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Gippsland Ag New banner; black angus beef cows looking directly
Thursday 30 May 2024
In this edition:
Avian influenza information
Report sick or dead birds - emergency animal disease hotline 1800 675 888

Movement controls remain in place for areas surrounding 2 avian influenza infected properties near Meredith and Terang.

The controls restrict the movement of birds, poultry products, poultry feed and equipment on or off properties in designated areas.

These include:

  • A restricted area covers a 5 km radius around the Meredith farm with a broader Control Area buffer zone in the eastern part of Golden Plains Shire Council. The western boundary of this area is the Colac-Ballarat Road.
  • A Restricted Area covering a 5-kilometre radius around the Terang farm with a broader control Area buffer zone covering an area of 15 kilometres.
  • A housing requirement for all birds within these areas.

Stay up to date at

Early bird ticket discounts end soon for the BestWool/BestLamb and BetterBeef conferences
bestwool/bestlamb betterbeef conference

Early bird ticket discounts end next week for the BestWool/BestLamb and BetterBeef conferences and dinner in Ballarat on 19-20 June.

Secure your discounted tickets by Friday 31 May.

Purchase your tickets here.

A 1-day conference ticket is only $80 and a full package 2-day conference and dinner ticket is $200.

Visit our events web page to download the program and learn more.

New Hog deer DNA technology targets poachers
Hog deer image

The Game Management Authority (GMA) is using new DNA profiling technology to help determine if people are poaching or in illegal possession of Hog Deer.

The technology was used in an investigation on six taxidermied Hog deer heads and two capped skulls.

GMA officers suspected a man to be in illegal possession of the items, which were seized after a search warrant was executed on a man’s property near Launching Place.

The man pleaded guilty to the illegal possession of Hog deer in the Ringwood Magistrates Court last December.

He was put on a good behaviour bond and the Hog deer heads and capped skulls were forfeited as the man could not prove he had obtained them legally.

The new technology analyses hair and tissue samples extracted from Hog deer to determine which discrete Victorian population the deer originated from, providing evidence of where they may have been taken.

Compliance and Intelligence Director, Zac Powell said the man did not have a valid Game Licence endorsed to hunt deer, had not received Hog deer tags and had not been authorised to participate in Victoria’s balloted Hog deer season.

'Even though some of the seized heads were 15 years old, DNA samples were analysed, and the results showed some of the Hog deer had been illegally taken from Snake Island in Gippsland, which can only be hunted during the annual ballot period using assigned tags,' Mr Powell said.

'People hunting Hog deer during the season or ballot period must have a valid Victorian Game Licence for deer and obtain Hog Deer tags to affix to each deer harvested.

'Those who break the law face significant fines and penalties, including prosecution, and having equipment confiscated. In some cases, offenders may face jail terms.'

Hunters and the community are urged to report illegal hunting to the GMA through its website at or by calling 136 186. If an urgent response is required, call 000.

The GMA assesses all reports of illegal behaviour and works closely with its partner agencies, to conduct enforcement and compliance operations across Victoria.

The DNA profiling system was developed for both wildlife forensic science and population research by a PhD candidate at La Trobe University who was co-funded by the GMA.

Victoria is one of the few places where wild populations of Hog deer can be hunted free-range on public land. Hog Deer are a highly valued game species in Victoria, with licensed hunters permitted to harvest one stag and one hind during an annual hunting season.

Investing in the future of Victorian AgTech
AgTech banner image

The Victorian Government is driving innovation in the agriculture sector by supporting more tech startups to create new technologies that will help farmers improve their efficiency and adapt to new challenges in the industry.

Minister for Agriculture Ros Spence recently announced $1 million for the AgTech Grants program which will invest $50,000 in eligible startups looking to build their business capability.

Delivered in partnership with LaunchVic, the grant provides founders with dedicated mentoring from startup experts to build their businesses and seize new opportunities. They can also support activities that help create new jobs and support Victoria’s economic growth.

The agriculture sector is critical to the Victorian economy, however changing conditions means that the sector needs to continuously adapt to new challenges. AgTech startups will help drive this adaptation and provide farmers with the tools, data and knowledge they need to improve productivity and sustainability.

Since 2023 the AgTech Grants Program has awarded grants to 19 startups providing services in supply chain efficiency, farming automation, soil sensing intelligence and pollination management systems, among others.

The success of the first round of the grant program has led to this additional investment of $1 million to continue to fuel technological advancements in the sector.

A notable recipient of the first round is Drone-Hand, the first commercially available, user-friendly, AI driven, automated flight-app for livestock monitoring.

Applications are open and will remain open until 30 June 2025 or until funding is exhausted.

To read more about past recipients and to apply for new grants click here.

