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South East Circular

Edition 16, February 2016

Work completed to improve TSR access


Access to a Travelling Stock Reserve (TSR) dam at Boorowa has been improved thanks to the combined efforts of neighbouring property owners, NSW Rural Fire Service (RFS) volunteers, a fishing club and South East Local Services.

Land manager, Gary Johnson approached Local Land Services about having the dam cleaned to improve the water supply for stock and to enable the dam to be used more efficiently. Gary’s proposal also presented an opportunity to create better access for emergency services to water supplies in the event of fire.



NSW RFS volunteer Greg Mason coordinated the support of six local NSW RFS brigades and a local fishing club.  Each group donated $100 towards cleaning the dam and for road gravel. South East Local Land Services contributed $3,000 towards cleaning, desilting and expanding the capacity of the dam.

This project will benefit not only land managers moving and grazing stock, but the wider local community.

Read the full article: Work completed to improve TSR access

Image:  Working to improve a TSR at Boorowa – local property owners with representatives from NSW Rural Fire Services; Mick Gorham, Earthworks; and South East Local Land Services.

Win for Small Farms Network – Milton Rocks project

 
The Small Farms Network - Milton Rocks project, delivered in partnership with the Croobyar Road Farming Group, recently won the Community Environmental Achievement Award at the Keep NSW Beautiful Blue Star Awards ceremony at Gloucester.

The Small Farms Network provides advice, facilitates workshops and delivers sustainable agricultural and biodiversity projects on farms.  It has been supporting small landholders along the South Coast since 2004 and has over 600 members on its database.

The Milton Rocks project coordinated by Project Officer Julie Holstegge and South East Local Land Services’ Small Farms Coordinator, Andrew Britton, is based within the Croobyar Road catchment.

Since 2010 over 10 kilometres of vegetation corridors and 11,000 tubestock have been planted, with 8,000 winter active dung beetles released and 34 soil tests and fertiliser management plans completed.

Small Farms website at www.smallfarms.net.au

Read the full article: 

Small-Farms-Network-Milton-Rocks-Project-Wins-Community-Blue-Star-Award

Landcare boost for South East

Peter Pigott
Regional Landcare Facilitator, Berry
Peter.Pigott@lls.nsw.gov.au
Local Landcare groups and networks are working hard looking after the natural environment and implementing sustainable land management practices. They play an important role both rural and urban communities. 

The coordination of Landcare volunteer effort in the region is receiving a boost through NSW and Australian Government investments in natural resource management. Funding has been made available through Local Land Services and Landcare NSW under the Australian Government National Landcare Support Program and the NSW Government Landcare Coordinators Initiative.

Fourteen Landcare districts will be able to access support to host a Local Landcare Coordinator.  These coordinators generally support a number of Landcare groups, or a group that covers a large area, with tasks including fundraising, planning, communicating, organising events and helping to ensure groups and networks are as effective as possible.

An annual allocation of $300,000 from the NSW Landcare Support Program will fund part time coordinators in nine different Landcare districts in the region.In addition to this, five Landcare districts, along with a number of agricultural producer groups, will receive coordinator funding support from the Australian Government’s National Landcare Program through the Community, Industry and Landscapes Fund.

A number of part time Landcare coordinator positions are currently being advertised across NSW.  Positions are being advertised locally and on NRM Jobs, a website specialising in adverstising jobs in the natural resource management sector.

Please contact your local South East Local Land Services office for more information about Landcare groups and networks in your area.

New leadership for Local Land Services

Minister for Primary Industries, Niall Blair, has announced the appointment of Tim de Mestre as the new Chair of Local Land Services Board of Chairs.

Mr de Mestre will lead the Board of eleven Local Land Services regional Chairs in the strategic direction of the organisation, to ensure delivery of local and State priorities.

He brings extensive knowledge of the agriculture sector; having previously held senior positions in corporate agribusinesses Paraway Pastoral, Twynam Agriculture and Clyde Agriculture, as well as operating a family farming enterprise.

