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Grazing conference planned in Kearney

The 10th annual Nebraska Grazing Conference will be at the Kearney Holiday Inn Aug. 10-11.

In addition to speakers from Nebraska including faculty from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources, conference participants will hear talks given by presenters from three other states and another country.

On Aug. 10 Neil Dennis of Sunnybrae Farms in Saskatchewan, Canada, will talk about building soil health with high stock density. That same day Dennis will be joined by Doug Peterson of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Natural Resources Conservation Service in Missouri and UNL’s Terry Gompert for a breakout session devoted to techniques to enable mob grazing on individual farms and ranches.

The other breakout session will be on generational transitioning, and will feature John McGlynn of Verdigre on financial planning, Sherry Vinton of Whitman and her daughter Jessica Taylor of Tryon on continuing the ranching tradition, and Todd and Kristen Eggerling of Martell on conservation management of land through generations.

Always a popular topic at this conference, cattle handling will be addressed in two presentations. Veterinarian Tom Noffsinger of Benkelman will discuss stockmanship concepts in an afternoon session, and caregiver impact on cattle performance in an evening workshop.

The Aug. 10 program also includes presentations on grazing standing corn by Bob Scriven of Kearney, and improved forages for drier areas by Keith Harmoney of Kansas State University.

On Aug. 11, Jim Knopik of Belgrade will talk about his mobile meat plant and how he markets grass-fed meat, UNL’s Dennis Bauer will address the feasibility of using custom mineral mixes, and Walter Schacht and Jerry Volesky, both with UNL, will present grazing strategies for Sandhills uplands.

A discussion of the relationship between grazing systems and ecosystems will include Andy Bishop with the US Fish and Wildlife Service and Heidi Hillhouse with UNL discussing the critical importance of grazing in Rainwater Basin wetlands, Jonathan Haufler of Montana, who will cover restoring grassland ecosystems in Nebraska, and Walter Schacht, who will present results of research on managing grazinglands for upland game birds.

Registration is $80 if postmarked by Aug. 1 and $95 afterward. Fees include two lunches, break refreshments, an evening banquet and materials. One-day registrations are also available, and walk-ins are welcome.

Reduced registration fees are offered for full-time high school or college students. Registration fees will be paid by the College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources for students who will still be in high school this fall and who pre-register by the Aug. 1 deadline.

For more information, go to the Center for Grassland Studies website, contact the center at (402) 472-4101, e-mail This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it , or contact a local UNL extension office.

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