Palms-on alternatives join actual life at fencing and grazing clinic

Understanding and implementing applicable fencing and grazing practices will pay large dividends for cattle producers. Iowa State College Extension and Outreach beef specialist Erika Lundy-Woolfolk mentioned the 2023 Fencing and Grazing Clinic hosted by ISU’s Iowa Beef Heart centered on environment friendly and efficient instruments and strategies. The daylong program was held on the ISU Armstrong Analysis Farm close to Lewis in southwest Iowa.

Lundy-Woolfolk, who additionally was one of many program organizers, mentioned timing of the occasion ought to assist contributors begin utilizing the knowledge as quickly as this grazing season.

“We’ve heard a number of curiosity from cattlemen and livestock producers in search of instructional alternatives to assist them improve their pasture and forage administration abilities and take it to the following stage,” she mentioned. “This clinic was designed with them in thoughts.”

IBC extension program specialist Beth Reynolds additionally helped plan the occasion.

“One aim for this clinic was to show contributors to instruments and ideas they’ll use to assist meet their grazing objectives,” she mentioned. “Attendees all the time get pleasure from hands-on alternatives, and the developments within the expertise and fencing worlds have actually modified in the previous few years and made it simpler to implement rotational grazing.”

The morning session featured new choices in fencing, reminiscent of good fencing and digital wiring methods for electrical fences, introduced by a Gallagher Animal Administration consultant. Efficient fencing methods go hand-in-hand with enough grazing practices. Individuals discovered how non permanent and everlasting fencing instruments could make grazing completely different paddocks simpler when shifting cattle and will observe some electrical fence wiring.

Kayla Creek with Pure Sources Conservation Service shared information on the significance of creating and utilizing efficient grazing methods. She additionally led an exercise during which attendees had been in a position to observe designing paddocks utilizing pasture maps.

“Livestock farmers are additionally grass farmers, and that’s the reason it’s so essential to implement efficient grazing methods,” Creek mentioned. “The advantages of rotational grazing and environment friendly paddock methods present a greater graze and higher fertilization.”

Throughout the classroom session, ISU extension area agronomist Aaron Saeugling shared info on poisonous crops in Midwest pastures and forages and reminded attendees that a wide range of poisonous species might be discovered all through Iowa. This spurred questions and dialogue on figuring out invasive species.

IBC analysis scientist Garland Dahlke supplied an outline of water high quality standards, testing and decoding outcomes, and well being issues associated to cattle that devour compromised water. He reminded contributors that each one cattle interactions with water should be balanced in a weight-reduction plan plan, and defined how one can take a water pattern and the place to ship these samples.

Lundy-Woolfolk and Reynolds talked about planning a grazing calendar, together with the significance of being conscious of seasonal modifications related to pasture progress and forage availability. Their session additionally lined estimating variety of days obtainable for grazing, calculating grazing days and relaxation occasions, measuring forage yields, and contemplating points of cattle consumption.

Greater than 60 attendees from Missouri, Kansas and 19 counties in Iowa attended the Might 16 clinic, which was supplied by sponsors Gallagher, Iowa Forage and Grassland Council, Theisen’s, Millborn Seeds, Iowa State Beef Checkoff Program, Sensible Farmers of Iowa and Dairyland Laboratories Inc.