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IndyWatch Goulburn Valley News Feed was generated at Seymour VIC IndyWatch.
Sometimes your name can give people the wrong impression. For example, as soon as people find out that a rakali is an Australian native water-rat, the term rat just puts them off. And a rakali is one of the cutest critters going. Similarly for cockroaches. They are automatically associated with spreading germs and disease. However 
Thursday 22 February 2018 On Wednesday 2 August 2017 I wrote what follows as a result of Barnaby Joyces inappropriate drunken outburst in a Shepparton hotel. It is but one of many examples of why he should not be the Deputy Prime Minister of Australia In a beery-voice filled with the local liquid amber, in
PRISONERS from Dhurringile Prison put their skills to good use recently, making nine of the 50 obstacles that will be part of the upcoming Zaidees Rainbow Foundation Mad Cow Mud Run event.
20 prisoners spent 11 days under supervision constructing obstacles for the event, including a rock climbing wall, ninja steps, a large hurdle, a guillotine jump, tyre hurdle, tyre tunnel, a hand and foot hurdle, spider web maze and a tyre chain swing.
As well as the nine obstacles made by the prisoners, the event will offer challenges such as swimming across the Broken River, a water slide, half pipe and full pipe, a tunnel crawl, cargo nets a-frame, a wooden a-frame, tyre shed, monkey bars, mud pits and a mud crawl to mention a few.
Zaidees Rainbow Foundation CEO, Allan Turner said, The prisoners have done a great job and the obstacles have come up so well.
This year were offering a 12km or 6km run for adults and 2km for the kids run and there will be many obstacles, so it was fantastic to have the assistance of the prison to help construct some of them.
Im looking forward to seeing how participants react to the obstaclesits going to be a fun day.
Dhurringile Prison general manager, Colin Thompson said, We lent a hand because we are all about giving back to the community and completing tasks such as this helps with the reintegration of the prisoners back into the community.
The enthusiasm of the prisoners was incredible. This really gave them the chance to utilise skills that they are learning in the prison and even to pick up a few more skills.
Registrations open at 7am on the day (Saturday, March 3) with first wave runners starting at 7:30am until 10:30am for adults, and kids running from 11am to 1:30pm followed by three and four years old at 2pm. For further information on the event or for register, visit www.madcowmudrun.com.au
THE Liberal Party is confident that they will have a chance to take the seat in Shepparton at the upcoming election, with State Leader for the Liberal Party, Matthew Guy telling The Adviser that there has been enough talk about what Shepparton needs and now is time for action.
While he was in town announcing the opening of the partys pre-selection nomination process, Mr Guy said that the partys focus would be on education, health, continuing the work of the Population Taskforce and transport, including the bypass and rail.
Mr Guy said, The Liberal Party hasnt stood here (in Shepparton) since 2006 and we will put our best foot forward.
It will be a hotly contested seat. There will be an Independent, The Labour Party, The Liberal Party and The Nationals, so Shepparton voters will be spoilt for choice.
Locally, I think there is a keen focus on the railway and the condition and quality of the rail service. From our point of view Shepparton in the same prism that you would view Ballarat and Bendigo, so we view it as a major regional city that needs to have services attached to that. And of course health is another important aspect that we have on our minds.
Weve had a Population Taskforce that has been around for two years that has been to Shepparton three times and we now have a local taskforce which has been doing a good job at looking at decentralising Melbournes growth to areas in regional Victoria.
There are also state-wide issues that will be our focus such as crime, law and order and the cost of living. We will have a little bit more to talk about when it comes to electricity in the near future too.
We are keen to stand. We have changed the way our party campaigns. Weve done a lot of work locally and put a lot of effort into finding candidates. I am very confident that we will be putting to the people of Shepparton a very good quality candidate for them to choose from. This is a unique time for this city.
From the bypass to the trains to the schools, there is a lot of interest in what is happ...
BETTER ways to get use out of fodder on farms in drought affected areas was the main focus of local, Mark Lewis from Alltech Keenan Shepparton and the business Bendigo nutritionist, Donal Blackwell and Tennyson engineer, Andrew Mitchel, when the group lent their knowledge and technology to the Burrumbuttock Hay Run appeal.
Beginning in 2013 by organiser, Brendan Farrell, the Burrumbuttock Hay Run is a charitable event organised to supply hay and fodder to drought affected livestock communities in NSW and Queensland.
The team from Keenan joined the hay convoy at Darlington Point on the evening of Thursday, January 26, which had departed with over 160 loads of hay, arriving at the showgrounds in Cunnamulla, south west Queensland that evening before dark.
Mark, Donal and Andrew said, Brendan asked us along with the Keenan mixer wagon technology because he appreciates that farmers need to be adding value solutions and be educated about new technologies that add value and make better use of their fodder on-farm.
Keenan mixers are unique in that they can process forage in a format that minimises sorting of different feeds and also allows stock to be maintained with less feed intake, meaning farmers can get more from less when resources are tight.
The convoy (up to 10km long) passed through Griffith, Hillston, Cobar, Bourke and onto Cunnamulla.
Being Australia Day many locals on the route came out to greet and cheer on the group with a large crowd of over 1,000 people (some travelling hundreds of kilometres) to meet the convoy at Cunnamulla.
One could see the effects of protracted drought in the region with just dust to be seen in many livestock paddocks where hay was being supplemented.
On Saturday we provided the facility to mix feeds (hay and straw) and talked with farmers in the region about drought feeding strategies.
They were so friendly and appreciative to have had us there.
POLICE have confirmed that Acting Sergeant Gavin Sproule was the off duty police officer who tragically died following a two-car collision in Shepparton on Saturday night.
The collision occurred at the intersection of Verney Road and Nightingale Way just after 9pm.
Investigators believe that a vehicle travelling on Nightingale Way turned right onto Verney Road and collided with a Toyota utility.
The driver of the utility, the 37-year-old Kialla man, was airlifted to a Melbourne hospital but unfortunately died on arrival.
The female driver of the other vehicle was conveyed to a local hospital with minor injuries.
The loss brings the total number of lives lost on our roads to 29, two up from the same time last year.
HUNDREDS gathered together on Monday to pay respect to and farewell a pillar of the local business community, Stewart Lynas who sadly passed away last week.
Many know Stewart through his years at Purdeys Jewellers. Please see next weeks edition of The Adviser for more on Stewarts life and involvement in the local community.
A FOCUS on education was expressed at the Committee for Greater Sheppartons (C4GS) Annual General Meeting (AGM) and dinner on Thursday last week, where the committee heard from Minister for Education, James Merlino on the Shepparton Education Plan and the Super School.
During the AGM the committee saw two board members retire from their positions, Rebecca Wolstencroft and Peter Gray and Rob Priestly was re-elected as chair, Lesley Hart was elected deputy chair, and there was the election of two new board members, Jane Macey from Spiire and former director of the Kelly Communications Group, Scott Kelly.
C4GS CEO, Sam Birrell said, During the AGM Dinner, over 90 members and some leaders in the education sector in Shepparton attended. We had Minister for Education, James Merlino speak on the Education Plan for Shepparton and the Super School plan.
The minister spoke about his commitment to the plan and was very pleased to receive the recommendation from the advisory committee and is keen to work towards making it a reality. He also discussed the possibility of a new Tech School in Shepparton and how important STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) is for the future of the Goulburn Valley region and the business that are here.
Were strong advocates for the Education Plan.
Afterward Minister Merlino spoke, the committees chair, Rob Priestly outlined the business confidence in Shepparton, the fact that we are an export town and that with government investment in infrastructure to help us along, we can continue to provide Victoria with solid export earnings.
GOULBURN-MURRAY Water (GMW) recently inducted 55 community members of new working groups that have been established to help carry out major projects.
