Browsing Journal of Range Management, Volume 37, Number 6 (November 1984) by Subjects
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Cattle Distribution on Mountain Rangeland in Northeastern OregonCattle grazing distribution patterns were studied directly through observation and indirectly through plant utilization during 3 summer grazing seasons under continuous and deferred-rotation grazing systems. Small riparian meadows were the most preferred plant communities. Meadows covered 3-5% of the total observation area but 24-47% of all cattle were observed in those plant communities. Logged forest communities ranked second in animal preference when available. Relatively open Pinus ponderosa-Pseudotsuga menziesii plant communities were the most preferred forested habitats. Deferred grazing equalized cattle use between logged areas and P. ponderosa-P. menziesii forests and increased cattle use of riparian meadows. Heavily forested sites were least preferred by cattle. Slope gradient was the only physical factor consistently associated with cattle grazing distribution. Water distribution was not correlated with grazing patterns in uplant plant communities. Multiple regression models could not predict grazing distribution patterns with useful precision.