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Wool Stocktake : AWI Annual Report 2013-14
Main focus is on development of grower knowledge and skills which directly relate to managing Merino reproduction, thereby increasing net reproduction rate and reducing wastage. Main area of investment aimed at ewe and lamb survival, early reproductive success and high-performance weaners, genetics and biological mechanisms and conception and early embryo mortality. Lifetime Ewe Management (LTEM) training and support for this program is provided under the Reproduction Management Training Package series: currently RMTP IV, with RMTP V approved to commence in 2015-16. Investment is being made in partnership with MLA -- five-year funding from July 2012. Investment started in 2012/13 and will finish in 2016/17 (covers three AWI Strategic Plans). Total funding of around $5 million a year with AWI contribution of 32%. For growers running Merinos: Average increase of 10% in lambs weaned. Subject to maximum additional annual cost of $2 per ewe carried. Adoption across nine million Merino x Merino joining. Woolgrower participation has increased by around 160% in 2013/14 (from 85 to 250 groups), and assessment of impacts for the 350 participants who have completed training demonstrate on average a 10% increase in lamb marking rate, 33% reduction in ewe mortality. Adoption targets are likely to be exceeded. Lifetime Ewe Management (LTEM) training provides hands-on on-farm training for small groups of producers (average five) in the management and nutrition of breeding ewes to maximise reproduction efficiency. On-going evaluation of group members continues to show significant benefits to participants through improving net reproduction rate. Analysis of 350 producers that graduated LTEM between 2008 -- 2013 show that, consistent with earlier analyses, the average LTEM participant: o manages 3500 breeding ewes o increased whole farm lamb marking percentage by 10% (98.7% to 108.4%) o reduced ewe mortality by 33% (3.7% to 2.5%) o increased stocking rate by 12% (8.9 to 10.0 DSE/ha) o thereby, increasing number of lambs marked per hectare by 23% (3.5 lambs/ha to 4.3 lambs/ha). Demand for LTEM training has increased in 2013/14 from a strong base, with 85 AWI-funded groups completing the training, and 137 new groups established across all states. In total AWI funding has supported more than 250 groups to complete LTEM training, at an average of five enterprises per group. To encourage the establishment and support for LTEM training in remote and pastoral areas, AWI provided $87,448 in LTEM REMOTE support: o 74 groups (370+ growers), across five states o utilising 23 facilitators, who collectively travelled 87,448 km. The Lifetime Ewe Management course provides materials and develops skills to help sheep producers improve animal nutrition, lambing percentages and weaning rates. REPORT OF 2013/14 OPERATIONS -- ON-FARM R&D
AWI Annual Report 2014-15
AWI Annual Report 2012-13