Notes From Kathy View All →

The Thinking Grazier Makes You Go, “Hmm….”

By   14 hours ago

What do you do when you encounter information that challenges long-held beliefs? Most of us get defensive to some degree. In fact, research shows that the more the information challenges our sense of self, the more threatened we feel and the more defensive we become, making us less likely to listen to or accept the […]

Read More →

Aging Farmers and Ranchers – Another Part of the Story

By   1 week ago

I’ve lost count of the numbers of articles I’ve read about the aging farmer population and how this affects agriculture’s future. But none of them ever address the aspect of aging that Don Ashford tells in this story. Since On Pasture’s readership is evenly divided into thirds – young, middle-aged, and mature – I thought […]

Read More →

Using Grazing Principles to Solve Overgrazing Impacts

By   2 weeks ago

First, you know that new version of the website I promised you this week? Well – technology happened and so there’s going to be a delay. But it’s coming! So stay tuned. Speaking of technology, some recent changes to the Google algorithms have a lot of websites scrambling. No one knows what the changes are, […]

Read More →

Coming Next Week – A New Look For On Pasture

By   3 weeks ago

Next week, when you click over to On Pasture, it’s going to look different. And I’m a little nervous because I know change is hard and when you get used to something and then it changes, well, it can be uncomfortable. But, I think you’re going to like this new look. I’ve focused on making […]

Read More →

Tips for Training Livestock to Come When Called (and do other helpful things)

By   4 weeks ago

In last week’s issue, John Marble showed us the numbers that demonstrate calling and leading livestock is more efficient and cost effective than herding. I also wrote about how it works just as well on large landscapes. This week, since On Pasture is all about saving you time and money, John and I are each […]

Read More →

Calling and Leading Livestock Over Long Distances – It’s Easy!

By   1 month ago

This week, John Marble is sharing his study comparing the efficiency of leading livestock vs. calling and leading them. Calling and leading came out on top every time. In his “Discussion” section, he mentions that folks working on large landscapes may question if it works in their case. I’m here to say, “Yes, it does!” […]

Read More →

On Pasture On Vacation – Here’s What to Read

By   1 month ago

As you read this, I’m somewhere camping next to a lake, maybe going for a paddle in my kayak, and definitely enjoying a little R&R. It’s the first time since March of 2020, and I’m pretty happy about it. Since I’m on vacation and haven’t given you anything new to read, it’s a great chance […]

Read More →

Why On Pasture Disappeared On Sunday and Next Week’s Schedule

By   2 months ago

This past Sunday there was a hiccup in the On Pasture multiverse. The domain auto renewal didn’t auto renew and if you came by to visit us you might have seen this screen. Three phone calls and five hours later, we had some good news. OnPasture.com was renewed and had begun “propagating” through the internet. […]

Read More →

    The Thinking Grazier View All →

    Collaborative Adaptive Rangeland Management, Multipaddock Rotational Grazing, and the Story of the Regrazed Grass Plant

    By   14 hours ago

    In this month’s The Thinking Grazier, we’re looking at some research that might challenge some of our preconceived notions. I’ve included questions we can ask ourselves as we consider what to do with this information. You can also download the paper with the link to the right. Preventing animals from taking that “second bite” or […]

    Read More →

    Leading Instead of Herding – Why and How to Teach Your Livestock to Follow

    By   4 weeks ago

    Last month in The Thinking Grazier, John Marble got us thinking about our relationship with our animals and how behavior (theirs and ours), along with our fence and infrastructure, factors into getting them to do what we want them to do. Then last week, he concluded that leading was more efficient and cost effective than […]

    Read More →

    Paddock Design and Stockmanship – Thinking It Through

    By   2 months ago

    Editor’s Note: John Marble runs a seasonal grazing operation. That means he doesn’t over-winter cattle, and,each spring, he’s working with a new batch of cows, calves, and custom grazed steers. Because these animals are unfamiliar with managed grazing, he’s developed techniques that make it easy to work with and move them. This month, we’re taking […]

    Read More →

    Adapting to a Changing Climate

    By   3 months ago

    Editor’s Note: I just got back from 5 days in the largest 2C hot spot in the Lower 48. Grand Junction, Colorado is in the middle of a 30,000 square mile region that has warmed as much as 3.5° C (5° F) above pre-industrial levels. The result, in addition to hotter summers and warmer winters, […]

    Read More →

      Grazier's Focus of the Month View All →

      How to Work With Neighbors to Graze Their Cover Crops and Crop Residue

      By   2 months ago

      One of the ways that graziers can extend their season is by working with neighboring crop farmers to graze their cover crops and crop residue. So in this month’s Grazier’s Focus, we’re giving you some tools to help with the challenge of actually speaking to your neighbors and working out an agreement that’s beneficial to […]

