CANTERBURY AGRICULTURAL & PASTORAL ASSOCIATION.
Annual Show. It would be impossible for us, nor is it necessary, to do full justice to the greatest agricultural show held in the colony, and all that is required of us is simply to notice in a cursory way its leading features. Let us thou start by saying that the Christchurch show this year is a complete refutation of the statement that the recent depression has in any way told adversely upon the agricultural energy of the colony, 01even in the slightest injured the hopes of the farmers, or shaken their confidence in the future of the laud they have made their home. The number of exhibits at the Christchurch Show has been steadily on the increase year after year, and this year we find they have risen to 1309, as against 1130 last year ; 1023 in 1878 ; and 581 in 1871. During the past ten years, only 1874 shows a slight decrease on the exhibits of any of its predecessors, and this decrease has been amply recruited in the years that have followed. Without stopping to speak much of the large number of people who attended the Show, a crowd which seems ever to increase as the Show annually recurs, and to be madoiip more and more of an ever-increasing number of visitors from all parts of the colony, and from sister colonies, we pass on to look at the chief feature of interest to the New Zealand farmer—the SHEEP. The merinos were disappointing—not because of any want of quality, but because of their number, and it has to bo said of them that the Timaru Show brought,out a better display. There are 'many reasons to he assignedifor the shortness, the chief being that other breeds are more profitable to the farmers in the districts within easy distance of Christchurch, while, the northern runs, towards Nelson and Marlborough, are prevented by the difficulty of transit from putting in representatives. It does not follow, however, that the merino is neglected ; in fact it is not neglected, but steady progress towards lai’gely increased flocks of merinos is being made. Another reason why fewer merinos, and in fact, sheep of other breeds, were shown this year than in its predecessor was that some of the men whose breasts cannot hold all the medals, and whose parlor tables fail to find accommodation for all the honors won in competitions of this kind, have this year backed out of the catalogue to give less known men a chance for honors. They made known their intention of withdrawing, and as a result, a greater number of humbler competitors entered the field. In merinos Messrs. Rhodes, Chapman, Pearson, Mallock, and Lane were the leading and most successful exhibitors, and their sheep left nothing to be desired, whether fox form or fleece. English Leicestcrs also showed a decrease slightly, but not in quality nor in condition. Mr. Threlkplcl was as usual in the front, with two lint rams above eighteen months, one gaining first and the other second honors. They were fine well-built animals, and wel fleeced. Mesrs. Wilkin and Carter, whou: we may claim as Ashburton representatives, showed two fine animals in this class, but did not moot the kindly eye oi the judges, while the Wcstorfield exhibit was too late in arrival to have its merits adjudicated upon. The same happenoc with the Westerfield rams under eighteei: months, in which class Mr. John Grigt showed to advantage, though he gained nc prize. In the owes above eighteen mouths second and third honors wen to Longbeach, the first prize being taken by Mr. Threlkeld, while Messrs, Wilkin anil Carter’s were favorably noticed, and we conclude that being somewhat small they failed to win tin judges’ favor.. The Lincolnshire entries were a fine display, so were the Bordei Leicester's, many splendid animals being exhibited ; but it is not until the Romney Marshes are visited, that we again fine local men corning to tire top. This wsi in Class 35 where we find Messrs. Wilkir , and Carter first and second with five ewe; - over 18 months, and also gaining the silver medal for the best ewe of any age. L Downs, the two prizes went to Longhead for superior rams. The fat sheep yieldec a first prize to Messrs. Wilkin and Carter for a pen of two lambs for butchers’ pur , poses, out of two entries. The CATTLE showed no falling oft, and still maintained Canterbury’s position. Unfortunately the quarantine arrangements prevented the exhibition of several fine cattle from twe Victorian breeders, which many woulc have liked to look at, and it was a pity that they could not .have been shown Still,, it is perhaps better that the quaran tine regulations should be respected, anc kept in their entirety so that should : time come when danger threatens by tin importation of infected stock, no pie: whatever can be set up for the introduc , tlOirotdi.icnco. Still, Vii-Unria WilS- I’cpi'e sen ted, and Messrs. Robertson Bros showed a grand roan shorthorn, the nearcs possible approach to perfection. Hi got the prize for the best bull of any ago and was certainly a credit to his breeders, Oxford, Duke of Cambridge, was followec by Mr. P H. Russell’s Hastings, ai > animal well known at the Show, and bu little inferior to the first prize bull i. Stafford, Mr. James Gow’s popular bull i got. thb third place. The other bullsthere were eleven in all—were fine short : horn specimens, and creditable to theii , exhibitors ; and amongst them were Mr John Grigg’s Don Carlos, which we ox 1 pected to have seen placed, even with tin fine animals that were shown, and we con foss to some disappointment in seeing hin loft out of the award list, but even tin judges could not but admire his splendic proportions. The Longbeach herd, how ever, got a place in the third class, fo bulls calved after June 30, 1878, when ; high-class bull, Cephas, ran Mr. Men love’s Christum Knight very closely fo , first honors. In Class 4, bulls ealvee since June 30, 3879, there were no les 1 than eighteen entries, the prize-winner being Mr. Grigg’s Orphan (first), ai animal of which we shall yet hear, for In '• promises well ; also his First Lord, : 1 .beautiful young bull (second) : and Mr 1 Kclland’s Prince, also a good anima (third). Victor, another exhibit by Mr - Grigg, was commended. We have no : space to note more than Mr. Grigg’; • Lord Napier, which took first honor! 