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TAS Country : March 24th 2011
TFGA www.tfga.com Friday, March 25, 2011 Tasmanian Country 13 Continuing professional e elop ent s olars ips in lu ing ut not limited to Conferen es ort ourses or s ops urse re entry refres er Postgra uate s olars ips in lu ing ut not limited to asters progra s ra uate iplo as ra uate erti ates onours progra s DO YOU CURRENTLY WORK IN AGED CARE? Australian Government funded scholarships are available for nurses ho are Australian citi ens or permanent residents to underta e further educational opportunities AGED CARE NUR ING C OLAR I R t li e k fe i l i i ti i d t t e t e t li e me t t e f d dmi i t t f t i m. freecall scholarships rcna or au rcna or au C or more information on eli ibility or ho to apply for a scholarship globe puts heat on Tassie ACCLIMATISE: Tasmanian farmers can look to properties like the Zema Estate winery and vineyard in Coonawarra as a refernence for the future. below 500m elevation but increas- ing at higher elevation sites. In most areas, the decrease in chill hours in lower elevations sites is likely to have limited impact on the majority of crops (including apples and pears) that require less than 1300 chill hours. However, black- currants that have high chill re- quirements may be forced to high- er elevation sites. In the warmer lower elevation and coastal areas, yields and quality of high-chill fruit varieties, such as some cherries, may be adversely affected later this century; For many areas, the period of frost risk is also projected to shorten from March-December to May-October. Frost has a positive role in agriculture because it breaks the life cycle of pests and diseases. Drought will still be with us, less in the south-east, north-east and south-west and more in the central highlands to north-west. By way of comparison, the CFT project team concludes that by the end of this century parts of Tas- mania could experience conditions similar to the present day growing conditions in the Coonawarra wine growing region in South Australia and the Rutherglen wine growing region in Victoria. Pasture is obviously critical to Tasmanian livestock. By 2085, annual dryland pasture production from ryegrass is pro- jected to increase by 10 per cent to 100 per cent, depending on the region. Those areas of Tasmania that are currently most ''temperature lim- ited'' will have the greatest in- creases, mainly through an earlier start to spring and higher growth during spring and early summer. Annual irrigated ryegrass yields are projected to increase by up to 30 per cent by 2040, but then decline. The project team says this de- crease in yield is due to an increase in the number of hot days during summer months. ''Farmers may have to consider alternatives to meet summer feed demands as increasingly higher temperatures reduce the yield of ryegrass,'' the report says. Simulations of wheat cropping suggest the potential for up to 15 per cent increases in yields, given adequate inputs of fertiliser and irrigation. The report offers some sugges- tions of potentially productive land. ''Agricultural production in many elevated areas in Tasmania is limited by unsuitable soils and steep slopes,'' it says. ''However, there are some areas with soils and appropriate slopes capable of more agricul- tural production where warmer temperatures are projected. ''These areas include a strip along the North-West Coast, with parts of the North-East above Ringarooma, parts of central Tas- mania from Bothwell across to Tarraleah and some areas in the Huon Valley.'' So, the executive summary for farmers would be that we have to readjust our thinking about the crops for which we have a natural advantage. We can gain a lot, we have to look to new areas to grow those crops and we have to arm our- selves against the new bio- security threats from weeds, pests and diseases. Fruit fly report false alarm GOVERNMENT entomologists say a suspected fruit fly found in the north west of Tasmania was a false alarm. A member of the public at Penguin reported grubs in a tom- ato sparking concerns fruit flies may have spread to the northe. However Department of Pri- mary Industries Water and En- vironment plant health manager Andrew Bishop said the grubs were actually vinegar fly. Mr Bishops said vinegar flies were a minor pest that were endemic to Tasmania and were not a quarantine concern. Mr Bishop said the department's entomology laboratory had been kept busy in recent weeks after an increased number of reports from the public following the discovery of two Queensland fruit flies in the Hobart through routine trapping. ''In most cases the reports have been vinegar fly, which although smaller than fruit fly, can easily be mistaken for fruit fly at first sight,'' he said. ''So far none of the cases re- ported by the general public have been fruit fly, but it is important that the public continue to report any signs they think may be an exotic pest or disease.'' Quarantine officers are check- ing the traps twice a week, but there have been no detections since one in February.
March 17th 2011
March 31st 2011