Location: Fruit and Tree Nut Research
Project Number: 6042-22000-024-023-S
Project Type: Non-Assistance Cooperative Agreement
Start Date: Aug 15, 2022
End Date: Aug 14, 2027
Objective 1: Evaluate small ruminant production efficiency outcomes in managed grazing platforms within fruit and nut orchards. Objective 2. Assess the impact of managed orchard grazing strategies on animal health and well-being. Objective 3. Evaluate the influence of small ruminant grazing strategies on plant and soil productivity and health.
The quality and yield of small ruminant meat products will be monitored following various orchard grazing regimes and diet components. Animal welfare, health, and parasite load will be assessed, and novel approaches to alleviate parasite pressure will be developed based on biological control methodology. Pecan tree and soil health will be evaluated following various grazing regimes, including aspects of soil compaction and fertility, leaf nutrition, gas exchange, nut yield, and nut quality.