About the app

Background

Stocktake Plus is the first production decision support app for FutureBeef and MLA, developed using funding  from Meat & Livestock Australia and the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry, Queensland.

Stocktake Plus represents the next generation in FutureBeef decision support tools. It is based on the previous, well-respected Queensland Government Stocktake monitoring software but allows the user to complete their monitoring and calculations in the paddock on their mobile device for an immediate response.

Importantly, Stocktake Plus will work without the need for mobile phone reception.  You can store information and get results while you are in the paddock. This means your monitoring and feed budget data as well as your stock and rainfall records are with you at all times. All the reports on your device can be printed and/or backed up when you return to your office.

Free for 3 years – thanks to FutureBeef and MLA

Stocktake Plus is a vehicle for promoting the Best Management Practices (BMPs) of monitoring grazing land condition, and undertaking short-term forage budgeting, for more proactive management of pasture and livestock. The overall aim is to make these practices easier and more immediate for graziers.

The value and hence future measure of the success of the app will be linked to greater adoption of these BMPs. Therefore, for at least the next three years, this decision support tool is being offered free to all users – free apps to download, and free backup to website.

For more information on Grazing BMPs visit www.bmpgrazing.com.au

Design & functionality

The app was designed to be visual, logical and prompted for ease of use, and importantly to work in remote areas without 3G/4G phone reception.

Stocktake Plus:

  • Assists in monitoring grazing land condition by logically guiding the user through the process.
  • Stores monitoring information and produces reports, including long-term carrying capacity calculations, based on user input
  • Guides the user through a basic or detailed forage budget
  • Stores rainfall records
  • Stores stock numbers (converts to Adult Equivalents, displays current stock on Land Condition reports, and can import figures to demand section of a forage budget)
  • Directs users to their monitoring sites using GPS functions
  • Helps the user identify their land type(s), using the land type mapping of Queensland.
  • Backups all information securely on the internet, only accessible by the user.

The app is more than a digital log; it has many in-built support tools including:

  • land type factsheets
  • pasture growth tables
  • ground cover photo standards
  • accessible yield calculation sheets
  • pasture photo standards
  • dendrometer for measuring tree densities

Everything you need to do your monitoring in the paddock is now within your device – there’s no more need to carry around your pasture photo standards, your GPS, or camera to complete your assessment!

Made for northern Australia, useful nation-wide

Stocktake Plus has been developed specifically for graziers and agri-advisors in northern Australia, but has partial functionality elsewhere. Users in other areas can establish their own monitoring sites and producer reports in the same manner, however, the reports will not calculate region-specific pasture growth and long-term carrying capacities. Forage budgets, rainfall records and other reports have full functionality irrespective of user location.

Multiple devices, one Stocktake Plus account

If you would like someone else to help with your Stocktake Plus monitoring, calculations and reports, such as a family or staff member, they can access and add to the property information from their own device using the same username and password.

It is not recommended that companies, agri-advisors or NRM groups use a single account, as you will end up with too many properties and reports within the app, and the data may consume too much space on your device. If more than 8-10 properties are likely, it is better to have separate accounts and if property information needs to be shared, this can be done by exporting data from the stocktakeplus.com.au website.

The science

The techniques of grazing land condition monitoring and forage budgeting promoted in the Stocktake Plus app are not new. The techniques and inbuilt support tools within the app are based on sound, published rangeland science and research and development undertaken in cooperation with the northern grazing industry.

The process of monitoring grazing land condition and the ABCD grazing land condition framework has been well documented. For more information please see Why is monitoring land condition important? and How does the ‘ABCD’ scale work in assessing land condition? in the support section of this website, or attend one of the Stocktake or EDGEnetwork Grazing Land Management courses.

Using paddock condition indicators, together with grass growth predictions for local land types (see What is the pasture growth model that sits behind Stocktake Plus?), Stocktake Plus allows managers to quantify the effect that sub-optimal land condition is having on their long-term paddock carrying capacity. View the the basic calculations for determining long-term carrying capacities within the app. These calculations are complex, and have been automated within the Stocktake Plus app. If you wish to manually calculate your carrying capacities, it is recommended attend an EDGEnetwork Grazing Land Management course and/or talk with a FutureBeef extension officer.

The forage budgeting technique provides a dynamic tool for land managers to adjust stock numbers based on seasonal forage supply. See What is forage budgeting? for more information on why and how to do a forage budget. The Stocktake Plus forage budget works solely on user input; it does not draw on any modelled data. View the basic calculations for the Stocktake Plus forage budget .