Read the Minister's statement: New leadership for Local Land Services

Grazing demonstration
returns profit in first year

Matthew Lieschke
Senior Land Services Officer - Livestock, Goulburn
Matthew.Lieschke@lls.nsw.gov.au
A local grazing demonstration has just completed its first 12 months and is already showing positive signs. The paddock-scale demonstration, established on Shannon Arnall’s property “Carinya” is investigating the level of production  that can be sustainably achieved on a native-based pasture in the Crookwell region.

Shannon recently purchased a new block of ‘native’ country and was keen to increase profitability in the most cost-effective way. A simple nutrient trial showed that phosphorous was the major nutrient limiting plant growth, especially sub-clover.



That wasn’t overly surprising given the history of the paddock, however the question then became: does it still pay to put fertiliser out in a wool operation? 

Read the full article: Grazing demonstration returns profit in first year

Relative Sheep Enterprise Performance 2015

Phil Graham
Department of Primary Industries, Yass
phillip.graham@dpi.nsw.gov.au

This paper looks at the production and financial performance of sheep enterprises across NSW. No sheep enterprise is greatly superior to any others over the long-term. Contrary to popular belief meat based enterprises are not always the most profitable. Profitability is more influenced by managerial ability to capture genetic potential across variable seasons, than the enterprise itself.

The method used ensures consistency in how the enterprises are compared. Some of the major variables that might be changed in grazing system are stocking rate, feed rates for finishing, fertiliser rate and use of fodder crops.

Farms are set up in GrassGro by using soil types, actual daily weather data from 1960 to 2015, suitable pasture species and livestock management programs for each location. The purpose of this work is not to compare locations but to examine how enterprises perform at a location over a long time period. 

Download: Relative Sheep Enterprise Performance (PDF)

Local disease watch

Bill Johnson
District Veterinarian, Goulburn
Bill.Johnson@lls.nsw.gov.au
South East Local Land Services district veterinarians visit farms to investigate herd and flock problems in livestock. The information we gain from these investigations improves livestock production and animal welfare, and helps to ensure that Australia is free from certain animal diseases.

Several worm outbreaks in sheep and goats have caught producers off-guard. A long spell of hot, dry weather was expected to reduce numbers of worm larvae on pasture. However, rainfall on some properties has allowed worms to rapidly build-up. Barber’s pole worm cases, with tell-tale anaemia and weakness, have been seen across the district. Even on farms which missed most of the rain, barber’s pole worms have flourished in the milder environment of valley floors.

Brown stomach worms and in some cases black scour and thin-necked intestinal worms have also produced high worm egg counts. While these worms typically cause scouring, the lack of green feed in many paddocks means sheep lose body condition due to worms, without scouring. Laboratory tests on faeces are a relatively cheap and quick way to monitor worm activity.

Read the full article: Local Disease Watch - February 2016

Take care around bats


Bats, including fruit-eating flying foxes and small insect-eating microbats, can pose a health risk to humans and animals. Bats in Australia are the natural reservoir for a range of viruses that may infect and sometimes kill humans or other animals, including Hendra virus, Menangle virus, and Australia bat lyssavirus (ABLV).

While the risk of infection from bats in our region may be low, the consequences can be pretty serious. Microbats are found across the district, frequently seen in the dark recesses of houses and sheds, and flying foxes regularly visit both coastal and inland centres. People and pets are frequently bitten or scratched by sick or injured bats, and horses occasionally die from contact with flying foxes. A few simple precautions could save you a lot of anguish.

ABLV is in the same virus family as rabies, and affects the bat nervous system, causing weakness and an inability to fly. This creates a risk for pets and people finding a bat on the ground. Surveys indicate that up to thirty per cent of sick or injured bats have been infected with ABLV. Three people have died from ABLV after being bitten or scratched by bats in Australia.

Hendra virus is carried by Australian flying foxes, which are unaffected by the virus. Horses develop an often fatal infection following contact with fluids or faeces from an infected flying fox. Several people have died from handling horses affected with Hendra.

Vaccination of horses is the best way to protect both humans and horses from Hendra virus infection. Vaccination is recommended where you travel with your horse throughout NSW and Qld, and is encouraged in parts of our region frequented by flying foxes. While the nearest case of confirmed Hendra infection in NSW was near Kempsey, bats as far south as Melbourne are known to have been exposed to the virus.

