The events promote good management practice for winter grazing and support farmers to create farm wintering plans that will help troubleshoot potential risks for their farm and crops.
The DairyNZ and Beef + Lamb New Zealand events, supported by Environment Southland and Otago Regional Council, begin in Taieri on March 25 and end inTuatapere on April 9.
“Wintering livestock on crops is common to keep animals in good condition and there’s a wide range of strategies farmers can use to help reduce the impact of a wet spell on soil and livestock. Many farmers are already doing great work in this space,” said Tony Finch, DairyNZ South Island hub leader.
“These workshops will provide the latest information and research into winter grazing. Farmers will work through the details of how they can create a wintering plan which protects critical source areas and waterways; and incorporates strategic grazing, stock management and planning for adverse weather.
“Having a ‘plan B’ prepared and ready for when wet weather does hit is so important – and the value of having it in place ahead of time will make a real difference for farmers, animals and the environment this winter.”
Following the recent floods, there is also variation in feed availability across Southland, for farmers to manage.
Beef + Lamb New Zealand Southern South Island extension manager Olivia Ross said it’s valuable to put time in now to prepare for winter.
“Winter is a challenging time for all farmers – having a plan and knowing what actions you will take to keep animals healthy, maximise feed utilisation and minimise mud will be invaluable when wet weather does strike.
“Farmers are already doing great work and they’recommitted to maintaining good practice management right throughout winter. We encourage them to get involved with these events to get the very best information and advice they can.”
A step-by-step video is also available online – it is a visual guide on how to create a Farm Wintering Plan. Check it out at www.dairynz.co.nz/wintering.
For more information on the Smart Wintering events, visit www.dairynz.co.nz/events or contact your local DairyNZ consulting officer.
Smart Wintering events
Wednesday 25 March: Taieri & Clydevale
Thursday 26 March: Hedgehope & Wyndham
Tuesday 7 April: Mossburn & Drummond
Wednesday 8 April: Mandeville & Riverton
Thursday 9 April: Tuatapere
Ph 027 836 6295