Pasture rotation by any other name is still a good idea.

Loyal readers, I must apologize.  It has been suggested that what I described in my last post was not, technically speaking, pasture rotation, but rather something with the intriguing label of “strip grazing.”  I don’t know about you, but visions of a major thoroughfare in Las Vegas featuring a bevy of either restaurants or another kind of treat come to mind when I hear that term. 

Be that as it may, let me set the record straight for the terminology perfectionists in the audience.  Here at Saltmarsh Ranch, we engage in both pasture rotation and strip grazing.   Pasture rotation refers to the placement of parts of our flock within, and the infrequent move out of, a large section of pasture delineated by stout permanent fencing. Depending on the weather, irrigation, and number of sheep involved, we need to rotate pastures every few weeks.  Within each pasture, however, we strip graze by moving the sheep every three or four days to a new small section of the same pasture using temporary fencing. 

To make jargon matters worse, one or both of these practices sometimes is referred to as “managed grazing” and I have no doubt there are other terms as well.  Call it what you like, the key is to keep moving the sheep every four days so the animals will only eat the grass once before it has a chance to grow back.

I promise there will be a more interesting post next time.

For now …