Bison once roamed vast grasslands that existed in southwestern Wisconsin. Today, as part of an experiment using cattle grazing as a management tool, animals are back on The Nature Conservancy's land in the Military Ridge Prairie Heritage Area.
Landowners, who are interested in learning more about using grazing to manage their land, are invited to attend a free field day on Saturday, July 19h from 8:30 to 11:00 a.m. at the Conservancy's Barneveld Prairie on Langberry Road off County Road K in Iowa County.
"The cattle are great—they love wild parsnip. They've been very effective at controlling this noxious weed in our grasslands," says Eric Mark, the Conservancy's land manager. Mark works with neighboring livestock producers to use controlled grazing to both improve the grassland and provide forage for the cattle. "It's a win-win situation."
The field day will include informational sessions on the natural history of the southwest grasslands, the environmental benefits of well-managed grazing, resources and how to get started on your own land, and a tour of the Conservancy's grassland grazing project.
"Well-managed grazing can also keep brush from encroaching on grasslands, and it can be a good alternative to annual row crops," says Laura Paine, Southwest Badger Resource Conservation and Development grazing broker. "The goal of our Grazing Broker project is to help connect landowners who want livestock on their land with like-minded livestock producers. At this field day, you'll learn how we can assist you."
The field day is free and open to the public. Coffee and refreshments will be provided. Please RSVP by July 14 to Laura Paine at 608-732-1202 or [email protected].Source: Southwest Badger RC&D