Keeping an eye on tame pastures

Agri-News / Pasture assessments help producers decide if a pasture needs to be rejuvenated and if so, how best to rejuvenate it. The Alberta Tame Pasture Scorecard is a quick and easy way of doing a pasture assessment. The Sustainable Resource Development Health Assessment forms are another good tool that provides a more detailed assessment.

Pasture assessments look at key indicators to measure pasture productivity and vigour. Indicators such as plant population, plant density, plant vigour, ground cover, soil damage and severity and uniformity of use are assessed.

“Pasture assessments provide producers with information needed to make decisions on grazing management, timing of grazing, cross-fencing and pasture fertility,” says Grant Lastiwka, forage/grazing/beef specialist with Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development.

Pastures should be assessed at least once a year, during the growing season. Pastures that are more intensively managed should be assessed more frequently. These pasture assessments allow producers to look closely at the pasture and identify specific areas where management improvements may be profitable and effective. Assessments allow targeted, specific management. Once problems are identified, a rejuvenation method can be selected to fix the problems.

The Alberta Tame Pasture Scorecard is available online and is designed to be simple and straightforward to use, with or without special training.

PRRS vaccine is now registered in Canada

Fostera PRRS vaccine is now registered for use in Canada by Pfizer Animal Health as an aid in preventing disease associated with Porcine Reproductive and Respiratory Syndrome Virus (PRRSV), Respiratory Form, a disease that costs Canada’s pork industry an estimated $130 million annually.

Fostera PRRS is a modified live vaccine for the vaccination of healthy, susceptible swine three weeks of age, or older, in PRRSV-positive herds or seronegative pigs deemed at risk for exposure to PRRSV, as an aid in preventing respiratory disease associated with PRRSV.

Registered for use in young pigs, Fostera PRRS helps growing pigs defend against a PRRSV challenge, allowing them to increase their post-challenge weight gain compared to non-vaccinates groups. Fostera PRRS is available exclusively through Canadian veterinarians.

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