Submitted to: Symposium Series
Publication Type: Research Notes
Publication Acceptance Date: June 2, 2009
Publication Date: June 3, 2009
Citation: Anderson, D.M. 2009. The art in getting flocks and herds to flerds. Symposium Series. Multi-Species Grazing; Profitable for your land, Profitable for you! June 3-4, 2009, Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan. Technical Abstract: Flerds (small ruminants that consistently stay near cattle under free-ranging conditions) offer four distinct advantages over stocking simply flocks and herds to carry out mixed species stocking. One of the main advantages flerds offer is added protection from canine predation, reduced time in locating mixed-species groups, the control of small ruminants without conventional net wire fencing and the ability to foster uniform stocking pressure over the landscape during foraging. Though flerds are created by socializing large and small ruminants through a continuous close association either in pens or in the field, there are distinct practices to insure cohesive and enduring flerds including preventing physical abusiveness directed to the small ruminants from cattle. The art and science associated with realizing successful bonding that results in enduring flerds requires observing and immediately altering animal behaviors and management practices that would prevent or alter interspecific bonds from developing.