The groups will assist with the Goulburn-Murray Irrigation District Asset 25-Year Strategy and the Tariff and Pricing Strategy, both of which are major projects arising from GMWs Strategic Plan, released in September last year. The outcomes of this work will feed into the Essential Services Commission review of GMW price structure from 2020.
Members include representatives from catchment management authorities, other water organisations that are urban water customers, retail customers, environmental water holder customers and community members from across the region. Members of some of GMWs Water Services Committees have joined the working groups as well.
GMW managing director, Pat Lennon said the next pricing submission is due in August 2019, and the new ESC requirements and previous submissions had shown the importance of early, transparent and genuine engagement with customers.
We are delivering on a theme that was touched on a number of times during the lead-up to our updated Strategic Plan that was the commitment to inviting our customer base to the table to have a genuine opportunity to have input and influence on important decisions, Pat said.
My thanks to each of the members of our working groups for being so committed to GMWs outcomes, and more importantly, outcomes for all of our customers.
THE WESLEYAN METHODIST CHURCH is holding an inaugural meeting at the Masonic Centre on Welsford Street, Shepparton from 10am on Wednesday, February 28. The speaker will be revered, Ian Davey. All interested people are welcome. For further information, phone Chris on 0414 906 617.
A FASHION SHOW will be held at The Salvation Army Shepparton on the corner of Nixon and Orr Street at 2pm on Saturday, March 3. $7 admission per person with all proceeds going to supporting people experiencing homelessness in Australia. Includes afternoon tea. See or contact 5821 2666 for more information.
GRANDPARENTS SUPPORT GROUP meet on the first Thursday of each month from 10am to 12 noon at the Shepparton Family Relationship Centre, 68 Wyndham Street in Shepparton. For information, phone 5820 0444.
THE PROBUS CLUB OF SHEPPARTON INC. meets on the second Tuesday of the month at 9:30am at the African House, 54 Poplar Avenue. For ladies and men, retired or semi-retired. Add zest to your lifestyle. For enquiries, phone Kevin on 5822 2673 or Marie on 5831 5256.
PFLAG SHEPPARTON we are a group of parents, family and friends of gay, lesbian and bisexual people who meet regularly to offer support and friendship to families and particularly parents. For more information, phone Glenys 0409 626 647 or email email@example.com
SING AUSTRALIA GROUPS Shepparton meets Tuesdays from 7:30pm to 9:30pm at the Baptist church Shepparton (except school holidays). To participate in singing (no auditions needed), contact Meryl on 5831 2202 or 0418 578 369. Also on the Sing Australia website www.singaustralia.com.au
GROW GROUP; Struggling with depression, anxiety, grief, relationship troubles or coping with everyday life? Know someone who is? Grow groups meet weekly to offer peer support and use a proven program for mental wellness. All welcome, no cost. Shepparton Wednesdays 1pm at 11 Service Street, South Shepparton. Cobram Thursdays 7pm at Moira Education Centre, ODwyer Avenue. Benalla Mondays 10:30am at Waminda Community House, 19 Ballintine Street. For further information, contact Lindy on 0448 052 769.
MOOROOPNA CROQUET CLUB (behind the bowls club) will host Golf Croquet. We play a fun game of Golf Croquet on Thursday afternoons at 1:30pm. First afternoon free. Free lessons on how to play the game. Flat closed in shoes. Equipment provided. Come on Saturday afternoon at 1:30pm for a more challenging game of Association Croquet. Beginners are always welcome. For further information, phone 5825 4541.
DISHEARTENING DISPLAY OF BEHAVIOUR
Over the weekend, I witnessed one of the most disheartening displays of human behaviour I have ever seen. I had just finished shopping at a local supermarket and was returning the trolley to the bay. I had noticed a homeless person sitting out the front on my way in who was sitting right beside the trolley bay. Before I had the chance to return the trolley, a young man approached the homeless man and bent down to snatch his bag of money that he had obviously spent all day collecting.
