A Dynamic Programming Application for Short-Term Grazing Management Decisions
MetadataShow full item record
CitationRodriguez, A., & Roath, L. R. (1987). A dynamic programming application for short-term grazing management decisions. Journal of Range Management, 40(4), 294-298.
PublisherSociety for Range Management
JournalJournal of Range Management
AbstractThis study emphasizes short-term management decisions that are made in a yearling cattle operation in northeastern Colorado. Empirical equations describing forage and animal growth were coupled with marketing and supplementation alternatives. Four cases were modeled with high and low stocking densities and partial or total sales strategies. Net present value of yearling steer sales were maximized using dynamic programming. Early sale of cattle was an economically favorable alternative because of decreasing daily gains toward the end of the grazing season (September-October) and decreasing steer prices. Supplementation during September-October was also profitable to offset the decreasing trend in average daily gain caused by declining forage quality. Under the high stocking density and partial sales strategy, early sales regulated standing crop left at the end of the grazing season. Under the low stocking density and partial sales strategy, early sales partially offset net return losses for those animals that had to be sold at the traditional marketing date. The total sales strategy favored sales of livestock 2 weeks before traditional marketing under low and high stocking density and partial sales strategy. Net present values per pasture were slightly larger for the total sales strategy than the partial sales strategy using both low and high stocking densities.