The harsh dry country north west of Bourke isn’t for everyone, but Mark and Suzy Pritchard love the land and the organic animals they graze on it.
After attending numerous seminars to improve land management, the Pritchards discovered that they really didn’t have control of their stock. To control stock movement they started dividing large paddocks up into smaller 5,000 acre paddocks, and soon realised that they could also generate an additional income by incorporating carbon into their management plan.
While the carbon income is important, the Pritchards are quick to point out that it wasn’t their main motivation. They are focused on what it allows them to achieve – running the station better.
Thanks to the carbon income, Mooleyarrah is now fully fenced and has improved water infrastructure – work that wouldn’t have happened without the backing of the carbon project.
In good seasons the Pritchards make more with their organic livestock than they do with carbon. But in bad seasons, the carbon income means they can de-stock, alleviating the need to flog the land helping protect it and their grazing business long term.
The overriding feeling the Pritchards have is one of security. “We put a lot of the carbon money back into the land and the property. It keeps us in the game. Our true interest is grazing, with our love of the animals and of the land. As farmers, we need to feed the world, and in our view carbon farming is all plus for our business,” they said.
Human-Induced Regeneration of a Permanent Even-Aged Native Forest – 1.1 Methodology Determination 2013