Livestock Basics


The best resource we’ve found is ATTRA’s Guide to Ruminant Nutrition.

Ruminant Nutrition

Reading time: 1 hour
Level: Basic/Intermediate
Topic: Ruminant Nutrition for Graziers
Author: Lee Rinehart, NCAT Agriculture Specialist

Publisher: National Center for Appropriate Technology, 2008

Where you can find it:

What you’ll get out of it: An overview of forage nutrition, nutrient requirements, which species to plant and to avoid, management, and more.

Why we love it: This will introduce anyone to the subjects they need to know and consider when discussing ruminant nutrition, and offers additional resources and tools to further knowledge.

Selecting Genetics

Allen Williams has developed a comprehensive guide to selecting cattle genetics for a grassfed program.

grass based geneticsRead time: 1 hour
Level: Basic-Intermediate
Topic: Selecting For Grassfed Genetics
Author: Allen Williams, PhD.

Publisher: The Pasture Project

Where you can find it:

What you’ll get out of it: Dr. Williams walks through exactly how to select and develop cattle for a grass-fed program.

Why we love it: It’s easy to understand, with very practical insights and lots of pictures to illustrate the points.  Dr. Williams is also one of the foremost experts on grass-fed genetics.

Rotational Grazing

rotional grazing
Reading time: 45 minutes
Level: Basic/Intermediate
Topic: Rotational Grazing
Author: Alice E. Beetz and Lee Rinehart, NCAT Agriculture Specialists, November 2004, Updated Sept. 2010

Publisher: National Center for Appropriate Technology

What you’ll get out of it: A basic overview of several different types of grazing systems, infrastructure to plan for, as well as brief discussions of economics, livestock, and forage.

Why we love it: This is an excellent overview, and will introduce a beginner to the world of rotational grazing, and give a reminder of important topics to keep in mind, even to an experienced grazier.