Submitted to: Lancaster Farming
Publication Type: Popular Publication
Publication Acceptance Date: August 15, 2004
Publication Date: September 11, 2004
Citation: Comas, L.H., Skinner, R.H., Goslee, S.C. 2004. Using biodiversity to improve pastures. Lancaster Farming. September 11, 2004:E13 Interpretive Summary: An interpretive summary is not required.
Technical Abstract: Interest in pastures is rising as producers increasingly recognize the benefits of grazing in livestock operations. Despite the many benefits of grazing systems, there has been little research to improve pastures in the USA compared to what has been done in Europe and New Zealand. Cool-season pastures are the best grazing systems for the Northeastern USA but there are several areas where these pastures could be improved. Improvements to pasture systems to date have been made through standard agronomic techniques. Pastures, in comparison to most agronomic systems, are complex plant communities. Recently, ecologists have focused their attention on biodiversity and the roles of different plants in communities. Learning more about biodiversity in pastures may offer insights and economical alternatives for improving pastures. Our research merges agronomic interests with ecological concepts in an exciting opportunity to benefit livestock producers.