Tasmania produces some of Australia’s best food and its beef and dairy exports are no exception.
The Tasmanian brand is internationally recognised as a mark of premium quality, supporting strong growth in the State’s world renowned beef and dairy industries.
The Sense-T Pasture Predictor is a new free on-line tool which aims to support productivity, efficiency and continuing growth in this important industry.
By providing 30-day forecasts for the growth of pasture and longer term trends for up to 90 days, we aim to help farmers make better decisions in managing their herds, production and costs.
Forecasts are provided for seven locations across the State’s main beef and dairy areas in the North West, North East, Northern Midlands and Derwent Valley.
In the future, this may be extended to individual properties on a subscription, cost-recovery basis.
The Pasture Predictor is based on a range of data, including current weather conditions and forecasts, rainfall events, past climate records, and real-time soil moisture.
This combination of different data sets and simple on-line presentation makes it more accurate and easier to use than those previously available, and with further work the model could be extended across Australia.
The initial version that’s now online will be further improved over coming months as we refine the model and upgrade to real-time data streaming, and it should be used with reference to our Terms and Conditions.
The Pasture Predictor was developed by Dr Richard Rawnsley, of the Tasmanian Institute of Agriculture (TIA), based at the University of Tasmania, and Dr Dave Henry from CSIRO as part of Sense‑T’s Beef and Dairy Project.
Pasture simulations are conducted using DairyMod. DairyMod is biophysical simulation model for dairy systems and was developed by IMJ Consultants in collaboration with Dairy Australia and the University of Melbourne.
It was funded by the Tasmanian Government, the University of Tasmania and CSIRO.
The Pasture Predictor online visualization was developed by Tasmanian ICT company 41st Degree Software.
The graphs show the forecast pasture growth over the next 90 days, expressed in kilograms of dry matter per hectare per day (kg DM/ha.d). Periods (P1,P2,P3) represent 10 day blocks of each month.
The main red lines displayed are the median expected growth at the 50th percentile. The grey lines displayed are the historical average, using data since 1960.
The red shading indicates percentiles in the 25/75 range. Percentiles from 90 to 10 can be switched on and off using the check-boxes in the top right hand corner of the graphs.
You can view the last 90 days growth using the 'Show < 90 days' check-box.