Local research on show at Seasonal Updates

Local research on show at Seasonal Updates

Cropping News
Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development research scientist Christiaan Valentine with an insect monitoring trap.

Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development research scientist Christiaan Valentine with an insect monitoring trap.

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West Midlands Group will host Seasonal Updates on March 16.

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PROMINENT speakers from across Western Australia's cropping and livestock sectors will showcase the latest agribusiness innovations and local research and development trial results at West Midlands Group's (WMG) Seasonal Updates on Tuesday, March 16, 2021.

Held at the Dandaragan Community Hall, the full-day event will cover a range of relevant topics such as budgeting to optimise feed and stocking rates, as well as results from the 2020 WMG research and development program and the 2020 National Variety Trials conducted at Dandaragan.

Producers will catch the latest on the current risk of fall armyworm (FAW) to the region, as well as results from the ongoing monitoring activities of Budworm and Diamondback moth (DbM) conducted by Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development (DPIRD) research scientist Christiaan Valentine.

"FAW can damage a wide variety of pastures and crops and is difficult to manage," Mr Valentine said.

"Susceptible forage grasses such as Rhodes grass are grown in the West Midlands region and may be susceptible to attack."

After arriving in Queensland in February 2020, FAW quickly moved west to Kununurra and then down to Carnarvon.

"Recently it has been discovered in corn at Gingin, so I will be answering the questions of what it can attack in the South West grainbelt and whether we at risk," Mr Valentine said.

Harvest of WMG trials at the 2020 Chelsea trial site at Dandaragan, hosted by G & Y Roberts.

Harvest of WMG trials at the 2020 Chelsea trial site at Dandaragan, hosted by G & Y Roberts.

"I will also be talking about our efforts monitoring moths and the importance of this work for predicting potentially damaging larvae outbreaks."

WMG executive officer Nathan Craig will share exciting results from a WMG trial hosted by G & Y Roberts at their Dandaragan operation, known as Chelsea, which investigated the benefits of growing long season wheat following chickpea.

"The long season wheat yielded a tonne per hectare more than the rest of the paddock in what was a very challenging season," Dr Craig said.

He said that maintaining production in an increasingly variable climate will be an ongoing future challenge for farmers in the region and across WA.

Former Australian cricketer Brad Hogg will share his incredible story at the upcoming Seasonal Updates held in Dandaragan.

Former Australian cricketer Brad Hogg will share his incredible story at the upcoming Seasonal Updates held in Dandaragan.

"These results open the door for new ways of capturing value from soil moisture in our deep, sandy soils following summer," he said.

"Long season wheat varieties have the potential to lower production risk by increasing the grain and graze focus in our farming system."

Dr Craig is confident that those who attend this year's Seasonal Updates will go away with new ideas to implement on farm or the inspiration to investigate further.

West Midlands Group executive officer Nathan Craig unpacking the long season wheat and chickpea trial in Dandaragan at the WMG Spring Bus Tour in September 2020.

West Midlands Group executive officer Nathan Craig unpacking the long season wheat and chickpea trial in Dandaragan at the WMG Spring Bus Tour in September 2020.

"The Seasonal Updates is about keeping our members up to date with new and emerging trends and ideas so that they can keep ahead of the pack," he said.

The Seasonal Updates will also feature a presentation from former Australian cricket Brad Hogg.

Attendees will have the opportunity to hear Mr Hogg's incredible story and meet him at the annual sundowner that will follow the grower-driven event.

- If you are interested in attending the 2020 Seasonal Updates, book your tickets at trybooking. com/BNIDW or contact the WMG office on 9651 4008.

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