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Beef and Sheep Networks Newsflash
Friday 24 June 2022
In this edition

What's On

What's New



Beef and Sheep News

Ag Recovery

Quick Links

Heading: What's On
Livestock Farm Monitor banner

Agriculture Victoria has positions available for sheep and beef farmers to participate in the 2022 Livestock Farm Monitor benchmarking project.

Participation gives you a real insight into your business and provides you with the information to assess your business's strengths and weaknesses and compare where your business sits in relation to other similar businesses in Victoria.

The report is a trusted and unbiased source of information that can assist farm businesses with conversations with the bank, consultants and industry.

Participation is free and all information is treated as highly confidential. Places are available until 30 June.

For further information about the project visit the Agriculture Victoria website or send us an email.

PLEASE NOTE: The events listed below may be subject to last-minute cancellation in the event of an emergency or advice from Victoria’s Chief Health Officer.

Event Details


When: Tuesday 5 July

Where: Upper Murray Events Centre, Strzelecki Way, Corryong

Time: 10.30 am – 2 pm


Workshop: Getting the most out of your Gallagher EID gear

This practical workshop will demonstrate what producers can do on-farm for capturing, managing and utilising electronic livestock data.

Visit Eventbrite to register for this free event or for more information contact Greg Ferrier, Livestock Industry Development Officer on 0438 738 634 or email

Event Details


When: 12 – 14 July

Where: Lardner Park, 155 Burnt Store Road, Lardner


Grasslands Society of Southern Australia 63rd Annual Conference

Registration for the conference is now open and the program overview is available online. Hear from Agriculture Victoria speakers; Fiona Baker, Livestock Extension Officer (Beef) and Dr Meredith Mitchell, Research Scientist (Pasture agronomy).

Visit the GSSA website for more information and to purchase tickets.

Decorative banner for ESG in Agriculture conference. Cow, sheep, text, NECMA logo, MLA logo, NSW DPI logo, Australian Government logo and Agriculture Victoria logo.
Event Details


When: Thursday 28 July

Where: La Trobe University Albury-Wodonga Campus, 133 McKoy Street, West Wodonga

Time: 9.30 am – 5 pm

Cost: $23pp

Dinner from 6 pm ($40pp, drinks at own cost) at The Albury Club, Kiewa Street, Albury. Guest speaker and celebrity chef.


ESG in Agriculture Conference

Environment, Social, Governance (ESG) is arguably the biggest move seen in agriculture, with consumers demanding a high level of product integrity and proof of source. This conference offers the opportunity to learn more about what ESG means for farmers and their market partners.


  • ESG – finance opportunities
  • sustainability frameworks
  • supply Chains – red meat, wool and retail
  • producers' perspectives
  • on-farm emissions
  • Q&A panel session.

Visit Humanitix for more information and to purchase tickets. 

Event Details


When: 18 – 22 July (Novice training)

Where: Omeo


Shearer and wool handler training courses

Australian Wool Innovation (AWI) is supporting training for shearers and wool handlers to attract and retain new entrants into the wool harvesting industry, build the capacity and longevity of existing staff, and increase returns to woolgrowers through improved clip preparation practices. All training aligns with nationally recognised qualifications and are designed to meet industry standards and needs.

To register for a course or for more information visit the Shearing Contractors Association of Australia (SCAA) Shearer Woolhandler Training Inc. website or phone 1300 787 984 or email. Contact the SCAA for a full list of upcoming course locations, dates and costs.

Access online training videos and resources for shearers, wool handlers, trainers, and woolgrowers on the AWI website.

Meat & Livestock Australia (MLA) upcoming events:


Visit the MLA website to register for any of these events or for more information.


