Spring is here and that means grazing season is around the corner. There are some things to look out for when starting to graze cattle in the spring. Cool-season grasses tend to be low in magnesium and when cattle become deficient in magnesium, we start to see signs of grass tetany. Grass tetany is a nutritional or metabolic disorder characterized by low blood magnesium. Grass tends to be low in magnesium when they are immature and have high potassium.
You may be ready to see green grass and be done with winter, but are our pastures ready? Before the ground thaws (unless sloped) is a good time to fertilize or apply soil correctives to the paddocks that didn’t get tended to last fall. It is time to check fences, and as it warms and greens up, water lines, lane condition, and pasture stand.
Evaluate The Stand
How did it come through the drought and winter?
More than one-quarter of the Midwest’s agricultural land is in some form of pasture. Rotational grazing is where one part of the pasture is grazed at a time, while the remainder pastures “rest”. Resting grazed paddocks allows forage plants to renew energy reserves, rebuild vigor, deepen their roots system, and give long-term maximum production. Below is the relationship between the number of paddocks and the rest period per acre.For optimum production, pastures should be grazed about a week before the grass heads out (goes …