Browsing Journal of Range Management, Volume 38, Number 6 (November 1985) by Subjects
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Evaluation of Pedometers for Measuring Distance Traveled by Cattle on Two Grazing SystemsThe precision and accuracy of pedometers for measuring distance traveled by cattle on production size grazing systems were studied. Pedometer calibration factors were similar among cattle, but varied because of differences in the sensitivity of pedometers to movement and/or the tightness of the case around the animal's leg. Adjusting pedometer readings by their individual calibration factor provided a precise and accurate measure of travel distance. Cattle on a short duration grazing system tended to walk farther, and travel distance was more variable than with animals on a continuous grazing system.
Factors Influencing Patterns of Cattle Grazing Behavior on Shortgrass SteepeFactors influencing distribution of free-roaming cattle were studied on shortgrass steppe in northeastern Colorado. Spatial units selected for grazing were plant communities (soil-plant associations) and a stock-watering area. Regression models of grazing patterns were derived for growing- and dormant-season grazing patterns. Seasonal-grazing distribution was correlated with proximity to water (1/distance) and site-quality indicators. Internal validation of seasonal-grazing models indicated a good fit of predicted to observed patterns. Because ad hoc regression models lack wide applicability, relationships between spatial preference and vegetation properties were investigated. Combined relative measures of forage quality and quantity were good predictors of community preference. Measures of relative biomass or frequencies of forage species were poor predictors of spatial preference. The high correlation between preference and properties of plants composing the bulk of the diet suggests an interaction between diet selection and selection of grazing areas. The highest correlation occurred between relative community preference and relative aboveground standing nitrogen (crude protein).
Nutrient Removal Rates from Ruminoreticula of Cattle Grazing Kansas Flint Hills RangeA Hereford steer and heifer were used to compare rumen removal rates of forage nutrients from Kansas Flint Hills range over a 2-year period. Rumens were emptied after an overnight fast and the contents sampled, weighed, and returned to the rumen. The cattle were then fed a known amount of range forage and fasted for 12 hours, at which time the rumen evacuation procedure was repeated. Removal rate calculations were based on change in rumen contents during the 12-hour fast. All nutrients studied passed the rumen more rapidly during spring and summer months than fall and winter months. Fibrous fractions were removed more rapidly than cell solubles and crude protein, which may indicate that optimum utilization of native Flint Hills range forage is not being achieved. Methods which increase microbial attack of plant cell wall contents may significantly improve livestock production on native rangeland.