I am not normally one to interfere with such circumstances, but as I was standing so close I reached over and grabbed the young mans arm, telling him to drop the bag. The homeless man was in shock and before we could do anything further the young man flung the bag into the air, scattering the homeless mans coins.
The young man then took off, turning around and calling the homeless man a scaband it was at that point I noticed the young man had a brown paper bag in his hand containing a bottle of alcohol.
Seeing such behaviour on its own was terrible, but then seeing that this young man walking the streets of Shepparton drinking without a care for others made it even worse.
While I was pleased that I was able to help the homeless man, I hope to never see such disgusting acts ever again.
WE NEED TO RESTORE SOME PRIDE TO OUR TOWN
I would like to follow up the comments made by I Hay in a Letter to the Editor in The Advisers February 7 edition We need to work on making our town better.
I wonder what our council is doing with regard to enforcing its own bylaws?
The town does look shabby and it wont improve while people are allowed to treat our roads and streets as a rubbish tip.
There are unregistered and burned-out wrecks on nearly every road and street in the town.
There seems to be a pop up wrecking yard, on every entrance to our town.
This also includes Doyles Road, Archer Street, Mitchell Street, Campbell Street and Vaughan Street.
These yards have so many vehicles that they cant store them on the premises, but need to use the roads and surrounding council land to keep them, and to pull them apart, and to dump their car parts.
Aside from this council allows storage of cars both registered and unregistered on the nature strips all over Shepparton.
If we cant take the time to tidy these streets up and restore some pride in our town, we will continue to spiral downward and nobody will want to visit Shepparton. Our real estate will continue to be underpriced and no one will want to purchase a home to live or to work here.
IN every walk of life, having systems in place tend to make things easier. When it comes to business systems, Telstra Business Centre has their finger on the pulse of the latest, simplest and most effective strategies and equipment for streamlining business success.
Telstra Business Centre regional sales manager, Tim Sali said, Id like to welcome two new members to the team, David Anderson and Don Atkinson. David and Don are specialised business consultants who are experts at growing customers businesses, mobilizing their teams and protecting their data. At Telstra Business Centre we will help you get the best out of your business and be sure to set your Business in the right direction.
Speak to the team at Telstra Business Centre. You can find them at 114-116 Wyndham Street, Shepparton. Call 5820 7040 to book your appointment and they can help you be that business.
IT IS not too late to enrol for university education in 2018, with La Trobe Universitys Shepparton campus offering classes starting in March, accommodation options, and a Tertiary Enabling Program for those needing a pathway into tertiary studies.
Full time and part time study options are available in the Bachelor of Educational Studies, Bachelor of Arts, Diploma of Arts, Bachelor of Business, Bachelor of Business (Accounting), Bachelor of Business (Agribusiness), Diploma in Business and Bachelor of Human Services/Master of Social Work.
Post graduate options are also available for those with a relevant existing degree or managerial experience such as a Master of Business Administration (MBA).
La Trobe University marketing and engagement advisor, Kristina Marko said, Its not too late to apply for tertiary study in 2018.
Applications can be made directly to the university through our website. We look toward previous study, relevant work or community experience and a students motivation for commencing a course, as part of the application process.
For those who are returning to study after work or raising a family or those who need a pathway into university education La Trobe University offers a one-year Diploma in Business or Arts, as well as the Tertiary Enabling Program (TEP).
Second year nursing student, Fabrice Ebe commenced a Bachelor of Nursing after completing the TEP at the Shepparton campus in 2016.
Here, I feel the campus is well organised and there is a lot of support. Its home, Fabrice said.
Schedule a chat at our Shepparton campus and forge ahead with confidence. To book a one-on-one consultation, visit www.latrobe.edu.au/choose
Direct Applications close March 11, 2018.
