Research is demonstrating how improved digestability can improve outcomes for stock.FIONA BROOM November 15, 2012 4:02am
A Benalla PhD student is hoping to reduce farmers’ feed bills by finding a way to unlock the energy in sorghum feed that livestock is unable to digest.
University of Melbourne Dookie campus student Natalie Bootes is aiming to hand in the results of her research next year.
Ms Bootes hopes soon to begin animal-based studies to determine if there is a way to process sorghum feed to harness the 80 per cent of energy that’s lost when livestock eat it.
She said she wanted to enhance the digestibility of sorghum because it was cheaper to produce than wheat.
‘‘And sorghum can be grown in drought where wheat would fail — it’s a low-risk crop,’’ Ms Bootes said.
Originally driven by an interest in animal science, Ms Bootes said she was now more focused on agriculture.
She grew up on a hobby farm and hopes long-term to work with farmers one-on-one to improve their farms’ efficiency.
Ms Bootes was one of dozens of postgraduate students eager to discuss their research at the university’s School of Land and Environment 10th Graduate Research Conference last week.
During conference conversations — which resembled a speed-dating set-up — students got a chance to network and find research links among staff and fellow students.
Student Fan Liu, from China, is studying the effect of heat stress on livestock, while Ruzana Sanusi is interested in urban forestry.
Ballarat student Tarnya Kruger has been speaking to firefighters across Australia to learn more about how they approach fires in different landscapes.
Water has been returned to Kinnairds and Black wetlands to help with their revitalisation after bushfire damaged them in February.
More than 2200 people have signed up to show their support for a campaign to have the green route chosen for the new Yarrawonga Mulwala bridge.
Members of Murchison Book Club are hosting a literary lunch with Vivien Achia, author of Marrying Italian — When Love is Not Enough.
Echuca faces a big test against Tatura at Victoria Park today.
Painter Ben Winspear and Scott Wileman will create new works as the public look on during the at Rochester Art Exhibition.
Kyabram Bombers have the chance to beat Rochester under light for the first time this Friday evening.
Lions star recruit had a tough introduction to the GVFL.
Tocumwal's Don Elgin is aiming to compete at the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Scotland
Eighty residents at a forum determined the Heathcote Community Plan was on track but need some fine tuning.
Cobram skate park hosts skateboarding and music for youth week.
Senior state minister Adrian Piccoli reaquainted himself with Deniliquin yesterday, leaving Deniliquin Counil hopeful it has an ally in him.
With his blue eyes and snow-coloured coat, Nanneella horse Sinatra has looks worthy of a fairytale.
Fourteen-year-old Benalla girl Jaimee Linke will launch her debut novel next month.
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