Page 4 - MWC 8-20-20s
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The Midwest Cattleman · August 20, 2020 · P4

                                         walk by a pasture where the
                                         cattle have been and see it
                                         rebound.  It’s also just as ex-
                                         citing to see where they’ll be
                                         going tomorrow – where noth-
                                         ing has touched it for almost
                                         a month.  The concept of ‘rest’
                                         is an amazing concept in graz-
                                         ing management.  It’s pretty
                                         obvious when you drive by a
                                         pasture that hasn’t had one
                                         in quite a while.  It just looks
                                         ‘tired’ and unproductive.
         Not everyone is setup to           We     haven’t     used      a
      do serious grazing manage-         creep-feeder for years, but
      ment.   Not everyone has  the      in our grazing system the
      time or even the inclination.      younger  calves  ‘creep-graze’
      I’m at the point now where,        every day.  They consistently
      after twenty-plus years doing      slip under our gates that are
      it and having traveled from        just a bit higher for a reason.
      one tip of New Zealand to the      This system allows the calves
      other - twice, it’s the only type   to get the ‘best’ and the cows
      of grazing I’m interested in       are forced to work a little for
      doing.  I realize it is not for    every bite.                        talking about?”   He was per- pointed.  “That’s green beans
      everyone.   When asked, I sug-        Just  this morning I            sistent. “Why do you have so  for cows.  They don’t like it so
      gest that everyone do as much      watched, actually videoed,         many fences?” He repeated.    much.  They want to just eat
      as is practical in their opera-    two Red Angus cows go nose-        We were on an  ATV at the  the  ‘ice-cream’ and move on
      tion.  What happens is, once       to-nose to try to beat the other   time,  so  I  let  off  the  throttle  until all the ice cream is gone.
      started, it grows on you.  The     to the best clover they could      and let it come to a stop.   I  We close the gate and make
      cattle handle differently.  The    find and later I imagine they      then pulled from my vast edu- them eat everything – includ-
      forages respond.   The forage      did the same for some mature       cation and experience and laid  ing the  ‘green beans’, before
      diversity explodes, and soon,      grass that they found remain-      the lesson out there so even  they get more ‘ice-cream’.”
      provided they have the time        ing in the afternoon.  By eve-     a five-year-old could under-         I didn’t explain that over
      and water system, a producer       ning, you know they were at it     stand.   “To make those cows  time the ‘ice-cream’ will com-
      who was only going to ‘try’ it     again - seeking out anything       eat their ‘green beans’, I said  pletely disappear and all that
      will be out there dividing more    edible-including  weeds  and       over the idling engine.  Again,  will be left is the other.  I also
      pastures in half and yes… in       less-desirable plants.  Graz-      he was silent, but you could  didn’t explain ‘rest’, ‘diversity’,
      half again.  My Grandma used       ing pressure works.  It’s a        see he was thinking.   “Pop,”  ‘intake’, ‘crude protein’, ‘TDN’,
      to  say,”  The  proof  is  in  the   bite-by-bite competition that    he said, “Cows don’t eat green  ‘nitrogen  fixation’, ‘fertility’,
      ‘puddin’.”  Well, it ain’t’ ‘pud-  resembles a trip down the          beans.”                           or  ‘pounds of gain per acre’,
      din’… but there is plenty of       ‘paper isle’ at the discount         Well he was right, and he  but it was enough for him.
      proof and anyone paying close      store during a pandemic when       had no idea what a  ‘meta-           Ask him today and he still
      attention can sure see it.         there is only one roll of toilet   phor’ was, so I shut the en- gets it.  “Why does your Pop
         The truth is that it primar-    paper left.  Grazing density       gine off and pointed to a tall,  have so many fences?”
      ily revolves around water. If      puts animals into a grazing        lush sward containing both           He’ll  answer boldly…  “To
      you can get water to all parts     competition, and it works.  It     Red  and White  Clover. “You  make sure those cows eat
      of your pastureland then it        works no matter the scale,         see that? I asked.  That’s ‘Ice- their green beans.”
      becomes a lot easier.  Every       and no matter the forage base.     cream’ for cows – they love       KwC
      season a few more producers           I have to admit I wasn’t        it!”  And those other plants –
      take  advantage  of  the  cost-    very  popular  with  my  sons      like that grass right there,” I
      share programs available to        who liked to ride horses near-
      do just that.  Just drive by       ly every day when we first put       JUG Livestock Waterers
      fence-lines where you see con-     in our grazing system.  They         WesLynn Enterprises
      tinuous grazing next to some       were not impressed.   And to
      type of rotation.   The differ-    my  surprise,  here  lately,  my
      ence is like black and white       five-year-old grandson Korvin
      in some places – even though       showed  his  dissatisfaction
      nothing changes in soil-type       with the arrangement.  “Pop,”
      below the surface – just stew-     He said, “Why do you have so
      ardship and management on          many fences?”  Evidently, he
      top.  Some places are obvious-     had noticed other pastures
      ly  poor, but many  more are       where they are less prevalent.
      just ‘poorly managed’.             I have to admit I was caught             Performance Tested for over 25 years
         We have a grazing system        off-guard.  What five-year-old              Clean Fresh Water Every Time
      where we have been putting         notices that anyway?   What                     Open Bowl Design
                                                                                  Draw Tube for Natural Drinking Action
      fifty pair on 1-2 acres for a      five-year-old even cares?             Feed Trap Keeps Feed out of Water Reservoir
      day and it’s amazing the uti-         After a long pause, I stalled        No Flap, Disks or Balls for animal to move
      lization that causes.   I love to   and inquired.  “What are you                           Ph: 515-771-6036
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