Amazing Grazing Education Event Resources

Below are the resources from the Amazing Grazing project's education events.

Range Plan & Ranch Drought Plan
David Kraft, Dwayne Rice, Doug Spencer and Ted Alexander
Sessions offered:
   Monday, August 26: NRCS office at 3020 W. 18th, Emporia
   Tuesday, August 27: NRCS Conference Center at 747 Duvall, Salina
 Click here for complete event information.

Developing a Ranch Plan:
- Maps and Farm Information
- Resource Inventory
- Setting Goals and Objectives
- Planning Appropriate Actions
- Creating a Strategic Plan
Developing a Drought Plan for Your Ranch:
- Examining Ranch Vision & Objectives
- Taking Inventory
- Identifying Critical Dates & Conditions
- Monitoring Resources
- Developing Strategies
- Implementing & Evaluating Your Plan
Climatic Impacts and Range Conditions
David J Kraft
State Rangeland Management Specialist
NRCS, Emporia KS
August 2013
42 pages, download 5.4MB PDF
Drought Planning: Now is the Time
Doug Spencer
Rangeland Management Specialist
NRCS, Marion KS
August 2013
47 pages, download 5.4MB PDF

Livestock Water and Electric Fencing

Mark Green
September 10
Abilene Civic Center, 201 NW 2nd Street, Abilene
Click here for more information

Mark Green, NRCS Specialist, from Missouri returned to Kansas for a workshop that is always in high demand. Water availability is the number one limiting factor in grazing possibilities. Fence is also extremely important. The use of electric fence offers many more options for managed grazing that in turn benefits the health of the soil and range, as well as improved production and profitability.

Topics covered include:

Water Development for Serious Graziers
- Livestock water requirements
- Water Sources: wells, streams, springs & ponds
- Siting water for improved grazing distribution
- Permanent and portable tanks
- Above and below ground pipeline
Fencing for Serious Graziers
- Pros and cons of various electric fence construction materials
- Permanent & temporary fencing installation techniques
- Fence building
- Floating corner post installation

Livestock Watering Systems
Mark Green
District Conservationist
September 2013
64 pages, download 5MB PDF

Missouri Electric Fencing for Serious Graziers
Ian Kurtz and Paul Frey
NRCS, Missouri
September 2005
34 pages, download 3.4MB PDF
The information in this publication is based upon the experiences of NRCS personnel and graziers during the past 20 years. This is not intended as a detailed how-to manual about fence building. Those are available from numerous sources. Graziers should collect manuals from several fence companies to learn the techniques that could apply to their operations.
Techniques described here are primarily for producers installing one-wire and two-wire fences and permanent power stations using 110-volt energizers.

Missouri Watering Systems for Serious Graziers
NRCS, Missouri
August 2006
40 pages, download 6.9MB PDF
Water is commonly the weakest link in grazing systems because it is the most overlooked and neglected nutrient on farms. Many people do good jobs ensuring that the pasture, hay and grain they feed to livestock is high quality and of sufficient quantity, but they ignore the quality and quantity of their herds’ drinking
water. The key to animal health, grazing distribution, and forage management is readily available, adequate supplies of quality water.
The cost of water systems is always a consideration, but cutting too many corners will reduce performance, flexibility, and user satisfaction. Well-designed systems constructed using quality components and good workmanship will provide many years of convenient, low-maintenance, profitable use.
The intent of this publication is to provide livestock producers with the basic information that they need to plan, design and install water systems that will maximize animal performance and minimize the labor necessary to care for their herds’ water needs.

