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Removing excess litter

Strategies for removing excess litter include:

  • Choose your stock wisely – prioritise mature dry stock over young, growing or pregnant livestock.
  • Go heavy – combine herds or mobs or run sheep and cattle together to achieve high stocking rates.
  • Eat up – supplementing stock with protein, such as lupins, can aid in the digestion of dry feed, allowing stock to eat more of it.
  • Keep it tight – reduced paddock sizes (20ha) means higher stocking rates can be achieved to graze down pastures in a short amount of time.
  • Bring in the slasher – pasture can be slashed if excess feed cannot be grazed and there is no fire risk.
  • Hydrate – it is essential to have a supply of good quality water to meet the demand of livestock grazing on dry feed.

Encouraging and protecting germinating seedlings: Once the season breaks, spell the pasture until the germinating seed has anchored adequately. Germinating seed lying on the soil surface does not anchor as quickly or as well as seed sown underground. Therefore, an extended period may be required to
enable adequate anchorage of the seedling compared to newly sown pasture.

The pinch and pull test is a useful indicator if plants are well anchored.

Pinch and pull test

To determine if the seedlings are well anchored and will not pull out when grazed, gently pinch the seedling between your finger and thumb and twist while pulling upwards. Well-anchored seedlings will offer some resistance and will not pull out easily.

Gently pull seedlings to check anchorage.

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