Sheep feeding tips for Western NSW producers in free webinar

Sheep Central, October 31, 2017

Sheep feeding on grain in crop stubble.

WESTERN New South Wales landholders can gain useful insights on managing the nutritional needs of stock in an upcoming webinar focusing on pastoral livestock nutrition for dry times.

The webinar, which is being co-ordinated by Western Local Land Services and Sheep Connect NSW, will be held on Thursday, November 9, with interested participants simply needing a computer with internet connection to take part.

Despite some much needed rain during October, conditions throughout much of the Western region remain dry, and landholders are having to make tough decisions about feeding and flock management.

Western Local Land Services Team Leader – Agriculture, Gemma Turnbull hopes the webinar will be informative for landholders and assist them in managing what has so far been a challenging season.

“The webinar will cover a range of topics including identifying feeding options to suit your situation during dry times but also the period immediately after rain,” Ms Turnbull said.

“Well known pastoral consultant San Jolly is the guest presenter and will discuss how to analyse types of feed, things to be aware of and how best to maintain stock when it is dry.

“There will also be the opportunity to ask San specific questions relating to your specific situation.

“We encourage all landholders to attend this webinar which can be done from home.”

The webinar will commence at 1 pm AEST on Thursday, November 9, and is free of charge.

Participants are required to register beforehand, and those unable to attend on the day will have access to a recording.

Warning on ceasing supplementary feeding

Western Local Land Services district veterinarians last week warned landholders not to immediately cease feeding their stock after recent rainfall in the Bourke, Wanaaring and Buronga areas during October.

After an extended period of little to no rain, many landholders have been supplementary feeding their stock.

Despite the rain, Western Local Land Services District Veterinarian, Dr Hannah Williams said landholders should be cautious before making the decision to stop feeding any stock.

“There have been instances in the past when as soon as landholders receive some rain they immediately stop feeding their stock which comes with some major risks.

“For sheep that are no longer supplementary fed and chase the green pick, if the green pick diminishes and the sheep return to eating grain, the ruminal bacteria may not have had time to adjust to these changes so there is an increased chance of grain poisoning,” Dr Williams said.

“Similarly, sheep will spend much more energy chasing the green pick after rain and as a result can rapidly lose body condition and ultimately die if already in poor condition from the dry conditions.”

In light of the recent rainfall, landholders should also be on the lookout for new weeds and plants coming through in the coming weeks.

The toxins in these plants and weeds can have a negative impact on stock so producers are advised to try and identify plants they aren’t familiar with to ensure they are not toxic to livestock.

To register for the webinar head to and for further information on the webinar, contact Ms Turnbull on (02) 6870 8632.

Landholders looking for further information on seasonal conditions should visit

Source: Western LLS.


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