Effect of Rancher’s Management Philosophy, Grazing Practices, and Personal Characteristics on Sustainability Indices for North Central Texas Rangeland Page: 38
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Launchbough (1986) reports greater net returns/hectare when a grazing strategy was
implemented in an effort to graze at the optimum time of plant production. Seasonality may play
an important role in designing economically advantages grazing strategies. Sims and Singh
(1978) suggest that the positive results observed by Launchbough may be related to temporal
patterns of forage growth; the rate of forage production in the region studied is consistently
greatest in spring and early summer. A major factor affecting the relative success of any grazing
strategy used in rangeland environments must be related to climatic rainfall patterns particularly
with regards to the temporal distribution of animals (Conner, 1991).
Effects of Grazing System on Economic Goals
From a rancher's perspective, there is little incentive t o implement a specialized grazing
system unless it can be shown that the additional livestock and/or wildlife production will more
than repay the cost of installation (Holechek, 1989). Economic documentation of specialized
grazing systems is limited. Much practical experience indicates that they have been
economically successful in a variety of range types. Information collected by Gray and Fowler
(1980) shows that well over 50% of ranches in New Mexico use specialized systems. Fowler
and Gray (1986) reported a case study of economic impact of specialized grazing systems on
New Mexico ranches. With only a few exceptions, on 26 ranches, deferred-rotation, rest-
rotation, and short-duration grazing systems all increased net annual monetary returns over those
prior to system implementation. This was true in both drought and nondrought years. Calving
rates and calf market weights almost always increased after specialized grazing systems were
established. Stocking rates were generally increased by about 4% after grazing systems were
installed. Stocking rates declined 18% from nondrought to drought years, both with and without
grazing systems. This study reflects the fact that management skills of the individual rancher
have much to do with the success or failure of a specialized grazing system. Similar results were
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Becker, Wayne. Effect of Rancher’s Management Philosophy, Grazing Practices, and Personal Characteristics on Sustainability Indices for North Central Texas Rangeland, dissertation, December 2011; Denton, Texas. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc103289/m1/49/: accessed February 24, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; .