Making Stock Management Areas Manageable

Sheep Workshop - Tarcutta NSW

This was our second Stock Containment Workshop, hosted by Tarcutta local Producer, Andrew Hindmarsh on his ‘Glenburn’ Property. With the focus on utilising containment areas in sheep operations, our presenters: Former DPI Livestock Officer, Greg Meaker and Agrista Consultant, Tanisha Shields both demonstrated once again their wealth of knowledge on the physical and financial components of establishing and maintaining containment areas.

Greg Meaker (Former DPI Livestock Officer)
Tanisha Shields (Agrista Pty Ltd)

After a bit of morning tea we hit the paddock for a closer inspection of Andrew’s Rotation five-pen containment area. Constructed during 2017 in the eve of the 2018-19 drought, Andrew’s stock containment area was a valuable tool for maintaining his breeding ewes during the dry time and for protecting the surrounding pastures on his property. When discussing his motivations for building the area Andrew highlighted that the goal was to have a simple, user-friendly, discrete system to get sheep off the paddocks during dry spells. The rotational five-pen design enables Andrew to feed in pen using a feed cart behind the Ute and flow livestock between pens allowing him to identify shy feeders and any showing signs of deceased health so that they can be removed and managed separately from the main mobs. When last used about four years ago Andrew reflects on the use of the area as a positive experience. Before using containment Andrew estimated that he would open no less than 27 gates every time he fed in paddock to the reduced labour and time associated with feeding that came from utilising the stock management area was a welcome change.

Tanisha rounded the morning out with a comprehensive insight into the financial benefits of investing in Stock Management Areas and how understanding the return on investment that these areas are to your enterprise is important for driving business efficiency and operational decision making.

We would like to thank Andrew for hosting and sharing his containment area with us and would like to thank Greg and Tanisha for their expertise over the last two workshops. HLN is currently planning two final workshops for November 2023. If you’re interested in providing some feedback into what topics related to Stock Containment areas, Pastures or Soils you’d like to have covered in there workshops.

Other Resources

Agriculture Victoria. (2018). Sheep Drought Feeding Guide. State of Victoria Government Department of Economic Development, Jobs, Transport and Resources.

Andrews, T. & Littler, B. (2019). Confinement Feeding Stock. NSW Government, Department of Primary Industries.

Australian Wool Innovation. (2019). Releasing Sheep from containment feeding. Australian Wool Innovation.

Department of Primary Industries. (n. d.).  Drought and Supplementary Feed Calculator. NSW Government Department of Primary Industries. 

MLA. (2020). What to consider before containment feeding. Meat and Livestock Australia.

Robertson, S. (2020). Managing Breeding Ewes in Containment Areas, A Guide for Producers.  Meat and Livestock Australia.,35ON,HSIAO,AG6M,1

This project is lead by the NSW Local Land Services, in partnership with The Southern NSW Drought Innovation Hub, Holbrook Landcare Network, Irrigated Cropping Council, FarmLink Research, Central West Farming Systems, Southern Growers, Riverine Plains, Soil Knowledge Network, and Charles Sturt University.

This Project is funded through the Federal Government’s Future Drought Fund (FDF) Drought Resilient Soils and Landscapes (DRSL) Grants Program.