      Read More →

      Stockpiling to Extend the Grazing Season

      By   3 months ago

      Stockpiling is a practice graziers use to reduce winter feed costs and increase profitability. It’s nothing more than setting aside some of your pastures so that livestock will have something to graze into the fall and winter. But while that sounds simple enough, it requires some forethought and planning, an understanding of your environment and […]

      Read More →

      Pinkeye and Fly Management Made Easier

      By   4 months ago

      This is our first offering in this new category where we focus on helpful, timely information. Learn more about this and more about what’s new at On Pasture here. It’s July, and as usual, the most popular searches at On Pasture are about how to treat Pinkeye. Why? This is when fly populations seem to […]

      Read More →

        Grazing Management View All →

        Staging Forages for Fall and Winter Grazing

        By   1 week ago

        Victor Shelton helps us make the most of our forages by telling us which should be grazed first, and which will last into the winter months.

        Read More →

        Are You Ready For Winter? Here’s How Much Feed You’ll Need and How to Serve It Up

        By   3 weeks ago

        Here in Indiana, the rains are finally replenishing reserves in most areas. Though a bit late for some things, it is still a boost for forages that have been stockpiled and they have leaped in compensatory growth! But sooner or later, it’s going to snow, and everything will quit growing. So, it’s time to be […]

        Read More →

        Protecting Pastures From Armyworms and Some Reminders for Your Fall “To Do” List

        By   1 month ago

        It has been another odd year with the weather. Some areas that were extremely dry early in the year are now enjoying abundant forages and rapid regrowth. Some areas that were wetter than normal during that same period are now on the dry side. No matter where you are located, you should always be prepared […]

        Read More →

        Prepping for Winter With a Better Way to Feed

        By   2 months ago

        While the grasshopper is enjoying the summer, the ant is always getting ready for the winter. Typically graziers and all producers are the ants, working away to make sure livestock and their communities will have food for the whole year. Still, there’s no reason that the life of an ant can’t be made a little easier and more profitable. This video describes how stockpiling and then strip grazing through the winter can save you time and money while improving your pastures.

        Read More →

        Time to Start Prepping Your Pastures for Fall

        By   2 months ago

        My dear Mother always said that the older you get, the faster time goes, she was right. I really don’t know what happened to the summer. But here it is, August already. This is the prep month for the beginnings of fall activities starting with the seeding of permanent vegetation, early planting of annuals for […]

        Read More →

        Good Grazing and Soil Health Protection When There’s Too Much Rain

        By   3 months ago

        It was just a few weeks back that many of us were concerned about how dry it was getting…and then suddenly some of these same places have way to much moisture. Excess water has turned the focus more on trying to maintain forage quality and a rarity for this time of year, “pugging.” Saturated soils […]

        Read More →

        Which Kind of Grazing is Right for You?

        By   3 months ago

        There are so many different names for different kinds of grazing management that sometimes it gets a little confusing. So, to help you pick what’s right for you, here are some names and definitions. Each of these styles of grazing could fall under “Management-intensive Grazing” meaning that management of the animals is the focus, with […]

        Read More →

        A Tip for Monitoring Livestock Water Tanks

        By   4 months ago

        A simple DIY project from items everyone has at home!

        Read More →

          Pasture Health View All →

          Is it the Cattle Causing Water Quality Problems? Bring in the Forensics Team!

          By   1 week ago

          When water quality tests in the Mink Creek watershed came back showing high levels of E. coli bacteria, Idaho’s Department of Environmental Quality reported cattle as the probable cause, setting the grazing permitees up for possible problems. But were the cattle really the problem? In this two part series from the “Art of Range” podcast, […]

          Read More →

          Frost Can Cause Forage Hazards – Protect Your Livestock

          By   3 weeks ago

          A rancher posted on a facebook group I’m part of that she’d lost 4 cows and one bull to bloat four days after turning them into a frosted alfalfa pasture. What should have been no problem suddenly turned deadly thanks to changes in frosted alfalfa that increase bloat potential. But that’s not the only plant […]

          Read More →

          Nitrate and Prussic Acid Poisoning – It’s That Time of Year Again

          By   1 month ago

          Here is our annual reminder that drought and potential weather changes can cause increases of nitrates and prussic acid in some forages. This article from Jill Scheidt, University of Missouri Extension, tells us what to look out for. I’ve added some charts and testing information as well as links to addtional On Pasture articles to […]

          Read More →

          Living Crop Mulch Feeds Livestock and Improves Soil Health and the Bottom Line

          By   2 months ago

          Thanks to Scott Elliott, ARS Office of Communications for this article. Who doesn’t like a two-for-one deal, or a double-double, win-win? A team of USDA scientists in the upper Midwest is working on a double-cropping system that is showing promise as a way to improve a farmer’s profit margin by growing cattle feed between rows […]

