Invasive Species Control through Combined Methods of Browzing and Prescribed Burning
The project incorporates the USDA approved methods of goat browsing and prescribed burns to maximize control of invasive species and invigorate native savanna growth in multi-use timber stands. An on-farm research/demonstration plot will be established for comparing the effectiveness of individual and combined control methods for invasive species in timber.
1) Maximum control of invasive species
2) Stimulate the desired natural understory regrowth of hardwood trees and Oak Savanna native plants
Timeline Tasks and Performance Targets:
Late Winter 2014/15:
The landowner and project team identified 10-12 acres within the existing timber stand that is conducive to setting up replicated trial plots. COMPLETED 4/15
Project team isolated the research plots and prepared them for the replicated trials. COMPLETED (PHOTOS ATTACHED) 4/15
Test points identified, GIS tagged and pre-test vegetative analysis conducted. COMPLETED 5/15
3300″ fence installed to establish plots.
First round of defoliation with 40 goats for one month. Completed 5/15
Invasive species allowed to fully re-leaf for one month. Completed 6/15
Round two of defoliation with goats for one month. Completed July 2015
Pre-during and Post evaluation data collection. Completed Sept 2015
Fence removed and fire lanes improved in preparation for timber burn on selected plots. Completed Sept 2015
Field Days and individual tours – 3 field days, 12 individual vistors – Completed Sept 25
Coordinate with Certified Burn Contract to burn the appropriate research plots. Scheduled for Oct/Nov 15. Dependent on leaf drop and climatic conditions.
Data collection and evaluation. ONGOING
Impacts and Contributions/Outcomes
Data supporting the effectivness of the individual and combined methods of controlling invasive species will not be done until the following spring (and subsequent years) however the interest in combining control methods can easily be measured by the attendance at field days and inquiries received about the project. As of Oct 1, the project team hosted three field days with a total of 62 attendees along with a dozen individual visitors during the summer months. The project has also been highlighted in local newspaper press releases and presented at local civic organizations.
Interest expressed by landowners of various sizes, including municipalities, has resulted in the owners of the goats expanding the services offered to accommodate a wider variety of interests and needs.
Initial results of multiple grazing has had a significant and visible impact on the health and vigor of the invasive species. Heading into the fall (eight weeks after second browse) noticable defoliation is still apparent – implying that the plants have experienced a large deficit in the amount of energy put into root storage. That vigor will be tested by both over wintering and the controlled burning plots later this fall. Impact will be measured again in the spring.
1903 W. Walnut St
Granger, IA 50109
Office Phone: 5155379309
Goats on The Go
17992 570th Ave
Ames, IA 50010
Office Phone: 5152576846
Jordan Resources LLC
505 S Greene St
Boone, IA 50036