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TAS Country : July 28th 2011
Friday, July 29, 2011 Tasmanian Country 5 News RUST ISSUES: Stewart McGee of Bishopsbourne and Greg Bullock of Launceston Rust never sleeps KAROLIN MacGREGOR SHARING VIEWS: Brenden Green, from Roberts Hobart, Michael Nichols, from Sisters Creek, and David Rann, from Seedmark, at last week's grower meeting. RUST is one of the biggest challenges facing grain growers around the country this year, and Tas- manian producers have also been warned to be on the lookout. Grant Hollaway is a re- searcher with the Depart- ment of Primary Indus- tries at Horsham in Victoria and was a guest speaker at last week's Grain Research and Devel- opment Corporation grower update at Campbell Town. Mr Hollaway told far- mers that the wet summer had provided the ideal con- ditions for rust to carry over through ''volunteer'' cereal plants. There are three main rust types: stripe rust, leaf rust and stem rust. How- ever, there are specific pathogens of all three varieties that target differ- ent cereals, most com- monly wheat, oats and bar- ley.Mr Hollaway said one of the most important factors to consider when tackling rust was that the patho- gens could only survive from one season to the next on green plant material. He said because of this the biggest issues with rust were often caused when there were large numbers of ''volunteer'' cereal plants from the previous season, which caused a ''green bridge''. Smaller numbers of the rust spores can also sur- vive on some grass species that grow along fence lines and beside roads. Rust spreads by wind and spores can travel long distances and will land on cereal plant leaves. At night when there is suf- ficient moisture, the spores enter the leaf and set up a feeding network to feed on the leave cells and eventu- ally produce more spores, which further spread the rust. Mr Hollaway said that with the ideal temperature and moisture levels, this process could take as little as seven to 10 days. ''Obviously when the spores are infecting and reproducing so quickly, the multiplying effect doesn't take long before this can spread over a large area and affect huge areas of crops,'' he said. Mr Hollaway said a serious rust problem could cause yields to fall by as much as two-thirds. ''It's really important that we have varieties that protect our crops from these potentially large yield losses,'' he said. In an effort to combat the problem, rust-resistant cereal varieties have been bred. Mr Hollaway said rust-resistant varieties could be divided into two categories: major and minor gene resistances. Major gene resistant varieties can recognise when a rust spore enters a leaf. As a defence mechan- ism, the plant kills off the surrounding leaf tissue, preventing the rust spores To Page 8 Lord comes to aid of abattoir JENNIFER CRAWLEY JAMES LORD: I want to run my own buisiness and I want to be involved in agriculture.'' CRADOC abattoir has a new owner --- James Lord, an eighth generation Tasmanian and the son of Northern Midlands farmer and Tasmanian Irrigation Development Board chair John Lord. Livestock owners in the south of the state are breathing a sigh of relief as the abattoir gets ready to open. ''I'm here to support the community that relies on this facility,'' James said this week. ''If the community is able to support us we are here to back them.'' Reading the Tasmanian Country story on the closure of t abattoir was the beginning of a whirlwind two weeks for the new owner, James said. ''I saw the story on a Friday and I thought I'd better go and have a look at that,'' he said. He spoke to the agent on Saturday, went to Cradoc on Sunday and spent the next two days on the floor with former owner David Stephens. He only had three weeks to seal the deal because the community could not cope with the abattoir being closed for longer. The local stock carrier, six butchers, a multitude of livestock owners, pig farmers, local chefs and providores, all depend on Cradoc for their businesses, he said. ''Everybody's got bills to pay, they're sending stock north and there's stock waiting in paddocks, I couldn't take six months. I want to live in Tasmania, I want to run my own business and I want to be involved in agriculture. I want to be involved in community, that's the important part.'' James, 25, studied science with a chemistry major. He worked on the mainland for a industrialist on sustainable projects. Project managing is his forte, James said. He worked as a junior engineer on infrastructure construction ''to get his boots one the ground'', James said. A year ago James put a canopy on the back of his ute and drove around the country. He worked in a country pub, drove heavy machinery in Western Australia and worked on an oil rig. James is completing a Masters of project management, and Tasmania was calling him home. ''I came home to write some assignments and work on the farm with Mum and Dad for a month.'' And that's when he saw the Tasmanian Country story. James is receiving expert advice and mentorship from a staff member of the Animal Industries branch in the Department of Primary Industries. Meanwhile he is looking for slaughtermen with experience. He needs six staff, two slaughtermen, one butcher, two meatpackers and one labourer. He has secured the services of one slaughterman and will be looking for extra hands in the lead-up to Christmas. Cradoc abattoir will reopen on Monday, August 8. 2034287-110715 TASMANIAN ALKALOIDS Value Adding in Tasmania Soil test now for correct fertilizer application
July 21st 2011
August 4th 2011