Animal science

Does livestock grazing benefit organic crops? Multistate research team explores impacts

May 20, 2020
To see if livestock grazing is beneficial in organic farming, or poses food safety risks, multistate research partners received a nearly $1 million grant from the USDA to study the impacts of livestock grazing cover crops on the bacterial population dynamics, soil building, and environmental health. Professor Amelie Gaudin, Plant Sciences, is part of the research team.

Elephants Reverse the Depletion by Cattle of Soil Carbon and Nutrient Pools

March 24, 2020
Truman Young, Department of Plant Sciences, UC Davis, co-authored an article showing that megaherbivores (elephants) mitigate the negative effects of cattle on tropical African savanna rangelands, where wild herbivore populations are declining. He is project director of the Kenya Long-term Exclosure Experiment (KLEE), the most productive field experiment in Africa, and the site of this research.

Cattle Ranchers Cope with Dry Pastures (Video)

March 19, 2020
This winter’s lack of rain, up until mid-March, did not produce much forage for cattle, or carryover vegetation. Leslie Roche, Department of Plant Sciences, covers rangelands and pasturelands, and says this has been commonplace this winter. Many grasses are producing seeds earlier, leading to less vegetative growth.

Supporting First-generation Ranchers in Coping with Drought and Climate Change

March 12, 2020
Leslie Roche and colleagues tell how new ranchers confront drought. Climate adaptation is important in agricultural systems, but new ranchers aren’t able to benefit from information passed down from multi-generational ranching families. First-generation ranchers are often young, female, and diverse, with different goals and needs.