Wyoming Pasture Fire Produces Interesting After Effects on Grass Growth
Posted on: Oct 02, 2013
A ranch client in Wyoming suffered a major wildfire in several pastures during the dry year of 2012. This resulted in a major loss of forage for livestock that required major replanning of livestock moves and forage allocation. The wet spring of 2013, however, brought a flush of grass growth that was interesting to observe. The photo below shows the pasture.
The bright yellow colored strip in the center of this photo is where the dozer plowed a fire break through the pasture. On the left side, the fire produced a vigorous stand of highly desired green needlegrass, while the unburned side on the right produced a vigorous stand of highly desired needleandthread grass.
Had these managers known the fire was going to produce such desired green needlegrass, would they have let it burn more? Probably not, since they needed all the pasture they could get in the dry autumn of 2012, but it's interesting to think about those possibilities now.