Tag: intensive grazing

Grazing Planning

planning grazing

Here in Wheatland, Wyoming it is a cold, snowy, and windy day. Perfect for planning out your grazing for the coming year! A grazing plan is where you think through what you know now, what you expect to unfold, and make a plan for the grazing in the year ahead. To get started on the […]

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Predicting Drought

fortune teller

What would the value be in your operation if you could predict drought? I know we can’t predict the weather, but we can keep track of monthly rainfall. Rainfall is going to be a darn good predictor of forage growth. In addition to rainfall, we can also keep track of monthly livestock head counts and […]

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Bumpers for Decision Making

Crossroads Land and Livestock

“When I bowl, I need the bumpers to keep the ball heading towards the pins, as my wife Maggie and I make decisions on the ranch we need bumpers to keep us heading toward our goal.” This statement was made by Austin Troyer at the recent Executive Link meeting in Billings, MT. Austin, Maggie and […]

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Biggest Mistakes in Grazing Management

cows on short grass

Too short a recovery period – When turning into a pasture ask, “Has this pasture recovered from the previous stress (grazing, fire, grasshoppers etc.)?” If not, then you need to lengthen recovery. It is possible for recovery periods to be too long, but too short is more common to see. Too long of a graze […]

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Just Start

We just wrapped up the Abilene Ranching for Profit School. It was an amazing week with 53 forward thinking ranchers who are challenging conventional wisdom and driving their businesses forward. I was joined by John Locke of Hungerford, TX who served as a co-instructor for the school. John has attended the Ranching for Profit School […]

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Boots On The Ground & Eyes Looking Down

I recently participated in a pasture rejuvenation workshop. My presentation on grazing principles was followed by an explanation of a multi-year trial on pasture rejuvenation. I didn’t understand why pasture rejuvenation was such a big issue to the attendees. A well-managed pasture shouldn’t need mechanical, herbicide or seeding treatments to stay healthy and productive. My […]

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How Long is Long Enough?

The biggest mistake people make in grazing management is providing too short a recovery period for plants after grazing. Of course too much rest isn’t good either. In drier environments excluding animals from a pasture long after it has recovered will lead to reduced productivity, dead grass and bare soil. In wetter environments it can […]

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To Move or Not To Move

How do you know when it is time to move animals from one pasture to another? Most people figure that if they are out of feed in one pasture, it is time to move. The herd is probably standing at the gate voicing their agreement that it is time to “Mooove.” There’s nothing they’d like […]

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Going Around In Circles

Rotational grazing doesn’t work. It doesn’t work for at least two reasons. One reason it doesn’t work is that, rather than rotationally graze, most people rotationally overgraze. They get overstocking and overgrazing confused. Overstocking happens when you have more animals than you have grass to support them. Overgrazing happens when you keep animals in a pasture […]

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Half and Half

Take half – leave half.  It is probably the most common advice you’ll hear regarding grazing utilization. In my opinion it is bad advice. It was probably the brainchild of someone looking for a one-size-fits-all, easy-to-remember recipe. It may be easy to remember, but this recipe is likely to produce a crummy meal. What does […]

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