IMPROVING bull fertility and cattle herd weaning percentages and gains will be a focus for the Kimberley Regional Beef Research Committee (RBRC), according to the new chairman James Camp from Kalyeeda station, Broome.
Mr Camp was appointed by the Northern Australian Beef Research Council (NABRC) as the new chairman earlier this year but has yet to meet other members and industry representatives due to COVID-19 restrictions.
Because of the slow start he's "still trying to get my head around it", Mr Camp said.
He said his first industry meeting at Darwin was cancelled and there was "not a whole lot to do" at the moment because of the restrictions.
"The committee is trying to figure out how to work it - we are trying to adapt," Mr Camp said.
He runs the station with his partner, parents and sister (as head stockwoman), breeding Brahman cattle crossed to Droughtmaster bulls.
They currently have a 9000 head operation.
Mr Camp said the family operation had started mustering and usually supplied the live export trade to Indonesia and Vietnam, as well as the local domestic market.
Selling would begin in the new financial year.
Mr Camp said he only became involved in the RBRC recently and he was still getting to know people.
"We will try to focus on what is relevant to our industry," he said.
"Everyone's operation is different and trying to work out research for the whole region in general is hard but so far I've had good support from everyone.
"They are a good group of people and really helpful and keen to give support."
Mr Camp said there had been some breeder trials done in the Eastern States which he thought the group could "look at trying to validate here as well".
They were around "increasing weaner gains and also maximising weaner percentages".
Mr Camp said testing bull fertility was another important factor that would help to improve the herd genetics and calving rate.
The Kimberley RBRC is one of two regional committees in WA under the NABRC.
The Pilbara committee is chaired by Kerry Paull, from Newman.
There are 11 regional committees in total with six in Queensland and three in the Northern Territory.
The regional committees provide grass roots input to NABRC and are made up of producers and local RD&E personnel from a wide range of organisations.
The NABRC said regional committee chairs play a key role in developing RD&A priorities for Meat and Livestock Australia's annual call for grassfed beef RD&A projects by providing advice relating to the strategic direction and principal components of the Program; the design and management of RD&A projects, to ensure the full benefit of projects are captured; RD&A funding and expenditure; and communication of results to industry.