CONVENIENTLY located on Maude Street in Shepparton, only a block from the centre of town, Wyndham House Clinic have been providing quality medical care to the people of Shepparton and surrounding areas for over 70 years.
Wyndham House Clinic welcomes three new doctors to the team. Dr Mala Gupta has a special interest in womens health and mental health, Dr Thet Thiri Nwe is passionate about working with families throughout their lifetime, womens heath and geriatric care and Dr Hasanthi Tennakoon has a special interest in geriatric and general medicine.
Shepparton has grown into a very multicultural community over the last decade and in recognition of this Wyndham House Clinic now has a group of doctors who represent many of these cultures including their long standing Australian born doctors who continue to have a very loyal patient base.
As a standard at Wyndham House Clinic, all children under 16 are bulk billed and there is a substantial discount for pensioners or health care card holders. There is also ample patient parking either on the street or in their car park at the rear of the building.
Visit Wyndham House Clinic at 96 Maude Street, Shepparton, phone 5820 3400or book online www.wyndhamhouseclinic.com.au
SOME 470 San Remo Channel Challenge competitors and hundreds of spectators honoured the 1986 inaugural winner of the event, the late Michael Gordon, on Saturday with a minutes silence before the race started at 2.05pm.
Federal Member for McMillan Russell McMillan paid tribute to his good mate who died on February 3 after he suffered a heart attack while taking part in the Phillip Island Swim Classic event.
Mr Broadbent presented a floral wreath to two of the Woolamai Surf Life Saving Club volunteers who transported it out in the channel and laid it in the water as a final tribute to Gordon.
In perfect weather conditions with blue skies, warm weather and calm waters it was smooth sailing for the 33rd Channel Challenge that saw the 2014, 2015 and 2016 winner Mitchell Kibby first over the line again in a blistering time, a good stretch ahead of the strong field of competitors who took to the water for the 550 metre swim and two kilometre run aquathon event.
The hard working Woolamai Beach Surf Life Saving Club and its volunteers do a fabulous job running this event , sponsored by the San Remo Branch of the Bendigo Community Bank and is the clubs major fundraiser for the year and also provides a welcome boost to the San Remo economy.
The daylong event saw San Remo bustling with childrens rides, market stands, various food vendors, a fashion parade, and live music.
Kibby won the event overall in a time of 12:06:04. Luke Plant of 12:58:06 was second and Mark Rowe was third 13:19.1.
Second overall across the line was junior womens competitor Rebecca Henderson 12:50.6, Overall Senior Womens winner was Ashlee Diston in a time of 14:14:6 from Kara Landells, second, and Georgia Key-Helmot, third.
The first place of the junior male returns to Linus Mayes.
The first three overall local males to cross the finish line were Luke Plant, Mark Rowe and Nathan Foote while Inverloch duo Kara Landells and Georgia Kaye-Helmot placed fisrt and second for the locals with Debbi Mahon third.
The swim started in San Remo on the mainland and crossed the Westernport Channel to Newhaven on Phillip Island.
After the competitors completed the swim leg they ran barefoot into the grassy transition area and after donning their running shoes they started the run back to San Remo.
The run back up over the picturesque Phillip Island bridge to the township of San Remo spread the runners out, and made for a spectacular sprint to the finish line in the main street where the large crowds urged the participants on.
OUTTRIM Moyarra Kongwak Cricket Club more than doubled its fundraising goal for the McGrath Foundation at its Pink Stumps Day event over the weekend.
The Club raised $10,400 when 105 ladies attended the luncheon event on Saturday.
The initial aim was to raise $5000. We are overwhelmed by the generosity and support of the local community, coordinator Amy White said.
We continue to grow bigger and better and on behalf of the OMK
Cricket Club we are so proud to be donating this money to the
Brent Sinclair Catering put on a two course lunch for the guests while McGrath Foundation Breast Care Nurse Catherine Enter spoke about her work with breast cancer patients at South Gippsland Hospital.
