Quarantine drench paying dividends
Using Zolvix™ Plus as a quarantine drench, Alpine Pastures Tarras is starting to see an increase in turnover says General Manager Matt Walker.
Alpine Pastures Tarras is located between Wanaka and Cromwell. Incorporating four properties, the business is an intensive finishing operation. An area of 1,100 of the 3,000 hectare (ha) area is irrigated, including ryegrass and clover, plus 150 ha fodder beet and 130 ha brassica for winter feed.
Being a high stock flow business with weekly transactions and animals coming in from multiple properties, they run a major risk of importing unknown drench resistance which would be highly detrimental to the business.
At the same time, they have a commitment to supply beef and lamb year-round, so need to consistently maximise animal growth rates. Pasture quality, feed budgeting and animal health are top priorities.
PGG Wrightson Technical Field Representative Gerard McCarthy has worked with Alpine Pastures Tarras for the past 11 years having been with PGG Wrightson since 1979. He visits Alpine Pastures weekly over summer, managing seed, chemicals, cropping and animal health inputs.
“Gerard’s attention to detail is excellent. He has good technical know-how and is always available to bounce ideas off,” says Matt.
When Matt joined Alpine Pastures in 2019, they identified that quarantining with triples wasn’t working. Gerard suggested Zolvix Plus.
“With so many lambs coming through and no way of knowing what parasites they come with, we needed to use a highly effective quarantine drench,” says Gerard. “Zolvix Plus is a ‘gold standard drench’ in today’s environment. Being an effective drench family*, we are confident the animals start with a clean slate.”
Every lamb is drenched with Zolvix Plus on arrival at the property. They remain on farm for a minimum of 120 days and are traded in summer and winter.
From Matt’s perspective, Zolvix Plus has enabled control of the worm burden. It also helps to minimise the impact of drench resistance and maintain the effectiveness of other drench products used through the year.
The welcome knock-on effects are increased growth rates and more profit. “With Zolvix Plus we’re growing our lambs faster, seeing an average of 40 grams extra weight gain per day,” Matt adds. “This meant finishing our summer lambs 21 days faster and being able to purchase the next wave of lambs sooner, increasing turnover.”