How Hay is Stacked Does Make a Difference

A year’s supply of hay has been harvested. Bales are coming into the feed yard for storage. What is the best strategy to stack and store the hay to minimize weather damage, shrink, and nutrient loss? Preventing moisture from migrating into the bales from rain or melting snow reduces bacteria, mold and fungi growth which reduces damage. Three common methods of stacking hay are compared. The pyramid stack creates the most damage. Moisture that runs down off the top bale migrates into the middle and bottom rows. Damage occurs where the bales touch. The mushroom stack results in less damage than the pyramid style. Moisture that runs off the top bale migrates into the upper end of the bot

Incurring Costs for Surface Rights Board

Incurring Costs for Surface Rights Board (SRB) Processes The Farmers’ Advocate Office (FAO) is advising landowners to be diligent when incurring expenses related to Surface Rights Board (SRB) processes. “Landowners will often recruit professional assistance in filing their applications to the SRB,” says Jeana Les, rural engagement and communications specialist with the FAO. “While the board has the power to require the industry operator to cover these costs, a cost award is not a simple reimbursement. A SRB panel will use discretion to examine the costs incurred by landowners in preparation for their hearing,” The SRB may consider a variety of factors in making cost decisions including: •

Is It Residual or Is It Residue?

A lot of people in grazing circles seem to use these terms interchangeably, but in grazing science they mean two very different things. Residual is the living plant material left behind after a grazing event. For clarity we often say ‘post-grazing residual’. Residue is dead plant material left on the soil surface. It is synonymous with litter or duff. Post-grazing residual is what we leave standing in the pasture following a grazing event. In the growing season in a temperate environment, the residual should be green and leafy. Leaving the appropriate residual largely determines the recovery rate of the pasture. The more green leaf residual, the faster plants regrow. Residue is the dead or s

Oregon Rancher Teaches Cows to Eat Sagebrush

Two weeks ago, Beth wrote about results of studies done by her colleagues at Utah State University on using cattle to graze sagebrush to increase biodiversity on rangelands. This week she shares a story of a rancher who took that information to heart, decided to teach his cows to be sagebrush eaters, and has never looked back. In 2005 after hearing Fred Provenza speak, Mat Carter, an Oregon rancher, felt challenged to use sagebrush as winter-feed and as a way to grow more grass for his cows. That following winter, he corralled 150 cow-calf pairs with electric fence on 5 to 10 acres for 3 days and fed them 15 to 20 lbs of meadow hay. The pastures were a mix of low and big sagebrush, gray and

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