Lord Cattle Land Management
See Land Rehabilitation images here
Lord Cattle aim is to obtain ecologically and economically sustainable beef grazing operation in a fragile environment.
In 1986 we purchased May Downs and the decade of the 80s to early 90s were very dry and spasmodic rainfall periods. I noticed there were a lot of bare lands and little things such as:
Roads and cattle pads and lack of mulch and litter on the soil were leading to lots of water runoff. There were also lots of finger erosion cells and scalded and dead areas due to past management practices. These are the same management practices that were experienced in other continents, i.e. South Africa, Zimbabwe. We introduced spelling of country to get mulch and litter back on the ground. We were aware of and identifying that we needed to change some normal management practices.
In 1992 I went to the Grazing for Profit course run by Stan Parson & Terry McCosker which introduced us to the practices of holistic resource management. This encompassed economic and ecological farm management practices.
We spent four years going to Executive Link, which was an extension of Grazing For Profit. Executive Link aimed to keep the businessesfocusedand to create a change within our own business. The changes were in economic discipline, land management practices and exposuretoinnovative speakers from all areas around
the world, ranging from land management practices to philosophy and psychology.
1993 James & Marjorie visited Bob Purvis at Artinga in Northern Territory, and he showed us what he had done to rehabilitate his fragile environment.
At the end of this period in 1997, I created the May Downs Property Development Plan. The purpose of this was to develop May Downs to an optimum level of management where we could utilize the grazing of the country evenly, and we could implement spelling of land and rotational grazing.
The aim was to utilize the development dollars effectively to give us the best result for our investment while still increasing the ecology of theproperty.
We now have records that prove that we have increased the ecology of this property.
I identified on early on May Downs that there was a lot of water running off the land into rivers.
- This was due to several factors such as,
- The country was continually stocked.
There was a lot of fire 'burning' being used as a permanent tool.
There was a lot of finger gully erosion, erosion cells, which were draining the country.
The vehicle roads were draining the country this was creating alive sides and dead sides of a road or pad. Water coming off the hills and ridges would hit the road, and this water then travelled down a gully and was lost.
The speed of water down a road is possibly five to 10 times faster than when it is flowing across land naturally. Due to the large volume and highspeed of water flows through the gullies also caused further erosion damage to the gullies themselves.
We built Whoo boys, gully erosion control banks to break this cycle and to slow down the water runoff. The Whoo Boys guide the water back into its natural flow state or 'chi' which is the natural flow of life and energy.
With the implementation of the 1997 May Downs Management plan, we have used the spelling of the country to increase the ecology more than developing gully erosion banks. We will continually use whoo boys to the water back into its natural flow state.
Bob Purvis said 'If you have raw earth gullies you are overstocked' he also said 'stop making excuses'.