A new smartphone app designed to help northern graziers determine stocking rates and carrying capacity of paddocks has been launched.
The Stocktake Plus app, launched on Monday by Queensland agriculture minister John McVeigh, has been developed with funding from the Queensland Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry and Meat and Livestock Australia.
MLA’s NRM Project Manager, Cameron Allan, said 25 per cent of producers were now on mobile devices and that number was rapidly growing.
“With the exponential growth in uptake of mobile technology, we realise there is an opportunity to put practical tools into the pockets of producers so they have ready access to information when and where they need it,” Mr Allan said.
“The Stocktake Plus app puts a property’s pasture records at your fingertips.
“The app gives you the ability to make informed on-the-spot decisions about stocking rates and paddock management – decisions that are essential to ensure longer-term condition and productivity of the grazing business.”
DAFF extension officer, Jane Pryor, led the development of the app, in conjunction with collaborator and beef industry consultant, Steve Banney.
“For a grazier standing in his or her paddock, the app uses GPS technology to assess and report the land type,” Ms Pryor said.
“Then, through a guided process, a grazier can use the app to monitor their soil, pasture and woodlands to come up with a recommended long-term carrying capacity and a seasonal forage budget.
“The app has a number of functions that can be used independently or together, such as tools to undertake a forage budget, monitor land condition, track stock numbers, and keep rainfall records.”
Ms Pryor said the design of the app took into account feedback from graziers on what functionalities it should include.
Promoted through FutureBeef Program for Northern Australia by program partners DAFF, Northern Territory Department of Primary Industry and Fisheries, Department of Agriculture and Food Western Australia, and MLA, the app is now available for use by all northern Australia beef producers.
Queensland agriculture minister John McVeigh said new technology, and industry’s acceptance of it, was slowly but surely changing the way primary producers could do business.
“Producers know their land and know their stock, but anything that can help them lift production and viability should be welcomed and embraced,” Mr McVeigh said.
“I encourage producers to have a look at this technology and utilise this free app, and take advantage of everything it offers.”
More information about the free app is available at at www.stocktakeplus.com.au