Pasture grazing topics set for Lake Ozark meeting
New ideas for pastures will be discussed at the Missouri Forage and Grassland Council meeting, Nov. 5 to 6 at Lake Ozark, Mo.
Topics include updates on new nontoxic tall fescue available to replace drought-stricken pastures, supplemental feeding on pasture and multispecies grazing.
Grazing sheep and cattle together will be explained by Joe and Hoss Hopping of Hopping Brothers Livestock, Wagoner, Okla. They run 600 ewes with 150 cows or 200 to 225 stocker calves. "We made lots of mistakes," Joe said. "We started with goats, but now sheep are our main deal. They make money."
The cattle eat grass, but sheep eat weeds and brush. "We thought only goats would do that," Joe added.
The MFGC program features farmers as well as University of Missouri and USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service specialists.
Craig Roberts, MU Extension forage specialist, will talk about managing fescue toxicosis and follow with updates on novel-endophyte fescue.
Justin Sexten, MU Extension beef nutritionist, will tell advantages of feeding supplements on pasture versus pasture only.
Abner Womack, founder of the MU Food and Agricultural Policy Research Institute, will review "Impact of Economic Climate on Farm Prices."
Nitty-gritty topics include flexible fencing by Ian Kurtz of Ozark, Mo., and how to grow grass with less nitrogen fertilizer by Mark Kennedy of Houston, Mo. He is NRCS grassland conservationist. Kurtz, formerly with NRCS, now consults on grassland farming.
Ann Wells, veterinarian at Prairie Grove, Ark., will tell about environmentally friendly fly control. Kathy Voth, founder of Livestock for Landscapes, Loveland, Colo., will tell how she trains cows to eat weeds.
The final product of grazing will be included. Bruce Shanks of Lincoln University, Jefferson City, describes meat processing and marketing.
MFGC is a commodity group for grass growers and graziers.
Darrell Franson, council president, Mount Vernon, Mo., will preside at an awards banquet. Outstanding graziers will be named.
The meeting starts at 10 a.m. and ends by 3 p.m. the next day at the Resort at Port Arrowhead on Business Highway 54 near the south end of the Bagnell Strip.
Full advance registration is $105 plus $55 for spouse. Discounts apply for MFGC members and one-day registrations.
Go to agebb.missouri.edu/mfgc/2012mfgcconf.htm for program and registration. Special room rates are $65 for early registrations at the resort. Call 800-532-3575.