Around the Camp: Biosecurity / Total Grazing Pressure / DNA / Climate Tools

  1. Biosecurity and Johnes Disease update
  2. Total Grazing Pressure Survey
  3. DNA testing options improved
  4. The Long Paddock
  5. Upcoming events
  6. eBulletins

1. Biosecurity and Johnes Disease update

Farm biosecurity planning has become very topical of late, and applies to sheep production just as much as to cattle.  All producers should have been notified by LPA of the requirement for farm biosecurity plans.  Many sheep producers also run cattle, and will have heard of the many workshops designed to enable farm biosecurity planning for beef.

But Johne’s disease (JD) risks are quite different for sheep than for cattle, as are the management tools such as J-BAS score.  JD in sheep has significantly greater impacts on productivity and deaths,readily spreads across fence lines and has a shorter incubation period. A cost-effective vaccine for infected sheep flocks is available, and fortunately JD in sheep has a very low prevalence in Queensland, compared to JD in cattle.

Most of the elements of farm biosecurity plan templates are common to both sheep and cattle, but the JD element should be modified to suit if you run sheep or sheep and cattle together.

More information on farm biosecurity planning relevant to sheep is available from:

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2. Last opportunity to have your say about Total Grazing Pressure!

This is your last chance to provide your feedback as the total grazing pressure survey closes at the end of November.  We need you to have you say as Queensland is not well represented (so far) in this survey – so contribute your thoughts and make a difference!

Click on this link to complete the total grazing pressure survey:

More about the survey:

A project is underway to identify where best to invest in research and development to achieve production gains through TGP management. Contribute your local knowledge and ideas, by completing this survey online.

Led by NSW Department of Primary Industries (DPI), the project aims to review current knowledge and identify information gaps to develop an investment plan for research and development by Meat & Livestock Australia’s (MLA).

The main regions of interest are the arid and semi-arid rangelands of central and south west Queensland; western NSW; South Australia; and Western Australia’s southern rangelands.

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3. Improved DNA testing option for Australia

DNA testing can be a very valuable tool for those looking to select or avoid certain traits within their flock and to verify parentage. Selecting for traits such as polledness for example is likely to continue to be very important to the sheep and wool industry into the future as we aim to reduce welfare concerns and improve the ease of flock management.

While currently DNA testing is more likely to be used by stud breeders, commercial producers can use this information when selecting rams to bring into their flock to meet breeding objectives. Breeders now also have better access to these services with turnaround times reduced and services increased with the recent purchase of the Australian Genetics Lab at Gatton, Queensland, by GeneSeek Australasia.

For more information on genetic selection, DNA testing and genomics see:

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4. The Long Paddock- climate and pasture tools online

The Long Paddock is a Queensland Government initiative that has provided climate and pasture information to the grazing community since 1995. The site provides access to rainfall and pasture outlooks and a wide range of decision support tools to support land management decision making and planning for landholders, education, consultants and extension officers.

Tools available include:

  • Seasonal climate outlooks and forecasting tools
  • Rainfall and pasture growth maps
  • Australia’s yearly rainfall posters, depicting 1890-2016
  • Webinar recordings of technical information and products

A re-developed website is also coming soon with more tools and interaction.

Visit The Long Paddock website

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5. Upcoming events

31 October Risk Based Decision Making Workshop, Longreach. For more information please contact Jane Tincknell.

1 November Succession Roadshow, Longreach. For more information and to register please click here.

2 November Risk Based Decision Making Workshop, Charleville. For more information please contact Andrea Wiles.

3 November Succession Roadshow, Charleville. For more information and to register please click here.

7 November Grazing BMP Workshop, Richmond. For more information please contact Robert Caird.

6-13 November Murweh Shire Baiting Program. For more information contact your Syndicate Co-ordinator or Erron Heinemann at Murweh Shire Council.

8-10 November Grazing Land Management EDGE Workshop, Emerald. For more details and to register please contact Byrony Daniels.

13-18 November Paroo Shire Baiting Program. For more information contact your syndicate Co-ordinator or Tom King at Paroo Shire Council

14 November Property Computer Mapping, Cunnamulla. For more information and to register please click here.

16 November Property Computer Mapping, Morven. For more information and to register please click here.

16-17 November Young Beef Producers Forum, Roma. To visit the website for more information, please click here.

20-21 November Business EDGE Workshop, Rockhampton. For more information and to register, please click here.

21-22 November Grazing BMP, Morven. For all enquiries please contact Andrea Wiles.

22 November Predator Control Field Day, Surat. For more information and to register, please click here.

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6. eBulletins

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