Cattle Yards | Schipps Red Angus | Alfredtown, New South Wales
Situated just east of Wagga Wagga, Doodle Cooma Poll Herefords & Schipp’s Red Angus is proudly run by Daryl Schipp, accompanied by son Adam & daughter Zoe. On Glandore, the Schipp’s run roughly 500 head of cattle, with 100 stud breeders of each.
Adam & Zoe have recently returned to the family run farm. Alongside the usual husbandry tasks, they’ve applied their skillsets to various facets of improving the business with Zoe managing the online marketing and sales through Auctions Plus and Adam being the driving force behind the data collection & analysis of their herd.
“Our main clientele are commercial buyers in the Wagga district, but we’ve got clients stretching from the QLD border down to western Victoria, and have sold into WA and Tasmania” Daryl explains.
Daryl had become increasingly keen to update his facility due to how inefficient the facility was, combined with obvious WH+S issues. “The previous facility was a lot of pipe and rail with a bit of mesh through it. We had a standard V forcing pen behind the race, meaning you had to get into the pen with your poly pipe and battle each individual animal.” Zoe added, “there were a lot more corners in the old yards, and they all bunched up and it was much harder to get them moving”.
Alongside obvious safety and existing infrastructure issues, Daryl was encouraged to pursue a new facility by the Government’s instant asset write off scheme. Daryl was familiar with ProWay, being a Wagga-based business, he knew some of the staff. “Our old yards weren’t going to cut it anymore, ProWay have a reputation as elite yard builders and we were encouraged by them being local, it was a no brainer to bring them out”.
“Our old yards weren’t going to cut it anymore, ProWay have a reputation as elite yard builders and we were encouraged by them being local, it was a no brainer to bring them out”.
ProWay Stockyard Designer Damien Halloway came to visit the site of the existing yards, and Daryl was impressed with how quickly he began to make adjustments including one that caught him by surprise. “Damien nearly fell over when he saw what we were working in, within five minutes he said he’d turn us around and aim the facility in a different direction. That’s not something I would have considered”. By planning to adjust the facilities orientation, Damien could incorporate existing infrastructure such as holding pens, sheds and trees as well as the natural gradient of the location. It also made it a lot easier to load out stock.
Damien set about designing the yards to be able to flow more efficiently, and create a safer working environment. After the facility design and manufacturing was complete, ProWay’s Transport team set off on one of its shortest journeys ever, and the local Contractor team set about standing up the Schipp’s facility. A key feature included a concrete working area to make it a more suitable all-weather facility.
“The old yards were built to run to a slope of a hill, so we got a front-end loader in, flattened it out and a bob cat to trim it off. We put down some road base, and concreted the working area, the only addition next will be a putting a roof over it, making it the ultimate I suppose!”
Daryl’s new facility includes a ProWay Rotary Force, Adjustable Race and 3 Way Drafter which will greatly improve the efficiency and time to complete tasks. Manways were also included to allow Daryl, Zoe & Adam greater flexibility when moving through the facility.
After having some time to work stock in their new yards the Schipp’s touched on some of their favourite additions to the new facility. “The Adjustable Race itself is just brilliant” says Daryl, “from big 850KG cows down to week old calves, you can adjust it to suit, it’s really good”.
The Adjustable Race is lever operated and allows the Schipps to quickly adjust their race in increments of 50mm, these smaller increments prevent small cattle from turning around in the race and creating havoc for the operator.
Adam, an engineer himself, was really impressed with the facility upon completion. He touched on the quality of the finish: “When they were completed, we did a walk through with them and any minor issues that were picked up were dealt with on the day, it’s a credit to them and it’s a good result”.
Whilst the efficiency and productivity gains in the yards have noticeably improved, the Schipp’s have been impressed with the safety aspect as a result of the new infrastructure. These improvements have seemingly encouraged an upcoming generation of livestock producers to pursue the work. “Advanced infrastructure like this is a big motive to be doing work like this, it’s so much easier to process cattle and it’s a lot more safer” Zoe said., Daryl added: “We have students with us at times, its certainly a step up and you can confidently say come over and work in the yards with us”.
“You can have a number in the pen, and just follow them around from the outside as they feed through the race, protecting you from getting injured in the back corner”. The Rotary Force is a safe and efficient lead up that separates stock from handlers, removing the need for the handler to be in with the animal”.
“There were times in the old yards where you’d bring in cows & calves, you’d process the calves and then you’d think ‘do you really want to go through the cows’, whereas in here it’s a no brainer, you just get in and get it all done”.
The Schipp’s have been impressed with their new ProWay Cattle Yards, and are glad they chose a local manufacturer to improve their cattle handling operation. “I’d certainly recommend ProWay, they’re known all over Australia and Internationally, the guys out there are easy to work with and there’s always someone on the end of the phone to talk to. – it was a pretty easy decision to make” Daryl said.
Zoe added: “The whole process of working with ProWay as well as the physical yards has come together so well, from planning and designing to implementing in such a short amount of time, I couldn’t fault it”.
The Schipp family are pleased to have partnered their seed stock cattle operation with a first-class handling facility that’s already paying dividends for their enterprise, and are sure it will last for generations to come.