October 31, 2019

Each year kookaburras build a new nest high up in the hay bales in one of our sheds.

Take note of the pile of hay on the ground under the nest that they have removed in the building process. 

Three eggs this year.


October 29, 2019

Each year we host Year 11 students from a high school on the south coast of NSW. They are studying Earth & Environment, Agriculture or Food Technology and our farm is part of their six day camping field trip focusing on the Murray Darling Basin. 

It is always a pleasure to have them on farm… keen to learn and not afraid to ask questions. 


October 27, 2019

This week has been National Bird Week and today is the last day to submit your count for the Aussie Backyard Bird Count. It only takes 20 minutes to be involved. 

For the record I counted 16 species and 40 birds in our backyard this morning including this pair of Blue-faced Honeyeater chicks.




October 10, 2019

Not sure who got the bigger fright – the fledgling magpie or me


October 5, 2019

Sometimes you just need to walk away and take the evening off.


October 4, 2019

Calculating dry matter yield. 

To the untrained eye this wheat sample looks mostly green and healthy albeit short but reality is that it has run out of moisture and the heads won’t fill for grain. We need to know if the crops are worth cutting for hay so we dry it down in the microwave to work out the dry matter yield.



October 2, 2019

Murray River at Tocumwal today

If you have been following my blog for a while, you’ll know that I try to focus on the positives; I try to find the beauty in each day. But in reality, things are not quite so rosy. The Murray Darling Basin Plan and its rollout has devastated our district. 

Last July at the start of the irrigation season Dartmouth Dam was 89% full and we got 0% water allocation for the year. This year Dartmouth Dam was 63% and we are on zero allocation. Today’s water flow rate for the Murray River at Tocumwal is 15,422ML/day. This river is not in drought. It is running very high. So what will it take for us ever to get an allocation again? 

In this week’s MDBA’s weekly report Dartmouth Dam storage capacity “decreased by 13 GL” and coincidently at the other end of the system i.e. lower lakes in South Australia some 2,500kms downstream “13 GL of environmental water was released through the barrages (out to sea) over the week… to provide environmental cues and connection to support the movement of several migratory fish species”  

So while dairy cattle are being sent to the slaughter, crops are dying, citrus trees are being pulled out, and people are contemplating their future…. while Australia is now importing wheat and dairy products the migratory fish… in the ocean… are getting fresh water, through man made barrages from a man-made fresh water lake that used to be a natural estuary. It is nice to know where we all sit on the list of priorities with the government.

If you live within the Murray Darling Basin then I urge you to take part in the Panel Engagement Sessions being held through-out the basin over the next 2 weeks. If you can’t get to one of the sessions please, please fill out the Community Experience Survey

This survey is for all in the community not just the farmers. I urge you to take the time to fill out the survey. 

(Click on the blue text above to access websites)


October 1, 2019

The difference a little bit of irrigation water makes. Alive vs dead.