• The Role of Cattle Grazing Management on Perennial Grass and Woody Vegetation Cover in Semiarid Rangelands: Insights From Two Case Studies in the Botswana Kalahari

      Mudongo, Edwin I.; Fusi, Tsholofelo; Fynn, Richard W.S.; Bonyongo, Mpaphi C. (Society for Range Management, 2016-12-01)
      On the Ground • We assessed the long-term effects of continuous and rotational grazing on grass and treedynamics on adjacent ranches in the semiarid Kalahari of western Botswana. • Rotationally grazed ranches had higher grass cover with more perennial grass species, higher grazing value (and capacity), and higher long-term stocking rates than their continuously grazed neighbors. Tree cover tended to be higher on continuously grazed ranches, suggesting that long-term continuous grazing reduced grass production and favored establishment of woody vegetation. • Improvement in semiarid rangeland health and production is unlikely to be achieved simply by reducing stocking rates; uniform grazing and growing season recovery periods are essential. • These and other case studies suggest that benefits of grazing strategies likely depend on scale and adaptive management. Future research should be at larger spatial and temporal scales.