Consistent-Sustainable Rangeland Improvement

Moving to a new paradigm of consistent-sustainable rangeland improvement is not a simple process but involves many changes to the grazing managers use of the tools available to him. While these tools are not complex in themselves applying them in the order and intensity necessary to complete the task can be a challenging process. Hopefully, the many posts I have sent in the past have eluded to and clarified how to begin the process. A continuing graze-rest program is the first of these management processes.

The picture below depicts what can happen over time when that graze-rest process is in place for all seasons of growth.

Canada Wildrye is increasing in density and availability for livestock to graze during a time of year that many producers believe there is no alternative to maintaining livestock condition other than an expensive feeding program, in particular during an extended dry spell. This photo proves there can be another alternative at little cost to the producer other than the intensity of management.

Canada Wildrye (Green winter growth) Sideoats and KR Bluestem (Red dormant growth)

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Rangelands and Ranching: A Study of Proper Use of Rangelands & the Environment by Frank S Price

My son and I ranch a cow-calf, wooled sheep and hair sheep operation in West Central Texas. We operate 7 different grazing units and utilize a single herd, traditional pasture grazing program within all these units. My son represents is the 5th generation of this enterprise that was started in 1876 by my great grandfather. He and his brother began by driving a herd of cattle from Ennis Texas to Santa Anna Texas, ultimately driving the herd of cattle they had built to Kansas markets and returned to Sterling County, to begin a permanent ranching operation. Rainfall within our scattered operations runs from 17” to 20”. The winters, while going into the single digits on occasion are relatively mild compared to ranches further north, resulting in mostly mild winters producing usable cool season growth along with the dominant warm season plants.

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