Tropical Grasslands (2007) Volume 41, 222–228

Integrating grazing and forage systems on marginal cropping lands

TREVOR J. HALL

Department of Primary Industries and Fisheries, Toowoomba, Queensland, Australia.

Abstract

Planned grazing systems are being introduced to beef cattle enterprises across the marginal cropping lands of Queensland, as they are on more extensive grazing properties. Systems range from continuous grazing with opportunistic summer rest periods to cell systems with more than 60 paddocks. The aim of planned grazing is to increase production, improve sustainability and increase economic viability from both the pastured and cropping lands of a property. Managing the more intensive grazing systems on native or sown pastures with strategic summer and winter forage crops is a challenge under the variable rainfall conditions. Under favourable conditions, integrating summer and winter crops with summer-growing grass-based pastures offers a wider range of options for breeding, finishing and marketing cattle. The integration of pasture grazing systems with opportunistic forage cropping systems on marginal cropping lands is discussed, and a current research project assessing grazing systems is described.

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