For more information on the AgTech Grant program click here.

Upskilling the future of agriculture industry

The Victorian Government is investing in the future of agriculture in Victoria by ensuring young farmers across the state can gain valuable new skills and investment towards their future.

Minister for Agriculture Ros Spence recently launched the 2024 Upskill and Invest Young Farmers Scholarship Program, encouraging the next generation of farmers to apply and receive the skills they need to thrive in Victoria’s vibrant agriculture sector.

The program offers scholarships of up to $10,000 with each recipient reimbursed up to $5,000 to support their training and study, and up to $5,000 to invest in putting their new skills into practice.

Successful applicants can receive training to build their knowledge and expertise in areas such as irrigation, agronomy, conservation and land management, as well as core business skills in areas including accounting, human resources and marketing.

Once they have completed their studies, applicants can invest in modern technology and equipment, on-farm strategies and planning, and their own professional development to kickstart their career as a farmer.

Since 2015, the Upskill and Invest Young Farmers Scholarship Program has successfully supported 117 young farmers from a range of agriculture industries.

Megan Cooper is a wool grower from the Wimmera region who used her scholarship to upskill and complete a remote pilot licence training and a Certificate IV Wool Classing course.

Megan also invested in infrastructure to improve her stockyards.

Albert Nunn from Central Western Victoria who is a mixed beef, sheep and grain farmer used the program to complete a diploma of agriculture through South-West TAFE and then invested in a portable sheep handler.

Applications are open to farmers aged between 18 and 35 who have been working in farm businesses for at least three days a week for the past three months, with at least two years total experience on-farm.

Applications will close on 17 June.

To learn more about the program and to apply for a scholarship, visit

WorkSafe – Footy's favourite farmer
Worksafe banner image

From cattle to cropping, Gippsland to the Mallee, and everything in between, we're on the hunt for this year's Footy's Favourite Farmer!

WorkSafe knows our farmers are a hard-working and humble bunch - so they'd like your help to nominate your local farmer.

All you need to do is tell us, in 50 words or less, why your nominee deserves to be Footy's Favourite Farmer in 2024.

There's over $20,000 worth of prizes for them and their club up for grabs, and just by nominating a farmer, you can win a prize yourself!

Hurry - get your entries in before Friday 2 August to be in the running.


Expressions of interest extended for on-farm demonstrations program
People standing in a paddock talking - applications are now open for sheep and cattle producer groups interested in running an on-farm demonstration

Extended to Thursday 13 June.

Expressions of interest are open for sheep and cattle producer groups interested in running an on-farm demonstration. 

Find out more at

Or contact

This program is in partnership with Meat & Livestock Australia.

Growing tomorrow’s farmers
Ag career start - producer applications open now

AgCAREERSTART is looking for employers/farmers who:

  • are able to offer a safe and positive experience for a young Australian
  • have the capacity to teach and support someone who might have limited experience in agriculture
  • are able to offer full-time paid employment for a period of 10 – 12 months in 2025*
  • can offer flexibility to your participant so they can undertake training and attend industry events
  • can provide accommodation or assist in finding accommodation off-farm.

When you sign up you will:

  • receive a $2,000 grant
  • get support from the AgCAREERSTART team to mentor and train your participant
  • gain access to industry events and the broader National Farmers’ Federation network.

For more information click here.

*Participants must be paid at – or above-award wages. All host farms must provide a signed employment contract to AgCAREERSTART before the placement commences.

The AgCAREERSTART pilot is funded by the Australian Government Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry.

Victorian Gorse Taskforce community grants now open

The VGT annual Community Grants Program is now open for 2024/25. 

The Victorian Gorse Taskforce (VGT) with support from Agriculture Victoria offers funding support for community-led gorse control projects.

Community Grants program objectives:

  • Reduce the impacts of gorse on environmental, agricultural, and social values
  • Strengthen community and stakeholder connections for better gorse outcomes
  • Build community knowledge and capacity in managing gorse
  • Promote best practice gorse management.


Community groups may apply for funding up to $8,000 for on ground gorse control works on private land. All participating landholders involved may receive up to $1,500 in grant funding and must match this with their own monetary contribution.


Grants are available to all Victorian Community Group organisations that have a focus on improving natural and agricultural areas.

How to apply

Visit the website and download a copy of the 2024/25 VGT Community Grants Funding Guidelines and Application Form. 

Once you have completed your application, email to

For more information, contact the VGT on 0417 593 250 or send an email to

Minerals exploration explained
Two people in a field exploring

Resources Victoria has released the first instalment of a video series helping to explain important and sometimes misunderstood aspects of the state’s resources sector.

Minerals exploration and mining are often confused. Though both are essential stages along the path to developing a resource, the process and scale are very different.