1 in the next class, and Mr. Monlove’; . Christmas Knight, which gained tin ■ silver medal as best bull of any age Taking the cows all round they were a; superior a show as could have well beet ■ wished. They brought out the foremos , men in the province, and many animali ! shown would Imp taken a high place ii ( the best Old Country competitions. W< would gladly dwell, did time and spaci • permit, on the many meritorious cows one . heifers that were "shown, and which wi ! delighted to look upon and admire, and i would give us pleasure indeed to go inti [ ample details of the points of excellenci that were shown. But we must conten ourselves with a simple congratulation o ' the colony on the progress which she every \ year gives fresh evidence of making ir ; stock breeding, and expressing the satis i faction that we feel, and every colonis ! must feel, on seeing not only a higl : position maintained, but a higher om 1 aimed after that must surely be gained f Now that mutton and beef are to be ir : tho near future a greater source of wealtl ■ to this colony than they have been in tin r past, the splendid cows that were showr ‘ at Christchurch have a deeper.,and ; !. keener interest to all, and all who say them must have looked upon them in this : connection with , unqualified pleasure. Come we now to th§
HORSES DRAUGHT. Although the entries in this class were ( less than last .year, the exhibits were of t the usual excellent quality. The absence ; of many animals entered by southern ‘ breeders was much regretted. In the open class for draught entires Mr. M‘Kel- 1 lar secured first honor.? with Crown Prince, ■ beating Victim, Boag’s Crown Prince, Young Clyde, and Lord Bcaconsfield, Sir , Colin Campbell, and Prince of Wales. ( Mr. Grigg’s entry (Lord Bcaconsfield), is fast furnishing into a nice horse, and wo | expect to see him high up in the prize list next year. Victor and Crown Prince secured second and third honors respectively. The three-year-old draught entires were represented by Lord Raglan, General, and a neat colt, the property of Sir Cracroft Wilson, the two former being' exceptionally good, but the latter is still a little coarse. "Mr. Boag’s Avon Chief was awarded first in two-year-old colts, beating eight others, Royal Prince and Glasgow Geordie securing second and third honors. The winner shows immense substance, and will be hoard of in older competitions. Mr. John Grigg’s exhibits in this class (three) were all promising youngsters, but not quite so finished and compact as the now renowned Fondaltown breeders’ exhibits. Mr. Boag scored another win in draught mares with his old farorite Grace Dari in" Maggie Lauder coining second. In thrce-year’-old fillies, Flora McDonald placed another first to Mir. Boag s credit, this same animal securing the Association’s piece of plate for the best mare of any age on the ground, an honor she well deserved. The two-year-old fillies were an exceptionally nice lot, and the prize winners were all animals of very high class. Messrs. Quinn, Holmes, and Boag secured thothreeawards. Seven yearling coltsfaced the judges, and Mr. Holmes secured first prize with a well developed son of Young Banker. We were glad to notice an exhibit of Mr. 6. G. Stead’s in this class, which secured third prize. BLOOD STOCK. In the class for entires, there were three entries, Leolinns, Daniel O Rourke, and Guy Fawkes, the first named again securing the foremost position, although hardly pressed by the little chestnut, .who wo think should have beaten Mr. Stead’s horse. Old Guy Fawkes was highly commended. Amongst the three-year-olds, Commodore, by old Admiral won, and a Traducer colt Harkaway was placed second. Class 20 (thoroughbred brood mares)
was graced by Mr. G. G. Steads’ three fashionable matrons, Petrolense, Anvhia, and L’Orient. Tliey were all greatly admired, and will doubtless produce a whole stud of winners for their plucky owner. Three yearling fillies made up Class 23, and a nice one from old Revoke by Anteros taking first honors, and Mr. Stead’s fillies from Gossip and L’Orient following. The evergreen Nobleman was the only ca.riage entire exhibited, but his well known merit secured him the highest award. Mr. Norman’s Jessie, and Mr. Overton’s Zulu secured first and second in the class for carriage mares or geldings. Sir Cracroft Wilson exhibited a very nice pair of carriage horses, to which a first prize was awarded. They are both by Nobleman, and probably the best pair in the colony.
Admiral added to his long list of victories by winning easily from his only opponent, Mr. Williams’Lord of the Vale. Mr. John’s mare was placed before Mr. Hopkins’s exhibit in the next class, but the judges’opinion was not unanimously endorsed. Mr. J. T. Ford secured first
in roadsters, with a very nice gelding by Sputter the How. As this sire was located in Ashburton for some time we hope to see a number of his progeny turning out equal to Mr. Fords exhibit. Prince Charming was first in pony entires, with King of the Ring, Allspice, and two others behind him. Mr. P. Cunningham’s Thetland pony marc, about the size of a well grown Newfoundland dog, won in her class. There were 13 entries in the class for boys’ ponies, and Mr. Monrow’s Gipsy was placed' first, beating a lot of sterling good ones, including ponies from Messrs. Acland, Boag, Back, Larnach, and Matson. Mr. Hugh Walker’s Claret won the hunter's first ; Mr. Kimbell being second with Rheinfals; und Mr. Ford’s Traveller getting a highly commended. Amy won the leaping match, with Prince second ; this event attracting the usual amount of popular attention.
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