To maintain the health and productivity of rural properties, stock need to be managed in a sustainable way. This helps ensure that the land and water are not degraded over time. When managing livestock, things to consider are:
- over grazing can reduce soil health, pasture productivity and ground cover and can result in soil compaction and increased erosion and weeds
- banks of watercourses are sensitive areas that can be affected by stock, leading to erosion, weed invasion, loss of productive land, decline in habitat for native species and reduced water quality from increased sediment, nutrients and dung entering the water.
Managing livestock sustainably
To keep land productive and the environment healthy, consider:
- keeping stock numbers within the recommended sustainable carrying capacity of the land
- controlling stock access and movement on banks of watercourses, ideally through fencing off watercourses and installing creek crossings
- avoiding over grazing by rotating stock and giving pastures a break
- fencing into smaller paddocks based on land type to allow for rotational grazing and more effective use of fodder through reduced trampling
- seeking expert advice on the type of fence and installation to ensure it will meet your long term needs
- maintaining healthy pastures by fertilising and liming as required and controlling pasture weeds.