Short Grass Prairie Grazing Basics and Research

Keith Harmoney & John Jaeger
September 17
KSU Agricultural Research Center, 1232 240th Ave, Hays
Click here for more information

Keith Harmoney, KSU Agricultural Research Center, 1232 240th Ave, Hays has extended the invitation to tour the station and learn from various research trials that have been conducted in the short grass prairie area of Western Kansas.  Keith will team the education for this tour with John Jaeger also of the center.  The tour will be September 17th. Topics for the day will include: perennial cool-season grasses for grazing in western Kansas, stockpiled native rangeland for winter grazing, distillers grains supplementation for late season stocker production on native rangeland, precipitation effects on animal production and forage yield from native rangelands, early weaning of calves as a drought management strategy, results of the early weaned calf performance studies, along with a tour of the facilities and forages grown there.
Short Grass Prairie Grazing Research Summary
Keith Harmoney and John Jaege
Kansas State University Agricultural Research Center- Hays
September 2013
6 pages, download 321kb PDF
Precipitation captured by the soil is the limiting factor to forage growth in the water-limited rangelands of western Kansas. Several years of correlating precipitation timing and amount to the end of growing season rangeland yield revealed the time of year that precipitation has the greatest affect on forage production and grazing animal performance. Late fall to early spring is the time period with the greatest need to increase pasture forage availability or quality, and supplementation late in the growing season was examined to determine strategies to keep grazing on low quality forage while maintaining animal gains.
For producers who would like to reduce feeding hay or supplement early and late in the season, yet have some early season grazing, this program also looked at data from a five year grazing trial of perennial cool-season grasses that can fill this niche in the mixed and shortgrass prairie region of western Kansas.
Information given in this summary is intended to help producers make decisions on stocking during years of average or minimal precipitation, and to show ways in which grazing may be extended and animal performance be maintained without increasing annual inputs.

How Animal Selection and Grazing Management Improves Productivity, Profitability and Personal Satisfaction

Jim Gerrish
October 28-29 Salina, Ramada
October 30-31 Pratt, Pratt Community College
Click here for more information.

Jim Gerrish returned to Kansas for two, 2-day workshops at Salina and the Pratt area.
Jim shared his knowledge and wisdom of managed grazing, animal production and performance, as well as planning the ranch to also provide profit and satisfaction. His workshops are always well attended with producers leaving with a different way of looking at why they do things the way they do, and perhaps explore ways that make less work and more profit.

Topics covered included:
- What really matters in grazing management
- How to build a better solar panel (for forage growth)
- The dollars and sense of grazing
- Using winter annuals and swath grazing to extend grazing
- Managing beef cow costs
- The cow’s job description: Defining the functional cow
- Why should the cow work for the ranch and not the other way around
- Cow size…feed efficiency…and genetics, breed differences effecting different health and performance factors
- Selecting for disposition
- Setting goals for the individual ranch operation
- To hay…or not to hay…why one should be out of the hay business
- Mob grazing sericea lespedeza: Turning a "noxious weed" into $$

Everyone in the grazing business should take the opportunity to learn from the many years of research and experience that Jim brings to Kansas from his being the Director of the Forage Research Center, Linneus, Missouri as well as experience with livestock production and ranch management.

Fall Forage Tour: Converting Sunlight, Soil and Water into Beef

Dale Strickler
November 1 at 1:00 p.m.
November 2 at 1:00 p.m.

Dale Strickler is a passionate agronomist that loves to teach people about soil, plants and the environment.  He is a former college instructor.  He now shares his knowledge on a much larger scale as an advisor/consultant/teacher for farmers, ranchers and the seed industry.  Every year Dale has a test plot of a very wide variety of forages used for grazing.

His tour last year attracted 108 people, who were able to walk out across the test plot, among his cattle and visualize the grazing results. Cattle know what tastes best and vote accordingly with their consumption. The results were stunning. Some forages were eaten to the ground practically roots and all while others were avoided until all other offered forage had been consumed. Dale will have another test plot this year and invites all producers to come take a look.

To accommodate the working person as well as the rancher his tour will be offered on two days; the first on Friday November 1st, and the second on Saturday November 2nd.  The tour will start at his farm 1 mile south of Courtland at 1:00 p.m.  Registration is requested, but not required, although we like to have enough handouts.

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