WMG Dandaragan Crop Tour

The WMG team is excited to invite you to join us for a morning out in the paddock with research partners and agronomists on hand to answer your questions and provide insight into the progress of each trial. A BBQ and refreshments will follow.

Click HERE  to view the flyer. Click HERE to RSVP.

Crop checks include:










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PADDOCK CHAT Episode Five: The advantages of late season of late season soil amelioration

Submitted by author on Thu, 07/09/2020 - 11:31

In this episode, we caught up with Dandaragan grower Duncan Glasfurd to delve into his experience with ameliorating soils, and late-season amelioration in particular. We cover why they choose to wait for rain when ameliorating, the preparation of a paddock prior to amelioration, how management changes following amelioration and all the things to consider before giving it a go that will save you time and money. This conversation was recorded on the 29th of June, 2020.

LISTEN via Apple Podcasts or Spotify.

PADDOCK CHAT Episode Four: Don't let mastitis cost your flock this season

Submitted by author on Fri, 06/26/2020 - 13:47

In this episode, we caught up with Nutrition & Production Specialist Bronwen Fowler from Nutrien Ag Solutions to talk about mastitis in ewes. Following the dry summer, sheep producers should keep an eye out for this highly contagious and damaging disease in their flock. We caught up with Bronwen in mid-June 2020 to get her advice on preventing, recognising, managing and treating mastitis.

PADDOCK CHAT Episode Three: The highs and lows of improving pastures with Zac Roberts

Submitted by author on Tue, 06/09/2020 - 10:54

This week's episode has literally come from a paddock near you! We caught up with Dandaragan farmer, Zac Roberts in a paddock full of perennials on Strathmore in Dandaragan to talk all things pasture improvement. Zac farms with his father Wade and brother Jeremy on approximately 10,000 hectares spread across four properties within the Dandaragan Shire. The Roberts family run a mixed enterprise made up of 30% cropping and 70% livestock, and have been experimenting with pasture improvement for roughly 15 years, with much success! Recorded on the 4th of June 2020, this conversation covers Zac's experience improving pastures with perennials and annuals. 

PADDOCK CHAT Episode Two: Solving the puzzle of crop agronomy

Submitted by author on Tue, 05/26/2020 - 10:48

In this episode, we chat with Summit Fertilizers Area Manager and Marchagee farmer, Juliet McDonald about what's keeping her busy in the paddock right now, how to spot the missing links to improve your crop performance, what she thinks we can expect from the 2020 season and plenty more. This conversation was recorded on the 15th of May 2020 when we were still waiting on the break of the season.

Listen via Apple Podcasts or Spotify.

PADDOCK CHAT Episode One: Pest Management Starts At Home

Submitted by author on Wed, 05/13/2020 - 11:13

This is the first ever episode of Paddock Chat, the West Midlands Group podcast that takes a closer look at what is happening in a paddock near you.
In this episode, our host Kirra Holley caught up with Chris O’Callaghan and Jim Miller to chat about how the Midlands Biosecurity Group is tackling wild dogs in our region. Our conversation was recorded in mid-April and due to restrictions in place to prevent the spread of COVID-19, this interview was recorded via Zoom so the audio quality isn’t amazing. We do talk about the extermination of feral pests so if you don’t want to hear about the nitty gritty of animal control, maybe skip this one.

Movement of water under irrigation in the West Midlands region

Submitted by author on Thu, 03/26/2020 - 11:14

The limitation of centre pivot irrigation systems currently is that water can only be irrigated as a blanket application across the whole site, or be limited into ‘pizza slice’ sub-sections of the paddock. This creates severe restrictions in being able to apply water to meet the specific needs of each soil type, and often results in some soil types being over-watered or under-watered depending on the location on the site. The over-watering of soil types can result in the leaching of unused water and nutrients down the soil profile and can potentially cause off-site impacts of nutrient enrichment. The aim of this project was to better understand the movement of water in the soil profile for three distinct soil types in the West Midlands region and assess the potential for the leaching of nutrients and water below the rooting depth of potatoes. This could then guide the implementation of variable rate irrigation in the region, where irrigation can be varied across the landscape to match water applied to soil water holding capacity.

Understanding weight gain in background cattle in the West Midlands Region

Submitted by author on Thu, 03/26/2020 - 11:03

An increasing trend is for pastoral properties to send lighter animals to the southern region to be ‘backgrounded’, or grown out, to heavier weights to enable access to the live export trade or entry into feedlots for future abattoir supply. However, the success of this approach revolves around reducing the amount of weight that is lost in the transition phase during transport from station and settling into the backgrounding property. The aim of this project was to quantify weight gain/loss in backgrounding systems for the first two months following induction in the West Midlands region.
Data was collected on cattle that were transported to the backgrounding region in 2018 and 2019 from multiple properties within the Pilbara and Northern Rangelands regions of WA, with the backgrounding properties located near Badgingarra in the West Midlands region. The cattle in this study were transitioned in the May to October period of each year and individual animal performance data was collected to monitor weight gain from induction at the backgrounding property for a period of approximately 2 months.

Assessing new varieties and mixes to increase pasture production in the West Midlands Region: Part 1- Economic Analysis

Submitted by author on Thu, 03/26/2020 - 10:59

Matching pasture production and livestock requirements can dramatically improve animal production while reducing the cost of supplementary feeding. The aim of this trial was to evaluate a range of pasture mixes that have the potential to fill niche pasture production windows in the West Midlands region. This pasture demonstration site was located at the 2019 Spring Field Day site near Dandaragan on a sandy loam soil type. The site was established on the 5th May using a plot seeder to dry seed 12 pasture mixes, with a volunteer pasture adjacent to the site as comparison. Up to three pasture cuts were taken from each plot during the season to assess pasture production.  The site was mowed in August to simulate grazing, and NKS21 fertiliser was broadcast to each treatment.