Pasture walks to highlight grazing amid challenging weather, building partnerships
Two upcoming pasture walks will offer a glimpse at late-season grazing techniques. The events conclude the Graze River Country series organized by Wisconsin Farmers Union and River Country RC&D, in partnership with the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Dairy Grazing Apprenticeship Program and Coulee Graziers.
“These pasture walks offer the opportunity for farmers and consumers alike to see sound conservation practices in action,” said WFU Communications Director Danielle Endvick. “Wisconsin Farmers Union sees a lot of potential for grazing to be a sustainable path forward that benefits family farms, wildlife habitats and our watersheds.”
Upcoming walks include:
• Thursday, Sept. 12, 11 a.m., Nathan and Karen Kling Farm, W15503 Kelly Road, Taylor. The event will begin with a presentation from the Dairy Grazing Apprenticeship (DGA) program, which combines work-based training with related instruction by pairing individuals interested in managed grazing with Master Dairy Graziers. Following the presentation will be a light lunch and pasture walk of the Kling farm. Topics for discussion during the walk include infrastructure for heavy cow traffic during wet years and dealing with saturated pastures.
• Saturday, Sept. 14, 1 p.m., Dale and Sherri Goss Farm, N1799 Sawdust Rd, Bruce. (Approximately 7 ½ miles south of Hwy 8 on Sawdust Road.) Hear how the Goss’s transitioned their farm to grazing grassfed beef and chickens, and learn about the partnerships they built along the way with NRCS, Rusk County Land Conservation, and River Country RCD. Projects completed on this newly operational farm are high tensile electric fencing, summer pasture watering system, underground watering system with heated fountain, barn roof gutter runoff diversion, pasture seeding, and wetland fencing protection. We will be discussing the challenges of developing infrastructure and the importance of developing partnerships (support, vendor, and consumer). The Goss’s are also experimenting on a smaller scale with cover crops (annual grasses, legumes, and brassicas) to extend the grazing season.
There is no cost to attend. Walks generally last about two hours; please dress for the weather.
For more information or to RSVP contact Kevin Mahalko at 715-314-0338.