Bovine

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Selecting Cattle Factsheet

Selecting Cattle to Improve Grazing Distribution Patterns, Rangeland Health and Water Quality

This project is the first and only study that we are aware of that has evaluated whether grazing distribution has the potential to be improved through intensive breed selection. Most of the management approaches currently used to increase grazing uniformity, such as water developments and fencing, can resolve livestock grazing distribution problems on both private and public lands. However, these practices usually require large capital expenditures.

Cover page of Smart Water Use bulletin

Smart Water Use on Your Farm or Ranch

As producers throughout the nation grow increasingly concerned about water scarcity, farmers, ranchers and agricultural educators are beginning to explore new, conservation-oriented approaches to water use.

Hands holding a plant

The Power of Data: Improving the Management of Rangeland Ecosystems

California's rangelands face a wide range of challenges, from invasive species and pests to flooding and drought. Much of the knowledge of how to manage rangelands effectively resides in the personal experience of land managers. To capitalize on this collective wisdom, University of California Davis researchers partnered with ranchers around the region to compile a database of site-specific management information that can help everybody take better care of the land.

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2015/2016 Report from the Field

Read about SARE-funded work in the areas of sustainable dairy cropping systems, soil health assessments, nutrient management, cover crops, beginning farmers, pollinators, technical assistance programs for women farmers, and more. This edition includes highlights of projects funded through the graduate student program, and the highly regarded Sustainable Agriculture Fellowship, a professional development program coordinated by SARE and NACAA.

Joel Myers at NoTill Workshop

No-Till and Cover Crop Innovations Increase Dairy Profits

Summertime for dairy farmers in New England is anything but slow. Silage corn must be planted and harvested in a short window to provide high-quality forage for cattle, leaving little time to plant cover crops to replenish the soil. Under pressure to get corn planted early, farmers may delay the first cutting of hay, sacrificing […]

the whole farm nutrient balance calculator

Whole Farm Mass Nutrient Balance Calculator

This software program calculates the annual difference between a farm's imported and exported nutrients (N, P and K). Teaching guides and instructions for the tool's use are also available.

cows eating grass

Alternative Continuous-Cover Dairy Forage System for Profitability, Flexibility and Soil Health

In a SARE-funded study in New York, a team of farmers, researchers and consultants addressed economic, labor and weather constraints in dairy farm rotations by developing an alternative forage cropping system with multiple options to produce high-quality forages. This system produces forage with yields comparable to traditional cropping systems, and is based on soil health management.

Low-Till Forage Production

To fill their need for year-round, inexpensive forages, California dairy producers typically plant and harvest a series of forage crops – small grains, corn for silage, milo and sorghum sudan. While this requires considerable tillage and seed-bed preparation ahead of each successive crop, the production systems lend themselves to conservation tillage approaches developed in other […]

Cows walking in pasture.

Sustainable 12 Aprils Dairy Grazing

When rising feed costs threatened to put his once-successful confined feeding dairy out of business, Tom Trantham made the switch to a pasture-based rotational grazing system, and now his operation has never been stronger.

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Experimental Farm Helps North Carolina Farmers

Specialty crop farmer Alex Hitt hesitated when a team of scientists asked him to help launch a research project. Designed to test sustainable practices under the same skies and soil conditions as North Carolina's working farms, the 2,100-acre experimental farm would truly be a long-term commitment. Major results couldn't be expected for about seven years. […]

youth renewing the countryside book

Youth Renewing the Countryside

This full-color book profiles 50 inspiring young people—one from every state—who are revitalizing rural America with new enterprises.

Dairy Your Way Cover

Dairy Your Way

This publication was created to provide information that will help producers explore the many choices available for today’s dairy farms. This book is not intended to be a how-to dairy guide or manual. While there is no one-size-fits-all answer for dairy farmers seeking success as milk producers, there are many options that can be profitable and satisfying.