Grazing Winter Stockpile Part 4 – The Gory Details

Editors Note: Troy Bishopp (aka The Grass Whisperer) has been sharing what's happening on his farm as he feeds his custom-grazed dairy heifers on stockpiled forage. What we really appreciate about his efforts is that he's truly transparent about the challenges he faces, so that you'll know what you could be facing when you try it on your operation.  Here he shares what happened, including the stress of figuring out how to make it all work, from the end of November into December. Grazing as the weather changes is doable, but it's not without it's challenges. We can all imagine what it looks like, but to give you a clear picture, let's start out this article with a 2 minute video of the herd grazing through a snow squall the day after Thanksgiving: Even though they had access to water during the snow event on Thursday and Friday, they never went for water.  The forage was more succulent as it was only 100 day’s old.  They also had the woods for cover, and they took full advantage of it. Just another reason to have woods and hedgerows integrated into your operation, right Brett Chedzoy?? The Stress of Rain, Mud and Snow If you’re a regular participant and grazing practitioner, you’ve seen that up to now things have been pretty steady according to the grazing plan excep

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2 thoughts on “Grazing Winter Stockpile Part 4 – The Gory Details

  1. We had nearly an identical weather pattern here in Southern Iowa. The mud was the worst. During a four day period I moved 61 fall calving beef pairs to our abandoned railroad track paddock and just hayed them. When the ground froze, we went back to grazing the pasture paddocks again. Thanks for the great articles!

    1. Bill, much the same pattern here in Lillooet, BC Canada also. When it got soggy we let the herd have more ground to minimize the damage. We’ve been joking that we have had early break-up 1 and 2 already this winter. Thankfully, we’re frozen back up now. But just now I was checking my weather… It’s -5C/21F and snowy right now, and the forecast says in two hours it will be +5C/41F… Hmm. I guess I’ll just fall back on my old motto: Expect nothing and be prepared for anything.

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