April showers bring May flowers. Unless those spring rains just won’t stop, and end up washing all the plants away instead. Rain is good for plant growth, but heavy spring rains can be very damaging to meadows, pastures, and grazing fields.
If the rain has begun to destroy your meadow, there are a few steps to take.
Move Cattle To Higher Ground
If spring rains have been heavy and flooded your pasture areas, move cattle to a higher, drier area. Cattle exposed to flooded grounds for extended periods of time are more susceptible to diseases like foot rot. Very wet pasture areas are also at risk for pugging from cattle, which can damage the grass and prevent future growth.
If you need to, you can build dirt or hay mounds that will allow cattle to get out of the flooded areas and dry their feet. Make sure feed is also kept in dry areas to avoid excessive moisture.
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Get Extra Supplies for Calves
Spring is calving season for many. A flooded and destroyed meadow can complicate things. It might be beneficial to give young calves extra care and health products at birth to keep them from getting ill with spring floods. A veterinarian specializing in cattle can advise you on keeping calves healthy when grazing grass has been destroyed, and they are constantly exposed to water and mud.
Work on Repairing the Meadow
The first step is to assess the damage and figure out what needs to be done to restore it. Depending on the severity of the destruction, you may need to reseed large areas of the meadow, repair drainage systems, and remove debris and silt that could harm cattle.
You may also need to add fertilizers and other soil amendments to help the soil recover from the storm. Once the meadow is restored, it’s important to take preventative measures to ensure it won’t be damaged again in the future.
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Take Preventative Measures
In the future, try to prevent overgrazing in areas prone to flooding. Make sure proper drainage is set up by building ditches and irrigation systems. You can build natural barriers out of rocks and dirt to redirect water. Planting trees and other plants with strong roots can help with soil erosion.
Cattle Grazing Tips at SoMo Farm and Ranch
SoMo Farm & Ranch Supply carries your basic necessities for cattle and calves for the spring. Visit our store in Springfield, MO, contact us, or call (417) 865-0312. We’re happy to help with your cattle farm in any way we can!