As the transition from fall to winter occurs, many livestock producers begin providing a protein supplement to their herd. It is estimated that 60-70% of a cow’s annual maintenance cost is due to feed cost, especially during the winter. The added cost of a winter supplement is an expense that is deducted from those producers’ profits. Input costs are things that producers can control in their operations. For producers with access to native rangeland, this supplement cost may be reduced by providing high quality supplemental native forage in the fall and winter months. This high quality native forage can be produced by conducting timely growing-season (summertime) prescribed burns.
Several things drive native plant communities: sunlight, soils, water, herbivory, fire and rest. We could learn a few things by paying attention.