The most important tool we use in management of the land is being able to control the amount of time that cattle graze a particular pasture. Too long in a pasture and the grass will have to work too hard to recuperate from grazing; too short and the grass will overgrow, oxidizing in the air and blocking younger seedlings from sunlight. The sweet spot is somewhere in between, so it’s up to us as land stewards to figure out how to manage our cattle to provide what the land needs. Our holistic approach, as advanced by Allan Savory, looks at the grass, ecological processes, the cattle’s needs, wildlife, habitat and personnel capacity in preparing our grazing plans. Done correctly, this model of managed intensive grazing will mimic the pruning and disruption that bison and other migratory ungulates have historically provided to grassland ecosystems.
For more information about implementing a managed intensive grazing system, see these resources from Holistic Management International: