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NDSU 12-month Livestock-Pasture-Forage Management Planning Workshop Offered

During the workshop, each participant will learn how to develop and operate a biologically effective management strategy that provides a full 12-month forage sequence.

A three-day planning workshop on 12-month pasture and harvested forage management will be offered to livestock producers, land managers and college students on Tuesday through Thursday, January 5-7, 2010, at the new office building at North Dakota State University’s Dickinson Research Extension Center. The building is on the corner of State Avenue and Empire Road in Dickinson.

The workshop is designed to scientifically address the persistent problems in animal agriculture of high production costs and low profit margins because of the mismatch of forage nutrients required and forage nutrients available between modern, high-performance cattle and traditional low-performance, old-style livestock forage management practices.

“During the workshop, each participant will learn how to develop and operate a biologically effective management strategy that provides a full 12-month forage sequence for his or her ranch,” says Lee Manske, DREC range scientist and a workshop instructor. “These science-based management strategies meet the nutrient requirements of livestock during each production period, meet the biological requirements of grass plants and soil organisms, increase the quantity of forage nutrients produced and improve the efficiency of forage nutrient capture and its conversion into saleable animal weight commodities. This will generate greater new wealth from the land’s natural resources without depleting future production.”

Information related to the workshop material is available at http://www.GrazingHandbook.com.

To design pasture and harvested forage management strategies specific to individual ranches, maps with each pasture and field for the entire land holdings, including owned and leased land, need to be made and acreages of each soil type in each parcel of land need to be calculated prior to the start of the workshop. This information can be compiled electronically for participants by a crew of ArcGIS specialists. The specialists will be working with another workshop instructor, Toby Stroh, assistant professor in the Dickinson State University Agricultural Department.

Location descriptions of land holdings will need to be provided a month prior to the workshop to give sufficient time to develop the maps.

The land holdings and acreage information also can be developed a more difficult way by the participants by preparing a complete set of maps from aerial photos showing pasture and field boundaries. Participants will need to calculate the acreage of each pasture and parcel of land and determine forage type and acreages of each soil type within each parcel. Instructions are available on how to do this at http://www.GrazingHandbook.com.

The only nonoptional cost of the workshop is a $25 lab fee per person to cover supply costs, refreshments and a working supper on the second day. The regular registration fee of $70 has been waived. Three textbooks are available at a cost of $75. The optional but highly recommended ArcGIS map set will cost approximately $50 per ranch. An option for professional development with one or two graduate credits for a continuing education course is available from NDSU at a cost of $50 per credit. Participants will supply their own calculators and notebooks.

The workshop will run from 1 to 9 p.m. on Jan. 5 and 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Jan. 6. The Jan. 7 session will go from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Dickinson is in the Mountain time zone. Participants requesting ArcGIS maps to be developed for their ranch must register by Dec 7. Space is limited, so those who wish to attend are encouraged to register as soon as possible. For information or to register, call (701) 483-2348, ext. 118.

NDSU Agriculture Communication

Source:Lee Manske, (701) 483-2348, ext. 118, llevellyn.mnske@ndsu.edu
Editor:Rich Mattern, (701) 231-6136, richard.mattern@ndsu.edu
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