How long will soil resources last in semi-arid grazing systems?

Level 1 General description


This study was completed to help determine sustainable management practices of grazing lands.

Methods (brief)

Erosion productivity assessments were conducted by reducing the plant available water range and nitrogen available, and assessing the effect against non-eroded growth for a 100 year period between 1900 and 2000. A scalping simulation was performed in GRASP. Scalded simulations were run reduction of 50, 100 and 150 mm and compared to an uneroded profile.

Key findings (brief)

The results show:

  • That safe carrying capacity nominated by graziers was highly correlated with simulated average pasture growth, and represented 20-25% utilisation of average annual pasture growth;
  • These safe utilisation rates are similar to previous studies in other regions of Queensland;
  • That the loss of 100 mm of soil was likely to lead to a 7-31% reduction in productivity of these pasture communities; and
  • If current safe stocking rates were maintained, then utilisation would increase by 12-58 %, thus placing even greater pressure on both pasture and soil condition.


Properties of producers in the Western Downs Beef Plan group (located between Miles, Wandoan and Roma)

Related studies



Level 2, level 3, level 4 and level 5