Two NRCS range specialists will discuss "Using a Drought Calculator to Assist Stocking Decisions" during an April 24 webinar, the fourth in this professional development series developed by the National Drought Mitigation Center. Speakers are Stan Boltz, state range management specialist for NRCS in South Dakota, and Jeff Printz, range management specialist for NRCS in North Dakota. The final webinar in the series will be May 29 and feature Matt Stockton, UNL agricultural economist, discussing "Economic Factors to Weigh in Making Decision During Drought."
Each webinar includes a briefing on current drought status, followed by information on a specific topic or tool. To register for the April 24 webinar, contact Nicole Wall or Tonya Haigh. More information including links to archived webinars and a Managing Drought Risk Planning Guide for Great Plains ranchers is available at Managing Drought Risk on the Ranch.
Grazing and Pasture Management During and After Drought
This winter has been warmer and drier than many Nebraska beef producers would have liked. While the start of the growing season is still a couple months away, producers should be planning now for the upcoming grazing season. This article, on Beef.unl.edu, links to several resources to help producers identify and consider various management options. It also links to a recent webinar, Grazing and Pasture Management During and After Drought with Jerry Volesky, UNL Extension range/forage specialist.
UNL research on livestock reproduction offers insight into why producers may want to adjust cattle nutrition during breeding season this year. Research shows that cattled bred on an increasing plane of nutrition have higher pregnancy rates than cattle bred on a declining plane of nutrition. In a more normal year a March calving herd in the Sandhills would have high quality forage in June when cows are bred. However, a May calving herd would be grazing August grass, which is likely to have lower protein levels as it matures. Generally, nutrition supplements would be recommended for the August "high risk" animals, but this year the entire herd may need supplementation due to lower quality spring forage. See more on this research in the UNL BeefWatch article.
Uncertainty about pasture condition is leading many livestock growers to consider planting forages on dryland and irrigated acres this summer. Learn about commonly recommended varieties and how to achieve optimum production with limited irrigation. This article on the UNL Beef website links to a webinar as well as four Extension publications on the topic.Grazing Annual Forages, presents information on the production potential, grazing carrying capacity (stocking rates), and grazing management strategies for different cool- and warm-season annual forages. See more resources. Learn more about space requirements, manure management, site considerations, and permitting requirements in two webinars now available online.
The two most important components of a grazing lease agreement are stocking rate and lease rate, according to Jay Jenkins, UNL Extension Educator in Cherry County. Balancing the forage demanded by the animals with the amount of forage grown is the most important part of proper grazing management. Learn what to include in your grazing lease. More.
If you missed one of the 2012-2013 Beef Short Course programs broadcast on NETV, don't worry. They're now available online on the Beef.unl.edu website. University beef, forage, and veterinary experts discuss:
- Winter Feeding Considerations for the Beef Cow Herd
- Managing Calving
- If the Drought Ends: Grazing and Forage Options
- If the Drought Continues: Grazing and Forage Options
Market Journal Video Segments
Video Segments from Market Journal
Drought has forced some producers to dry-lot cattle for extended times. Rick Funston, UNL Extension beef cattle reproductive physiologist, discusses breeding and synchronization in confinement.
With limited rains and a cool spring, UNL Extension range and forage specialist Jerry Volesky discusses current condition of grasslands in west central Nebraska.
Planting forage in irrigated land has become a popular topic with continuing drought. UNL Extension Range and Forage Specialist Jerry Volesky talks about the options for using grasses in this situation.
Managing Drought Risk on the Ranch
- May 29 - Economic Factors to Weigh in Making Decisions during Drought - Register Now
- Managing Drought Risk on the Ranch - View Now
- Avoiding Analysis Paralysis: Monitoring and Setting Critical Dates for Decision Making During Drought - View Now
- The New Cumulative Forage Reduction (CFR) Index: Assessing Drought Impacts and Planning a Grazing Strategy - View Now
- Using a Drought Calculator to Assist Stocking Decisions - View Now
Grazing and Pasture Management During and After Drought- View Now
Drought Decision Tools for the Cow Herd - View Now
Growing Annual Forages - View Now
Grazing Annual Forages - View Now
Site Selection Considerations for Confined Feeding of Dry Cows or Cow-Calf Pairs - View Now