A recent survey indicated that approximately 67% of deer farmers integrate sheepand/or cattle on their deer unit to better match feed demand with the seasonal pattern of pasture growth, maintain pasture quality, particularly during lactation and to control weeds. Integrated stock policies also allow for improved financial risk management and provide flexibility to adjust stock numbers in response to market signals and feed supply. There is evidence from the sheep and beef industries that productivity can be increased from the integration of sheep and cattle compared to a single species system. There is limited information for the integration of sheep and cattle with deer so an assessment of the ‘challenges and opportunities for co-grazing deer with other livestock’ must inevitably rely on extrapolation of knowledge from the co-grazing of sheep, cattle and goats of which there is an extensive literature. This paper identifies the key knowledge needed to meet the challengesand identify the opportunities of grazing deer withother livestock.
Proceedings of the New Zealand Society of Animal Production, Volume 67, Wanaka, 107-116, 2007
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