Korumburra resident and breast cancer survivor Tracey Goodwin gave a moving speech about her battle with cancer while raising three children as a single mum.
Jimmy Kyle from SEJ auctioned off 25 items which contributed to half of the money raised, Ms White said.
We managed to raise a huge amount between ticket sales, raffle tickets, spinning wheels and lucky dips. Local businesses gave cash donations and we also had an online fundraising page.
The Under 16s and A Graders had a chance to hit the Walker Electrical Hitting Breast Cancer for Six sign but although no-one came through with the goods, Walker Electrical donated $500 to the cause.
The Pink Stumps Day committee was made up of Annelise VanRooye,
Alma Waetford, Heidi Greenwood, Kerryn Gow, Louise McMeekin, Brooke
Elford, Ebony Knox and Ms White.
In three years we have raised over $20,000 and will continue to grow this amount in recognition of those affected by breast cancer especially those in our cricket community, Ms White said.
COMPETITORS this weekend at Yanakie Campdraft were treated to great weather and fierce competition with over 120 competitors and their horses coming together to compete in the seven events.
Saturday morning kicked off with the Maiden event.
After 130 runs, 18 horse and rider combinations made it through to the final.
Mat Holz and Grifter eventually came out on top, just one point ahead of Michael Kelly and One Moore Disappointment.
The 13 and under 17 event was won by Trinity McInnes on Action, while Charlie Goff and Maria came second, just one point behind.
The 8 and under 13 event was won by Zoe Adams and Moonshine who shot to the lead, with the closest competitors Cooper Rand and Donari seven points behind.
The Saturday Novice was another closely contested event, won by Mat Holz and Gracie, one point ahead of Charlie Hengstberger and Basalt.
The best of the best came out Saturday afternoon in the open for open event, won by Darren Towns and Bodene, two points ahead of Michael Hiscock and Tip Top and Ken Boulton and D-Max.
Sunday morning started off with the ladies event which was won by Jordi Stockdale on Serene, one point above Marni Hamilton and Blue Denim, Carol Tonkin and Judge, and Vicki Hiscock and Bamalam.
At almost 200 runs, the largest event of the weekend was the Sunday novice. This was won by Mel Towns and Mercury by two points from Lincoln Adams and Dixie.
The last event for the weekend was the Sunday open which ran late into the afternoon. Peter Boddy and Kumar were the winners of this, one point ahead of Darren Bowman and Jet.
With just three campdrafts left in the season before Championships competitors will next week be competing at Powlett River Downs Campdraft near Wonthaggi before a long awaited weekend off.
SURFERS of all abilities gathered together on Saturday in Inverloch with support from the Disabled Surfers Association.
Inverlochs Jodie Cvetovac organised the event, now in its second year, and said it was great to see everyone out hitting the waves.
We ran one event last February and we are hoping that given the success of today we may run two events next year, depending on funding, she said.
We had 120 volunteers turn out to assist our surfers which was fantastic to see. There were about 75 surfers out on the water.
Members of the Disabled Surfers Association Mornington came down for the day which also saw the Inverloch Surf Lifesaving Club host a barbeque for participants.
Committee member Tanya Starkey said it was rewarding to see surfers of all abilities in the water supporting one another.
My husband and I have lived in Inverloch for years and he goes surfing all the time. We are lucky we have this beautiful beach and the opportunity to surf whenever we want. Not everybody has that opportunity, she said.
So it was really rewarding to share this experience with people from across the state. Seeing them feeling supported and safe on the water was fantastic.
STUDENTS of St Josephs Primary School Korumburra, St Laurences Primary School Leongatha and Leongatha Chairo Christian School participated in the combined school swimming carnival at the Korumburra pool on Thursday.
St Josephs Primary School congratulated team red house on first place with 437 points, gold house in second place with 415 points and blue house with 373 points.
Maia Whiteside was the junior girl champion and Callum Donohue was the junior boy champion.
