Grazier Support 2019 | Landholders Driving Change

BBB suite of

opportunities

THE LDC team has put together a suite of training opportunities that could be useful for graziers in the BBB.

Click HERE for more information.

If you’re interested in a particular area of training and it doesn’t appear here, please contact the Bowen-based LDC team.

Big year of training on offer from the LDC

As part of an integrated program the LDC team in conjunction with project partners RCS and DAF is delivering a series of workshops and supported activities throughout 2019.

These will be aimed at improving the amount and quality of information readily available to landholders; our intent is that by providing this data to producers we can increase the quality of decisions being made on-ground and, in turn, help properties increase farm productivity and profit while also improving the environment.

This program kicks off with a Taking Stock – Managing Pastures and Productivity day to be held on 21 March at Weetalaba Campdraft Grounds.

This is a free event to all producers and will host speakers from RCS, DAF and industry. Attendees will hear about “what to measure, and why” from forage production to animal performance, ways to boost your pastures performance (new varieties and rejuvenation techniques) and what this all means for the bottom line.

Launched on the day will also be an opportunity for any producers within the BBB Catchment to undertake:

  • Forage Budgeting – Measure the feed supply for the coming dry. The LDC team and partners will undertake property or paddock assessments.
  • Photo Monitoring Sites – Record and monitor visual changes. The LDC team and partners will install sites and record this data.
  • Assessing pasture diet quality with Faecel Near Infrared Spectroscopy (NIRS) testing
  • Soils testing and analysis – have a professional test and provide a detailed soils analysis for your paddock or property.

These options are available free of charge. We do encourage properties to be actively involved in the data collection process. Once collected, all information will be presented back exclusively to the landholder only.

Data will not be shared unless approval to do so is given by landholders.

In mid-May, the focus will turn to Herd Performance and Productivity.

Producers will be encouraged to attend workshops and industry training days focused on breeder efficiency, herd modelling, selling strategies and much more.

As part of this, the LDC team will offer producers within the BBB catchment a unique opportunity:

  • Catchment-wide preg-testing. What better option than to measure your breeding herd’s performance?  Conducted by recognised practitioners any property within the BBB will be encouraged to participate. The first 500 cows will be free of charge.

Conditions will apply and participants will also be required to undertake a Herd Management Plan with an approved consultant of their choosing.

By Senior Grazing Support Officer Brendan Smith

BBB Grazier Support – Integrated delivery for 2019

Supporting a culture of stewardship that enables land managers to be effective custodians of the land

PROPERTY

PLANNING

Feb – Dec

Mapping workshops and one-one-one training continues to roll out across the BBB (eg Phoenix and Farm 4D).

Mar – Dec

Soil testing across the BBB,  supported by DAF.

Jun – Dec

Whole of property planning training workshops and one-on-one training to roll out across the BBB, supported by LDC partners.

 

 

 

MANAGING

GRASS

21 Mar

Taking Stock – Managing Pastures and Productivity Day at Weetalaba Campdraft Grounds.

Mar-May

Forage budgets to roll out across the BBB, supported by RCS and DAF. Includes photo monitoring sites.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

ANIMAL

PRODUCTION

Mar-Dec

Assessing pasture diet quality with Faecel Near Infrared Spectroscopy (NIRS) testing.

Mid-May

Herd Performance and Productivity workshop.

May-Jun

Two Breeder Management Days with Dr Ian Braithwaite.

May-Jul

Preg-testing to roll out across the BBB.

May-Jul

Herd growth modelling to roll out across the BBB.

FINANCIAL

MANAGEMENT

21 Mar

Taking Stock – Pastures and Productivity day at Weetalaba (finance component).

Mid-May

Herd Performance and Productivity workshop (finance component).

Jun-Dec

Finance workshops (various topics).

 

 

 

 

 

PEOPLE (HUMAN

DIMENSION)

Jun-Dec

Workshops focused on managing and understanding people, behaviours and communications.

Opportunity for graziers to undertake a personal development and leadership program supported by LDC’s Governance and Delivery program from April.

 

 

 

 

 

 

The LDC project has engaged with 75 per cent of graziers in the BBB catchment.

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KEQ #1

Figure 1. Total fine sediment reduction by project type and erosion source. Inset shows the proportion of the total project area for each project type.

These estimates have been calculated using two methods: 

1) The pollutant reduction component of the Alluvium/Great Barrier Reef Foundation (GBRF) investment tool for hillslope and streambank erosion management projects; 

2) The Reef Trust Gully Toolbox method for gully erosion management projects. The LDC Water Quality Report 2020 (Waterhouse et al., 2020) highlights that a number of assumptions underlay these calculations, therefore these figures should be treated as the best available estimate of sediment reductions to date.

Preventing sediment from reaching the Great Barrier Reef

Each wet season sediment is washed into local waterways and out to the Great Barrier Reef (GBR). 

Most sediment is very fine, and can stay suspended for a long time and can travel great distances. Valuable topsoil is lost from production, and increased concentrations on the reef can be harmful to seagrasses and corals. 

Landholders in the BBB have completed 69 on-ground water quality practice changes, and it is estimated that these have contributed a fine sediment reduction of 6,154 tonnes per year from reaching the GBR. 

Of this, approximately half of the sediment savings are attributable to grazing land management changes on hillslopes and streambanks, and the other half as a result of gully remediation treatments across a broad range of scales, as shown in the graphs above. 

The table below also highlights the relatively small area of intervention in the gully management projects compared to the large sediment savings that these can achieve - 60 per cent of the sediment savings over only 4 per cent of the project area.

Table 1. Estimated sediment reductions (tonnes) from projects completed in the LDC Project to date.

KEQ #2

*GLMWW = Grazing Land Management Wire and Water

KEQ #3

*The Exploring New Incentives activity area has provided an opportunity for graziers to adopt improved land management practices through a range of activities. For some of these properties, it was the first time they signed contracts for on-ground works.

KEQ #4

The LDC project monitors four gully sites (represented in this table) with gold standard equipment and analysis, carried out by CSIRO.

Results have been compiled in a preliminary report from Bartley et al (2020), with the final report expected to be released by the end of 2020. The preliminary report shows all four sites have indicators of improvements, notably the Strathbogie and Mt Wickham sites.

KEQ #5

KEQ #6

KEQ #7
KEQ #8

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Reef regulations - grazing, standard conditions

  1. For land in good or fair condition (more than 50 per cent ground cover at 30 September), continue using measures to maintain land condition.
  2. For land in poor condition (less than 50 per cent ground cover at 30 September), steps must be taken to improve land condition.
  3. For land in degraded condition (less than 20 per cent ground cover at 30 September), steps must be taken to improve land condition OR prevent areas from further degrading or expanding.
  4. Keep records of measures taken and also of agricultural chemicals, fertiliser and mill mud or mill ash applied to land.
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