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PRECISION MANAGEMENT Fine wool Merino/mixed grazing enterprise PowerPoint Presentation
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PRECISION MANAGEMENT Fine wool Merino/mixed grazing enterprise

PRECISION MANAGEMENT Fine wool Merino/mixed grazing enterprise

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PRECISION MANAGEMENT Fine wool Merino/mixed grazing enterprise

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  1. PRECISION MANAGEMENT Fine wool Merino/mixed grazing enterprise Robert Kelly Mt William Agriculture Pty Ltd

  2. Mt William Agriculture • Northern Tablelands, NSW • 1050 ha • 5000 fine wool Merino sheep (16.8 micron), 850 trade cattle • 880 mm annual rainfall • Naturalised pastures • Historical stocking rate 6-7 DSE/ha • Current stocking rate 11 DSE/ha

  3. Precision management • Pasturemanagement • Ewe management • Weaner management • Genetics • Parasite management

  4. Pasture management • Intensive rotational grazing • Pasture budgeting • Fertiliser and legume application

  5. Intensive rotational grazing at ‘Mt William’

  6. Intensive rotational grazing • Improved pasture utilisation • Increased pasture growth rates (20-60%) • Increased stocking rates (40-60%) • Improved labour efficiencies • Micro-manage mobs of sheep

  7. Pasture budgeting 1cm leaf area = 200-500 kg DM/ha 1 dse consume 1 kg DM/day

  8. Pasture budgeting • Pasture growth rates • Stocking rates • Decisions on buying/selling stock made easier • Need and timing of supplementary feeding • Efficiency during low and high growth periods

  9. Fertiliser and legumes • Soil testing • Increase pasture quantity and quality • Legumes: - provides nitrogen - thicken pasture sward - provides feed at critical times

  10. Ewe management • Fat score (FS) • Pregnancy scanning • Targeted supplementary feeding (protein)

  11. Fat score (12th long rib) Condition score (short ribs and spine) Fat score Key times: Target (FS 3 3+) 1. Mating: lift lambing percentage 2. Pre-lambing: increase lamb survival Source: A. Thompson, Vic DPI

  12. FS at mating-lambing rate 12% increase in lambing rate per fat score at mating Source: average of 2003 & 2004 lambing Dr Lewis Kahn MLA Management Solutions

  13. Pregnancy scanning • Separate ewes into twins, singles, drys • Scan at day 80 of pregnancy • Allows time for paddock preparation • Aids in selection for ewe fertility • Non-bias classing of ewes

  14. Supplementary feeding • Key times: mating and pre-lambing • Targets: single ewes (FS<3-), all twin ewes • Cotton seed meal (CSM; 43% protein) • (6 wks prior to lambing) • Single ewes (FS<3-) 150-200 g/d • Twin ewes 200-250 g/d

  15. CSM & lamb survival 40% more lambs Source: Dr Lewis Kahn MLA Management Solutions

  16. Weaner management • Weaner mortality 4th highest cost to producers • Most susceptible animals to parasites • Minimum of 25kg first winter (reduce weaner mortality) • Higher life time wool production including progeny • Maiden ewes reaching minimum joining weights • Draft into separate body weight groups

  17. Parasite management • Highest cost to sheep producers • Worm egg counts (WEC’s) • Drench resistant testing- alternate use of drench groups • Genetic selection for resistance • Preparation of lambing/weaning paddocks • Alternate grazing of sheep and cattle • Reduction in drench use

  18. Genetics • Australian sheep breeding values (ASBV’s) • Greater accuracies in sire selection • Select best traits for individual farms • Body weight, micron, fleece weight in commercial sheep • Genetic gains for wool traits: 4% ASBV’S 0.5% objective measurement

  19. 6.5 ewes/ha 80% weaning 2002- $405/ha 2009 Gross margin $888

  20. The future • Increase number of IRG systems • Improvement in weaner management • Increased use of genetics • Increase ewe fertility • Zero drench use

  21. Marketing • World manufactured fibres to increase by 5.7%/year to 2012 • Continued replacement of natural fibres by cheaper alternatives • Rising level of personal income • High end synthetics to grow the fastest – lightweight, softness and resistance to deterioration from perspiration • Rising demand for flame resistant and protective clothing