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Seasonal updates and wildlife workshops proves popular

South East Local Land Services organises regular seasonal updates throughout the South East region to provide local producers and land managers with an opportunity to access information relevant to managing livestock and pastures.

Attendees have indicated they find these updates valuable and very practical; a great opportunity to hear first-hand from livestock health and pasture management specialists in an on-farm format.

The recent seasonal update in the Southern Highlands was very well attended with 45 landholders participating despite wet and cold conditions on the day.

District vet Bill Johnson discussed cattle and sheep health issues to be on the lookout for at this time of year. For cattle there are increasing reports of liver fluke, the reproduction losses caused by pestivirus and a late surge in clover in pastures resulting in a number of cases of bloat.

With sheep, Bill mentioned the the need to catch and examine lame sheep and goats, with problems made worse by wet, dense pasture and warm conditions. Worms and blowflies are both very active in the recent warm and wet weather meaning regular observation and treatment is essential.

Local livestock agent Jim Hindmarsh commented on the recent very strong cattle market but highlighted prices can and probably will fluctuate very quickly in response to a number of factors including periods of hot weather and demand from the USA.

Pasture specialist Fiona Leech provided a her pasture systems presentation and gave an outline of the best methods of sampling soil for effective soil testing.

Also popular was this recent workshop hosted by South East Local Land Services with Wingecarribee Shire Council and the National Parks Association of NSW.

The focus was pest animal control and citizen science wildlife surveying, with 27 landholders, mainly from western areas of Wingecarribee Shire participating.

Charlie Signorelli, Senior Biosecurity Officer, delivered the vertebrate pesticide induction training course, instructing landholders on the safe and effective use of the pesticides 1080 and Pindone for rabbit, fox and wild dog control. The benefits of coordinated local group baiting were outlined and most of the landholders present signed up to be part of the Feral Fighters program.