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Tips for planning an updated water reticulation system

Tips for planning an updated water reticulation system

Tips for planning an updated water reticulation system

If you’re looking to improve water reticulation around your farm, updating your stock water system may be necessary. By doing so, you’ll be future-proofing your farm and ensuring your precious water is not being wasted.

Just ask Andy Wells, a sheep and beef farmer at Clinton in South Otago. Wintering 6,000 stock units, with a system of only 10 to 15 troughs, water supply proved a challenge. Installing a new stock water system, with the assistance of PGG Wrightson and Waters & Farr, proved a game changer.

“I can now put cattle into blocks where I couldn’t before and the stock are able to drink whenever they need to. I can fill spray units from anywhere on the property, saving me time, while grazing management is easier. Plus, I have seen a big improvement in water quality,” says Andy.

To assist with planning an updated water reticulation system, here’s some points to consider:

  • What are the farm’s immediate water requirements and what’s likely to be needed in the future?
  • Plan for a system that will deliver an unrestricted flow rate to all the areas of the property.
  • Calculate the estimated daily water usage by stock. Allow 70 L per day for dairy cows, 70 L per day for milk cooling and wash down of dairy cows and milking goats, 55 L per day for beef cattle, 45 L per day for dry stock and 5 L per day for sheep (ewes).¹
  • Potable water used within a household per person is estimated at 300 L per day.¹
  • What is your water source: A bore, dam, stream or tank? How much water will it deliver during summer during dry conditions?
  • Consider the size of the pumping and filtration equipment that will be needed to circulate the water so it reaches the furthest troughs on-farm.
  • Consider pump hours and the size of the piping and fitting system so you can calculate the most energy-efficient way of distributing the water around the farm.
  • Will there be a change in elevation within the system?
  • Do you want to install ball valves at points along the mainline? By doing so, you’ll enhance the system’s usability if the mainline becomes damaged.

To discuss updating your water reticulation system, visit your local PGG Wrightson store or complete the enquiry form here.

Reference

1 Reasonable Stock Water Requirements Guidelines for Resource Consent Applications. Technical Report. December 2007. Horizons Regional Council.