MeatUp Forum

When: Tuesday 28 June

Where: Naracoorte Town Hall, 95 Smith Street, Naracoorte SA

Time: 8 am – 7 pm

Cost: $25 MLA members, $50 non-members


Great South Coast Sustainable Energy Forum

When: Wednesday 13 July

Where: Brother Fox, Deakin University, Warrnambool

Time: 9 am – 3.30 pm

Cost: Free

Event Details


When: 6 - 20 July


  • Buninyong
  • Hamilton
  • Horsham
  • Swan Hill
  • Bendigo

Cost: Free


Stock Sense – sheep and goat roadshow

Stock Sense has teamed up with several guest speakers to deliver free workshops on issues relating to the sheep and goat industries.  VFF members and non-members are all welcome.

Workshops will be held at:

  • Buninyong - Wednesday 6 July, 9 am - 1 pm
  • Hamilton -  Wednesday 6 July, 1 - 6 pm
  • Horsham - Thursday 7 July, 9 am - 1 pm
  • Swan Hill - Wednesday 20 July, 9 am - 1 pm
  • Bendigo - Wednesday 20 July,  6 – 9 pm

Each event will provide a light lunch/dinner and there will be opportunities to ask questions of our expert guest speakers. To register go to

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Heading: What's New

Agriculture Victoria is encouraging farmers to download a new online booklet to learn more about the latest soil carbon science.

The Soil Carbon Snapshot booklet is one of several tools being developed to support farmers to reduce their on-farm emissions, managing their climate risk and improving productivity.

Agriculture Victoria Land Health Project Leader Melissa Cann said there are many ways to increase soil carbon while also increasing productivity, water holding capacity and nutrient cycling.

“Increasing soil carbon will reduce input costs and produce wider natural resource management benefits,” Ms Cann said.

“If you are trying to better understand the fundamentals of soil carbon in agriculture, this is a great resource to start your journey,” she said.

The free updated booklet has 70 references to soil research papers, abstracts or reports, all hyperlinked for easy access and use.

“Soil organic matter makes up a small component of the soil mass, yet it has an important role in the functioning of the physical, chemical, and biological properties of soil,” Ms Cann said.

“Soil organic carbon is a measure of the carbon contained within soil organic matter and increasing soil carbon levels can lead to better plant establishment and growth,” she said.

Ms Cann said the original booklet was written by Agriculture Victoria in 2013 as part of a program to summarise the latest science on soil carbon, as a resource for Fertilizer Australia and their national Fertcare® advisor training program.

“With the current renewed interest in soil carbon, it was time for an update."

“Fertilizer Australia in partnership with the International Fertiliser Society also recently ran a series of webinars with expert speakers and had this updated booklet available online is a timely resource for those keen to understand the latest science.”

Recordings of these webinars can be viewed on the Fertiliser Australia website.

Agriculture Victoria is helping the agriculture sector respond to climate change and reduce emissions through its Agriculture Sector Pledge program, conducting research trials to test methane inhibiting feed additives and delivering an innovative pilot involving 250 farm businesses in a free on-farm emissions assessment.

The booklet can be downloaded from the Agriculture Victoria website.

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Season three of the AgVic Talk podcast takes listeners on a virtual bus tour to speak with farmers and agricultural influencers who are looking at different ways to manage climate variability.

This season includes conversations with livestock producers who are using stock containment areas, agricultural business resilience experts, low and high rainfall zone growers who talk about their coping strategies, and farmers developing new skills through online learning.

Agriculture Victoria Land Management Extension Officer Darryl Pearl said across the ten podcasts, we hear real examples of how farmers have managed climate change and variability across a range of locations around the state.

“In one episode we talk to third-generation Millewa farmer Ian Arney who has experienced a huge amount of change to continue farming in a changing climate, arguably none more so than in the last ten years with a move from cereal and grain cropping to focusing mainly on sheep” Mr Pearl said.

“Everyone we talk to during this season has a focus on planning and understanding their business to help them through the tough years and make the most of the good ones,” he said. 

You can subscribe and listen to AgVic Talk wherever you get your podcasts:

More online resources relevant to season three include the Climate Change in Australia website.

You can also look up your location on the climate analogue website.

Or for more climate-related information from Agriculture Victoria, visit the climate and weather page on the Agriculture Victoria website.

