Extension service schedules grazing risk management workshop

Availability of forage and the risk of drought are always in the back of producers’ minds as they consider their grazing and forage plans for the coming year. With 18 million acres devoted to pasture and perennial forages across Kansas, livestock producers take plenty of risks as they aim for both profitability and for maintaining the long‐term productivity of their grazing and haying lands.

In preparation for the 2017 grazing season, K‐State Research and Extension is providing a series of workshops across Kansas to discuss range management concepts and risk management strategies. These events are supported through grant funding provided by USDA’s Risk Management Agency and its Risk Management Education Partnerships Program.

One of these workshops will be held at 7 p.m. March 8, 2017, at the Williamsburg Community Building, 126 W. Williams, Williamsburg, Kan. The program should run about 2 1/2 hours.

Speaking at the program will be Dr. Walter Fick, professor in Kansas State University Department of Agronomy, and specialist in range management. Fick will discuss stocking rates, a variety of grazing configurations, and monitoring rainfall and forage productivity. Understanding the relationships between timing of rainfall, pasture composition (warm‐season vs. cool‐season), and forage output are keys to making grazing management decisions through the season. Fick will also discuss development of a drought plan, culling and stocking adjustments, and other management practices that alleviate the impact of drought on pasture’s long‐run productivity.

Also speaking is Dr. Monte Vandeveer, Extension Agricultural Economist at the KSU Southwest Research and Extension Center in Garden City. Vandeveer will discuss the new insurance product for grazing and haying lands, called Pasture, Rangeland, and Forage (PRF) coverage. PRF uses a grid-based area concept along with a rainfall index as its key coverage features. Vandeveer will also discuss how PRF coverage compares with protection provided by the Livestock Forage Disaster Program, based on the Drought Monitor and provided through the Farm Service Agency.

There is no charge to attend the program, which is hosted by Frontier Extension District. For more information, contact the Lyndon Extension office at 785-828-4438.


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