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Pasture And Rangeland

Find news and information for advice and tips on pasture and rangeland.

Cow/Calf Producer

Climatologist says current El Niño could mean more favorable weather for midwest crops

Much-needed precipitation through the U.S. heartland this year has replenished soil moisture, refilled ponds and promises to boost crop yields, thanks to the weather phenomenon known as El Niño, according to Iowa State University agricultural climatologist Elwynn Taylor. And the benefits for the Midwest may continue into 2016.


USDA expands forage crop insurance option nationwide for livestock producers

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Risk Management Agency (RMA) is expanding crop insurance coverage for ranchers to help them protect against loss of forage produced for feeding livestock. The Rainfall Index Pasture, Rangeland, Forage pilot program (PRF) will now be available in all 48 contiguous states beginning with the 2016 crop year. Livestock producers have until Nov. 15, 2015, to sign up for coverage.

Pasture and Rangeland

Expert: Managing pastures doesn’t only mean growing grass

What a pasture should look like – whether a waving sea of grass or one with diverse vegetation – depends on the cattleman’s final goal and actions taken before rain falls, said a Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service range specialist.

“With the rains we’ve had this year, the waving sea of grass can be a cattleman’s dream: no weed problems, no brush problems and plenty to eat going into the winter,” said Tim Steffens, AgriLife Extension range specialist in Canyon.

Pasture and Rangeland

Profitable beef pastures need legumes

Forage legume species such as red or white clover, birdsfoot trefoil, and alfalfa are important plant contributors to productivity and quality of beef pastures in the Upper Midwest and elsewhere.


From really wet to very dry, what's left in your pastures?

How quickly things can change here in Ohio! Not much longer than a month ago, while I was moving cattle from one paddock to another, I was amazed at how wet it was for the middle of July. It seemed more like early March weather because it was really muddy when I put the cows through a gate into a new paddock. I don't ever remember my livestock pugging paddocks in July before, but there was some this year.

Cow/Calf Producer

Testing hay can save supplement dollars

Forage analysis can be a useful tool to remove some of the mystery concerning the hay that producers will feed this winter. Testing the grass hays this year for protein and energy content will help the producer design winter supplementation programs most appropriate for the forage supply that is available. Any of the potential nitrate accumulating hays should be tested for nitrate concentration.

Pasture and Rangeland

Determining hay prices

The 2015 haying season will be wrapping up in the next month, and with that many sellers will be pricing the bales they put up this summer. Knowing costs would help provide a lower bound or minimum asking price for hay. Market forces and quality levels also need to be considered.

Pasture and Rangeland

Feeding damaged wheat to cattle

With recent rains causing delays in completing the wheat harvest, there have been reports of damaged wheat, particularly in the northern areas of South Dakota. In some cases, factors such as vomitoxin or ergot have caused the affected wheat to be unmarketable.


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