Milli MacKay was the senior girl champion and Callum McLeod was the senior boy champion.
The Carmel Kennedy 200 metre individual medley medallion went to Callum McLeod.
SINCE the beginning of the Winter Olympic Games in PyeongChang, South Korea on February 9, Leongathas Norma Bellingham has been soaking up the coverage of the games and its athletes.
The volume of the television is noticeable as Norma waits to see her grandson Phillip Bellingham at the start of the cross-country skiing race.
Its very difficult for me to know when my grandson will be on television as I do not want to miss it! My technique is to let the television stay on all day to be sure to be there at the right time she said.
At just 26 years old, Phil is participating in his second Winter Olympics. Going in he is confident of his medal chances in the discipline.
On Normas coffee table, family photos are everywhere, in the middle are newspaper articles about her grandson.
Of course, I am very proud of him, and if my husband was still there, he would have been very proud too! Immersed in old family albums, Norma remembers the beginnings of her grandson in the discipline.
Phillips father, Russell, is a instructor at Mount Beauty School Camp at the base of Falls Creek ski fields, Its thanks to his fathers job that Phillip was able to grow up in the mountains.
Russell has always done cross-country skiing, Phillips mother Anne too. Phillip started skiing at age 3, or even earlier! We can really say that he has skied all his life she said.
After competing at his first World Championships in 2013, the athlete participated a year later in the Sochi Winter Games.
On Friday, February 16 while Bellingham missed a medal he was ranked 77th out of more than 120 athletes at the Mens 15km free.
Federal Sports Minister Bridget McKenzie congratulated Phil, who finished above his World Cup rankings in Fridays event.
We wish him the best for the future!
THE Australian Dairy Conference tour travelled through Gippsland last week, with 30 farmers and service providers from around Australia enjoying insights into the regions production systems.
The tour took in some of the most productive and attractive farmland in the region as it headed towards Mondays first stop in the heart of the Strzelecki Ranges at Ellinbank, where the Victorian Governments National Centre for Dairy Research and Development is located.
From there, it moved into the rolling hills of West Gippsland where a visit to Tarago River Cheese offered participants the chance to see a working dairy farm combined with a specialty cheese production facility. They also had the chance to taste some of their wonderful cheese.
The final stop of day one was at Willow Grove, where Ian and Kerry Cougle have set up a large herd dairy business, with an associated beef operation.
The tour dinner that night saw Macalister Irrigation District farmers Michael and Sarah OBrien share their journey through the industry. Agriculture Victorias Alexis Killoran also spoke about innovations in the irrigation sector.
Day two took participants through the heart of Victorias power generation industry to south east Gippsland where Won Wron farmers Paul and Lisa Mumford have a Jersey herd that is a showpiece of genetic investment
Later that day the tour moved to the property of Fish Creek farmers Graeme, Jenny and Shaun Cope, who run a large herd operation in one of the most reliable rainfall areas in Australia.
GippsDairy regional extension co-ordinator Tony Platt said the tour was a success, with participants eager to learn from successful farmers running unique farming systems.
The best indicator of interest in these sort of events is the number of questions being asked and it was often difficult to get the participants back on the bus because they were so engaged with the farmers they were visiting, he said.
Id like to thank all the farm businesses involved for sharing their stories and opening up their farms to a busload of complete strangers.
It was a really worthwhile exercise and a great way to kick off the Australian Dairy Conference.
FEDERATION Training and GippsDairy have jointly announced that dairy industry training programs will be offered in Gippsland during 2018.
The announcement will provide certainty to former GOTAFE students after GOTAFE ceased its training delivery in Warragul and Leongatha at the end of 2017 to focus on northern Victoria.
Federation Trainings executive director, strategic engagement, Tim Weight, said Federation Training had the infrastructure and processes in place to offer a seamless transition for agriculture and dairy students who were enrolled in the GOTAFE courses.
