. . . 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: internationaldairyweek.com.au
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.