NORTH DAKOTA (KXNET) — With the fall season in full swing, it is important to know how to care for your livestock.
Primarily in North Dakota ranchers are dealing with cattle, although the state does house some pigs and sheep.
Spring and fall are usually the best times for livestock due to the grass coming back in.
“We get some cool season grasses that really do well in these cooler temperatures, and then you look in the summer temperatures where cattle are out grazing and if they are a cow in production, they’re obviously nursing the calf,” said Agriculture and Natural Resources Agent, Tyler Kralicek.
In the state there are a lot of different calving windows, most of them are aiming for that springtime period.
Fall is a good time for the cattle to graze on but not so much for calving.
However, this spring, during the drought ranchers and their livestock saw minimal growth, so fall calving might be ideal for many ranches.
After the April snowstorm, ranchers did have to dig out some of that snow, but the residual moisture did help in the long run.
“In terms of the moisture in a lot of areas in our state we were really sitting pretty darn good up until the fourth of July and then for whatever reason, mother nature decided to turn the faucet off and things got pretty dry here and there’s been some isolated showers here in the last month that have helped out some producers quite well and some of them just missed out on it,” added Kralicek.
There are a couple of things that North Dakota ranchers can do to combat the unforgiving weather in the state.
“Doing any kind of strategy whether it be rotational grazing, resting, those types of things are definitely in play for a lot of these livestock producers,” said Kralicek
The NDSU extension center says every operation is different.
Fall can be a broad time period, so you need to establish yourself what months are considered fall-calving months.
Since this is dependent on weather and landscape this time period may vary throughout the state.
For more information on ranching in North Dakota visit the NDSU extension website.