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At Agriculture Victoria, we’re interested in knowing how our audience listens to podcasts. Your feedback will help us identify how we can improve podcast production and develop new content. While we know podcasts are a great medium and an increasingly popular format to share timely and topical information, we’re keen to know how you listen to them and what you like.

Please take this short five-minute survey and help us continue to create great new podcasts.

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Heading: BestWoo/BestLamb

BestWool/BestLamb is a partnership between Agriculture Victoria and Australian Wool Innovation Limited, which provides a network facilitating information exchange that enables producers to implement improvements in key aspects of their business.

Lyndon Kubeil, Senior Sheep Specialist 0418 532 085 or email

Alison Desmond, Project Leader Sheep Industry Development 0409 424 274 or email

BWBL Lamb logo, AWI logo

Visit the Agriculture Victoria website to watch a one-hour webinar recording presented by Greg Misfuld, National Wild Dog Management Coordinator, on how to best manage foxes and wild dogs and deal with their impact on livestock businesses and communities.

For upcoming fox and wild dog bounty collection schedules, visit the Agriculture Victoria website.

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Access the latest issue of the SheepNotes newsletter on the Agriculture Victoria website.

In this edition read about

  • the prolapsing ewe
  • using soil moisture for early decisions
  • farming without a label
  • chronic heliotrope poisoning
  • Victorian traceability systems paying off
  • on the lookout: sheep with neuro signs.

We would love your feedback on our SheepNotes newsletter (hard copy or digital version). Please complete the short five-minute survey.

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Woolgrowers' continued support of this survey will provide forward-looking information allowing the industry to better manage the supply chain and meet producer and customer expectations.

Contribute to the survey by 30 June 2022 for the chance to win a $1,000 Caltex/Ampol cash card.

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Image with text and QR code

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Heading: BetterBeef
BetterBeef logo

BetterBeef is an Agriculture Victoria coordinated producer and service provider network with a focus on increasing the profitability and sustainability of beef enterprises. It aims to grow and support a strong producer network featuring genuine partnerships with the private sector in co-design and delivery.


Amanda Davis, Acting BetterBeef Project Leader
0407 947 580 or email


Biosecurity is simply the implementation of a series of basic management practices to prevent the introduction of contagious diseases and noxious weeds. A simple, tailored biosecurity plan can protect your farm livestock investment. Preventing the introduction of animal diseases and weeds by adhering to some simple rules may prevent disaster.

Find out more on the Agriculture Victoria website.

For further advice please contact your local veterinarian or Agriculture Victoria veterinary, animal health or livestock extension officer on 136 186.

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Dr Jeff Cave, Senior Veterinary Officer

Imagine this scenario, you call your local vet to come and pregnancy test your herd of cows, only to find out most of them are empty. What do you do next?

A pre-joining check of your bulls for fertility may help prevent this disheartening scenario.

Fertility is the ability of a bull to achieve, by natural service, a pregnancy rate of 60 per cent and 85 per cent in 50 normally cycling females, within three and six weeks of mating, respectively.
Your veterinarian will check several components of the bull to ensure this is possible.

Firstly, the bull needs to be physically examined for faults in the head, legs, joints, feet, sheath and penis as any of these will affect the bull’s ability to serve a cow. Its general health also needs to be clinically examined.

It is important to watch the bull during joining to determine his serving ability and his desire to serve cows.

Secondly, your veterinarian will check the bull’s scrotal circumference and inspect the bull’s testis for tone or resilience, as these are closely related to a bull’s fertility.

Furthermore, your veterinarian will examine the bull’s semen under a microscope and analyse it for motility as well as looking at the morphology or structure of the individual sperm cells.

So, there is much more to it than putting a bull out with a herd of cows and expecting him to perform.

For further advice contact your local veterinarian.

For more information on beef cattle breeding visit the Agriculture Victoria website.

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The Australian Beef Sustainability Framework 2022 Annual Update was released on 16 June.

