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Improved Grazing Management (BF 231)

Bf231GrazingImprove Your Triple Bottom Line Through Better Grazing

Grazing is more than simply turning livestock out onto a green “warehouse”
and hoping for the best. With sound grazing management, you can reduce your workload, keep your animals happier and healthier, and improve the overall productivity and profitability of your farm. Well-managed grazing systems also provide greater environmental benefits and enhance habitat for many wildlife species.

In this course, you’ll learn the key concepts of successful grazing operations that can be adapted and successfully implemented on your own farm.  The course focus will be on grazing ruminant livestock, but most of the information will be relevant to non-ruminant animals as well.

 

Target Audience

INTERMEDIATE to ADVANCED: This course is designed for livestock producers who have already initiated grazing practices on their farm, and who have at least a basic knowledge of the grazing behavior of their animals and of their pasture ecosystems. Producers who do not yet have livestock are welcome to participate, but may find it more challenging to absorb and keep up with the course content. 

 

Course Objectives

At the end of this course you will:

  • Learn common grazing terminology, systems and methodology
  • Comprehend the fundamental principles of every successful grazing system
  • Develop confidence in implementing or enhancing a grazing system for your farm
  • Know how to monitor, evaluate and refine the grazing system

 

Webinars

The bulk of the course happens on your own time, with discussions, readings, and assignments in MOODLE, our virtual classroom. To add to the experience, webinars will be woven into the online interface of the course to allow you to meet on a weekly basis to learn from presenters and ask questions in real time. If you miss one, they are always recorded and posted for later viewing.

 

Instructors

Brett Chedzoy, Senior forestry and agriculture educator with Cornell Cooperative Extension of Schuyler County.  Brett and his family also own and operate Angus Glen Farms, LLC in Watkins Glen, NY – a 400- acre grazing operation that raises grass-fed beef.

Brett will be joined by several guest co-instructor experts throughout the course.

 

Dates

November 9 – December 14, with webinars each Wednesday evening from 7:00 – 8:30pm Eastern time.

 

Course Outline

Week 1: Strategies for Expanding Grazing on the Farm  
Topics covered: Navigating in Moodle (our online classroom), course expectations, student introductions, Why graze? Intro resources to support grazing.

Week 2: Grazing Infrastructure  
Topics covered: Types and technologies, pros and cons of some common systems, do-it-yourself vs. contractor installed, technical and financial assistance.

Week 3: Livestock Health on Pasture 
Topics covered: Nutrition, behavior, health, and humane considerations, common problems and how to address them.

Week 4: Improving Pasture Quality and Productivity 
Topics covered: Seeding, mechanical and chemical options, grazing density vs. stocking, rest and recovery, monitoring, research supporting the benefits of more intensively managed systems.

Week 5: Alternative Grazing Arrangements 
Topics covered: Planned grazing, custom grazing, the business side of grazing.

Week 6: Enhanced Grazing Systems  
Topics covered: Silvopasturing, multi-species grazing, “Living Barns”, extended season grazing, integrated agroforestry ventures.

 

Cost and Registration

Fee for this course is $250. Sign up a month or more in advance of the start date and receive $25 off. Sign up for three or more courses and received $50 off your total.

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