Today, Dion manages the 39,000ha Woodlands Station for Fucheng Woodlands Pty Ltd and the Li family, in Queensland, about 120km north of Goondiwindi, and vividly recalls the words of his grandfather all those years ago.
“He used to tell me all the time: ‘you can grow cattle on water and sunshine, but you need both’. Those words certainly ring true in our hot, dry climate,” Dion said.
In these times of severe drought, a reliable water supply has become more important than ever. Calling on a lot of the knowledge and experience passed down by his father and grandfather, as well as what he’s learned in his 20 years working on cattle properties, Dion has spent the past two-and-a-half years working with Mr Gaoqi Li, the owner’s representative, on improving the property’s infrastructure, including cattle yards, fencing and water systems.
“Out here, you can’t afford too many errors when it comes to decisions around infrastructure, so in improving the water systems and strategies employed on Woodlands we took our time and did our research and we’re really pleased with where we are now and how it’s all working,” he said.
The water for Woodlands is sourced from two, high-flow bores with the water moved around the property through a new system of 110mm to 63mm pipes to six Kingspan Rhino RT-365 water tanks
, which as the name implies can store almost 365,000 litres of water. From these tanks, the water is then gravity-fed to each paddock via a series of troughs.