Pasture Revival Field Day proves very informative
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The first of two Pasture Revival Field Days held at Berremangra (near Jugiong) has proved very successful attracting 50 graziers.
These field days are being held to ensure pastures are as productive and persistent as they can be, particularly after the recent years of drought .
The field day run by NSW Department of Primary Industries (DPI) on 16 April was held on two local properties owned by Richard and Stephanie Hyles and Peter and Margaret Hyles.
NSW DPI Advisory Officer, Jim Meckiff, said the day highlighted the value of properly managing and maintaining existing native and introduced perennial pastures.
"Participants inspected and assessed two phalaris pastures with reasonable plant populations but the drought was evident in the small size of perennial plants.
"Group discussions covered the merits of each pasture, where improvements could be made for the future and what could have been done differently in the past.
"Chemical and grazing control of broadleaf weeds, clover content of pastures and how to thicken perennial pastures were the hot topics.
"The prolific growth of native species during the summer and their ability to persist even in the harshest of droughts generated a lot of interest," he said.
Also covered on the day was Grazclock™, a grazing management software program that calculates total pasture production and livestock feed demand over a year.
NSW DPI District Agronomist, Fiona Leech, said other critical factors to ensure an introduced pasture persisted included selecting the appropriate species for the paddock, nursing and spelling of newly established pastures and not using cover crops to establish pastures.
Through an economic analysis of perennial pasture establishment, NSW DPI’s Nathan Ferguson, showed participants the significant investment involved and the impact on profitability of failed pastures, lack of persistence and not increasing stocking rates.
Participants were also alerted to the EverGraze project ‘More livestock from perennials’ by Murrumbidgee CMA’s Janelle Jenkins and NSW DPI’s Jim Meckiff as support sites are being set up in the district with graziers hoping to replicate results from the EverGraze proof site at Wagga Wagga.
A highlight of the day was a seedling recruitment method using cattle to package (ingest) and transport phalaris seed.
Grazeclock™ is available by contacting Doug Alcock at email@example.com
EverGraze research details can be found at www.evergraze.com.au
Another Pasture Revival field day is planned for Coolac and native pasture recruitment days are planned for later in the year.
Catering for the day was provided by Murrumbidgee CMA.
For information contact your NSW DPI district agronomist or livestock officer.
Photos available from firstname.lastname@example.org
Media contact: Sarah Chester on (02) 6036 2110 or 0417 207 669