The 2022 Update:

  • shows the progress industry has made in the past years
  • provides a clear snapshot of activities across the 24 priorities
  • celebrates the industries successes in sustainability, and highlights areas for improvement
  • provides case studies of sustainable practice.

What is the Australian Beef Sustainability Framework (ABSF)?
Originally launched in 2017, the ABSF was developed by the Australian beef industry to meet the changing expectations of consumers, customers, investors and other stakeholders. The ABSF reduces risk and leverages opportunities by managing what is most important to stakeholders inside and outside the Australian beef industry.

Why is it important? 
The ABSF is being used by the beef industry to guide and track performance on-farm and through the value chain to ensure that Australia continues to be recognised as a global leader in sustainable beef production. Consumers, customers, industry and other interested stakeholders can get a clear snapshot of the beef industry’s sustainability performance.

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Heading: Beef and Sheep News

A range of biosecurity/animal health risks need to be managed when using manures as fertilisers on livestock properties. These risks need to be evaluated before bringing manure onto the farm and precautions then need to be taken with manure handling, storage, application and grazing management.

When introducing animal manure there is potential to introduce certain pathogens such as bacteria, viruses and parasites. Examples of disease agents that can be present in different types of manure include Salmonella, Clostridia (including botulism), E. coli strains, Cryptosporidium, Q fever, and Johne’s Disease.

Good management practices are needed to gain maximum benefit from the use of manure as fertiliser, while also protecting animal, human and environmental health. Inappropriate manure use can have significant animal and human disease risks and cause adverse environmental effects such as soil nutrient imbalances, chemical and heavy metal residues, run-off and groundwater pollution and public concerns from dust or odour generation.

Read the fact sheet in full on the Agriculture Victoria website.

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Monitoring farm water supplies is an important part of any livestock operation. Timely and accurate information is critical to welfare and performance, especially in summer.

There are three main options when it comes to monitoring water tanks;

  • ultrasonic sensor
  • pressure sensor
  • float sensors.

Find out more on Agriculture Victoria’s Feeding Livestock website.

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The Southern Australia Livestock Research Council (SALRC) has announced the call for nominations for the 2022 Awards for Excellence in Southern Australian Livestock Industries.

The annual SALRC Awards have been developed to recognise, reward and celebrate excellence in the contributions of individuals to research and development, extension, communication and practical application of innovation on-farm, to improve the profitability, productivity and sustainability of the southern Australian red meat and livestock industries.

Award nominations close 30 June 2022. To nominate or for more information visit the SALRC website.

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Grants of up to $10,000 are available to farmers and land managers to plant pollinator-friendly trees that are indigenous to their farms, with Bee Friendly Farming (BFF) providing farmers and land managers with $1 for every tree planted, thanks to One Tree Planted and Flow Hive.

Successful applicants will receive a contribution of $1 per tree planted, with grants between $1,000 and $10,000 available. Larger grant requests will be considered.

Applications close 5 pm 31 July 2022.

To be eligible to apply for these tree grants, farms must either be a BFF CERTIFIED Farm or have a BFF CERTIFIED application submitted and pending approval by the tree grant closing date.

To apply for tree grants and to become BFF certified visit the BFF website.

For more information email

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Heading: Ag Recovery Support

Our recovery guide booklet helps farmers to rebuild and provides a one-stop reference to the support available after fires. The guide includes steps to take immediately after the fire and for short-term recovery and longer-term rebuilding. It covers re-fencing, dealing with erosion and flooding, pasture recovery, pest and weed control and preparing for the next season.

The printed booklet is available from Agriculture Victoria, by contacting our agriculture recovery managers (details noted below) or phone 136 186 or digital version online.

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The Victorian and Commonwealth governments are supporting landholders impacted by fires and floods across Victoria.

For more information on bushfire recovery programs or recovery from floods/storm events, visit the Agriculture Victoria website or phone 136 186.

Regional Agriculture Victoria recovery managers:

  • North East – Kylie Macreadie 0428 975 728 or email
  • Gippsland – Darren Hickey 0457 609 140 or email.

