Grazing systems planning guidePDF (3.8 MB)
Table of contents
Grazing Management Systems
|2. GRAZING RESOURCE INVENTORY|
What are my goals for the grazing system?
Land and Soils
What land resources are available for the grazing operation?
What is the productivity of the soils?
Are there sensitive land areas or soil limitations for grazing in the pasture?
What are the forage requirements for each livestock herd?
What are the plans for potential expansion of the livestock operation?
How many herds will be grazed?
What are the existing forage species in the pasture?
How healthy or in what condition is the pasture?
What are the estimated yields and seasonal distribution of the existing forages?
What are the existing water sources and where are the drinking facilities?
What are the other potential water sources?
What are the types and condition of the existing fences?
|3. GRAZING PLAN DEVELOPMENT|
Paddock Design and Layout
How many paddocks are needed for a rotational grazing system?
How do I decide paddock size?
What are some considerations for paddock layout?
Fence Design and Layout
What kind of fence should I install?
Water System Design and Layout
How can I supply adequate water to the livestock?
Where should drinking facilities be located?
Heavy Use Area Planning
What do I consider when planning livestock lanes?
How do I stabilize the livestock lanes?
How do I keep the area around water facilities from becoming mudholes?
|4. PASTURE MANAGEMENT|
Pasture Forage and Livestock Management
What is proper grazing management for the desired forage species?
How do pasture and livestock management affect plant growth and forage quality?
When do I start grazing in the spring?
When do I move livestock from paddock to paddock?
Pasture Soil Fertility Management
Can nutrients from livestock manure be utilized more efficiently in pastures?
When is increasing soil pH with lime important for forage production?
How much nitrogen fertilizer do I need to put on my pasture?
Does phosphorus and potassium fertilizer improve pasture productivity?
Pasture Brush and Weed Control
Can unwanted weeds be controlled through grazing?
What are the cultural and mechanical brush and weed control alternatives for pastures?
When is control of brush and problem weeds with herbicides the best option?
Sacrificial Paddock Management
How will the livestock be managed during times of drought or wet conditions?
Will sacrificial paddocks be rejuvenated after removal of livestock?
|5. GRAZING SYSTEM MONITORING|
Pasture Record Keeping
How do I know I have enough forage available?
Is the productivity of the pasture increasing?
Are the natural resources improving?
|6. GRAZING PLAN EXAMPLE|
A Livestock Forage Monthly Balance Sheet
B1 Identification Key for Common Forage Species – Grass
B2 Identification Key for Common Forage Species – Legume
C1 Determining Grassland Condition/Trend
C2 Inventory Category Items
D1 Average Forage Yields for Northern Minnesota and Northern Wisconsin
D2 Average Forage Yields for Southern Minnesota and Southern Wisconsin
E Water System Design Considerations
F Visual Method for Calculating Reserve Herd Days
G Calculated Method for Reserve Herd Days
H Grazing Plan Checklist
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