Iowa Learning Farms partnered with Triple C Farms near Leon for a pasture management field day on July 24. Nestled deep within the rolling hills of southern Iowa, field day attendees enjoyed a gorgeous evening out in the Triple C Farms pasture for their second (annual?) field day/pasture walk. Read about their 2012 field day HERE.
Brothers Todd and Chris Coffelt were wonderful hosts in sharing their (often humorous) stories and perspectives on rotational grazing and pasture management over the past few years. Todd joked that if they were keeping score, it would probably be Cows 10 – Coffelts 1. They are currently operating with a system of five paddocks, rotating the herd on a weekly basis.
Several changes are in the works to help improve pasture management at Triple C Farms. The most visible were the recently constructed, EQIP-funded sedimentation basins (pictured behind Todd, top photo above). Each basin has a drain in the bottom, designed to temporarily hold water and then slowly transit it to the pond at the bottom of the hill (rather than the existing ditch continuing to cut its way up the slope). Todd commented that the basins handled a 2.5” rain (received in 30 minutes) without any problems.
One of the ongoing challenges is the presence of cedars.
There was great discussion and dialogue amongst field day attendees about rotational grazing management techniques, strategies for weed/invasive species control, and cost-share options available for pasture improvement.
The only downside was that the cows were being very elusive!
But a few overcame the “Stranger Danger” and got close…
Thanks to the Decatur Co. Cattlemen for preparing the delicious dinner of ribeye steak sandwiches, coleslaw, and more, and to the Coffelts for a great event!