Don’t place horse feed or water under trees, especially those that have flowers or fruit. Horse feeders and water troughs should be under cover. Remove horses from paddocks where trees are flowering or bearing fruit. Remove uneaten fruit or molasses to discourage foraging by fruit bats.

Avoid handling sick or injured bats, and try to keep pets away. If bitten or scratched by a bat, flush the wound with water and soap for at least five minutes and immediately contact a doctor for advice. Submit the bat for laboratory testing if this can be done safely, without further risk to humans. Contact the Emergency Animal Disease Hotline on 1800 675 888 for assistance.

Visit the NSW DPI website for further information: www.dpi.nsw.gov.au

Indigenous land management plans

 
South East Local Land Services is encouraging Local Aboriginal Land Councils (LALCs) to develop Land Management plans for their land.
 
Expressions of Interest are sought from LALCs for funding under the South East Local Land Services Aboriginal Engagement Program, through the Australian Government's National Landcare Programme and NSW Government’s Catchment Action NSW.
 
Expressions of Interest will be assessed on the basis of value for money and capacity to deliver outcomes of relevance to Catchment Action NSW and the National Landcare Program requirements. Specifically Southeast Local Land Services will invest in projects that enable Indigenous communities to participate in land and sea management.  We are also interested in supporting plans that will create employment and training opportunities for Aboriginal communities and protect or improve the condition of Aboriginal Cultural Heritage.

Further information: Indigenous land management plans
 

Events

 
War On Worms In Cattle
10 February 2016
Braidwood
A FREE day of information, discussions and demonstrations about worms in cattle with Dr Kate Sawford, District Veterinarian, Local Land Services and Dr Steve Love, Veterinarian/Research Officer, Parasitology, NSW Department of Primary Industries.

War On Worms In Cattle
11 February 2016
Murrumbateman

A FREE day of information, discussions and demonstrations about worms in cattle with Dr Kate Sawford, District Veterinarian, Local Land Services and Dr Steve Love, Veterinarian/Research Officer, Parasitology, NSW Department of Primary Industries.

Robertson Show
19 and 20 February 2016
Robertson
South East Local Land Services will have a display for the two days focussing on biosecurity, agricultural and environmental services available from the Moss Vale office.

Seasonal Update: Illawarra/Shoalhaven
26 February 2016
Cambewarra
Producers, land owners and managers join us for a FREE information session about seasonal issues and opportunities as we head from Summer to Autumn. Discussions will include pasture transitioning, cattle marketing and weather conditions and a livestock health update.

Southeast Harvest Festival
11 March 2016
Moruya
The Southeast HARVEST regional food festival's origins date back to 2009 and it is now conducted under the auspices of Sustainable Agriculture & Gardening Eurobodalla (SAGE). 

Community Pest Day
12 March 2016
Kangaroo Valley
Presentations and discussions on local vertebrate pest issues and control options for wild dogs, feral cats, foxes, deer, goats, rabbits as well as noxious weeds. 

Soil testing and interpretation: two-day workshop
2 and 10 March 2016
Broughton Vale and Bomaderry
Topics will include understanding our local soils, understanding soils tests and fertility and prioritising inputs and management for sustainability and production.

Phosphorous management workshops
16 March - 28 April 2016
Boorowa, Braidwood and Moss Vale 
South East Local Land Services and NSW DPI are holding a series of FREE workshops that focus on the economics of investing in fertiliser. These workshops will be based on the ‘Five Easy Steps’ program that was developed by CSIRO and NSW DPI.

Feedback


South East Circular is a monthly email newsletter containing information about our services, biosecurity alerts, technical articles and notices of upcoming events, training and funding opportunities. It also celebrates the innovations and achievements of the wide variety of land management partnerships, projects and programs across our region.
All comments can be sent to: southeast.circular@lls.nsw.gov.au.
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Local Land Services South East
enquiry.southeast@lls.nsw.gov.au
1 300 795 299