Projects Inventory

Non-Member

Use of the Grazing Response Index (GRI) on Saskatchewan Pastures to Facilitate Forage Management Decisions

Jeff Braidek

Government of Saskatchewan

April 2013 - February 2017

Audience(s): Cow-Calf   Project Type(s): Demonstration

Canada’s prairie rangeland is filled with a variety of plants, birds, insects, and animals which thrive on healthy pastureland. In order to maintain the health of plants on pastureland, producers can use a variety of grazing management techniques suited to their environment. The Grazing Response Index (GRI) is designed to provide time for regrow of the plant between grazing periods. The GRI evaluates frequency and intensity of plant defoliation, and the opportunity for a plant to recover from use to determine whether a grazing system is providing long‐term beneficial, neutral or harmful effects to the stand.

Using the GRI, this team showed that tame forages can be grazed more heavily than native forages. They also noted that grazing three times is detrimental to native forages, but tame forages can be grazed 3 times or more depending on grazing management. The plant stand usually needed a 6 week period for full regrowth is appropriate for tame and native, but it is subjective and can vary due to quality of rest period.

Goals:

Goal #3: Enhance ecosystem services and biodiversity on lands managed by beef producers

Indicators Addressed:
  • Continuous learning regarding beef production is pursued.
  • Grasslands, tame pastures and native ecosystems are maintained or enhanced.
    • Grasslands, tame pastures and native ecosystems shall be monitored and managed, and a balanced approach to exotic and invasive plants shall be achieved.
Communication Tools:

For more information on this project, please see the summary.

 

Tagged as: Grazing Management