Head count needed for fu­ture graz­ing workshop

Warwick Daily News - - BUSH TELEGRAPH -

THE Con­damine Head­wa­ters Land­care Group is call­ing for ex­pres­sions of in­ter­est from farm­ers want­ing to at­tend one of the nat­u­ral graz­ing work­shops it will host in the com­ing months.

It is in the process of sourc­ing grant fund­ing to bring holis­tic graz­ing ex­pert Dick Richard­son to the re­gion to fol­low up on the suc­cess of last year’s work­shops.

He­len Lewis said Mr Richard­son’s land man­age­ment method­ol­ogy had been around for the past 20 years and was ac­cepted as a main­stream prac­tice.

“All of the good news sto­ries that have come from the drought were from farms that prac­tice holis­tic man­age­ment,” she said.

“The win­ners of the re­cent Land­care awards have all been holis­tic man­agers.”

Along with ex­plain­ing how to in­crease oxy­gen lev­els and bio­di­ver­sity in soil, Mr Richard­son also pro­vides workshop at­ten­dees with ac­cess to Ma­iaGraz­ing soft­ware.

Farm­ers can in­put their pad­dock sizes, grass va­ri­eties and rain­fall vol­umes and the pro­gram will give ad­vice on car­ry­ing ca­pac­ity and when to re­duce stock­ing rates in lean times.

“Farm­ers have to do a bit of feed as­sess­ment first and that’s what they learn at train­ing, how to mon­i­tor and man­age what feed they have in the pad­dock,” Mrs Lewis said.

The prac­tice had taken root in the South­ern Downs and Mrs Lewis said there were about 40 farm­ers us­ing the sys­tem in the re­gion. She said if used well the man­age­ment prac­tice re­sulted in health­ier soil, along with grass­land that could bet­ter re­tain mois­ture.

“It makes it so gra­ziers are not wast­ing money on ar­ti­fi­cial in­puts, it makes farms more profitable,” she said.

Mrs Lewis was keen for peo­ple to get in­volved.

“Bring an open mind and be pre­pared to learn,” she said.

“Farm­ers need to have a good idea of their pad­dock sizes and that’s prob­a­bly about all.”

Dates for the ses­sions are yet to be con­firmed but to regis­ter your in­ter­est or for more in­for­ma­tion about nat­u­ral graz­ing, phone He­len Lewis on 0418 785 285.

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