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September news and events

SUMMER CROPPING OPTIONS

By Mixed Farming Adviser, Rohan Leach
High winter rainfall has inhibited some grain growers in the Central West from planting their full winter crop program. As a result, they may be interested in summer cropping to take advantage of full moisture profiles and recoup some losses with a summer cash crop.

NSW Department of Primary Industries has also released a Guide for summer cropping options for central NSW. Get in touch on 1300 795 299 to access a hardcopy. The guide looks at the agronomy and cropping fundamentals of sorghum, maize, mungbean, soybean and sunflower. My Summer cropping options article looks at some key points on growing each of those crops as well as Super High Oleic Safflower as a spring sown option.

SUMMER CROP BASICS

For those new to summer cropping in the Central West, growers will need to be aware of a number of basics in order to grow a successful crop:

  • Soil water holding capacity is a key consideration for any summer crop. Soils with a high water-holding capacity (i.e., soils with a high clay content) are essential for high yielding crops. Sandy soil types simply do not hold enough water for the high demands that hot weather requires of summer crops. Consider at least 1 metre of soil moisture before sowing any summer crop.
  • Soil fertility is also crucial for obtaining good yields. It is important to be soil testing now, in order to plan your fertility regime to match your target yields. After the last three years, soil Nitrogen (N) will likely be low in most paddocks. Table 1 shows the N removed/tonne of grain harvested. For example, a 3t/ha sorghum crop will require around 75kg of N. Soil testing at depth will give you a greater understanding of what soil N you have stored and what this may mean for your gross margin.
  • Paddock history is very important to consider, with historical weed populations and chemical use a key determinant of what you should plant. Some crops are limited in what weed control options are available, with residual or pre-emergent herbicides a necessary requirement. Be aware of chemical history on your planned summer crop paddocks as plantback periods or re-cropping intervals can be up to 14 months for some common herbicides.
  • Lastly, communicate your plans with your agronomist and rural reseller to organise your crop input requirements. Many growers may be considering a summer crop and inputs may be limited.
Read the full article

UPCOMING EVENTS


EMERGENCY ANIMAL DISEASE WORKSHOP
  • Bedgerabong, 12 September
  • In response to the current risk of Foot and Mouth Disease and Lumpy Skin Disease, we are holding an information session where questions and open discussion are welcome.
TOP FODDER ONE DAY SILAGE WORKSHOPS FERAL PIG AWARENESS DAY
  • Collie, 22 September
  • See different traps, baiting options and research into the most effective ways to control feral pigs. Demonstrations and displays of HOGGONE, remote activated traps, conventional traps and the role of feral pigs in spreading disease.
PASTURE UPDATES
  • Forbes, 27 September and Purlewaugh, 28 September
  • Join our sustainable ag team and Richard Hayes from NSW DPI for research updates and field walks at a number of demonstration sites. Come and see some of the latest pasture varieties and how lime and fertiliser are improving production.
SPRING FIELD DAY
  • Gilgandra, 29 September
  • Join our sustainable agriculture team, speakers from NSW Department of Primary Industries and the agronomy industry for great morning checking out trials, research updates and grower insights.

LATEST FROM THE DISTRICT VETS

By Acting Team Leader Animal Health - Kirsty Cordon
The Central West Animal Health and Biosecurity team have been busy in the field, and delivering a range of presentations and workshops focused on raising awareness of the exotic diseases currently circulating close to our shores. We have been:

  • Sharing our knowledge and expertise on the clinical signs and symptoms of foot and mouth disease and lumpy skin disease,
  • Working closely with both the ag team and local Rural Crime investigators to deliver information to producers on what can be done on farm to better control feral animals, the importance of accurate and timely NLIS data and discussions around farm and biosecurity planning and the issue of illegal hunting.

What we are seeing:

  • Pink eye in sheep
  • Lame sheep
  • Bloat risk increasing
  • Yersiniosis
  • Vaccinating sheep against pulpy kidney

What to look out for:

