MAXIMUM production from a beef cattle property ultimately relies on managing grazing pressure to maintain quality pastures and good land condition.
That was the message delivered at a field day attended by more than 40 people at Leon and Raylee Clothier’s Borilla Park near Emerald, designed to help graziers plan for the wet season.
Fitzroy Basin Association’s Prue Becker organised the day together with producers involved in the Billaboo CQ BEEF group, one of eight producer groups across the Fitzroy Basin focused on developing learning opportunities to improve beef businesses.
“The experts that presented on the day had a common message – to build a productive beef business in the long-term, you need to take care of your property from the ground up,” Mrs Becker said.
“Low to moderate grazing pressure, good pasture management and maintaining ground cover are essential for profitability and sustainability.”
CQ BEEF is an initiative funded by FBA through the Federal Government’s Caring for our Country, and is delivered in partnership with the Department of Employment, Economic Development and Innovation (DEEDI).
Guest presenter, Emerald-based rangeland scientist Paul Jones from DEEDI, spoke about the results of a seven-year trial at Kielambete to compare grazing pressures.
“Exceeding low to moderate grazing levels gave no production benefit and also accelerated soil erosion occurring in the weakened ironbark pastures of the Keilambete trial,” Mr Jones said.
“The optimal level of grazing pressure is between low and moderate, and this is sustainable over time.
“Productive, palatable and perennial (3P) grasses were stable and resilient over the seven years of the trial, showing that they are key to sustainable production.”
Mr Jones also discussed a grazing systems trial run by the DEEDI Northern Australian Grazing Systems Project that investigated low intensity continuous stocking, moderate intensity rotational grazing and high intensity cell grazing systems over a three-year period.
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