In Minerals Exploration Explained we asked a Victorian minerals explorer to outline in their own words what they do, the techniques they use, how they select a site and how it is restored.

Mineral explorers use low-impact methods to understand local geology and look for evidence of minerals over a large area, then typically focus activities on a smaller zone.

It typically involves mapping, water and soil sample testing, surveying the ground from the surface or air and targeted drilling.

If an exploration licence is granted and a commercially viable deposit identified, a separate process toward mining would involve environmental assessment and extensive local engagement.

Visit for more information and to view the video.

Applications open for Corella Management Grant Program
corellas in a tree

Applications for funding to address the impacts of Long-billed Corella and Little Corella populations on community are now open.

Local government authorities, farmers and committees of management are among those eligible to apply for grants to address agricultural, infrastructural, environmental and social impacts.

A total of $250,000 is available in Victorian Government grant funding.

The Corella Management Grants Program guidelines align with the Victorian Corella Strategy 2022-2032.

The strategy promotes a ‘living with wildlife’ approach to encourage positive attitudes to corellas, as part of a broader strategy for living with wildlife in Victoria.

Find more information about the grant program here.

Make this your moment – the Governor of Victoria Export Awards
Two people smiling at the camera, one is holding an award. The text reads: make this your moment

Get ready to shine in the spotlight!

Applications have now opened for the Governor of Victoria Export Awards (GOVEA).

Open to all Victorian exporters, regardless of business size or total export sales, winning a GOVEA isn't just about recognition; it's about catapulting your business to new heights.

GOVEA winners automatically receive a place as finalists in the National Export Awards.

Boost your brand and gain exposure to potential clients, investors, and partners, both locally and globally.

Showcase your innovation to the business community in 2024.

Apply now by visiting

Applications close 14 June.

Fox and wild dog bounty

Victoria’s bounty collections continue.

Please continue to check our website for the latest information, collection centres and dates.

Click here.

For any assistance, please speak to our bounty collection staff on collection days or call our customer service centre on 136 186.

Free financial counselling with RFCS
A person standing in a paddock looking at the sunset. The text reads free financial counselling with the Rural Financial Counselling Service. 1300 771 741.

Have you been impacted by recent floods, storms, fires or dry seasonal conditions?

The Rural Financial Counselling Service provides a free and confidential financial counselling service to eligible farmers and small related enterprises who are experiencing, or at risk of, financial hardship.

They can help you to access available support, analyse your business situation, negotiate with lenders and develop strategies to improve your financial position. 

To find your closest service visit the Rural Financial Counselling Service website or call 1300 771 741.

In case you missed it
Image of a sunset with the text 'in case you missed it'

Book early for Ballarat sheep and beef conferences

Early bird tickets are now available for BestWool/BestLamb and BetterBeef conferences to be held on 19 and 20 June in Ballarat, at The Goods Shed.

Read the full media release here.

What's on
Image of a group of people at an event in a green paddock listening to a presenter with the text 'what's on: online and on-farm events'

Details about Agriculture Victoria events can be found in one spot on our website. Log on to the Events page to keep in touch with upcoming events.

Are you a young farmer in horticulture that’s looking to upskill?
Hort bootcamp image

Agriculture Victoria is running a horticulture business bootcamp focussed on the horticulture industry that aims to support the next generation of growers, business owners and managers to improve their skills and management practices.

The bootcamp will be delivered by Agriculture Victoria and Ion Group.

2-day in-person workshop on 12-13 June from 9 am to 2:30 pm.

Location TBC pending interest as Yarra Valley or Werribee

Online session
21 June, 10-11 am


  • In-person day 1: Farm business performance and profitable decision making
  • In-person day 2: Risk, resilience and adapting to change
  • Online session: Natural resource management.

The bootcamp is free to all participants but places are limited.

A free one-on-one session with an Ion Group consultant is available to participants who register for both the in-person workshop and online session.

To secure your spot for this bootcamp, click here to register or contact: Tanya Dobrijevic on 0429 353 649 or at

Farm Business Resilience Program workshops - East Gippsland

Register now for our free Farm Business Resilience Program workshops.

These sessions, created in partnership with ION Group, are designed to better prepare farmers for and to manage risk, adapt to change, and strengthen their farm businesses.

Topics include:

  • Business planning and risk management
  • Farm finances and profitable decision making 
  • Managing people on-farm, farm safety and wellbeing
  • Climate adaptation and natural resource improvement including soil, water, crops and pastures.
Farm Business Resilience Workshop, East Gippsland

As part of the program, participants will have access to a one-on-one with a professional to develop their farm business plan.

  • Monday 17 to Wednesday 19 June - block two.

