Page:Statesman's Year-Book 1899 American Edition.djvu/629

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This page needs to be proofread.


DEFENCE — PRODUCTION AND INDUSTRY

281

Defence.

The first consideration has been to ])rovide sufficient means of protection for the principal ports of the colony. The approaches thereto are defended by batteries of heavy ordnance, supplemented by torpedo-boats and submarine mines.

The Volunteer force has a strength of 7,694 of all ranks. There is be- sides a permanent militia, consisting of an artillery branch of 195 officers and men. Torpedo branch 73. The colony has 4 small torpedo boats. The police force numbers 530, It was found by the census that in April 1896 the total number of males liable to be called out for service in the militia was in round numl)ers 130,000, consisting of all males between seventeen and forty years, with the unmarried between forty and tifty-tive years, less exemptions, numbering about 18,000.

Production and Industry. I. Agriculture.

It is estimated that two-thirds of the surface of New Zealand is suitable for agriculture and grazing. Of the total area, sixty-seven millions of acres, about 20,000,000 acres are still under forest, and nine millions are barren mountain tops, lakes, and worthless country. The total area under crop including 9,866,549 acres in sown grasses and 60,792 acres })roken up but not under crop) in 1898 was 11,444,563 acres. Of thirty-four millions oi acres of Crown lands remaining for disposal, about! fifteen millions are open grass or fern country and ten millions forest.

The rural lands of the colony can be bought from the Crown for cash. They can also be held on ' lease ' in perpetuity (999 years), ' occupation with right of purchase ' (with restriction of area) or in some parts on pastoral leases. The largest freehold estates are held in the Middle Island. The total extent of occupied holdings over one acre in 1898 was returned by the Department of Agi'iculture at 33,980,479 acres, in holdings of various sizes, as shown in the following table, which deals with all the occupied land, in- cluding Crown pastoral leases : —

Sizes of Holdiugs

Number

of Holdings

Acres

Over 1 acre to 10 acres inclusive 10 ,. 50 „ 50 „ 100 100 „ 200 „ 200 ,, 320 „ ,, 320 „ 640 ,, „ 640 ,, 1,000 ,, „ 1,000 „ 5,000 „ 5,000 ,, 10,000 „ 10,000 „ 20,000 „ 20,000 „ 50,000 Ujiwards of 50,000 acres

Total

17,133

11,182

7,068

9,192

5,481

5,436

1,956

2,454

345

246

164

102

68,929 317,821 5.58,798 1,396,699 1,431,406 2,492,275 1,611,267 5,165,119 2,416,149 3,501,576 5,251,819 9,769,121

60,759

33,980,479