Best practices for graziers - livestock practices

INTRODUCTION

Livestock have been part of the Australian scene since 1788 with the arrival of the first fleet. There have been many discussions in past years about livestock practices and the most appropriate animal welfare practices. All livestock managers aim to ensure that stock are treated to the highest standard of animal welfare. Best Management Livestock practices include any activities which improve livestock health and reduce potential hazards. Many of the practices which are positive drivers for soil health, pasture health and biodiversity are also positive drivers for livestock health. As an example, moving stock to fresh pastures on a regular basis (planned grazing) will also reduce selective grazing, improve pasture plant health, allow recovery of grazed plants and improve weight gains and general health of livestock.

Q. Can one man move over 300 breeders, calves and bulls to the next paddock in under 5 minutes?

A.Grazing BMP paddock moves

Each state of Australia has various codes of practice for livestock management and practices. A review of the Model Codes of Practice (MCOP) in 2005 recommended they be converted into Australian Animal Welfare Standards and Guidelines. Animal Health Australia was commissioned by the Australian Government Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry (DAFF) to manage the conversion process.

Under the Australian Animal Welfare Strategy (AAWS) and Animal Health Australia (AHA) management, the existing Codes will be re-written in a new format, to incorporate both the national welfare standards and industry guidelines for each species or enterprise (e.g. saleyards, abattoirs). The task is to re-format each of the 22 existing MCOP into a document that combines Australian Welfare Standards and Guidelines for that species or enterprise. For more information Click here.

Basic Welfare Needs

The following is a list of basic welfare needs of livestock. It is not exhaustive, but a start to a Livestock BMP.

This is a list of combined notes from many Australian sources.

For more information and to discuss any issues above Phone 1300 780872.

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