Water Conservation Tips for Stretching Water on Pasture Range by FoodInspect


									For More Information
Check with your local USDA Ser-
vice Center providers:
• Natural Resources Conserva-
     tion Service
• Conservation District office
                                                                                                                  Water Conservation Tips
• Farmers Home Administration                                                                                     for Stretching Water on
Consult your local irrigation district
or irrigation equipment suppliers
                                                                                                                      Pasture & Range
Contact your Cooperative Extension
Service office                                                                                                                     in Utah
Check these Web sites:
• www.nrcs.usda.gov/feature/
• http://extension.usu.edu/
   water saving tips by county
• www.drought.unl.edu/mitigate/

Other Tip Sheets
•    Water Conservation Tips for
     Stretching Water on Crops &
• Water Conservation Ideas for
     Dryland Farmers
• Water Conservation Tips for
     Stretching Irrigation Water
                                         Natural Resources Conservation Service

• Crop & Irrigation Management
                                             U.S. Department of Agriculture

     During Drought
                                                                                  Penalty for private use, $300

To download these tip sheets go to:
                                                                                       OFFICIAL BUSINESS


    USDA is an equal opportunity
      provider and employer.                                                                                             www.ut.nrcs.usda.gov
Range & Pasture Tips                            Rather than Risk Permanent                         Wildlife
During Drought                                  Damage to Grazing Resources,                       During times of drought, wildlife suffer as
                                                                                                   much or more than domestic livestock. The
                                                Consider these Options:                            wildlife that share your land are a valuable
                                                ►Reduce livestock numbers to balance with          natural resource. To help wildlife:
Extra Care Needed
                                                forage supply                                      ►Include additional features at stock water
Utah’s severe drought continues to impact       ►Cull herds more than normal                       developments which will allow small
range and pasture production. The follow-                                                          animals and birds safe access to water
ing tips from the Natural Resources Conser-     ►Sell calves and lambs early                       (these are usually not expensive and are
vation Service (NRCS) can help you pre-         ►Determine forage needs and buy additional         easily installed)
pare for and better deal with water shortage.   forage supplies early                              ►Fence ponds and springs and install
Irrigated Pasture                               ►Grow small grains or sorghums for hay or
                                                pasture (these need less water than conventional
                                                                                                   collector pipes to deliver water to a tank or
                                                                                                   trough. This will save the water source
Management practices on irrigated pasture                                                          from damage by livestock trampling, as
                                                forage crops)
which encourage root and leaf growth are                                                           well as allow access by small animals and
the same practices which allow plants to        ►Defer planting perennial pasture, hay, or         birds to lush vegetation that grows close to
make the best use of soil moisture. They        range seeding until a year with more favorable     wet areas.
include:                                        water outlook
►Rotation grazing with adequate rest and        ►Keep spring developments, stock tanks, float
regrowth periods                                valves and pipelines in good working order so
                                                water is not wasted
►Leaving 4-6 inches of top growth at the
end of each grazing period                      ►Use evaporation retardants on ponds & tanks
►Fertilizing properly                           ►Prepare for hauling stock water
►Applying irrigation water in the right         ►Give spring development high priority (even
amount at the right time                        mediocre springs will be helpful)

Range and Dry Pasture                           ►Check with local NRCS and FSA offices to
                                                learn if regular or emergency cost-share pro-
Forage production on dry pasture or range
                                                grams are available to help with spring develop-
depends entirely on natural moisture.                                                                                     March 2004
                                                ment, water harvesting, storage tanks, or other
Overgrazing during a drought does more                                                              This publication provided as a service to Utah farmers
                                                water conservation practices.
damage to perennial plants than during a                                                                  and ranchers by the Utah state office of the
season of normal moisture. It reduces plant     ►Don’t overgraze or otherwise disturb stream                Natural Resources Conservation Service
vigor, stops root and leaf growth, reduces      bank vegetation (it will be needed to prevent           125 South State Street, Salt Lake City UT 84138
                                                erosion, reduce sediment, and provide food and       For further assistance contact your county NRCS field
ground cover, and invites accelerated
                                                                                                    office listed below, or in the phone book under USDA.
erosion. Once erosion begins, it tends to get   cover for wildlife)
worse each year, further reducing plant
                                                ►Remember, if a pasture unit must be abused, a
vigor and forage production. This process
                                                well established seeding can tolerate overgraz-
is difficult to reverse.
                                                ing better than native range.

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