“Regenerative Grazing, Part 1” Left us with a beautiful pastoral scene that most have been conditioned to to use as the benchmark of proper grazing techniques.
This highly managed plan has resulted in cow that will not eat most plants, has lost the instinct to keep with the herd, has no immunity to the natural critters, such as flies and parasites, land that will not grow a crop without the addition of chemical fertilizers, and undesirable plants that are resistant to the chemical herbicides. The bugs are missing from the pasture, the flies run rampant without the use of insecticides and the cows cannot get bred, nurse, and maintain their health without harvested grain or other supplementation. What happened to Mother Nature’s plan when the animals were doing it on their own? Man’s system requires man and multiple inputs with lack luster results and adverse implications, some known and others yet to be discovered; on the land, animals and the people that consume them.
Herd animals were once kept moving by the predators. When animals are left to browse and constantly graze on the youngest most tender plants in one area, they keep going back to the same plant not giving the plant time to recover and eventually the plant dies. When the plant dies, Mother Nature steps in and places a plant in that spot to cover the soil. The plant that Mother Nature puts in the spot will be a plant that grows naturally and rapidly. Since this is not a plant that the animals are accustomed to eating, they will avoid it and man intervenes again with chemicals to kill the plant (herbicides), chemicals to grow a new “desirable” plant (fertilizer).
Who would have thought that Mother Nature knew what she was doing? She put the microbes, fungi, and bacteria in the soil to help feed the plants and maintain a healthy soil structure. She put the bugs on the ground to spread the nutrients left behind by the roaming herds. She put the flies and other insects to feed the birds. She put the predators on the land to keep the herd together to evenly trample and distribute the nutrients. She incorporated the diverse plant selection for balance and optimum nutrition for the animals maintaining this diverse eco system. Think about it, we can’t live on Kale alone; we need a variety in our diets for maximum health benefits and so do the animals out on the land. Herd animals also stayed on the move constantly moving forward leaving the droppings behind for the bugs and the birds to obliterate and filter back into the earth. Eventually the herd would return to the area after this regenerative process was completed and the plants had fully recovered.
…….. Stay tuned for the next post on how we try to work with Mother Nature rather than against her.