Grazing Management to Improve Soil Health- rotational grazing can improve soil health over continuous grazing strategiesLeave a Comment
- Proper livestock grazing – which maintains and improves soil health – results in a series of interconnected positive outcomes including:
- Soil densities and structure that allow root and water penetration of the entire soil profile.
- Vigorous forage plants with capacity to develop and maintain extensive rooting systems.
- A community of palatable forage plants with high rooting mass and depth.
- Stable, resilient increases in primary productivity both above- and below- ground.
Ken Tate April 9 2018 Read full UC Rangelands article here
Grazing lands occupy nearly half the Earth’s land area, provide livelihoods for millions, and mitigate climate change via massive stores of carbon. Maintaining and restoring soil health is essential to ensuring these benefits in our ever changing environment.
Thus, there is substantial global interest in managing livestock grazing to improve soil health. Grazing is promoted by some as a panacea for sequestering carbon and mitigating climate change. In other cases, grazing is depicted as an ultimate driver of soil degradation….
…Our findings (Byrnes et al. 2018) suggest that rotational grazing can improve soil health over continuous grazing strategies. Decisions about grazing strategy and intensity significantly influence soil health outcomes, and site-specific conditions play important roles in shaping these outcomes.
Byrnes, R.C., D.J. Eastburn, K.W. Tate, and L.M. Roche*. 2018. A global meta-analysis of grazing impacts on soil health indicators. J. Environmental Quality. doi:10.2134/jeq2017.08.0313.