The development of a lambing management system has lead to some of the best lamb survival rates in Australia and New Zealand for Tim and Georgie Leeming. The couple operate Paradoo Prime in south-west Victoria and are finalists in the Boehringer Industry Innovator award for their Precision Lambing system, which was developed about six years ago. Mr Leeming said improving lambing survival rates was multifaceted, with requirements including providing shelter, privacy, the right amount of pasture, and the right condition score of the ewes. Mob size was another important aspect, he said. "We recognised the importance of having smaller mobs for twins and triplets over 15 years ago," he said. "All those aspects are very, very difficult to do consistently if you're lambing over a traditional five-week, six-week, or even longer period of time." Lambing often occurred in winter or early spring, which meant unpredictable weather and diminished pastures. If lambing was held over five or six weeks, the best paddocks were eaten out and could not be use again that year. "We only lamb now for 15 days," he said. "It throws a lot of traditional joinings out the window... basically it allows you to use the best lambing paddocks on your farm multiple times. "We've been able to achieve over the last five or six years some of the highest lamb survival in Australia and New Zealand." He encouraged farmers to work out what parts of the farm were most suitable for lambing and work backwards to only join the amount of ewes that the best land could hold. The system involved two joinings with a 20-day break in between to ensure enough time for pasture recovery, he said. "I'll lamb them, have a good result, and then I'll lamb again the rest of the ewes in that environment," he said. Hundreds of farmers had visited Paradoo Prime to learn about the system, he said, and it was rewarding to see it adopted by other people. "It's really satisfying - it's getting farmers to think a little bit differently," he said. "You learn a lot from other people that come along - we're always learning and we're always making refinements to what we're doing. "It's always refreshing, rubbing shoulders with enthusiastic people." Mr Leeming said a Victorian state vet also explained the system at a world veterinary conference in 2019 and received high praise. The fact that the system was about management, rather than buying new products or investing in technology, was another bonus, he said. "It's not a band-aid, it's a systems approach," he said. "It's a bit of time - you're putting rams and teasers in and out of your ewes, and having your scanner and your communication really good." It was important to recognise the good work being done in the Australian sheep industry, he said. "People just look at our sheep industry and it's mulesing, it's drought, it's flood - there's so much good that we don't advertise," he said.