Pasture recovery advice available after fires

bush-fireOne-on-one pasture recovery advice is now available to assist landholders affected by the March fires get their pastures back on track ahead of the autumn break.

Extension officers from Agriculture Victoria and WestVic Dairy have joined forces to deliver this new service to ensure people can access information tailored specifically to their farm.

Michele Jolliffe from Agriculture Victoria said many farmers affected by the recent fires were wanting to better understand the full impact fires had on their pasture and how they might respond to decent rainfall when it happens.

“Fires can have a drastic effect on a pasture; changing the composition, reducing growth and their carrying capacity in the following season,” Ms Jolliffe said.

“No two farms are the same and because the intensity of the fires varied so much, even in the same paddock, we thought it would be most helpful to work with people one-on-one so that those affected can develop a plan to get their pastures back to being productive sooner.”

Lindsay Ferguson from WestVic Dairy said getting pastures established now to fill the winter feed gap, would be high on farmers’ recovery priority list.

“Fire-affected farms will need to make decisions in a shorter timeframe than normal, given the amount of work that they are doing to get up and running again,” Mr Ferguson said.

This special service will help with feed budgeting and provide some tailored recommendations about species, sowing rate and fertiliser which will help with those decisions.”

To speak to an extension officer about your situation and to organise a free visit please contact:

  • For graziers – Michele Jolliffe from Agriculture Victoria on 0428 581 883
  • For dairy farmers – Helen Chenoweth from WestVic Dairy on (03) 5557 1000.

Farmers who need fodder for their livestock can contact the Victorian Farmers Federation on 1300 882 833.

The Rural Financial Counselling Service is also available to offer free and independent financial support to primary producers and non-agriculture related small businesses. The service can be contacted on 1300 735 578.

Detailed information about recovering from fire, including a pasture recovery quick reference guide, can be found at www.agriculture.vic.gov.au/firerecovery

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