The effects of fire on livestock fencing is a concern following wildfires, as well as before applying prescribed fire. There are many opinions and beliefs about what fire does to fencing materials. This fact sheet will present findings from several studies that investigated the impacts of fire on fencing materials in grasslands.
Objective: The overall objective of this study was to evaluate management practices that may impact stocker steer gains on a 90-day double stocking grazing system in tallgrass native range. Specific objectives include evaluating the timing of burning, addition of spices in a complete free-choice mineral, and determination if the effects are additive.
Study Description: Two pasture burning times (March or April) and free-choice mineral with or without addition of spices were evaluated using 281 head of stocker steers on eight pastures of tallgrass native range. The spices included garlic oil in powder form and Solace (Wildcat Feeds LLC). Cattle were weighed at the start of the study and the end. Steers grazed pastures for 87 days. Data analyzed included average daily gain, total gain, and final weight.
Results: There was no interaction between the two management practices for average daily gain, total gain, and out weights (P > 0.17). Average daily gain was increased by 0.35 lb/day (P = 0.03) with an April pasture burn instead of March. There was no difference in average daily gain based on mineral supplement (P = 0.23), even though numerically the cattle on spice mineral had a greater average daily gain. When evaluating final weights, cattle on April burned pastures tended (P = 0.09) to weigh 20 lb more than those grazing pastures burned in March. Calves on the spice mineral tended (P = 0.10) to weigh 19 lb more at the end of the study than steers on the control mineral.
The Bottom Line: Burning pastures in April results in a greater calf gain than burning in March, while the addition of spices to a free-choice complete mineral shows promise as a cost-effective method to increase gains in stocker steers on tallgrass native range.
Every year, wildfires
burn across the U.S.,
and more and more
people are living where
wildfires are a real
risk. But by working
can make their own
property — and their
neighborhood — much
safer from wildfire.
The Great Plains Grassland Summit: Challenges and Opportunities from North to South was held April 10-11, 2018 in Denver, Colorado to provide syntheses of information about key grassland topics of interest in the Great Plains; networking and learning channels for managers, researchers, and stakeholders; and working sessions for sharing ideas about challenges and future research and management opportunities. The summit was convened to better understand stressors and resource demands throughout the Great Plains and how to manage them, and to discuss methods for improved collaboration among natural resource managers, scientists, and stakeholders. Over 200 stakeholders, who collectively were affiliated with all of the Great Plains States, attended the summit. Attendees included university researchers, government scientists, and individuals affiliated with Federal and State agencies, tribes, the private sector, and nongovernmental organizations. Plenary speakers provided syntheses of current knowledge on key topics to help stage working sessions on working lands, native wildlife and biological diversity, native plants and pollinators, invasive species, wildland and prescribed fire, energy development, and weather, water, and climate. The summit steering committee designed a suite of questions that were asked of participants in each working session. This report is a digest of the input from those who attended the seven working sessions and responded to the structured questions.