on 45 682087 or email them on crackerjacksh@gmail.com to confirm that conditions and cattle numbers allow their safe attendance.

 

Four days’ notice of an intention to attend is kindly requested. As the musters run on a Thursday this would mean a request should be made by the Sunday before the muster.

 

Commoners are to use appropriate Personal Protective Clothing and Equipment when on the Common working cattle, riding horses, at Working Bees or any other activity involving risk.
 

UHF radios will be given to those attending by the Herdspeople to enable the best and safest management of the muster.

 

Generally the day runs to this timeline:
START TIME:
8.30am – Trust & Horse Riders at Perry’s Crossing
10am – Ground Crew and spectators at Top Yards
Please bring a plate to share for Morning Tea!

The Trust & Riders will meet at Perry’s crossing at 8.30am and under the guidance and instruction of Corey and Suzi the riders will sweep the Common for cattle from Perry’s up to the top yards where they will be yarded. A couple of the Trust will check to make sure no cattle have escaped into the neighbouring properties i.e. Jimmy Franks/Brands and report back to the herds people. While the remaining Trust members will head to the top yards to oversee the preparation of the yards and morning tea set up.


It is requested by the herds people that no vehicles are parked in front of the yards while mustering is in progress. The vehicles and people are best situated over near the tie rail at the base of the hillside to the left of the yards.
 

If the Trust/Groundcrew can please ensure the gates are open ready for the arrival of the cattle into the yards and that the water troughs are filled, the salt/mineral blocks are out, the race, crush and ramp gates are all closed and that any hazards are removed. Then all the people need to vacate the yards and move away so as not to baulk the cattle as they arrive.


Once the cattle are yarded, we will break for morning tea. Again, please leave the fence line at the yards free for the horse riders to tie up their mounts. Morning tea is also a time for the cattle to settle so please enjoy a cuppa and a bite to eat, catch up with others and let the cattle ‘be’ for a while before working with them. During morning tea, the Herds will brief the riders and ground crew on ‘positioning’ during the muster.


After morning tea, the briefed riders and requested ground crew will head south to the bottom yards sweeping up the rest of the cattle to yard at the bottom yards. Again, some of theTrust/ground crew can go ahead and prepare the bottom yards, the same as the top yards, gate open, water troughs checked, salt/mineral blocks out, race, crush and ramp closed and assist in setting up/cooking lunch. Other Trust/ground crew upon request will be positioned in various places as outlined in the briefing.
 

It is requested that the least amount of vehicle’s park near the lunch shed, leave about a 3-car gap between the shed and the next parked cars towards the road for the cattle to come through. You can also park your vehicle across the road and on the high side near the ramp but do not block the ramp as the truck will need to come to load/unload cattle.
 

Once the cattle are brought into the yards, please give them time to have a drink and settle before working with them, they have had a big day too. Have some lunch and a drink and chat with friends first. Commoners that have cattle on the Common at the time of a muster must be present or send a representative in their absence to check and do any necessary work i.e., worm etc. The Trust needs to be informed prior to the muster if you cannot attend and who your representative is.


If you own cattle on the Common and cannot attend a muster and you do not have a representative arranged your cattle will not be held in the yards unless prior arrangement has been made with the Herdspeople. The cattle will need to be fed either by yourself or arrangements can be made with the Herdspeople.
 

After lunch is sorting and treatment time, this is the owners/representative’s responsibility. Help is always on hand if needed; you just need to ask. Please be considerate of other cattle owners, you cannot all be in the yards working with your cattle at the same time, so there needs to be a little patience and communication amongst yourselves to keep things relaxed and flowing smoothly so as not to stir the cattle.


Please remove all your rubbish from the yards and place in bins at the lunch shed when you are finished with your cattle.

Any cattle owners wishing to remove or add stock to the Common must notify the Herds people prior to the muster so that they can do their best to see that your cattle are brought in during the muster and kept in for transport at the end of the day.


If you are counting on your cattle to come in for a particular sale or to go to a bull etc and you do not want to risk the possibility that they may not come in at the muster, you can always arrange a private muster with the herds people to get your cattle in the week before the muster so that you can take them home and know that they will make it to the market or bull. There is a fee for a private muster with the Herds people.


More hands make light work so if you can all help pack up the lunch shed at the end of the day that would be greatly appreciated. No cattle are to be let out; the herds people will let the cattle out at the end of the day after they have done a stock take.


The Trust and Herdspeople take its responsibilities to keep all records up to date and ensure that animal health and welfare is prioritised and feels confident that Commoners will appreciate this effort and do their best to assist. Please note it is the cattle owners responsibility to enter/update their cattle movements on the NLIS database.


The Trust and the Herds people look forward to seeing you at the next muster.


All future musters will be conducted in keeping with tradition and community spirit with riders and ground crew on Thursdays as outlined above, this ensures that if any cattle are missed that the Herdspeople have time on Friday morning to muster them in and they can still make the truck for market. This also gives the cattle transporters more time to move the cattle to market and/or other properties. The cattle also will be more settled for transport thus ensuring a good weight for sale. The cattle will be fed on the Thursday night after the muster and Friday morning. Owners of any cattle staying longer in the yards need to make arrangements to feed them.

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