Grazing Management

The educational materials listed on this page are about Grazing Management.

Grazing management is critical to any pasture-based livestock farming system. Rotational grazing, intensive rotational grazing and management intensive grazing are key to successful and sustainable rotational grazing systems. So, what is rotational grazing? Careful grazing strategies include stocking rates of cattle, time spent on each paddock or pasture, how many times a herd revisits that same paddock or pasture throughout the year, and incorporating multi-species grazing to reduce parasite loads. Management approaches used to increase grazing uniformity, such as water sources and fencing, improve livestock grazing distribution problems. Rotational grazing cattle may also require capital expenditures. Thus, less expensive, practical solutions, like selecting cattle with desirable grazing patterns and culling cattle without, have been suggested as tools for improving managed intensive rotational grazing. This makes a rotational grazing definition difficult to refine depending on geographic location. Key practices include holistic managementgrazing managementrotational grazing, livestock breedingstocking raterangeland pasture managementpasture renovationwatering systemsmulti-species grazingcontinuous grazing.

The Rangeland Management Strategies bulletin has information for multi-species grazing and winter grazing, and it offers advice for forage management and vegetation management, as well as practices for protecting riparian areas. SARE’s Small Ruminant Toolbox offers producers with small ruminant livestock enterprises practices that provide pest, weed and parasite control. Smart Water Use on your Farm or Ranch can be used to better understand the role of water in a farm system and in grazing management.

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New “Sustainable Grazing and Pasture Management” Video from SARE

“Sustainable Grazing and Pasture Management,” the sixth video in SARE’s “What is Sustainable Agriculture?” series shows how farmers can improve soil health and plant vigor by focusing on the health of their pastures and rangelands. This simple animation is a great introduction to the basic principles of sustainable livestock management and is intended to complement […]

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.

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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.

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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.

Cover Crops as Part of an Overall Nutrient Management System

In this session, Steven Mirsky (USDA-ARS) and Heather Darby (University of Vermont) discuss the role of cover crops in integrated fertility management and address cover crops in the context of forages, dairies, perennials and pastures, and rotating pasture to grain.

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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.

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The Small Ruminant Toolbox

This Small Ruminant Toolbox is a large collection of publications, presentations and other resources that will be helpful to small ruminant producers and educators.

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Avicultura Rentable

Avicultura Rentable: Criando Aves en Pasturas es una guía que incluye experiencias de agricultores  y lo último en investigación para criar pollos y pavos usando corrales, cercos portátiles y pasturas.

Que es la Agricultura Sustentable

¿Qué es la Agricultura Sustentable?

Este reporte ganador de un premio provee un muestrario de mejores prácticas en la agricultura sustentable – desde el mercadeo y la vitalidad de la comunidad hasta cultivos de cobertura y pastoreo – así como ocho perfiles de productores, educadores e investigadores que las han implementado con éxito. 

Researchers Study Forage Chicory for Parasite Reduction in Sheep

Sheep and goat production is a growing enterprise for small and limited resource farmers in the North Central region. While small ruminants (sheep and goats) are adaptable to many different production systems and can be raised with relatively few inputs, they present production challenges. For instance, control of internal parasites, especially gasrointestinal nematodes including Haemonchus […]

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Multi-State Resource Tool Addresses Small Ruminant Production Needs

A comprehensive small ruminant resource tool covering all manners of production, planning, marketing, health, and facilities has been developed to aid producers and the Extension agents who work with them in improving sheep and goat profitability and sustainability. Linda Coffey, agriculture specialist with the National Center for Appropriate Technology (NCAT), said that the popularity of […]

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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.

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Profitable Poultry

Profitable Poultry: Raising Birds on Pasture features farmer experiences plus the latest research in a guide to raising chickens and turkeys using pens, movable fencing and pastures.