Cattle are a herd animal. Being kept in natural groups (or herds) with their mates makes them happy.
Raising Angus and Charolais cattle on just under 3,000 acres near Warwick in Southern Queensland, Jim and Jackie Wedge from Ascot Cattle Company are committed to keeping their cattle are happy and healthy.
Not only do they keep their cattle in their herds, Jim and Jackie also make sure every interaction the cattle have with them and their staff is as natural and stress free as possible through ‘low stress handling’ practices.
Cattle are checked daily to ensure they have plenty of food, fresh water and are all in top condition.
Jim and Jackie breed cattle that have no horns (also known as polled) as reduces the risk of cows hurting themselves, other cattle or the people caring for them.
In addition to their focus on animal wellbeing, Jim and Jackie care for and improve the environment at Ascot Vale by ensuring healthy pastures that cover, protect and promote soil health below the surface. One of the key factors in ground cover success is managing the number of cattle in a paddock at one time (also known as the stocking rate). They have also invested in alternative energy, with solar power generating over 50% of energy used on the property.
Fencing off the 12km Condamine River frontage on their property has also enabled Jim and Jackie to protect sensitive riparian areas along the river. This has stopped erosion, protected hundred-year-old river gums and increased the abundant biodiversity and birdlife on their property.
Jim and Jackie know their property is special and they care for, preserve, and enhance it accordingly.
“We want to do the right thing by the environment."
Breeding polled (hornless) livestock is a key focus for the Australian red meat industry to eliminate the need for dehorning or disbudding.
Minimising animal stress during red meat production is not just the right thing to do, it also produces higher quality meat.
How fresh approaches to grazing are helping farming and native biodiversity coexist.