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Evaluate water use on your farm

This will help determine where the most water is used and help identify leaks and losses (evaporation or seepage). Preventing water loss (i.e. through fixing leaks, etc.) is the easiest, most cost effective and least work intensive way to save water. Once you know where water is used and where it is lost, you can begin to develop a strategy to save it.

Some farmers in the Coleambally Irrigation Area use the SWAGMAN Farm« modeling system to assist in water use evaluations. It is a computer modeling tool developed by scientists at CSIRO Land and Water in Griffith to help determine cost-effective options to achieve farm scale water and salt balance within irrigation areas.

The model takes into account distribution of soils within the farm, potential land uses, crop evaporative requirements, current irrigation practices, leaching requirement, annual rainfall, rainfall runoff, leakage to deeper aquifers, depth to watertable, capillary upflow from shallow watertable, the economic returns from potential landuses and the salt concentration of groundwater, rainwater and irrigation water.

The model can be used to:
  • provide farmers with a method to simulate and assess various farm cropping scenarios in terms of economic return and environmental effects;
  • determine environmentally optimal irrigation intensity; and
  • encourage water use efficiency.