Information and Articles

Australia’s first bushfire resistant straw house to be built

 With bushfire season fast approaching, construction of the first bushfire resistant straw bale house tested by CSIRO has begun in rural Victoria. Conceived  by sustainable designer Joost Bakker, the house is based on design principles that minimise environmental impact and it is set to withstand temperatures  equal to that of a worst case bushfire scenario.

New sheep worm drench resistance kit makes testing easier

A new kit containing everything needed for a sheep worm drench resistance test has been developed by researchers at the Department of Agriculture and Food WA.

Farm security: Preventing crime on hobby farms

 Rural crime is on the increase. This is mostly due to the isolation and ease of access to farms and the portable nature and high value of its livestock and  farming equipment. Hobby farms in particular are at high risk of theft as owners are often absent while such farms are usually located within close proximity  to towns or cities.

Workshops for new or potential pig owners

 Many people move from cities to regional areas and part of the lifestyle shift usually includes taking up ownership of small parcels of land and rearing  livestock.

Spooky Horses? You don’t have enough chickens around!

 Known as nature’s tractors, a chicken’s favourite pastime is scratching in loose litter looking for worms and little bits of grain that have dropped out of hay  or feed.

Starting a lavender farm

 Have you purchased a small farm, or are you interested in lavender and thinking of starting a lavender farm? Many people do, some as a paying hobby and  others that go on to make a successful business from it.

Barbers Pole worm warning

 Recent worm count and egg count results throughout the south east of Australia suggest that Barbers Pole worm (Haemonchus contortus) will be a  challenge this spring and summer on farms that traditionally may not have seen issues previously with this parasite.

Part two: Calf housing and bedding requirements for successful calf rearing

 For small landholders wanting to make a success of calf rearing and make a supplementary income from it, calf housing will be an important  consideration. Providing suitable housing for calves at night and in bad weather for the first 4 weeks of their life can result in growth rates of up to 25%  above those of non-housed calves.

Beware of bloat

 As we head into spring, a few cases of cattle bloat have caused some problems in the region over the last week. Bloat is a seasonal problem in both dairy  and beef cattle.

Small farms and community supported agriculture

 Community supported agriculture (CSA) is a sustainable food production system where farmers sell direct to the consumer. Farmers grow a product  consumers want, in exchange for them supporting the farmer.

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