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Sustainable and profitable grazing management in a highly variable environment-evidence and insights from a long term grazing trial in northern Australia.

O'Reagain, P. J. and Bushell, J. (2008) Sustainable and profitable grazing management in a highly variable environment-evidence and insights from a long term grazing trial in northern Australia. In: Multifunctional grasslands in a changing world, Volume II: XXI International Grassland Congress and VIII International Rangeland Congress., 29 June - 5 July 2008, Hohhot, Inner Mongolia, China, ..

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Abstract

Rainfall variability is a major challenge to sustainable management in semi-arid rangelands. We present empirical evidence from a large, long-term grazing trial in northern Australia on the relative performance of constant heavy stocking, moderate stocking at long-term carrying capacity and variable stocking in coping with climate variability over a range of rainfall years. Moderate stocking gave good economic returns, maintained pasture condition and minimised soil loss and runoff. Heavy stocking was neither sustainable nor profitable in the long term. Variable stocking generally performed well but suffered economic loss and some decline in pasture condition in the transition from good to poor years. Importantly, our results show that sustainable and profitable management are compatible in semi-arid rangelands.

Item Type:Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Business groups:Animal Science
Keywords:Arid lands; carrying capacity; grasslands; grazing; profitability; rain; returns; semiarid grasslands; soil fertility; stocking density; stocking rate; sustainability.
Subjects:Agriculture > Agriculture (General) > Agricultural meteorology. Crops and climate
Animal culture > Rangelands. Range management. Grazing
Animal culture > Cattle
Agriculture > Agriculture (General) > Special aspects of agriculture as a whole > Sustainable agriculture
Deposited On:07 Sep 2010 23:44
Last Modified:27 Sep 2021 03:52

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