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Importance of Grazing cows

Importance of Grazing cows

Cow Grazing is one of the most important component of raising and managing cows. There is a fine symbiotic relationship between cows and their grasslands-

First, grazing livestock are needed to cycle carbo arbon and other nutrients essentially locked in above-ground vegetation and put it back on the ground in a more biologically active form to feed soil life and further vegetation growth 

 Second, they are vital for terminating cover crops, using low-quality forages and crop residues, again putting them into a more bio-available form that quickly feeds soil life. Put another way, grazing livestock are an important management tool.

Thirdly,  livestock are also vital to produce a profit from enterprises that would otherwise be an expense. Cover crops are an example. They have many benefits that pay the crop farmer in the long run but cannot produce a profit in their own right without grazing livestock and good management to harvest them at correct levels that leave soil covered at the same time they produce beef or other meat products. As any fool should be able to understand, without profit for the operator there can be no one to manage the land.

Fourth, they are the only affordable option to manage large acreage. Mowing is too expensive and total rest has proven a miserable failure.

Fifth, different grazing and browsing species eat and provide control of different plant types. This is a case for us to use more than one type of livestock. The fossil record on all continents tells us the variety of species was extremely rich, but the complexity of that discussion must wait for another time. However, it is clear that cattle, sheep and goats provide better usage of a wide variety of plant species than does a single one of these species.

Sixth, and a point not yet proven but suspected true — some producers believe the microflora in the gut of ruminants and hind-gut fermenters are either some of the same species, or are certainly symbiotic with the myriad species of soil life. These folks talk about “inoculating the soil” with livestock presence. Again, the circumstantial evidence tells us when grazing is applied correctly, the relationship between gut life and soil life is true and good

Cows  use their tongues to pull tufts of vegetation into the mouth. This means that they do not graze vegetation too close to the ground and often leave tussocks of grass which are used by insects and small mammals. Because of their wide mouths cattle do not graze selectively and as a result do not target flower heads and herbage which is important for botanically diverse habitats. Cattle are able to create their own access into rough areas and the trampling of these areas can be an important way of controlling scrub and preserving the very important Biodiversity, Humankind’s Bulwark against infections and ever evolving pathogens by providing them much needed secondary hosts due to which they do not need to jump to humans as host for their survival.