With Highlands

While you might have seen these magnificent beasts at a show or field day, or better still, on a trip to Scotland, getting started in Highlands should involve more than just handing over money for the first animals you see. We have written this article to help those thinking of getting some Highland cattle (or any cattle for that matter) so you can avoid some of the mistakes that we (and many others) have made in the early days.

As a source of information and contact with other Highland enthusiasts, consider joining the Australian Highland Cattle Society (see AHCS website) and your state Highland Breeders Group.

Join the Australian Highland Cattle Society

Email to join the Victorian Highland Breeders Group
Free Quarterly Newsletter
Organised events
(Fields Days, State Show, On Farm Show)
(see website)

Email to join the NSW Regional Breeders Group

Organised events
(Fields Days, State Show, On Farm Show)


Step 1:    Set Up Your Property (Read More)

This is the first step because many people do not think of this until they get their animals home & run into various problems with fences, yards, shade and water supply. Take your time & get this done properly, BEFORE the cattle arrive. In fact visiting a couple of properties will allow you to see various set-ups and might give you better ideas on what might work on your property.

Step 2:    Choose Your Cattle Wisely (Read More)

Whether you are looking for a couple of attractive lawn mowers or the start of a stud breeding fold, you need to take your time with your first animals to avoid ending up with cattle that are not appropriate to your needs. Talk to as many breeders as possible and visit as many folds as you can. Do your homework as you are going to have those animals for a long time (they can easily live 15-20 years).

Step 3.     The Official Stuff (Read More)

There is always the boring stuff you have to do to keep the government happy.  Don't they spoil everything!  Before you bring cattle on to your property, the property needs to be assigned a Property Identification Code (PIC - Read More) associated with your name. This allows animals to be transferred (on paper) from one property to another across Australia. What is transferred is their National Livestock Identification Scheme (NLIS - Read More) number. This is a microchip ear tag that is unique to that animal in Australia and is meant to stay with the animal for life. Every animal leaving your property, whether down the road to another property or to slaughter, needs to have one of these ear tags, so you will need to register for these as well at some stage.

If cattle are moving off your property, then you will need to fill out paperwork for this so they can be tracked. This is called a NVD / Waybill. (read more about NVDs)

Step 4.    Basic Care of Cattle (Read More)

While Highlands are hardier than other breeds, there are a few routine things that need to be done like vaccinations, drenching for worms and lice, as well as occasionally other interventions that you might want to know more about before jumping into things.