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Grassland Evaluation Team

May 18, 2010

Everyone, I would like to apologize for not posting anything lately. I am the coach of a 4-H Grassland Evaluation Team. We took second place at the state contest and are heading to Springfield, MO the beginning of June for the national contest. Preparing for practices and making travel arrangements has consumed my life. So I’ve decided to do a blog post about the Grassland Evaluation Contest and my team! The contest consists of four testing areas: soils evaluation, wildlife habitat, plant identification, and grassland evaluation. Soils Evaluation focuses on teaching the students how to use a soil survey, find their location, and answer questions related to the suitability of the site for grazing and wildlife. The Wildlife Habitat section introduces the concepts of managing a pasture or grassland to benefit the native wildlife. Wildlife and livestock can co-exist in a pasture; understanding the habitat needs of wildlife and adjusting your grazing plan accordingly is necessary for co-existence. Plant Identification is self-explanatory. The students learn how to identify 100+ plants from the following categories: grasses, legumes, forbs(weeds), and woody plants. During the actual contest the students only have to identify 25 plants, but you never know what plants they will be. Grassland Evaluation takes the most thought. The students must evaluate a pasture for its ability to support the livestock herd. They have to understand the forage needs of the herd, the production potential of the pasture, and how to match a livestock herds needs with pasture production.  A team can consist of either four high school age 4-Hers or FFAers, but each individual team must consist of only 4Hers or FFAers not both. I am super proud of my team and we are looking forward to the national contest in Springfield. Check out the “action” shots below!!

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One Comment leave one →
  1. Annette Farabaugh permalink
    May 19, 2010 8:49 am

    Congratulations for winning 2nd place and going onto MO. Please keep us posted on your progress.

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