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Woody plant encroachment restricts forage production and capacity to produce grazing livestock. Biophysical plant growth simulation and economic simulation were used to evaluate a prescribed burning range management technique. Modeling systems incorporated management practices and costs, historical climate data, vegetation and soil inventories, livestock production data, and historical regional livestock prices. The process compared baseline non-treatment return estimates to expected change in livestock returns resulting from prescribed burning. Stochastic analyses of production and price variability produced estimates of greater net returns resulting from use of prescribed burning relative to the baseline.
Aerial applications of 20% tebuthiuron JA/-[5-(1,1- dimethylethyl) - 1, 3, 4 - thiadiazol-2 -yl] -N, N' dimethylurea pellets at 2.2 or 4.4 kg/ha in the spring to heavy brush cover in Texas Post Oak Savannah did not increase the amount of grass, compared to that of untreated pastures, until the growing season after application. By the second growing season after tebuthiuron application, however, native grass stands were composed of a higher proportion of perennial species of good-to-excellent grazing value than were stands on adjacent, untreated rangeland. Tebuthiuron at 4.4 kg/ha did not improve botanical composition of grass stands, but increased the amount of grass during the second and third growing season after application compared to those where 2.2 kg/ha were applied. Daily steer gains were increased in one experiment in the fall after application of 2.2 kg/ha of tebuthiuron in the spring, but were unchanged after two growing seasons in another. Days of available grazing were increased, however, by the second or third growing season after treatment with 2.2 kg/ha of the herbicide in both experiments.
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