Register for the East Gippsland sessions here. 

Export Development Programme
Export Development Programme

Ready to grow your agri-food and beverage business by exploring export opportunities but not sure where to start? Join us for a free Export Development Programme! 

Agriculture Victoria's Pathways to Export is partnering with Export Connect to deliver a series of in-person masterclass workshops in Gippsland and Melbourne and online export strategy webinars. 

Final webinar: 

  • International Buyer and Exporter Panel: Tuesday 4 June, 2– 4 pm.

Register for one or more sessions here.

Stock Sense calving webinar
A cow and a calf, the cow is cleaning the calf

When: Wednesday 26 June, 6 - 7:30 pm

New to calving? Wanting to learn more? Maybe you just need a quick refresher! 

This free webinar is perfect for you. 

Get ready for the calving season with a checklist covering everything you need to know.

From when to call a vet to prepping your calving box, we've got you covered. 

Join Stock Sense and seasoned expert Rob Bananno, who brings over 30 years of farming and veterinary experience to the table. 

Don't miss out on this invaluable session!

Register here.

Stock Sense sheep and goat workshop

When: Friday May 31, 9:15 am – 1:30 pm
Where: 10 Stones Road, Dollar, South Gippsland 

Led by a veteran farmer, Martin Stone, and experienced East Gippsland vet, Dr Alison Gunn, explore everything relating to sheep and goat essentials — from welfare and biosecurity to feed and fencing — equipping you with the knowledge to ensure your farm thrives.

As a bonus, witness a live working dog demo and engage in discussions about the role of the working dog on smaller farms.

Topics covered:

  • Learn to condition score your sheep
  • Sheep and goat husbandry fundamentals
  • Pre and post lambing all you need to know
  • Working dog demonstration and discussion.

Admission is free, with lunch provided so registration is essential.

Register here.

For further inquiries, please contact Stock Sense at

Pastures 101 - MID, West Gippsland and South Gippsland

Join GippsDairy for a one-day workshop that will introduce farmers to dairy cow nutrition and pasture.

This practical, on-farm event is aimed at new entrants to the industry and people with little to no pasture knowledge.

Topics will include:

  • When to graze
  • Where to put the strip grazing fence
  • When to graze the paddock again
  • How to get the most production out of your pasture
  • What to do with surplus grass growing.

A light lunch will be provided. Please bring along a chair.

  • MID: Wednesday 12 June, 10 am - 3 pm - Nambrok (address provided on registration)
  • West Gippsland: Thursday 13 June, 10 am - 3 pm - West Gippsland (address provided on registration)
  • South Gippsland: Friday 14 June, 10 am - 3 pm - South Gippsland (address provided on registration).
Grasslands Society of Southern Australia – 54th Annual Conference 

The GSSA conference at Bendigo on 17-18 July will offer something for everyone. 

The central theme will focus on ‘Evidence Based Decision Making’ and the topics have been built around what farmers need to know. 

Delegates will be able to choose from 2 bus tours. One to a property north of Bendigo integrating lucerne into a profitable livestock system and one to a higher rainfall perennial pasture property south of Bendigo. 

Topics will include: 

  • Carbon - an informed farmers perspective 
  • Carbon neutral livestock production - is it possible? 
  • Soil carbon and fertility 
  • Measuring and knowing your soil carbon levels 
  • Old clover identification and sub optimal clover nodulation 
  • Paddock livestock weighing 
  • What bugs you? 
  • Use of drones in agriculture 
  • Facial livestock recognition 
  • Remote pasture measurement 
  • Running lambs on improved varieties of perennial ryegrass vs more persistent Victorian ryegrass - animal responses above yield responses 
  • N efficiency and endophytes in ryegrass pastures 
  • Introduction to fertiliser calculator tool. 

For more information visit the website.

Southern Australia Livestock Research Council Livestock Conference
Sheep in a paddock. The text reads: save the date: livestock 2024 conference.

Livestock 2024 is the third biennial conference delivered by SALRC. This year's theme is environmental challenges and opportunities for Australian livestock industries.

Location: Atura Hotel, Albury NSW. 

Date: Wednesday 21 and Thursday 22 August.

Tickets on sale soon. 

Click here to register for conference updates.

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Contacting Agriculture Victoria

Call 136 186 from anywhere in Australia for the cost of a local call (except for mobiles and public telephones).

If you are deaf or have a hearing or speech impairment contact the National Relay Service on 133 677 or

All contact points can be found at:

Don't forget to check out Agriculture Victoria's social media sites for up-to-date information and news.


'Like' our Agriculture Victoria Facebook page.


Follow us on X (formerly Twitter) @VicGovAg


Subscribe to the Agriculture Victoria YouTube channel. 


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