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Rural Skills Series – Managing Beef & Dairy Cattle

October 17, 2015 @ 9:00 am - October 18, 2015 @ 5:00 pm

$145 – $250

About the Workshop

Ok, so you’ve decided on cows for your property. But how should you prepare for and look after them? What breeds should you select? What do they need, what do you need to do to keep them, and are they the right ones for your farm or property?

Dairy and beef cows have specific needs and characteristics. They both provide great benefits to your farm or permaculture system in the provision of grass mowing services, meat, milk, manure, hides and more. Both have the ability to regenerate your landscape provided they are managed well.

Like with any animal cows have very specific requirements. Good fencing or electric wire is essential to control your cows and prevent them from escaping into the neighbours veggie patch. Cows particularly cause many disputes in the country with niose and escapees. Good structures and management systems for your cows can save you disputes with neighbors, stress, heartache and legal penalities. Having the knowledge, skills and confidence to manage your animals well will also save you money, time and inconvenience.

Workshop Outcomes

This two-day intensive workshop into the world of cows will provide you with a complete range of information on both beef and dairy cattle. You will be able to distinguish between different breeds to select the best types for your requirements. You will learn about the needs, characteristics and functions of cows and acquire a range of skills and knowledge to manage them efficiently and effectively on your property. You will learn where to buy and sell them, transport them, and move and handle them calmly. Legal requirements of keeping cattle will be covered as well as a range of general management requirements. You will acquire knowledge on health and nutrition and some basic veterinary skills to both treat and prevent heath problems and learn all the basics of breeding. Additionally you will learn the importance of good pasture and management of cattle to regenerate not degenerate your property.

This is the perfect workshop for anyone wishing to raise cattle and care and manage them in a humanly and sustainably. There will be practical hands on experiences with cows such as handling and moving; milking; injecting; and many more. The workshop includes a visit to an operational farm in the area to see cattle yards; watering systems; different types of fencing including permanent and electric fencing; and cattle husbandry in practice.


  • Difference between Beef and Dairy breeds and specific species
  • General Management of Cattle: Shelter, Water, Food, basic equipment and infrastructure.
  • Land size and grazing for all seasons
  • Nutrition: Mineral Deficiencies, Toxicity, supplement feeding,
  • Health – Pest and disease prevention and management
  • Handling Cattle: Flight zone, moving cattle in paddocks and yards.
  • Fencing for cattle: Permanent v temporary v Electric
  • Breeding: Natural v Artificial Insemination.
  • Pastures: Winter, Summer, Natural, Improved, deficiencies
  • Calving: Problems
  • Selling: Private sales, Sale yards (Store v Fats), costs etc.
  • Transporting Regulations
  • Veterinary Basics: Calving, injections, castrating etc
  • Processing for meat, hides,

About the trainers: Sherri McMahon and Ingrid Cullen

Sherri and Ingrid PhotoSherri and Ingrid are farmers in the historic valley of St Albans. They manage their own farm business “She-Ing Farm” from which they make a livelihood and sustain themselves financially. Since purchasing their rural property in 1997, Sherri and Ingrid have subsequently regenerated the land from scratch turning it from a sandy, degenerated unproductive site to a highly productive, diverse, and sustainable property. Sherri and Ingrid built their own house, and have self developed their property into an excellent demonstration site for a productive working farm. They grow their own produce; sell produce; farm and slaughter their own livestock (including cattle, sheep and poultry); log and mill their own timber; and farm in a humane and sustainable way. They also have a successful farm maintenance business. “The Girls” as they are known in the valley are highly respected in their community with active roles in the Rural Fire Brigade, the St Albans Common Trust and a range of other community activities. They are both extremely capable and highly skilled rural women who have extensive and in depth knowledge of all aspects of rural property management and who provide excellent leadership examples of sustainable, self-reliant and resilient living. The girls are passionate to extend and improve their property using a range of principles and techniques drawn from permaculture, organic and sustainable farming practices. They are also passionate to share the knowledge they have gained to help others find and develop sustainable farm practices.

Sherri McMahon
Sherri provides a no nonsense insight into the workings of a rural property and will help all participants understand what they need to know to run a successful rural property in a sustainable way. Sherri has a certificate 2 and 3 in Agriculture from the Hunter Institute as well a several other awards and agricultural training certificates. Sherri grew up on her family’s traditional 1500 acre mixed production farm, running 200 sheep, cattle and crops in the Snowy Mountains area and was very much part of the farm team. She left the family farm to undertake a Bachelor of Visual Arts at Canberra University, and after graduation joined the Federal Police as a photographer, rising to become a senior investigator. She then travelled extensively through her work, including heading the Vulnerable Persons Unit in the UN peace-keeping mission in East Timor in 2001. She was an Australian champion in athletics and power lifting.

Ingrid Cullen
Ingrid has organic gardening genes in her DNA. She comes from a family of organic gardeners and farmers from Lorne in Northern NSW and her enormous repertoire of rural skills and knowledge are largely a product of her upbringing on the family’s diverse 100 acre farm. Ingrid went on to a Visual Arts Degree at Sydney College of the Arts and has a Certificate 2 and 3 in Agriculture as well as accreditation in the area of fitness, wellness, and massage. She too was a serial competitor and Australian champion in power lifting and rowing. For many years Ingrid worked as a personal fitness and wellness trainer in community gyms and not for profit organizations. She specialised in working with people with HIV-AIDS and was awarded the World AIDS Day award for her work.


October 17, 2015 @ 9:00 am
October 18, 2015 @ 5:00 pm
$145 – $250
Event Categories:
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Bandusia Country Retreat
1056 Upper Macdonald Rd
Upper MacDonald (St Albans), NSW Australia
+ Google Map
(02) 4568 2036


Old clothes, gloves; decent work boots, water, hat, note book, camera,
Click here for details
Workshop, morning tea, lunch, afternoon tea, course materials and a beautiful setting in which to learn