Skip to main content
ARS Home » Plains Area » El Reno, Oklahoma » Grazinglands Research Laboratory » Agroclimate and Natural Resources Research » Research » Research Project #429595

Research Project: Grazing Management School for Southern Great Plains

Location: Agroclimate and Natural Resources Research

Project Number: 3070-11130-006-06-S
Project Type: Non-Assistance Cooperative Agreement

Start Date: Sep 1, 2015
End Date: Aug 31, 2019

Objective:
Deliver a 3-phase grazing management course that will provide the participants with the means to develop a functional financial and grazing management plan for their ranch that they can execute to achieve their management goals.

Approach:
The course is structured into 12 units to be delivered in three sessions spread over the course of a year as outlined below. The course will be offer three times over the period of this project. Session 1- Introduction and overview 1. Day One; Presentation 1 – Economics of a Grazing Operation a. Review 3 secrets and effects of stocking rate/carrying capacity. Differentiate between not changing carrying capacity with increased stocking rate and increasing carrying capacity and stocking rate. b. Modern vs. Hunter-gatherer management (use key to identify where problems are and then try to solve those problems. c. Close with: “How do we increase carrying capacity and stocking rate without substantially increasing costs of production? (Homework) 2. Day Two Presentation 2 – Ecology and Managing Ecological Processes 3. Day Two Presentation 3 – Reading Landscapes and Evaluating Ecological Processes 4. Day Three Presentation 4 – Nutrition, Reproduction and Supplementation Session 2 – Planning Principles and Tools 5. Day Four Presentation 5 – Plant Growth and Effects of Defoliation at Different Scales 6. Day Five Presentation 6 – Grazing Management Planning and Management Tools, Rules, and Guidelines 7. Day Five Presentation 7 – Goal Setting 8. Day Six Presentation 8 – Long-Term Grazing Planning and Infrastructure Development Practice Session 3 – Personalizing Planning Principles and Tools 9. Day Seven Presentation 9 – Long-Term Grazing Planning and Infrastructure Development (theirs) 10. Day Eight Presentation 10 – Grazing Management Scheduling Practice 11. Day Eight Presentation 11 – Grazing Management Scheduling (theirs) 12. Day Nine Presentation 12 – Monitoring and Drought Management and Adapting the Plan The economic planning element will be conducted using the appended economic spreadsheet that is designed for use in ranch businesses. We plan to organize no-cost education venues that will provide an excellent learning environment located on ranches that have achieved conservation award winning results. We will aim for each participant to develop a resource and economic plan for their own management unit or portion thereof. The course will be delivered at the practical level with the aim of preparing each participant with the ability to effect suitable changes to their operations to achieve significantly improved economic and resource improvements.