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Technical annual report 2000-01



Technical annual report 2000-01


Dept. of Regional Development, Primary Industry, Fisheries and Resources technical annual report; Department of Regional Development, Primary Industry, Fisheries and Resources technical and annual report; Reports; PublicationNT; Technical bulletin (Northern Territory. Dept. of Primary Industry and Fisheries) ; no. 295




Made available via the Publications (Legal Deposit) Act 2004 (NT).






Agriculture -- Northern Territory -- Periodicals; Fisheries -- Northern Territory -- Periodicals

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Dept. of Primary Industry and Fisheries

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Technical bulletin (Northern Territory. Dept. of Primary Industry and Fisheries) ; no. 295



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Technical Annual Report 2000/01 63 Outcomes/Benefit: 1. Identify specific areas of the production cycle where improvements may be possible. 2. Evaluate and compare the financial contribution of the first and second round weaners. 3. Estimate the financial benefit of reducing calving spread and therefore increasing/decreasing the percentage of the weaning crop weaned at first round. 4. Improve knowledge of pasture condition and the relationship with herd performance and rainfall patterns Method: A herd of approximately 850 Santa Gertrudis breeders is mustered twice yearly. Live weights, condition scores, pregnancy status and lactation status are recorded twice a year. All weaners are weighed, aged and have their sex noted. Developments in 2000-2001: An early Wet season at the end of 2000 prevented recording a second round on these breeders. Because this project is very much in the early stages there is a lack of sufficient data from which trends may be drawn. The 2000/2001 Wet season recorded the highest rainfall ever. The trial herd has been pregnancy tested, weighed and condition scored. Lactation status was recorded and all calves and weaners were weighed (Table 1). The percentage of pregnant and wet cows has increased from last year (12.8% to 22%). With time we may determine if this result is due to seasonal conditions alone or as a response to other factors such as delayed weaning. It is interesting to note that cow weight has not increased in response to the exceptional seasonal conditions with average weights changing from 497 kg in April 2000 to 491 kg in April 2001. This slight reduction in weight has been associated with a slight increase in average body condition score from 5.5 to 6.2. As a general observation, the condition score is high which is often typical with the seasonal conditions being experienced. Table 1. Results to date As at 15/4/00 As at 7/4/01 No. of cows tested for pregnancy 641 656 Average cow weight (kg) 497 491 Average condition score (1 to 9) 5.5 6.2 Pregnant and wet (%) 12.8 22 Pregnant and dry (%) 27.5 23 Non pregnant and wet (%) 50.5 13 Non pregnant and dry (%) 9.2 42 Average calf weight (kg) 108 106 Average weaner weight (kg) NA 339