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Managing Pasture Damage After a Period of Bad Weather - 1st May 2016

Managing Pasture Damage After a Period of Bad Weather Managing Pasture Damage After a Period of Bad Weather
Dairy NZ have put together the following information which will help you determine what to do with small to medium sized parts of paddocks which have been pugged by cows during bad weather. These can be areas such as gate ways, around troughs, feeding out areas, temporary lane-ways in paddocks, or where cows have been driven into a corner by wind.
In the case of large areas or whole paddocks extensively damaged, the best option is complete pasture renewal preferably following a cropping phase.

The cost of doing nothing
Research has shown that pasture seriously pugged in Spring will produce about 40% less DM than undamaged pasture through the following season. For each ha of damaged pasture with a normal production of 14,000kg DM,(ave for SDF) this is equivalent to a loss of  5600kg DM, at 20c/kgDM this is a revenue loss of over $1000/ha. Pasture yield reductions of up to 80% have been recorded....
Losses will continue over following years as the affected areas will likely become infested with weeds and unproductive grasses. If soil structure is not repaired affected areas will also become more prone to future pugging due to impeded drainage.



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