Old wives' tale or truth?

Discussion in 'Cattle' started by mucklingmom, Aug 20, 2004.

  1. mucklingmom

    mucklingmom Member

    Nov 19, 2003
    Hi, All!
    I'm also posting this question in the sheep forum. I have a dairy farmer's son who is telling me (not from his own experience) that cows won't graze where sheep have been. Does anyone know if this is true? We've been planning for months and working toward putting our 2 sheep and 1 cow together on a pasture, and are worried now that it might not work out. Help, anyone?
    Amy M.
  2. Fla Gal

    Fla Gal Bunny Poo Monger Supporter

    Jul 14, 2003
    Central Florida
    I'm not experienced in this area but a quick google search led me to this site on "Multispecies Grazing". It seems to have the good's and bad's of doing this.

    It may be more information than you need but it's better to have the source of information and not use it... rather than.. not have the information if something bad comes down the pike.

    ATTRA--National Sustainable Agriculture Information Service

    Benefits of Multispecies Grazing

    I hope someone well informed will be able to help you.

    Fla Gal

  3. leaping leon

    leaping leon Well-Known Member

    Jun 9, 2004
    Thanks for the info Fla Gal, I'm going to check this site out thoroughly. I'm hoping to combine goats and a cow or two later, God willing...
  4. uncle Will in In.

    uncle Will in In. Well-Known Member Supporter

    May 11, 2002
    The amount and quality of the pasture is a bigger issue than the types of livestock.
  5. MucklingMom,

    Carol Ekarius, in her book, "Small-Scale Livestock Farming", states that you can successfully run cows and sheep together as complementary species. They seem to prefer different feed. What one doesn't eat, the other does. Adding goats completes the mixture.

    She further states, "When running complementary species on diverse pastures, you can almost double the total stocking rate of your land. If you ran ten cows before, for instance, you can now run ten cows and thirty or forty sheep!"

    I really like her book and recommend it.

    Paradise Farm
  6. one reason we don't often mix sheep and cattle around here is the sheep can starve the cattle a sheep can graze below the reach of a cow. sheep and cattle both graze predominately grass goats are a better candidate as they tend to prefer weeds and brush to grass
  7. poorme

    poorme Well-Known Member

    May 12, 2003
    I've seen it where the sheep follow the cattle in rotational pastures.