Pouring with potential

So far this year the rain has just kept coming and it’s got our farmers excited about the potential of their 2016-17 winter crops.

The above average early rainfall across most of the Northern Agricultural Region (NAR) has assisted many growers with a favourable start to the 2016-17 winter crop – allowing them time to explore new opportunities to help adapt to the changing climate.

That’s probably why more than 80 growers and industry people from across the region recently converged on the Badgingarra Research Station to attend a livestock and seeding demonstration day.

Hosted by the West Midlands Group in association with the Northern Agricultural Catchments Council (NACC), the day kicked-off with a livestock-focused session, presented by NACC board director Dr Dean Revell, who spoke about the importance of having a biodiverse mix of forage shrubs for sheep nutrition.

Dr Gina Micke, WGM’s Livestock Production and Innovation Manager, who was the driving force behind the livestock event, also presented on how to treat lice, including timing of treatment and management strategies.

The session concluded with a practical demonstration by Elanco on how to treat lice using a pattern of application.

A seeding demonstration session was next on the agenda, providing growers, agribusiness and NRM practitioners with an opportunity to see the latest farming technology and equipment, test drive the latest seeding machinery, and compare firsthand the differences between the top precision seeders that are currently on the market.

But it was the Nufab deep ripper that attracted a lot of attention, and had the crowds silenced. The ripper is fitted with heavy-duty, hard-faced blades – giving it an amazing breakout force over large rocky outcrops and an ability to incorporate lime to a depth in problem areas.

NACC Regional Landcare Facilitator Stanley Yokwe said it was great teaming up with the West Midlands Group to deliver the well-attended event.

“The West Midlands Group is one of our region’s most effective groups with a proven track record for delivering successful research and community engagement activities,” he said.

“Partnering with the West Midlands Group always results in multiple benefits for our farming communities and the natural environment.”

Mr Yokwe congratulated the West Midlands Group for a very successful day and said NACC was looking forward to collaborating on future similar events and other sustainable agricultural projects in the region.

The WMG’s livestock and seeding demonstration day was supported by NACC through funding from the Australian Government’s National Landcare Programme as part of the Regional Landcare Facilitator project. Other contributors include Fuel Distributors WA, Rabo Bank, Agritrack, AWI and Elanco.

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