          Read More →

          Providing Good Forage for Calving Season and Year Round Grazing

          By   2 months ago

          It’s always helpful to hear from fellow graziers about why they do what they do, especially when it comes to discussions of why and how changes they’ve made have improved their profitability and reduced their stress. That’s what you’ll find in this 6:46 video. It’s part of a series from the South Dakota Grassland Coalition […]

          Read More →

          Aspirin Takes the Headache Out of Establishing Sustainable Pastures

          By   3 months ago

          It seems like there is a lot of good research results becoming available right now. In June, we learned how plants develop “memories” to adapt and survive heat stress. This week we find out that native grasses may benefit from a headache cure! Researchers at Curtin University in Perth, Australia have shown how a readily […]

          Read More →

          Alfalfa: A Winner for Producers and the Environment

          By   3 months ago

          Here’s some good news about how alfalfa can feed our livestock and our soils. Thanks to Scott Elliott, ARS Office of Communications, for this story. Alfalfa has a long history as the go-to feed for farm animals and poultry. Aquaculture has also discovered the power of alfalfa by refining it into a high-protein fish food. […]

          Read More →

          Feed Alternatives When Drought Puts a Halt to Forage Production

          By   4 months ago

          This week’s report on forage and drought conditions in North Dakota provides some good information for everyone suffering from drought conditions, and that includes a large swath of the United States this year. Nearly 10% of the contiguous U.S. is now in “exceptional drought,” the highest for that designation since 2011. Soil moisture conditions continue […]

          Read More →

            Livestock View All →

            When You Move an Animal to a New Place, Don’t Make it Eat New Foods Too

            By   1 week ago

            New places cause stress, and stress can lead to animals picking the wrong foods, or not eating at all. Here’s some insight into the reasons why and how you can help.

            Read More →

            Winter Grazing and Weaning Calves

            By   3 weeks ago

            The ranchers in this 4-minute video don’t bring their cattle in and feed them over the winter. They’ve found that bale or swath grazing is a much more economical, low labor way of carrying their stock through the winter. Here they talk about when and how they wean and feed their calves as part of […]

            Read More →

            Calling and Leading Cattle is More Time and Cost Efficient Than Herding

            By   1 month ago

            To start, I’d like to thank my neighbors Ken and Debbie for inspiring this study. Ken and Debbie raise “stock dogs.” This provides me with endless hours of entertainment during the pleasant evenings of spring and summer as I listen to the strange commands, whistles, and threats that float across the pasture. They sound like […]

            Read More →

            Targeted Cattle Grazing Quickly Contains Wildfires

            By   2 months ago

            Back in 1997 when I first began my research project on the logistics of using goats to create firebreaks to protect homes in wildland areas, I dreamed that one day, livestock would become an important part of our firefighting toolbox. As I continued my work, my dream expanded beyond goats to what seemed a bigger, […]

            Read More →

            Cattle Are Losing Adaptations to Their Specific Environments

            By   2 months ago

            Researchers have uncovered evidence showing that cattle are losing important environmental adaptations, losses the researchers attribute to a lack of genetic information available to farmers. After examining genetic material stretching back to the 1960s, they identified specific DNA variations associated with adaptations that could one day be used to create DNA tests for cattle — […]

            Read More →

            Stress Spreads: What’s Pee Got To Do With It?

            By   3 months ago

            You may have noticed that when a few animals get stressed, others do too, or that a normally calm group of animals just isn’t the same when you add a Nervous Nelly. Here’s what could be going on.

            Read More →

            Alternative to Antibiotic Created to Combat a Major Poultry Disease

            By   3 months ago

            Thanks to Autumn Canaday of the Agricultural Research Service for this article. Researchers at the USDA’s Agricultural Research Service and US Biologic, Inc., have developed an oral solution to an antibiotic alternative that fights against poultry coccidiosis, a disease that costs the poultry industry $3.5B in annual losses worldwide. Coccidiosis is a parasitic disease that […]

            Read More →

            Test Your Knowledge of Management Practices That Affect Dewormer Resistance

            By   3 months ago

            Thanks to Michelle Arnold for this excellent article! There are many important diseases in sheep and goats but none are as common or threaten the herd health as much as internal parasites (worms). Although there are many types of worms that may contribute to a parasite problem, the blood-sucking barber pole worm (Haemonchus contortus) is […]

            Read More →

              Money Matters View All →

              What to Consider When Developing Winter Cow Care Agreements

              By   1 week ago

              Thanks for this article go to Aaron Berger, Nebraska Extension Beef Educator, Mary Drewnoski, Nebraska Extension Beef Systems Specialist, and J. David Aiken, Extension Water and Agricultural Law Specialist. Watch the Sept. 2, 2021 webinar, “Considerations When Developing Winter Cow Care Agreements,” for a more in-depth look at creating good agreements for all parties.   […]

              Read More →

              Asking “What Should We Do?” Instead of “What Can We Do?” Leads to More Possibilities

              By   3 weeks ago

              In managing through the recent drought covering much of cow country, I hear a lot of discussion around questions like:  “How many cows ‘can’ we keep?”;  “How much hay do we have on hand?”; “How much hay can we afford to buy?”. These questions are not very helpful. They miss the larger point. In looking […]

              Read More →

              Selling Cattle in September Increases Profit Potential

              By   1 month ago

              Researchers discovered that sending cattle to feedlots earlier than the traditional timing of October may provide a two- fold benefit.

