Sun 19 Jul 2020 9:30PM

Implementation of Plantain in OverseerFM

CR Caroline Read Public Seen by 28

This discussion provides information on, and an opportunity to discuss, the way Plantain is to be implemented in OverseerFM


Poll Created Mon 20 Jul 2020 3:48AM

Group discussion on the implementation of Plantain in OverseerFM Closed Fri 31 Jul 2020 5:02AM

We have invited you to this Overseer Science Discussion thread because you have either been involved with or have shown an interest in the implementation in plantain in OverseerFM. The information posted here aims to provide clarity on how we propose to implement plantain in OverseerFM.

The aim of this online discussion forum is to give people an opportunity to read about and then comment on the implementation approach before it goes live. We will attempt to answer questions that relate to the topic, but the forum is open to discussion and so please feel free to post responses.

This group is public and all posts by members are visible. Others can also request to join the group.

About the Topic:

The Foragers for Reduced Nitrate Leaching programme identified how to reflect their research findings in the Overseer model. Overseer Limited have implemented these recommendations and they have been tested.

Three documents are attached with information on this:

  1. The Implementation Document - which sets out the FRNL findings and how they are to be implemented in OverseerFM.

  2. The Test Report that was produced to assess that the implementation is delivering the results that are expected.

  3. A Question and Answer document with some potential questions on the implementation.

The Implementation Document includes links to the FRNL research reports and publications that set out the scientific research behind the new modelling.


Results Option % of points Voters
Undecided 0% 10 GR AW CR AM AR IP IP MS MD

0 of 10 people have participated (0%)


Mike Dodd Tue 21 Jul 2020 1:07AM

The 60% impact threshold has been noted by our Tararua dairy farmers and required some clarification for them. Possibly just need to check over the way it is described in the Implementation text, so it is clear when referring to content in a paddock vs content in the animal intake. it will have implications for how blocks are set up to reflect management. For example a farmer who has a pure plantain paddock but break feeds it to give the stock a 6-7kg allowance each day (c. 40% of intake rather than 100% of intake).


Mark Shepherd Tue 21 Jul 2020 2:54AM

Yes, the model coefficients are modified by proportion of plantain expressed as intake. When considering the model, we were thinking about dilution by supplement but, clearly, the grazing strategy you describe also ends up with a dilution too. will need to check how this works in the model.


Gerald Rys Tue 21 Jul 2020 7:58PM

Has there been any work looking at leaching response to different levels of intake eg intakes during winter or intake at peak lactation at he same proportion of plaintain?

there any impacts on rates of leaching at different times of the year?


Mark Shepherd Wed 22 Jul 2020 1:08AM

There has been no direct measurement of N leaching, the model is based on first principles of effects on urination characteristics. We received no information of differences in effect at different times of the production cycle. When constructing the Overseer model, we did indicate the need for further information on seasonality of plantain and how this might effect leaching reductions. We indicated in the slide set that this might be a future refinement to the model as more information becomes available.


Gerald Rys Wed 22 Jul 2020 1:09AM

Ta Mark

Dr Gerald Rys

Principal Science Advisor

Science Policy

Policy and Trade Group

Ministry for Primary Industries

Charles Ferguson Building

34-38 Bowen Street

PO Box 2526


Ph 64 4894 0711 wk

Ph 0211398348 pvt cell

[email protected] ( [email protected] )

www.mpi.govt.nz ( http://www.mpi.govt.nz/ )

https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Gerald_Rys ( https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Gerald_Rys )

https://orcid.org/0000-0002-0049-0543 ( https://orcid.org/0000-0002-0049-0543 )

“In times of crisis, facts matter most”


Greg Sneath Wed 22 Jul 2020 4:55AM

If using first principles on urination characteristics, then I assume the modelling will also reflect a reduction in GHG emissions from reduced nitrogen being partitioned to urine. However, as yet, there is insufficient science to attribute any changes to soil nitrous oxide emissions resulting from bioactive compounds of plantain, or effects of dietary intake on enteric methane emissions. Is that correct? Presumably as the science develops, any GHG emissions effects will be introduced? Do you have an estimate for how long this will take?


Mark Shepherd Wed 22 Jul 2020 8:58PM

There is a small effect on nitrous oxide emissions as a result of reduced partitioning of excreta to urine. As more research becomes available on other aspects, these can be captured.


Greg Sneath Wed 22 Jul 2020 9:33PM

Cheers Mark. The proposed implementation looks good and sensible . I support Mark Dodd's comment above about providing clarity for the OverseerFM users on what constitutes up to 60% of dietary intake.


Caroline Read Wed 22 Jul 2020 10:04PM

Thanks Greg and Mike - we will make sure we have some clarification on the 60% for users in FM and the knowledge base.

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