  • Worms: Judging from many worm test results we are seeing, worms are going to continue to cause headaches for sheep producers into spring. At this stage of the year clean paddocks will be few and far in between - did you know that in seasons such as this it will take six months for 90% of the worm larvae population to die out on pasture?? Look after your weaners. In all cases lambs should be given an effective drench at weaning and put onto a clean paddock. It is high risk to put weaners onto a paddock that has carried lambing ewes this year.
  • Flies: They are coming to your farm very soon... start preparing and implementing your fly management strategy now!
  • Anaemic sheep with pale gums. It could be weaner anaemia (Mycoplasma ovis) or barber's pole worm. The two are easily confused as they both cause weakness and pale gums. Contact your private vet or District Vet to get a diagnosis as their management is completely different and losses could be significant if you get it wrong!  
  • Japanese Encephalitis: A mosquito born disease that causes abortions in pigs, neurological clinical signs in horses and is zoonotic, meaning it can infect people. Stock the shelves with insect repellent, cover up at dawn and dusk and get your ‘deet on’ this spring. A human vaccine is available, consult your health care professional for further human information.
  • Signs of Lumpy skin disease or foot and mouth disease

What to think about:

  • Monthly worm test monitoring for sheep flocks is almost essential this year. Drop into your Local Land Services office and pick up worm test kits today!
  • Pain relief strategies at lamb marking.
  • Ram soundness checks for the upcoming breeding season.
Read the full update

JOIN THE FIGHT AGAINST FERALS THIS SPRING

We are calling on all land managers to join the state's largest ever coordinated pest animal management campaign.
Spring of 2022 is a critical time to manage pests – tackle feral pigs before summer crops get established, get on top of foxes and wild dogs to get more lambs on the ground..
Over the past 12 months, almost 38,000 pest animals have been culled through Local Land Services’ aerial culling operations, including more than 32,000 feral pigs.
Pest animal populations have risen following successive good seasons with available food, water and shelter. In August our invasive species team worked with public and private land managers to organise aerial baiting to help control wild dogs in inaccessible terrain. Aerial operations are being supported by on-ground baiting programs to help land managers fulfil their pest management obligations. All land managers have a general biosecurity duty to control pest animals on land they manage.

 

HOW YOU CAN GET INVOLVED:

  • Join your local pest animal/biosecurity group - if you're not already in one get in touch with your local biosecurity officer on 1300 795 299.
  • Come along to our Feral Pig Awareness Day in Collie on 29 September to find out the best ways to manage feral pigs
  • Talk to your neighbours and work out a plan to manage pest animals - the most effective pest management is coordinated efforts across a number of properties.

WOODLAND HOLLOWS WORKSHOP

By Land Services Officer, Catie Guise
Fifty-six land managers, ecologists, community members and local students gathered at the Wambangalang Environmental Education Centre recently for a practical workshop focussing on Woodland hollows.
Woodland habitat and in particular large hollow bearing trees play a critical role in supporting many hollow dwelling native species – some of which are listed as threatened.  
Tree hollows take from 120+ years to form and each animal that uses the hollows have very specific requirements for the size, location, tree and surrounding vegetation of the hollow that they choose.  
Large old hollow bearing trees have disappeared from our landscape over time due to land clearing, development and grazing of regenerating eucalypts in particular. The loss of hollow-bearing trees causes the displacement and decline of species that rely on them for survival.
The creation and installation of artificial hollows and nest boxes will provide future homes for our native wildlife.
Arborist, Sam Bragg demonstrated the use of a specialist tool, the Hollow Hog to create augmented hollows in trees at Wambangalang.
Cameras were installed to monitor the activity in and around these new hollows. It is hoped that future visiting students and staff at the education centre can play an active role as Citizen Scientists and monitor and report on the activity on the cameras.

 

Hollows are homes - here's what you can do:

  • Protect remnant woodlands with large overstorey species such as white box, yellow box, Blakely’s red gum, grey box, fuzzy box, apple box, red box and river red gum.
  • Protect existing and future hollow-bearing trees.
  • Encourage natural regeneration of species in remnant sites e.g. fencing out old trees.
  • Include local species of Eucalypt trees in revegetation sites.

MEET OUR NEW RALF: CHARLES BENSON

G'day Central West! I’m Charles Benson, the new Regional Agricultural Landcare Facilitator (RALF). I am excited to be a part of Local Land Services in the Central West. I am currently based in Dubbo as part of the Ag Advisory Services team.
I have a grazing background starting from the family farm in Barraba, the business was primarily a sheep/wheat enterprise and has since shifted focus to farming angus/wagyu cattle. After working in the family farm, I had a short stint managing and developing a property in the Dorrigo region, with a primary focus on grazing management, animal health, and pasture development. In March 2019 I joined Western Local Land Services as a Regional Agricultural Landcare Facilitator in the Western Region, based out of Buronga.
While based in Buronga I enjoyed the views and lifestyle afforded from living on the junction of the Darling and the Murray River. The highlight of my time as a RALF in Western region included Broken Hill Landcare Conference, working with Ag-natural Resource Management Community Advisory Groups and supporting the far West Rangeland Rehab Alliance.
As part of my RALF role with Central West area, I will work with Landcare, producer groups and industry to address local agriculture issues and emerging opportunities for sustainable agriculture. I will help identify funding opportunities throughout the year and will be a point of contact for landholder groups within the Central West region.
I have a key interest in sustainable agriculture, commodity markets, strategic business planning and market development. So, if you have ideas for sustainable agriculture events you would like to see in your area, please feel free to contact me.
I look forward to meeting you in person and on farm over the coming months.
Charles.benson@lls.nsw.gov.au
0409 175 840

