Grazing yearling steers with ewes between November and March led to improved ewe and steer live-weight gains compared to grazing them in mobs by themselves. This occurred on both steep and easy land, and on each of 3 grazing pressures; residuals of either 1200, 1700 or 2300 kg DM/ha with pre-grazing masses 1200kg DM/ha greater than residuals. Ewe live-weight gains were 56, 67 and 82 g/d where sheep/cattle ratios were 100/0, 80/20 and 60/40, on a stock unit basis. Steer live-weight gains were 0.65, 0.55 and 0.51 kg/d for the 80/20, 60/40 and 0/100 sheep/cattle ratio treatments. Associated with improved ewe and steer performance under mixed grazing on steep country was a decrease in the area of pasture rejected at 40% cattle stock units compared to 0% and 20% cattle (26% v 32%). On easy country, the amount of clover in the pasture increased by 5 and 19 percentage units at 40% and 100% cattle stock units respectively. The results suggested that between 20% and 40% cattle stock units in a mob may be needed to obtain high levels of ewe and steer live-weight gain in late spring-summer.

L, Bodin, JC Flamant, and JM Elsen

Proceedings of the New Zealand Society of Animal Production, Volume 46, , 105-110, 1986
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