Your spring toolkit of on-farm tips, tools and resources

03 August 2017

MLA has compiled this suite of resources, tips and tools to support your on-farm decision making during spring.

PASTURE MANAGEMENT: Calculate | evaluate | plan ahead

Rainfall to pasture growth outlook tool

Make better pasture and grazing management decisions by estimating pasture growth in relation to rainfall, soil moisture and other climatic conditions. This website provides future outlooks for up to three months ahead for more than 3,300 weather stations in southern Australia.

EverGraze Feed Budget and Rotation Planner

The EverGraze Feed Budget and Rotation Planner is an Excel-based tool for simple feed budgets, planning rotational grazing, defining appropriate stocking rates, calculating pasture growth rates, determining how long a paddock can be grazed for and preparing the most economical ration for stock. The tool now includes a monthly stocking rate calculator and a paddock grazing days recorder.

EverGraze Stocking Rate Calculator

The Stocking Rate Calculator works out the monthly stocking rate in dry sheep equivalents per hectare (DSE/ha) throughout the year by adding together the stock numbers of each class and their DSE rating in a given month. This calculator is also available within the Feed Budget and Rotation Planner (see above).

MLA Feed Demand Calculator

The MLA Feed Demand Calculator allows producers to identify the pattern of feed supply and demand in a 12 month period, the location of ‘feed gaps’, and the ways in which modifying the livestock enterprise might help to close these gaps. There are instructions on how to use the MLA Feed Demand Calculator here.

EverGraze Pasture Improvement Calculator

The Pasture Improvement Calculator will help to work out the costs and benefits of resewing pastures. The tool allows inputs for costs of resewing, the benefits of the resewn pastures to livestock, soils and the environment at any given financial values (i.e. different interest rates, tax rates, gross margins etc). 

MLA Cost of Production Calculator

The Cost of Production Calculator takes data on production, livestock enterprise costs, labour and overheads, and delivers both a ‘cost of production per kilo’ figure for the business and a picture of how it compares with other properties across Australia.

SHEEP: Manage spring lambs | create genetic shopping lists | take on parasites

Wean more lambs module from Making More From Sheep

This module provides the framework and guidelines to set in place all the important management steps to improve flock reproduction rates and lamb survival to weaning.

Australian Sheep Breeding Values - a guide for ram buyers

This guide will help you understand the complexities of breeding profitable yet functional sheep which are right for your business. It focuses on how to make genetic gain in your sheep flock by selecting rams with the right Australian Sheep Breeding Values (ASBVs).

RamSelect

RamSelect Plus is the latest version of the web-based app designed to simplify the use of ASBVs so that you can quickly and easily identify the right genetics for your flock using objective data from Sheep Genetics— MERINOSELECT, LAMBPLAN and DOHNE.

Check out the outlook for internal parasites in your region

The WormBoss ‘state outlooks’ area of the website has now been centralised together with FlyBoss and LiceBoss outlooks in one convenient location on the ParaBoss website. The site also houses advice on creating management plans for worm, fly and lice control. 

More Lambs More Profit

Download this MLA publication to guide you through building lamb numbers through ewe management and increasing lamb survival.

Grass seed management

Grass seed infestation affects producers and processors through reduced growth rates in lambs and extra costs to processors. This hub of information contains management options and strategies for keeping it under control.

SOUTHERN CATTLE: Bull buying time | assess calving performance

BREEDPLAN

Heading to the bull sales? Learn how to interpret estimated breeding values and create your own bull buying shopping list.

Calving histogram calculator

This is a tool to measure the performance of your herd management for calving.

NORTHERN CATTLE: Look after weaners | keep cows in condition | wet season planning | bull selection

Weaner management

Download MLA's guide to weaner management in northern beef herds for advice on managing weaners at the end of the dry season.

Reproductive management

Revisit the learnings from MLA's CashCow project to understand the interventions to be made now to lift reproductive rates in your herd.

Phosphorus advice

Plan for wet season phosphorus supplementation with this guide from FutureBeef.

Bull buying advice

Tips on how to buy better bulls in September and October ahead of November joining.

Breeder disease management

Have a read of these helpful strategies to assist with minimising risk of disease, increasing weaning rates and appropriate vaccination programs for your breeder herd.

MLA heifer manual

Preparing maiden heifers to join the breeding herd is arguably one of the most important aspects of breeder cow management. Check out MLA's heifer management manual.

Breeder Mortality Calculator

The Breeder Mortality Calculator assists beef producers in using their own property records to determine levels of breeder mortality in their herds.

Tips on supplementation in a tough season

In a tough season, supplementation can be vital in maintaining herd productivity as outlined in this fact sheet.

End of dry season burning fact sheets one and two

Many properties in the north burn off old pastures in August and early spring. Here are two information resources to help maximise the benefit.

GOATS: Understand parasite impact | herd management

WormBoss

There is a worm control program for goats in each WormBoss region that will assist you to manage worms profitably and sustainably.

Each program includes practical strategies relevant to the region on grazing management: how to breed for worm resistance, when to drench, when to worm test and how to manage drench resistance.

Management tips

Check out MLA's Going into Goats guide which includes modules on topics ranging from reproductive management to marketing.

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