YOUR OPINION SOUGHT ON DROUGHT

The Southern NSW Drought Resilience Hub (the Hub) invites you to contribute to a project that will establish a shared understanding of what constitutes drought, and what that means for businesses, organisations, communities, and producers of Southern and Central NSW. The outcome of the project will be a basis for assessing the changes required, barriers to overcome, and potential opportunities to improve farm business and regional resilience. The Hub has received reports from the Farming Systems Groups Alliance and RuralAid on this topic, and now looks forward to contributions from the entire agricultural stakeholder network across Southern and Central NSW.

How? Have your say

 There are two separate online opportunities to contribute your drought experience:

  1.     Survey: Defining Drought - Then & Now – a quick & easy click-button survey, (<5mins), and 
  2.     Open Call for Submissions: Defining Drought - Then & Now – a prompted survey for individuals and/or organisations to provide their insights into experiences or observations of drought (<15 mins)

We invite you to complete either (or both) of the above forms. The questions cover a range of areas from farming to small business, community to personal, to allow for a broad reflection of drought experiences and observations. 

Please feel free to forward and share these links to your networks, colleagues, friends and family to allow them to participate. 

 

RUSSIAN WHEAT APHID NEAR GILGANDRA

Recently, Russian Wheat Aphid (RWA) has been spotted in cereal paddocks in the Gilgandra district. Producers are encouraged to be familiar with the defining features of this pest and consistently monitor for its presence. RWA can cause severe damage, particularly in wheat and barley, when populations are left unchecked. Crops can be impacted through reductions in plant growth or plant death. Heavy infestations can lead to significant yield loss.

Several fact sheets are available which can help with identification:
· Russian Wheat Aphid Primefact NSW DPI PDF
· Russian Wheat Aphid Pest Notes - Cesar Australia
· Russian Wheat Aphid - Western Australia Department of Primary Industries

The economic threshold calculator from the Grain Research Development Corporation should also be consulted and is a handy tool for producers to quickly see the financial impact on crops of RWA. This will assist in determining whether control of an RWA population is warranted. Due to the damage potential and the high price of commodities, control is likely deemed viable in most instances. 

For a comprehensive resource on RWA and other aphids check out this recent webinar produced by Local Land Services and presented by Cesar Australia.

For more information on pests in your crops, contact your Local Land Services ag adviser on 1300 795 299.
Image credit:  Elia Pirtle, Cesar Australia

GRANTS AND FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE

 

Regional Development Australia - Orana


Subscribe to the grants newsletter, obtain assistance with applying for grants and see what grants are currently on offer.

Find out more
 

Foundation for Rural and Regional Renewal (FRRR)


FRRR provides funding and capacity building support at the hyper-local level. We have reach, relationships, networks, and know-how to align funding, big and small, to community-led solutions that build resilience and long-term viability and vitality of smaller remote, rural, and regional communities across Australia.

Find out more
 

The NSW Rural Assistance Authority (RAA)


The RAA administers financial assistance programs including transport subsidies for animal welfare and natural disasters to primary producers on behalf of both the NSW and Australian Governments.

Find out more

 

TAFE subsidised training and qualifications


Subsidised training and courses from TAFE NSW.

Find out more

 

Service NSW grants and financial assistance


Information on grants and financial assistance for small businesses in NSW

Find out more
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Copyright © 2022 Central West Local Land Services, All rights reserved.

The information contained in this publication is based on knowledge and understanding at the time of writing. However, because of advances in knowledge, users are reminded of the need to ensure that the information upon which they rely is up to date and to check the currency of the information with the appropriate officer of Local Land Services or the user’s independent adviser. For updates go to www.lls.nsw.gov.au






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Central West Local Land Services · 89 John Street · Coonabarabran, NSW 2357 · Australia