Snapshot

Location: “Euthulla,” 15 km North West of Roma, Central QLD

Property size: 2,490ha

Average annual rainfall: 552mm

Enterprise: Beef Cattle breeding

Achievements:

– Implemented grazing and breeding strategies.
– Developing secure water infrastructure.
– Improved land and animal performance.
– Decision triggers in place and increased profitability.

Drivers of Success:

– Strategic property development.
– Training and ongoing education.
– Mentoring and network.

RCS services used:

RCS Grazing Clinic
RCS Advisory
Drought Resilient Soil and Landscapes Program.

Learning from the Land: Roma Graziers Share Their Secrets to Building a Drought Resilient Business.

When Fred and Cath took over Fred’s family’s Roma property in mid-2021, they decided education was the way forward and embarked on a path to build their skills and knowledge.

The Clarks were participants in the Drought Resilient Soils and Landscapes Program, joining 23 other grazing businesses across the southern Queensland and northern NSW rangelands to develop drought-resilient practices. Since then, they have made a series of on-ground and management changes to build resilience into their operations with a focus on matching stocking rate to carrying capacity.

Picture: Cath and Fred Clark with RCS Advisor Raymond Stacey.

Video Explainer: Click the play button below and see the Clark's practice change in action.

Play Video

Farming for their Family

The Clarks take their role as land custodians seriously and build on the work of Fred’s parents as property managers.

“This is a family property, it’s been in Fred’s family for generations,” Cath said. “We were fortunate enough to have the opportunity to take over running it a few years ago.”

The RCS Soil and Landscape Program has helped them see a long-term future for their business.

“We want to provide the opportunity for our children so that, if they want to, they can have a career on the land,” Fred said. “We want to create that opportunity by improving both our resilience, and the resilience of the land and the environment around us.”

The experience of destroying cattle in the drought is a motivator for the Clarks to improve how they managed their livestock, country and business.

“Having to put down animals because of their condition is a horrible feeling, In an ideal world, our kids won’t have to experience that.” Fred said. “We just want to keep making good decisions as we move forward; wise decisions that look after our land and livestock. That will help look after our business.”

Training was the way forward

When the Clarks took over running Euthulla, they saw an opportunity to improve the property through science and technology. However, they were aware they lacked the experience of a lot of other graziers, as they had both lived and worked away for two decades.

They decided training was the way forward, and over the last 18 months have been working with RCS to upskill as managers and business owners. The Drought Resilient Soils and Landscapes Program gave them access to training, mentoring, business tools and a supportive network. Through the program they were able to:

  • Learn regenerative grazing management principles by attending a 2.5-day RCS Grazing Clinic
  • Turn this new knowledge into skills and implement improvements on-ground through regular access to an RCS mentor
  • Build momentum and a support network through sharing experiences within a grazier peer group hosted by RCS
  • Access a MaiaGrazing software platform for recording and reporting on grazing management, with product mentoring by a dedicated team of RCS-trained graziers
  • Access the regional Drought Resilience Innovation Hub and associated partner networks
  • Share and learn through a combination of project case studies, field days and events to showcase drought resilience improvements within their community.

This project is supported by RCS, through funding from the Australian Government’s Future Drought Fund.

What’s changed at Euthulla?

Since working with RCS, the Clarks have changed their grazing strategies to run all animals as one mob with rotational grazing. They have also developed bore, tanks and secure trough water infrastructure.

Through the program’s management frameworks and working with RCS mentor Raymond Stacey, they have also aligned their grazing pressure and breeding with the environmental cycles.

“It’s really exciting seeing the small changes we’ve made having an impact on the land,” said Cath. “We know it’s a long game and it takes a long time for things to be regenerated fully, but it’s really great seeing those changes already start.”

Making decisions has been key for their growth as managers and business owners. They have adopted tools to support a profitable business and healthy environment, such as grazing software and decision trigger points.

“Making decisions at the right time and using tools like MaiaGrazing has flowed through to less stress for us, but also a better bottom line as well,” said Fred. “Through these tools we made the call to partially destock ahead of the current dry spell, resting our pastures and avoiding selling in a falling market.”

Support in the paddock

Their RCS mentor, Raymond Stacey, has seen first hand the changes in the Clarks and their operation over the last 18 months.

“The Drought Resilient Soils and Landscape project is about supporting graziers to manage their country and businesses better,” Raymond said. “The greatest resource we have in this country is the people — the program helps people like Fred and Cath be more resilient to a changing environment.”

Outcomes for drought resilience
  • Implemented feed budget and grazing plan with a goal of 60 days’ rest.
  • Installed secure water points, fencing and monitoring sites.
  • Data-driven decision-making to future proof the business.
  • Realigned breeding to match the environment and ecological cycle.
  • Destocked early – better prices and reduced pressure on the land.
  • Developed vision and goals
  • Improved stress levels.
  • Training and Coaching: 2.5 day RCS Grazing Clinic
  • RCS Drought Preparedness course, MaiaGrazing platform and training, RCS coaching and mentoring.

Find out more about the Drought Resilient Soils and Landscape Program. Or call us on 1800 356 004

RCS Logo

Join our mailing list

You look like someone who appreciates quality with a discount!

$500

Yup. That’s right. You can score up to $500 off many of our upcoming courses as an Early Bird. Be quick. There are limited numbers. Conditions Apply.