Keep­ing cool

Shepparton News - Country News - - FRONT PAGE - By Alana Chris­tensen

. . . It was a hot start to In­ter­na­tional Dairy Week at Tatura Park on Sun­day, with tem­per­a­tures climbing to 41°C. This nine-month-old heifer from Long­warry in Vic­to­ria en­joyed a drink in the shade as prepa­ra­tions and groom­ing con­tin­ued for the five-day event.

Tatura Park has come to life with In­ter­na­tional Dairy Week get­ting un­der way on Sun­day, bring­ing to­gether more than 1100 en­tries from 198 ex­hibitors to com­pete at the five-day event.

Ex­hibitors have de­scended on Tatura from across the coun­try as Ayr­shire, Illawarra, Guernsey, Brown Swiss, Jer­sey and Hol­stein cows bat­tle it out to be named In­ter­na­tional Dairy Week Grand Cham­pion at 4.30 pm on Thurs­day.

Tatura Park’s newly in­stalled air­con­di­tion­ing has been put through its paces at the event, with tem­per­a­tures peak­ing at 41°C on Sun­day and ex­pected to sit in the low-to-mid 30s for the re­main­der of the event.

Fol­low­ing the dizzy­ing heights of last year’s World Wide Sires Evo­lu­tion Sale, all eyes will be on the main ring at Tatura Park on Wed­nes­day night for this year’s auc­tion, but auc­tion­eer Brian Les­lie said he was not ex­pect­ing an­other record-break­ing re­sult.

Last year two-month-old heifer Light­ning Ridge-CMD Jedi Gigi-Imp-Et sold for a record-break­ing $251 000, the high­est price paid for a beef or dairy cow in Aus­tralia.

‘‘We cre­ated a record price last year, you don’t ex­pect to do that ev­ery year,’’ Mr Les­lie said.

‘‘We’ve got as good a cat­a­logue as we’ve ever had, across the board. We’re ex­cited about the en­tries and it’s ev­ery bit as good as it should be.’’

There are sev­eral lots that in­ter­ested buy­ers should keep an eye on ac­cord­ing to Mr Les­lie, in­clud­ing the off­spring of a former two-time In­ter­na­tional Dairy Week win­ner.

‘‘We are sell­ing the daugh­ter of the high­est ever clas­si­fied cow in Aus­tralia (Fair­vale Morty Lady 51), that’s a first.

‘‘We’re pretty ex­cited about that,’’ he said.

‘‘Lot 1 is also the high­est GTPI (Ge­netic To­tal Per­for­mance In­dex) heifer in Aus­tralia . . . There’s some pretty out­stand­ing lots in that cat­a­logue.’’

Mr Les­lie is hop­ing for an­other strong turn-out this year and said all the heifers had been well pre­sented and were sure to at­tract plenty of in­ter­est.

The World Wide Sires Evo­lu­tion Sale be­gins at 7.30 pm on Wed­nes­day, Jan­uary 24 at Tatura Park.

■ For more in­for­ma­tion and to view the In­ter­na­tional Dairy Week sched­ule, visit: in­ter­na­tion­al­dairy­

Pic­ture: Holly Daniel

Pic­tures: Holly Daniel

Hosed down . . . Cana­dian Emily Stephen­son did her best to cool off this Jer­sey as tem­per­a­tures climbed into the 40s at In­ter­na­tional Dairy Week on Sun­day.

Coolest place to be . . . Five-year-old Bethany Ea­gles from Forbes tries to beat the heat, cool­ing off in a bucket.

Ready for the ring . . . Erika Quinn from Co­huna pre­pares for the Hol­stein Aus­tralia Vic­to­ria Youth Chal­lenge Tri­als on Sun­day.

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