Drought recovery and reproduction on agenda at Trangie field day

Trangie Merino field day to provide hands-on update on key challenges

Sheep
MACQUARIE MERINOS: Macquarie Merino Lifetime Productivity project site chairman, David Greig, NSW Department of Primary Industries development officer, Dr Kathryn Egerton-Warburton, and Australian Wool Innovation's Don McDonald inspect sheep at the 2019 MLP field day at the Trangie Agricultural Research Centre.

MACQUARIE MERINOS: Macquarie Merino Lifetime Productivity project site chairman, David Greig, NSW Department of Primary Industries development officer, Dr Kathryn Egerton-Warburton, and Australian Wool Innovation's Don McDonald inspect sheep at the 2019 MLP field day at the Trangie Agricultural Research Centre.

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A big Merino field day at Trangie in Central West NSW early next month will provide an update on drought recovery strategies and flock reproduction performance.

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Sheep producers will get the chance for an update on how to best manage drought recovery and improve flock reproduction performance at a Merino field day at Trangie in Central West NSW early next month.

Rain has fallen across wide parts of the region in the first step to snapping the worst drought in living memory.

The field day on March 4 at the Trangie Agricultural Research Centre will also include a talk on new strategies to address blowfly chemical resistance along with workshops on sheep classing and visual scoring.

NSW Department of Primary Industries development officer, Kathryn Egerton-Warburton, said the field day would give producers the first chance to inspect the full complement of ewes in the Macquarie Lifetime Productivity (MLP) project.

"MLP is exploring relationships between selection at an early age and lifetime ewe performance," Dr Egerton-Warburton said.

"The project uses raw data, enhanced breeding values and visual classing to select young sheep as we explore new ways to better predict superior lifetime performance.

"We aim to ensure the best data and strategies are used to make robust decisions about retaining animals which will either return the most profit or cost less to manage and are the most productive over their lifetime."

The impact of selecting for wool, liveweight growth, reproduction, welfare and carcase traits on lifetime Merino ewe productivity are being measured and evaluated.

Now three years into the 10-year MLP research program, standard sire evaluation assessments have been completed for both drops of ewes, the two-year old ewes have completed their first joining and three-year old ewes have had their second joining.

Producers will hear Australian Merino Sire Evaluation Association (AMSEA) executive officer, Ben Swain, deliver the latest update from the MLP project.

Field day workshops will cover sheep classing and visual scoring, NSW DPI's Drought and Supplementary Feed Calculator and how to achieve improved reproduction outcomes.

Former NSW DPI Livestock Systems technical specialist, Phil Graham, will provide insights and practical examples of how producers can work towards livestock recovery after drought with an emphasis on production and the financial implications of selected strategies.

NSW DPI livestock research officer, Jess Richards, will explore opportunities to use collected flock breeding, performance and management data to deliver the most value to producers.

One of five national MLP sites, the MLP Macquarie site at Trangie is managed by NSW DPI as part of a $12 million co-investment by Australian Wool Innovation, AMSEA, Merino stud breeders, NSW DPI and other site hosts.

The story Drought recovery and reproduction on agenda at Trangie field day first appeared on Farm Online.

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