Brush and weed control on ranges and pastures

TitleBrush and weed control on ranges and pastures
Publication TypeBook Chapter
Year of Publication1968
AuthorsHerbel C.H.
Book TitlePrinciples of Plant and Animal Pest Control, v. 2. Weed Control
PublisherNational Academy of Sciences, Publication No. 1957
Keywordsbrush, control methods, grazing lands, weeds
AbstractApproximately half of the total land area of the United States is used for pasture and grazing purposes, and weeds and brush are a problem on nearly all these forage lands. Economic losses from weeds on forage lands are virtually incalculable and include low yield of forage and animal products per unit area, reduced livestock gains and livestock poisoning. Tremendous weed problems have been created on grazing lands by the introduction of exotic plant species or the shift of nonforage native species to positions of major importance. Changes in the vegetation communities of vast areas of range and noncropland are constantly occurring through the influences of grazing practices, cultural manipulations, plant introductions, diseases, insects, various other fauna and many other environmental factors. In areas where vegetation is disturbed or removed, the species remaining or introduced tend to increase and become dominant. Trends toward dominance by weeds can be halted or changed by judicious use of mechanical and chemical control methods, introduction of new forage plant species, fertilization and control of the kinds and numbers of grazing animals and their seasons of use. Because of factors such as climate, native animal life, plant species and soil depletion or erosion, some ranges do not respond readily to improvement measures. Nevertheless, many forage lands can be made more productive by present techniques which almost always will include some form of weed control.