Grazing, Livestock & Land
Livestock are a critical tool for producing food, income, and ecosystem services on the landscape. Animals’ impact may vary greatly on the landscape, depending on how they are managed. Our management services are designed to optimize ecological performance, improve livestock performance, and provide livestock operations that sustain themselves financially.
A written grazing plan provides critical certainty for livestock managers on both private and public lands. Landowners must be aware of the forage quantity and quality they provide for their livestock to maximize performance. Many factors influence the choice of pastures as livestock move across a ranch during the year, and those factors require that any written plan be designed with great flexibility. We create grazing plans for managers that provide flexibility, simplify livestock moves, achieve land-based objectives, and meet the needs of wildlife.
Grazing riparian areas
Running cattle in areas near water has become a highly debated subject in recent years. Some object to cattle lingering near a stream, and their solution is to fence off the stream. The intent of fencing cattle off a stream is good, but it ultimately doesn’t treat the cause of the problem. The cause of the problem is a poorly designed grazing program. The symptom of that problem is seen along waterways. Cattle may be successfully grazed along riparian areas if the grazing duration and recovery period between grazings are properly managed. Our programs are designed to properly manage livestock near waterways while reducing the need for costly fencing.
Many ranches today are selling their herds and providing “custom grazing” services for livestock owners. Custom grazing operators prefer a defined revenue stream, less potential risk, and a more managed cost structure over the vagaries of the commodities cattle market. We help custom grazing operations find the livestock to fit their land base and maximize their revenue during the grazing season.
Grazing for improved wildlife habitat
Cattle may be used as a tool for improving wildlife habitat. Research has shown that properly designed livestock grazing programs may provide much benefit to wildlife resources, including the quantity and quality of forage consumed by wildlife. Critical elements of improving wildlife habitat on ranchlands include the timing of grazing by livestock, grazing duration, intensity of grazing, and recovery period between grazings. Our services are designed to help enhance wildlife habitat through improved livestock grazing.