Sunday, December 5, 2010

Winter Grazing

Moved the main cow herd into a one of the five grazing cells on the ranch.  There are about 20 different paddocks in that cell to graze through.  By estimation I expect to get to about January 5th before going into the next cell.  Most of that grass height and density looks about like 4000 to 5000 pounds to the acre.  Because of the lack of rain during the summer and fall the next 2 cells appear to be less dense and lower in height which will definitely reduce total forage availability.  All of this talk and calculation of forage is primarily a plan to reduce if not eliminate all winter hay feeding.  Some may not see the importance of this.  This cow herd using the old traditional winter hay feeding system could rack up a feed bill in excess of $40,000, and sometimes a lot more depending upon the winter severity.  It is well worth my time to work on this part of my grazing plan.

I invite you all to visit the ACRES USA convention next week in Indianapolis.  I will be giving talks on Holistic Systems.  You can also pick up a copy of my new book, Ranching Full Time on Three Hours a Day.  I urge you to keep those livestock moving to a new paddock each day, all winter long

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