Field days spreading the word about accurate fertiliser application

This June, Healthy Estuaries WA is again providing the popular Accu-Spread demonstration days in partnership with catchment groups and Australia’s leading expert, Russell Nichol. The field days will provide farmers with an opportunity to improve the performance of their spreaders.

Most fertiliser spreaders deliver highly variable spread patterns. This means that some areas of a paddock may receive too little fertiliser and others too much. Accu-Spread involves the testing of fertiliser spreading equipment for accuracy and evenness of spreading.

“By testing and calibrating fertiliser spreaders, farmers can ensure they are accurately applying the right amount of fertiliser in the right places,” said Dr Deborah Holtham, the Sustainable Agriculture Project Coordinator for the Department of Water and Environmental Regulation.

When fertiliser is evenly applied, it improves farm profitability and productivity by optimising returns from fertiliser investments. It also helps minimise nutrient losses to waterways.

“With the rising costs of fertiliser, it is especially timely for farmers to learn how to test and calibrate their fertiliser spreaders to make sure their spreader is not wasting fertiliser,” Dr Holtham said.

“From the perspective of waterways, and in a drying climate, it is more important than ever to keep excess nutrients from entering our waterways where they can fuel harmful algal growth.”

The demonstration days will be delivered in partnership with Healthy Estuaries WA catchment groups. Farmers are encouraged to bring their machines to be tested. During the demonstration days, modifications can be made to spreaders to optimise performance.

Farmers who want to bring their spreaders along must confirm this with their local catchment officer when they register. Places are limited to a maximum of six spreaders per day. Farmers without a spreader are also encouraged to attend. 

With several of the demonstration days being cancelled in 2020 due to COVID-19, these workshops are sure to be popular again this year. Interested farmers are encouraged to register through their local catchment group.

The demonstration days are part of Royalties for Region’s Healthy Estuaries WA and Revitalising Geographe Waterways programs. These State Government initiatives aim to support the long-term health of our South West estuaries.

PEEL-HARVEY CATCHMENT

Tuesday, 7 June 2022
Contact Megan LeRoy for more information and to register:

Peel-Harvey Catchment Council

Megan.leroy@peel-harvey.org.au

Ph: 6369 8800

LESCHENAULT CATCHMENT

Wednesday, 8 June 2022
Contact Sonny Vitale for more information and to register:

Leschenault Catchment Council

sonny.vitale@leschenaultcc.org.au

Ph: 0439 322 949

VASSE-WONNERUP AND GEOGRAPHE CATCHMENT

Thursday, 9 June 2022
Contact Jenelle Schult for more information and to register:

Geocatch

geocatch@dwer.wa.gov.au

Ph: 9781 0111

LOWER BLACKWOOD CATCHMENT (HARDY INLET)

Friday, 10 June 2022
Contact Dean Campbell for more information and to register:

Lower Blackwood LCDC

dean.campbell@lowerblackwood.com.au

Ph: 9758 4021

WILSON INLET CATCHMENT

Monday, 13 June 2022
Contact Shaun Ossinger for more information and to register:

Wilson Inlet Catchment Committee

info@wicc.org.au

Ph: 0401 291 457

TORBAY CATCHMENT

Tuesday, 14 June 2022
Contact Pip Tilbrook for more information and to register:

Torbay Catchment Group

info@torbaycatchment.org.au

Ph: 0439 461 591

OYSTER HARBOUR CATCHMENT

Wednesday, 15 and Thursday 16 June 2022
Contact Bruce Radys for more information and to register:

Oyster Harbour Catchment Group

bruce.radys@ohcg.org.au

Ph: 0428 994 408