A fly in the oinkment - 7 July 2015

When you’re producing up to $650,000 of irrigated hay annually for drought-stricken farmers in Queensland, feral pigs can be more than just a fly in the ointment – they can cost producers thousands of dollars.

Fortunately for Charters Towers producer Luke St. George from St. George Rural Group, they have installed seven kilometres of Waratah fencing to protect the 150 hectares of Rhodes Grass under centre pivot irrigation from the onslaught of feral pigs.

“We have spent a considerable amount of money establishing our hay paddocks, so when you’re faced with mobs of up to 40 feral pigs that can wipe out up to two hectares in one night, you have a serious problem,” he said.

“With so many consecutive dry seasons up here, there’s a lot of demand for hay. Our bottom line is compromised by feral animals, as is the bottom line of our clients who desperately need hay for stock feed.”

In addition to round bales, square bales and silage hay production, St. George Rural Group runs about 500 Droughtmaster Brahman cattle on their 1600ha property located 120km west of Townsville, on the Burdekin River in North Queensland. 

Since installing the Waratah 11/90/15 Stocksafe-T® Longlife® fence around both paddocks, they have been completely pig free.

“Knowing the feral pigs can’t get into either paddock gives us great peace of mind, especially when we are away from the farm,” he said.

“Granted, there aren’t as many pigs around with the poor seasons, but nonetheless I’m confident that the fence lines will be up to the task when the rain and pigs come back.”

The fence uses a combination of Stocksafe-T Longlife blue wire and two runs of Longlife blue high tensile Barb, with 1.8m Jio® posts spaced every 4m.

Putting the Jio star posts in was made even easier by the use of the Thumpa® Pneumatic Post Driver.