Visit the Bushfire Recovery Victoria website or 1800 560 760.

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Rural Financial Counselling Service

The Rural Financial Counselling Service (RFCS) have an experienced team ready to assist primary producers and small rural business in recovery planning.

Financial counsellors can help develop financial forecasts and business plans required for lenders or investors, plus connect with support agencies and services.

RFCS provides free financial counselling to farmers and small related businesses who are in, or at risk of, financial hardship. They can also assist with filling in forms and grant applications.

For more information or to book an appointment call RFCS Gippsland on 1300 045 747 or RFCS North East on 1300 834 775.

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The Regional Weather and Climate Guides project is part of the Commonwealth Government Drought Assistance Package.

The project aims to improve the resilience of farming businesses by providing localised facts about the likelihood, severity, and duration of key weather variables in regions across the country.

The weather and climate information will be delivered through a set of guides corresponding to Australia's Natural Resource Management regions.

The project is a collaboration between the Bureau of Meteorology, the CSIRO, and FarmLink Research.

The guides have been developed in collaboration with representatives from each NRM region to ensure the information is tailored to the needs of local farmers and agribusinesses.

For more information visit the Bureau of Meteorology.

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Heading: Quick Links
Feeding Livestock Website

For tools, calculators, resources and livestock feed planning guides, visit the Feeding Livestock website.

Logo: feeding livestock website
Australian Wool Innovation (AWI) wool market review
Image: AWI logo

For weekly commentary on the wool market from AWI trade specialists, visit the AWI website.

Market reports and prices
image: MLA logo

Meat and Livestock Australia’s (MLA's) market information service provides producers with accurate, timely and independent market information, allowing them to make profitable business decisions.

For the latest cattle market reports, visit the MLA website.

AgVic podcasts
Decorative; AgVic Talk podcast logo

AgVic Talk podcast series delivers knowledge and information in a format that suits the way farmers and agricultural professionals work and live today.

Latest episode: Stock containment yards make sense on many levels with Peter Gibson and Martin Hamilton

Decorative: My Rain Gauge is Busted podcast logo

For all things climate and farming listen to Agriculture Victoria's My Rain Gauge is Busted podcast series.

Latest episode: How to be certain when the outcome is uncertain

AWI podcast - The Yarn No. 217

Barber's Pole: Clear and present danger

Worm control in sheep has become a major issue and the spread and frequency of Barber’s pole worm in flocks is alarming. A parasite that rewrites the books for control and the world champion in terms of resistance according to those who know and we are about to hear from three of them.

Tune in to gain insights into what AWI and Woolmark are doing across research and development and marketing.

Listen to The Yarn podcast.

Follow AWI on social media for the latest on sheep and wool.

@Facebook, @Twitter and @Instagram

Image: The Yarn - AWI podcast
The Fast Break Seasonal Climate Update

For the latest edition of The Fast Break - an update of seasonal climate drivers and outlooks.

The Fast Break details oceanic and atmospheric climate driver activity over the last month and summarises three month model predictions for the Pacific and Indian Oceans, rainfall and temperature for Victoria.

Image: The Fast Break
Livestock and animals
Agriculture Victoria logo

Visit Agriculture Victoria’s website for the latest information and resources relating to livestock and animals.

Follow Agriculture Victoria on social media. 

@Facebook and @Twitter 

Workshops and events

Agriculture Victoria is delivering workshops, farm walks and online information sessions. Visit the Agriculture Victoria website for a list of upcoming events.

Rural Financial Counselling Service

The RFCS provides free financial counselling to farmers and small related businesses who are in, or at risk of, financial hardship. Counsellors can also assist applicants to apply for the Farm Household Allowance (FHA).

For more information visit the RFCS website or contact your local recovery support officer by searching the RFCS online directory

National Centre for Farmer Health

The National Centre for Farmer Health (NCFH) provides health and safety education and advice to farmers and their families via the Online Ag Health program. 

For more information visit the National Centre for Farmer Health website.

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