June 23, 2014

Livestock Foraging Behavior: It may not be what you think!

Understanding how animals choose what to eat, based on learning and how their bodies work, will help you see why your animals are eating what they’re eating and give you a leg up on figuring out how to help them do more for you.

June 16, 2014

Temple Grandin’s Response to Analysis of Her Handling Facilities Design

Dr. Temple Grandin shares her thoughts about the Stockmanship Journal’s analysis of her handling facilities design.

June 9, 2014

Good Stockmanship Makes All The Difference

This is the final excerpt in this series. Authors Whit Hibbard and Dr. Lynn Locatelli conclude that investing in training for anyone handling and moving livestock is cheaper and more effective in the long run than trying to create and install expensive handling equipment that doesn’t necessarily do the job.

June 2, 2014

Tubs Vs. BudBoxes: BudBoxes Win!

You don’t need to spend your hard earned cash on fancy facilities. Here Whit Hibbard and Dr. Lynn Locatelli continue their analysis highlighting why inexpensive, easy to use BudBoxes make more sense than high dollar facilities.

May 26, 2014

Straight, Open-Sided Chutes and Squeeze Chutes are Best For Cattle Handling

In Part 4 of their analysis, Whit Hibbard and Dr. Lynn Locattelli describe how these kinds of facilities respond better to animal behavior than those suggested by Dr. Temple Grandin, and why they make your life as a livestock handler easier.

May 19, 2014

Ditch Those Curved Facilities and Tubs – They Don’t Make Livestock Handling Easier

Dr. Temple Grandin designed livestock handling facilities with curves and solid sided tubs to keep livestock moving forward without fear. But analysis by Whit Hibbard and Dr. Lynn Locatelli shows that livestock don’t respond well in these facilities. Here’s Part 3 of their analysis.

May 12, 2014

Get Rid of Solid-Sided Handling Facilities

Dr. Temple Grandin designed livestock handling facilities with solid sides based on her theory that they prevent animals from seeing outside distractions. In this part of their analysis of these kinds of handling facilities, Hibbard and Locatelli demonstrate how animals move much more easily through open-sided facilities.

May 5, 2014

Will Temple Grandin’s Handling Facilities Work for You?

Do you think you need a new cattle handling facility? Are you trying to figure out what will work best for you? Here’s an analysis of the Grandin system and how it matches animal behavior in action.

April 7, 2014

Using Livestock Behavior Makes Improving Landscapes Easier

In Part II of this series summarizing Bob Budd’s lessons learned, he describes how understanding and using an animal’s natural behavior makes it easier to move them and use them to improve landscapes and create habitat.

March 10, 2014

Livestock Choose Parasite-Killing Foods

Researchers at Utah State University have conducted several studies that show that tannins in forages can reduce parasite loads in livestock, and that animals will choose to eat more foods with tannins when they are infested with parasites.  Most shrubs contain tannins, and tannins can also be found in sudangrass, birdsfoot and big trefoil, sorghum, […]

December 16, 2013

Mother Knows Best – Why Your Livestock Do What They Do

We are used to thinking about forage type, nutrition and quantity as we raise our animals, but we overlook what animals might be learning from Mom and herd mates. Since what a young animal learns about food has life-long consequences, knowing more about this process can help us be more successful managers.

November 18, 2013

Sue Kennedy Teaches Cows to Eat Leafy Spurge

Here are some of the posts on the Kennedy Ranch Facebook page from Sue Kennedy’s work teaching cattle to eat leafy spurge on their ranch in Lamoille, Nevada. Sue says that the cattle do well eating the spurge on their first rotation through a pasture. But 14 days later they tend to eat around the […]

August 12, 2013

Deer and Cattle Eat Rabbits

Sometimes cows eat rabbits too! Here’s a look at some unusual animal eating behavior and why they choose to eat things we wouldn’t have imagined for them. If your livestock are eating strange things, you’ll learn why here.

June 3, 2013

Are Poisonous Plants A Bigger Problem for Weed-Eating Livestock?

William “Willie” Gibson, a board member of the Vermont Grass Farmers Association, and a dairy and livestock farm advisor for the Northeast Organic Farming Association wrote me a question in response to an article about teaching cows to weeds: “This surely is fascinating, Kathy.  One question that popped into my head when reading your theory […]

May 27, 2013

Is Teaching Cows to Eat Weeds a Beneficial Weed Control Technique?

One of the common questions I get from folks who hear me talk about training livestock to eat weeds is whether or not it is a good way to control weeds.  For the answer, I’ll share what was in my head when I started trying to figure out the process for teaching animals to try […]

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