August 7, 2006 – Grazing Example

Although it might not be as noticeable in this late evening, low-light photograph, this shows how rotationally grazed pastures can hold up better in a drought.

In the center there is a long rectangle fenced off from the rest of the pasture where we have planted trees. The grass outside of the fenced off area is continuously grazed. Inside the fence simulates rotational grazing (periodic mowing). The grass is much happier (and greener) since it has a chance to recover between grazing episodes.

If a tuft of grass is eaten once, it grows back – if it is eaten a second time, before it has had a chance to recover and grow, its roots can’t keep up and it gives up. The lush grass in the middle shows the power of periodic, instead of rotationally grazing. The net effect is the same amount of pasture can maintain more grazing animals and be healthier.

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