Developing a Handbook for Utilizing Livestock as a Tool in Noxious Weed Control in Nine Western States

Project Overview

Project Type: Professional Development Program
Funds awarded in 2004: $90,133.00
Projected End Date: 12/31/2008
Matching Non-Federal Funds: $39,953.00
Region: Western
State: Nevada
Principal Investigator:
Jason Davison
University of Nevada Cooperative Extension

Annual Reports


  • Animals: bovine, goats, sheep


  • Animal Production: feed/forage, grazing - continuous, grazing - multispecies, range improvement
  • Education and Training: extension, focus group, participatory research
  • Farm Business Management: new enterprise development
  • Pest Management: biological control, eradication, physical control, weed ecology
  • Production Systems: holistic management
  • Sustainable Communities: new business opportunities, community services, employment opportunities


    A handbook concerning livestock grazing as a noxious weed control method was developed and distributed to 1656 individuals located in 14 states. The handbook was presented at 11 meetings, selected for inclusion into the Bureau of Land Management’s National Integrated Pest Management curriculum and taught to 240 employees, made available online, and incorporated as a chapter in a published book concerning targeted grazing. An evaluation involving users of the handbook (N=313) revealed that 95% of the respondents rated the handbook somewhat to very useful and 92% indicated the handbook increased their knowledge of livestock grazing for noxious weed control.

    Project objectives:

    The objectives for this project were to: 1) compile a list of noxious weed species for California, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Washington, Wyoming and Utah, 2) collect, review, and summarize current knowledge about livestock grazing as a control method for each noxious weed species, 3) present this information in a handbook and distribute to Cooperative Extension (CE) personnel, Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS) employees, and others, and 4) evaluate the usefulness of the handbook.
    The project objectives were to be accomplished by: 1) conducting an in-depth literature review, interviews with researchers, and a survey of grazing management practitioners to generate a knowledge base regarding livestock grazing as a control agent for specific noxious weeds, 2) presenting the information in a handbook (binder and CD formats) which describes the effectiveness of grazing as a control method for each noxious weed species, 3) producing and distributing to every CE and NRCS office in the targeted states, plus additional copies to other entities, 4) developing an interactive website featuring the handbook and other related information, 5) presenting the project at weed management conferences in the targeted states and at three national meetings, 6) publishing a synthesis, science-based paper in a peer reviewed journal, and 7) evaluating project impact through telephone surveys of handbook recipients, monitoring the number of hits on the project website, and tracking information requests.

    Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the U.S. Department of Agriculture or SARE.