Monitoring Birds in Rotationally Grazed Pasture

Published Dec 6, 2016

In a Nutshell

Wild bird populations can thrive in properly managed working landscapes. Cattle activity changes grassland structure; creating areas with short and tall vegetation, which provides habitat that is less available in conservation areas. Rotationally grazed pastures have the capacity to support greater bird populations, for some species, than conservation areas that are not grazed.

Key findings

Restored prairie in a conservation area supported 285 birds of 21 species. Rotationally grazed perennial pasture supported 553 birds of 22 species. Rotationally grazed perennial + annual pasture supported 524 birds of 28 species. Pastures better supported some birds that have conservation implications, than the restored prairie.