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Pasture management includes controlling brush and invasive weed species and maintaining forage quality and quantity. Grassland management can be accomplished with a variety of tools: grazing animals, annual mowing, and periodic prescribed fire. Each of these will have varying impacts on the resultant vegetation. There are many resources to guide you through the decision process of deciding which disturbance tool is best for you.

Completely new to owning livestock?  Transitioning to a grass-based dairy operation?  Seeking to improve the condition of your existing pastures?


County Land and Water  Conservation Departments (LCDs) provide local leadership in carrying out programs that conserve Wisconsin's land and water resources. Your County Conservation Department is the primary local delivery system of natural resource programs.  Visit your county's website for more information.

Dairy Grazing Apprenticeship (DGA) can provide you with the tools and training you need to feel confident stepping into farm ownership.  DGA partners with established grazing dairy farmers, universities, community based organizations, and other stakeholders to deliver high quality work-based training in managed-grazing dairy production in multiple states. 


USDA-Farm Service Agency (FSA) and USDA-Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) are two federal agencies that work with farmers to implement national conservation practices through local offices and contacts. FSA serves farmers, ranchers and agricultural partners through the delivery of effective, efficient agricultural programs for all Americans. USDA-NRCS provides farmers, ranchers, and woodland landowners with financial and technical assistance to voluntarily put conservation on the ground.


Department of Trade, Agriculture, and Consumer Protection (DATCP) offers support to producers interested in incorporating grazing into their farm. Grazing maximizes use of fresh pasture and focuses on reducing production costs to improve profitability. Grazing is size neutral and flexible in each operation.


GrassWorks, Inc. is a grassroots membership organization that provides leadership and education to farmers and consumers for the advancement of managed grass-based agriculture to benefit present and future generations. GrassWorks links farmers with the resources they need to be successful grazers.


UW Extension Grazing Resources and Research  explore new ideas and grazing research projects completed and on-going, have access to resources, and announcements of local and regional events.


The Wisconsin School for Beginning Dairy and Livestock Farmers trains and empowers Wisconsin’s next generation of farmers to beat the odds and make a successful and rewarding career out of farming.


Cathy Bleser

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