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Errymaple holds agricultural learning trip

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Errymaple holds agricultural learning trip


Ellen Mlambo

MASVINGO-Errymaple International, a private school in Zvishavane, is taking its students on practical education trips. 
Some 77 agriculture students recently toured Rockwood Farm in Masvingo, where they learnt artificial insemination, different breeds of cattle and record keeping in cattle ranching.
The Agriculture Head of Department (HoD), Edmore Mafa, coordinated the trip. Three teachers, Vongai Mbata, Danmore Dube and Precious Musakatiza accompanied the students.
Rockwood Farm is under Masvingo Bull Breeders Private Limited Company, owned by Tokkie van der Merwe, popularly known as Tokkie. He is a beef master and Brahman breeder.
Mafa said the trip was vital to students and staff as animal production is part of their syllabus. He said they chose to visit the farm as Tokkie is well-known for breeding good cattle.
“The agriculture educational trip was important as students got lessons on cross and in breeding and life skills on artificial insemination. They also learnt about local and exotic breeds and got business aspects of cattle ranching, record keeping on bulls and cows rearing. They were also educated on the values of the different categories of animals,” said Mafa. 
Tokkie applauded the school for a practical approach to education. He also said artificial insemination enables farmers to access top genetics from sires that would be too costly to purchase as stock bulls. 
Rockwood Farm manager Edmond Chadiwa said the trip was an opportunity to teach young people proper cattle ranching. 
Fivet resident veterinarian Dr Betty Muyambo also educated the pupils on artificial insemination and different synchronization methods such as injection, pregnancy diagnosis and controlled breeding.
Errymaple is a Cambridge International Examinations Associate School, situated about four kilometres outside Zvishavane CBD along Masvingo Road. It has an enrollment of 200 students and 22 teachers.

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