Cell grazing in the Pilbara: Cheela Plains, WA

Cell grazing in the Pilbara: Cheela Plains, WA Report

DKCRC Working Paper

  • Author(s): Walsh, D
  • Published: 2009
  • Publisher: Desert Knowledge CRC
  • Volume: 56

Abstract: Twenty-five percent of the overall property is rested at any given time. The cell system, which has been fenced on 23,500 hectares of the most productive country for nine years, has 98% of its area being rested at any given time. Cattle are run in a single mob of 1,000 to 1,200 head. The decision to implement cell grazing was made after Evan and Robin attended a Grazing for Profit School in the late 1990s. The cell area currently comprises 57 paddocks in a grid formation, with the potential to become about 100 paddocks with an ideal size of about 225 hectares each. A single-wire electric fence is used to control the cattle. Most waterpoints are situated in the paddock corners which means that each water can supply four paddocks. The water supply is still being refined to maximise flow rates to troughs and tanks. An innovation in the water infrastructure has been to use dump-truck tyres from the local mines as water troughs. Another innovation at Cheela Plains is the lack of gates in the cell system. Cattle are moved between paddocks by lifting the single-wire electric fence with a PVC pole. This means the stock can be moved from any location (not necessarily the paddock corner or trough). The cattle also recognise the white pole very quickly. When paddocks are not in use an old truck tyre is simply laid on the wire at track intersections etc. The old truck tyre laying on the ground near the fence becomes the only permanent “gate” fixture. Cattle are moved quietly using horses.

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Suggested Citation
Walsh, D, 2009, Cell grazing in the Pilbara: Cheela Plains, WA, Volume:56, Report, viewed 15 June 2024, https://www.nintione.com.au/?p=4897.

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