This April we are launching our online head shepherd conference. So join us on the day and get access to a truly inspiring panel of experts covering a range of topics all from the comfort of your home. We hope to see you online. If you have any questions or would like help getting access, please let us know at email@example.com
Grab your place for the conference and we will see you on the day. All registered delegates will have access to recordings of all of the sessions a few days after the conference is completed
$100 NZD per person
We've pulled together a fantastic group of experts for our online conference. Below is an overview of all of our online talks on the day. We will be meeting online via zoom so feel free to ask questions or simply relax and learn from the comfort of your favourite chair.
Mark is a Director and Consultant at neXtgen Agri. Head Shepherd is his brainchild and he will be your MC for the day. Mark grew up on a farm in the Victorian Mallee and has since pursued a career focussing on sheep nutrition and genetics in Victoria, Western Australia and New Zealand. He now lives in Christchurch and is a recognised thought leader in sheep genetics.
Traci will lead us out with an address on the importance of leadership and good governance. Traci is a multiple award-winning company director and a recognised industry leader. Traci has been named in the top ten most influential women in NZ agribusiness and in the BBC's 100 most influential women in the world.
Andrew is a Director, Consultant and Veterinarian at Livestock Logic in Hamilton, Victoria. Animal health underpins the prosperity of livestock farming. Andrew will lead us through the key practices that are required for healthy livestock and therefore a healthy livestock business.
Herman is an Emeritus Professor at the University of Sydney. He started his career in studying the genetics of Merino sheep. Some of the concepts he was championing over 30 years ago are now starting to get traction. These concepts are loved by consumers. He’ll talk to us about how the health of our animals can be improved through breeding the right ones.
Julia is Head of Analytics at NZX (NZ's stock exchange). Julia and her team analyse global dairy and agri-food behaviours, sustainability, infrastructure and equities. A large part of her job involves travelling, gleaning insights and identifying trends and then sharing these. Julia will talk to us about her version of what the future has in store for us.
Andrew is a Director and Consultant at Thrive Agri Services. Andrew has worked in the prime lamb industry for his whole career, he brings a balance of hands-on practical experience with detailed bio-economic modelling. Andrew will discuss the factors to consider in optimising a prime lamb system and in doing so how to minimise the carbon footprint per unit product.
Amy is a recent PhD graduate and now a Research Scientist at Murdoch University in Western Australia. Amy’s PhD and ongoing work largely focusses on improving lamb survival. She will talk to us about some simple concepts to set up lambing mobs for success, with a focus on mob size.
Rachel is a 4th generation Merino farmer from South Australia. She spent the past 20 years supporting and mentoring people in multiple case management and leadership roles. She has a strong affinity for agriculture and a strong desire to see people to succeed. This will be a session of self-reflection and some concepts that we should all confront whether we like it or not.
Bronwyn has more than 20 years of experience working in the Australian and New Zealand sheep breeding industry. She specialises in genetics focussed research and development as well as project management. She works at Murdoch University and will present her take on classing commercial ewes and how good the industry is at picking the winners.
Holly is Managing Director at The Livestock Collective and the Corporate Governance and Compliance officer for Emanuel Exports. She is a Veterinarian and Agricultural Scientist focused on systems, training and processes to continually improve livestock welfare, compliance and efficiency, with a focus on the livestock export supply chain. The Sheep Collective, and now The Livestock Collective, is a great story of how transparency builds trust – Holly will share this story with us.
And finally, Mark will round out the day with his summary and thoughts.
Many sheep producers are working on strategies to improve their reproductive rates. Nutrition and management interventions have yielded great results for many producers. In some operations, responses to these improvements have been lower than expected. Consistently these producer shave a genotype that has been selected for traits other than reproduction and survival. The Merino Lifetime Productivity trial currently underway has demonstrated massive differences in reproductive performance between the daughters of industry sires. Despite these obvious differences and producer sentiment suggesting they want to improve reproductive performance and lamb survival, the industry uptake of genetic tools to improve reproduction (NLWASBVs) have been poor (estimated less than 10% of ram buyers utilising this information when purchasing rams). With the advent of new reproduction ASBVs to help inform producers when buying rams, there is a renewed opportunity to demonstrate the role that genetics can play to augment nutritional and management strategies to improve ewe reproductive performance.
There is a range of over 60% in the number of lambs weaned breeding value in the Merino analysis and 50% in the maternal analysis of Sheep Genetics. Largely producers are not using this information when selecting rams and many ram breeders are not supplying the information. Genetics is obviously a slower route to an improvement in reproductive performance, but it is permanent and cumulative. The large range in genetic potential provides an excellent opportunity to demonstrate the difference to Australian sheep farmers.
This project is establishing 5 demonstration sites that will compare the ewe progeny from the participating producer’s normal ram team with a demonstration ram team that has been purchased using breeding values for reproduction. This page will be updated with information as it is generated and will feature each of the properties that are involved. Project information will be provided periodically. If you would like to receive updates on this project please sign up here.
To find out more please contact Darren Gordon - Call 0408 114 656 or email firstname.lastname@example.org or MarkFerguson - Call +64 21 496 656 or email email@example.com
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