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TAS Country : November 11th 2010
4 Tasmanian Country Friday, November 12, 2010 News MODERN WAY: Claire Blackwood says Corriedales have great maternal traits. Pictures: ROSS MARSDEN New breeding tack pays dividends HEALTHY MOB: Some of Claire Blackwood's sheep. BRIAN WARD LONGFORD Corriedale breeder Claire Blackwood is taking a different approach to breeding. She said she was ''modernising'' her approach to suit today's market. Mrs Blackwood and her husband Peter have been breeding sheep for about 15 years, initially breeding Merino and White Suffolks. They added Corriedales to their operation about four years ago and Mrs Blackwood, who grew up with Corriedales, said it was the right move. ''Corriedales have great maternal traits and the flock is self- replacing,'' she said. After the addition of Corriedales, the couple also joined Performance Corriedales, a group that uses modern techniques to breed the sheep. ''There's another member here in Tassie, one in NSW, one in Victoria and another couple in SA,'' Mrs Blackwood said. The group meets twice a year and regularly monitors and measures their stock's progress, logging their analysis on LAMBPLAN, a computer program and database for sheep-monitoring statistics. ''It helps us gauge the progress of the sheep and how well we measure up with other breeders,'' Mrs Blackwood said. The interactive computer program provides information for terminal, maternal and dual-purpose sheep producers about the genetic potential of their stock. ''We also participate in a trans-Tasman analysis with a group in New Zealand which helps us bring out the breeding traits most suited to our needs.'' Mrs Blackwood said. But she said their methods were not a case of ''out with the old and in with the new''. The original ewes for Mrs Blackwood's Corriedales came from her father's stud, where she learned a great deal about the breed. ''Dad takes the traditional approach to his breeding but we're looking at more modern techniques,'' Mrs Blackwood said. Waiting with baited breath on Woolnorth JENNIFER CRAWLEY MORRIS WILLIAMS A MAJOR landholder is still deciding whether to allow fox baiters on to its land, just days before the second round of fox baiting program in the North-West begins. Woolnorth, owned by New Zealand's VDL Company, is a massive dairy and beef property on Tasmania's far North- West tip. Company chief executive Nicola Morris refused to allow baiters on to Woolnorth in the first round of the program, citing concerns about the 1080 fox baits on one of Tasmania's last healthy Tasmanian devil strongholds. Ms Morris said talks with the Fox Eradication Program had gone a long way towards reassuring the company. ''We've had very positive meetings with them,'' Ms Morris said, ''They've outlined what they want to do and the science behind it. ''We've also received some political assurances on who would take respons- ibility if something did go wrong.'' She said the biggest issue for the VDL Company was the political fallout if poisoning went ahead and devils were killed. ''It would be huge for the New Zealand district council who owns the company,'' Ms Morris said. ''In New Zealand, 1080 is a huge issue. ''We need to review one more aspect, then get back to them. ''I believe that we will end up being able to work with them.'' A decision is expected within the next few days. The Fox Eradication Program's Craig Williams said extra community support was needed because stage two of the North-West program required baiting on a much larger scale. More than 90 per cent of landholders responded to applications to bait on private land during stage one of the North- West baiting program. Mr Williams said properties in the Circular Head region would be monitored for fox activity before landholders were asked to provide access to baiters. So far, 2039 baits have been laid over 42,000ha in the South of the state. The program aims to lay one bait per 10ha, but its progress can be influenced by landscape features and FEP buffer (ex- clusion) zones. ''To be effective, the strategic baiting program will target all identified proper- ties that contain core fox habitat,'' Mr Williams said. ''Any areas that aren't targeted could potentially be harbouring foxes.'' Mr Williams said the FEP would also contact landholders for permission to undertake post-baiting monitoring activi- ties. Information sessions will be held from 7.30pm to 8.30pm at the Arthur River Fire Station today, and at the Montagu Hall on December 2. Information days will run from 10.30am to 3.30pm at the Marrawah Memorial Hall today, the Togari Hall on December 2, and the Circular Head Show at Stanley on December 4. FEP staff will be available to answer questions. Fox sightings and evidence of fox activity can be reported to the 24 hour hotline, 1300 FOX OUT (1300 369 688). 03689 Call 1300 WIDE SPAN (1300 94 33 77) Check out our full range online at www.sheds.com.au Zinc = Zincalume all over / CB = Colorbond walls & trim, Zincalume Roof All promotional pricing is valid for 14 days from date of quotation. Offer ends when steel allocation runs out, but not later than December 14, 2010. All prices quoted include GST and are for building kit only. Free Delivery is restricted to those located in our Green areas, those located outside these areas will be issued with a discount on their delivery charge. Unless otherwise stated, all prices are indicative of Class 10 buildings in Region A with an Importance Level (IL) of 1. 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November 4th 2010
November 18th 2010