Browsing Journal of Range Management, Volume 42, Number 2 (March 1989) by Subjects
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Growth dynamics of fourwing saltbush as affected by different grazing management systemsIndividual leaders of fourwing saltbush were permanently marked and their growth responses monitored during a 3-year study in a shortduration grazing system, a 4-pasture rotation system, and in ungrazed exclosures. Primary and secondary leader growth and numbers of secondaries were responses of interest. Plants continuously browsed by cattle were usually maintained in a hedged form and produced relatively little growth. There was little difference in growth responses between plants in the 4-pasture rotation and the shortduration system when the shortduration rotation cycle was 32 days. However, when the rotation cycle was increased to 64 days, there was a substantial increase of growth for plants in the shortduration system. Plants protected from browsing for 1 year also responded with progressively less leader production as length of protection time increased. We suggest fourwing saltbush plants respond to a 60-day deferment at the beginning of the growing season.
Seeded wheatgrass yield and nutritive quality on New Mexico big sagebrush rangeEstablishment, yield, and nutritional quality of 'Nordan' crested wheatgrass (Agropyron desertorum [Fischer ex Link] Schultes), 'Fairway' crested wheatgrass (Agropyron cristatum [L.] Gaertner), 'Arriba' western wheatgrass (Pascopyrum smithii [Rydb.] A. Love), 'Luna' pubescent wheatgrass (Thinopyrum intermedium subsp. barbulatum [Schur.] Barkw. and D.R. Dewey), and 'Largo' tall wheatgrass (T. ponticum [Pod] Barkw. and D.R. Dewey) were evaluated on big sagebrush range (Artemisia tridentata Nutt. tridentata) in northcentral New Mexico during a 5-year study. All the above wheatgrasses showed high initial densities and long-term persistence. Wheatgrass yields across years and seasons during the last 2 years of study averaged 760 kg/ha compared to forage yields of 355 kg/ha on surrounding ungrazed native rangeland. There were no differences (P > .05) among wheatgrasses in standing crop of current year's growth during spring, summer, or fall. Crude protein concentrations did not differ (P > .05) among wheatgrasses with seasonal advance. However, all the wheatgrasses showed a consistent decline in nutritional quality from spring to summer to fall. All the wheatgrasses we studied will provide high-quality, spring (mid-April to mid-June) forage for livestock. During summer, use of native range is advantageous because it contains a high component of warm season grasses and forbs. Interseeding shrubs in wheatgrass seedings could reduce protein supplementation costs in winter.