For agriculturists who raise livestock on their farms as a livelihood forage production is very important. These cultivators need to ensure top quality of their grasslands by eradicating weeds, using suitable fertilizers and maintaining proper management of their cattle. By implementing these measures, pastures are better and the quality of the livestock too is good!
Geoffrey Morell, an American agriculturist and the proprietor of P.A. Bowen Farmstead warns farmers in his country of the dangers of overgrazing their pastures with farm animals. He is one of the few individuals in the farming community who is popularizing the concept of rotational grazing as a means to ensure the health and productivity of such livestock. This cultivator advises his fellow husbandmen to feed organic fodder to their cattle, chickens and other livestock. Moreover, he also discourages the use of growth-inducting hormones on such animals as it affects the quality of their yield and is harmful to their health.
What is rotational grazing?
This agriculturist explains that rotational grazing refers to a system where cultivators raise their livestock on grasslands, which they divide into a number of plots or paddocks. These farmers allow such animals to nibble on a fresh pasture at suitable time in order to avoid the adverse affects of overgrazing and ensure the optimum growth of grass on such fields. In addition to this, such grasslands also have an effective manure management system. Rotating farm animals from one paddock to another at the right time ensure the solid waste they discharge get opportunity to decompose into the soil rather than running off. Such manure assists in maintaining the fertility of the soil to ensure the growth of new grass.
Benefits of rotational grazing
This prominent farmer say rotational farming has the three main advantages for agriculturists who raise livestock:
- Increases fodder production
Farmers who adopt effective measures to control grazing of their livestock on their grassland notice a significant increase in quality forage production on an annual basis. This results in savings as the grass on their pastures can recuperate and grow naturally through rotational grazing.
- Enhance soil fertility
When cultivators allow their livestock to overgraze their grasslands, they unintentionally reduce the organic matter of the soil in such fields. This is because the plants that grow on such pastures have a small root mass than healthier flora. On the other hand, when they introduce rotational grazing practices, these plants have time to grow their root mass. This goes a long way in improving the organic matter of the soil in such fields and its fertility.
- Enhance the soil’s resistance to drought and floods
When agriculturists execute effective rotational grazing measures on their pasture, the soil in such fields are in a better position to deal with water shortages. Moreover, the grass on such fields slows down the follow of water during intense rain to preventing floods and soil erosion.
Geoffrey Morell says that farmers may find implementing rotational grazing practices on their pastures to be a costly exercise. However, in the long run, the revenues from such an investment will justify the expenditure.