We are delighted that Federation Training is helping to honour the original commitment to these existing agricultural and dairy students to enable them to complete their studies, Mr Weight said.
Federation Training is the local TAFE. We are fully committed to Gippsland and we are very keen to work with our agriculture and dairy industry connections to identify the future student training needs in the region.
Mr Weight said discussions would take place during 2018 with farmers, business groups and key training stakeholders in the sector to determine their needs and to plan future training accordingly.
GippsDairy regional manager Allan Cameron said anyone who had been enrolled in GOTAFE courses in 2018 would now be able to complete their studies with Federation Training.
Mr Cameron said GippsDairy and Dairy Australia are now working
with other registered training organisations in the Gippsland area
to further bolster the training options available to locals working
With Federation Training locked in as a training provider for 2018, we can now work with all local registered training organisations towards building on existing programs and developing new training initiatives to grow the capability of everyone in Gippslands dairy sector, Mr Cameron said.
AROUND 10 per cent of Australias dairy cows suffer from lameness each year.
Economically, the results of foot disease are much greater than the treatment costs. Reduced milk yield, lower reproductive performance, increased involuntary cull rates, discarded milk, and the additional labour costs to manage these cows accounts for the largest monetary loss.
Poor track maintenance and design can be a factor, but not the only one. A poorly maintained track does not guarantee you will get a high incidence of lameness.
In pasture based systems, a factor associated with an increased incidence of lameness is poor maintenance or condition of farm tracks. As dairy farms become larger, there is increased pressure on tracks, particularly those near the milking shed. Ideally, the milking shed would be located at a central point on the farm so as to minimise the distance the cows have to walk, but this is not always possible.
Many of the farm tracks used today were designed for herds that were much smaller than the current herd size; they are often too narrow, poorly drained and require excessive maintenance.
Cows would prefer to walk on a softer surface than a hard compacted clay-rock surface.
We can a better job of constructing practical farm tracks made of material that is readily available to us. Farm track construction is expensive, but it is better that the job be done correctly the first time so that subsequent maintenance costs are reduced and we build a surface that meets the needs of dairy herds.
Cow numbers will, in part, determine the type and extent of the work needed to build sound farm tracks. The bigger the herd, the greater the amount of work required to construct successful farm tracks.
When designing the layout of farm tracks, care should be taken to avoid right angle bends as these tend to slow cow movement. Similarly, gateways through which cows must pass, or culverts over which they must cross, must be of sufficient width so as to minimise any disruption with cow flow.
Steep gradients reduce the pace of stock movement. Excessive gradients also complicate design and construction of laneways, and increase the cost of construction and maintenance.
The layout of the farm track should be such that trees do not cause shading of the farm track. In such areas, drying does not occur and track breakdown is more likely.
Tracks require a relatively impermeable surface and transverse crown, so that rainfall is shed from the trafficking surface as quickly as possible. Table drains, culverts and bridges isolate the road surface from water flows. When the purpose of the track is to carry cows, an additional requirement is that it should not cause damage to the cows hooves.
Drains are required along either side of the farm track to prevent water seeping into the base from the surrounding ground. They must be correctly graded and the water must have somewhere...
MARY MacKillop Catholic Regional College students were inducted
into their leadership roles at the Ash Wednesday mass last
The commemorative mass saw students in years 8 to 12 celebrated for their roles in the school community, while the whole school took time to consider its values for the forthcoming year.
Principal David Leslie congratulated students who were receiving honours and said they are an asset to the school.
We have a student mission team which comprises of Year 11 and 12 students who come up with a theme for the college every year. This year they have chosen the theme let our courage rise, he said.
The wider South Gippsland community will also have an opportunity to gain an insight into the teachings at Mary MacKillop Catholic Regional College at its open day on Friday, March 9.
We are inviting people to come into our environment and get a better feel for what it is like here at the college, Mr Leslie said.
Prospective students and parents can take a peak in the classrooms while our staff are at work and all are welcome.
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