              Read More →

              How to Write a Letter/Resume When You Want to Lease Land

              By   2 months ago

              If you want to start or expand your farming operation, making contact with a landowner is one of the first steps. Here are some tips about making that all important good first impression.

              Read More →

              Infrastructure Costs on Different Ranches – Wide Open Spaces and Little Bitty Places

              By   2 months ago

              As a young man growing up in the narrow green valleys of western Oregon, I was routinely given the following advice: “If you want to be a rancher, you better move east, because that’s where all the real ranches are.” The “east” all those folks were speaking of is the huge sea of sagebrush that […]

              Read More →

              How One Grazier Builds Cattle Business on Leased Land

              By   3 months ago

              How do you start a second career as a farmer/grazier? For John Shubeck, former Marine Corps Captain, it included not just coming home to work with his Dad, but going to school and learning about new techniques like No-till farming and rotational grazing. In this 6:20 video we visit John at his South Dakota farm […]

              Read More →

              Should You Diversify? Or Is There Beauty in Simplicity?

              By   3 months ago

              We tend to over complicate things. A simple business that does a few things well and at scale, is a thing of beauty! It is easy to get caught in the trap of doing lots of small things. After all, if someone is making money on the calves I sell, maybe I should background them […]

              Read More →

              You Can Be Paid for Protecting Your Grasslands, Rangelands and Pastures

              By   4 months ago

                USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) is accepting applications for Conservation Reserve Program Grasslands from July 12 to August 20, 2021. The program is an effort to help landowners and operators protect grassland, including rangeland and pastureland, while while still using them for grazing. Participants receive annual payments of not more than 75% of the […]

              Read More →

                Consider This View All →

                Are You a Grazier Suffering From Iron Disease?

                By   1 week ago

                This week marks one year since Chip Hines passed away. He provided us with so much great information and advice, so I wanted to honor him again by sharing one of his many great articles. Many men suffer from this un-researched affliction that is somewhat prevalent in the cattle raising community. This problem has been […]

                Read More →

                Rising CO2 Levels Threaten Dung Beetles

                By   4 weeks ago

                Extreme weather conditions, as seen in recent flood, drought and fire events worldwide, are some of the most obvious ways in which rising atmospheric CO2 levels are changing our world. But there are some serious effects that CO2 is having on our ecosystems that are less easily observed. A new study led by Wits University […]

                Read More →

                Let Go of the Goat and No One Gets Hurt – Being Safe Around Livestock

                By   1 month ago

                Our livestock could be one of the biggest dangers we face. Here’s how to be safe. And – Yes, you ALL need to read this!

                Read More →

                Is There Science Behind That Supplement You’re Taking?

                By   2 months ago

                This is more “grazier-related” than grazing-related. Here’s to your health! Does coffee cure heat disease? How about coconut oil for ending obesity? And green tea – is that really a cancer preventative? Last, but not least, are my Facebook friends a good source for information about what I should and should not be eating? David […]

                Read More →

                Wild Pigs’ Climate Impact is Greater Than a Million Cars

                By   2 months ago

                By uprooting carbon trapped in soil, wild pigs are releasing around 4.9 million metric tonnes of carbon dioxide annually across the globe, the equivalent of 1.1 million cars.   An international team led by researchers from The University of Queensland and The University of Canterbury have used predictive population models, coupled with advanced mapping techniques […]

                Read More →

                Poutine – Anything but Routine

                By   3 months ago

                If you’re a meat and potatoes kind of person, you’ll love this salad!

                Read More →

                Test Your Knowledge of Management Practices That Affect Dewormer Resistance

                By   3 months ago

                Thanks to Michelle Arnold for this excellent article! There are many important diseases in sheep and goats but none are as common or threaten the herd health as much as internal parasites (worms). Although there are many types of worms that may contribute to a parasite problem, the blood-sucking barber pole worm (Haemonchus contortus) is […]

                Read More →

                Grazing Salt Marshes Improves Resistance to Erosion and Sea Level Rise

                By   4 months ago

                More and more places around the world are facing the challenge of flood risk due to sea-level rise, land subsidence and frequent storm surges. Some are approaching this problem by developing dikes or storm barriers. But construction of these hard engineering solutions can also destroy coastal ecosystems and the services they provide. For example, in […]

                Read More →
                  Translate »