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Sheep workshops on the mark

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Sheep workshop
Photo: The Koondrook and Barham Bridge Newspaper

Last Wednesday a group of 40 local sheep producers attended a Lamb Marking Best Practice workshop organised by Western Murray Land Improvement Group (WMLIG) and Central Murray Sheep Producer at “Glenbar” in Mallan. The workshop was facilitated by Geoff Duddy from Sheep Solutions who has dedicated the last 30 years to improving sheep producers’ and enterprises’ skills and knowledge base across all areas of sheep production. Whilst recent wet weather has not been ideal for marking, the dry day offered up the opportunity for farmers to learn and recognise best practice.

For young and new farmers, the workshop offered the opportunity to gain skills and knowledge off farm. For more experienced farmers, the day introduced new tools and processes that will help improve their practice. Whilst some farmers outsource their marking to contractors, the importance of being able to recognise that contractors are performing best practice marking helps farmers feel empowered and enables them to feel confident that their sheep are in good hands.

Duddy covered off all aspects of marking including the best conditions for marking, the welfare of animals and humans, use of new pain relief products such as Numnuts, tools, and mothering up post-operation. The group gathered around three sets of cradles, ranging from vintage to modern to watch needling and tail docking demonstrations. The pros and cons of mulsing were also covered off by WMLIG’s Project Officer, Rick Ellis, who provided insight based on his experience in the industry as an ex-mulsing contractor. WMLIG would like to thank Marcus and Bree Nalder for hosting the workshop on their farm and a special thanks to Murray Local Land Services Vet, Linda Searle, who provided her insights throughout the day.

Next Monday, June 28, WMLIG is running the annual Wakool Sheep Night at the Wakool Club from 7pm. Geoff Duddy will be returning to present “The Real Profit Drivers In The Sheep Industry”. He will cover topics such as improving sheep enterprise efficiencies, reducing costs per kilo of product produced and getting more bang for your buck. All sheep producers and family are welcome to attend this social night, and a light dinner will be provided.

The presentation is a free event, although signing up as a member of WMLIG will help support a team of locals that work towards bringing capacity building workshops and many other events to the local region. To register for the event, and to see upcoming events and workshops please head to www.westernmurraylig.org/upcomingevents or call (03) 5453 1577.

Both the Lamb Marking Best Practice workshop and Wakool Sheep Night are funded by the Australian Government under the Murray-Darling Basin Economic Development Program.

The Koondrook and Barham Bridge Newspaper 24 June 2021

This article appeared in The Koondrook and Barham Bridge Newspaper, 24 June 2021.

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