Mob grazing effects on nutrient runoff in cool season pastures

Project Overview

Project Type: Graduate Student
Funds awarded in 2012: $10,974.00
Projected End Date: 12/31/2014
Grant Recipient: Virginia Tech
Region: Southern
State: Virginia
Graduate Student:
Major Professor:

Annual Reports


  • Agronomic: sorghum (milo), wheat, grass (misc. perennial), hay
  • Animals: bovine


  • Animal Production: feed/forage, grazing management, grazing - continuous, grazing - rotational


    A comparison of stocking method effects on surface runoff quantity and quality is ongoing. The stocking methods to be evaluated are 1) continuous stocking, 2) rotational stocking, and 3) mob stocking. Water quantity and quality data from runoff induced by rainfall simulation have been collected over two grazing seasons (2012 and 2013). A total of 99 rainfall simulations have been performed. Stocking method impacts on runoff quantity and nutrient losses were minimal in 2012. Stocking density of the mob stocking treatment was increased in 2013. Additionally, improvements to the data collection protocol were made for data collected in 2013. During 2014, data from 2013 will be analyzed and water quantity and quality data will be collected for a third year of the study.

    Project objectives:

    1. Compare runoff volumes among mob, rotationally, and continuously stocked pastures.
    2. Compare sediment losses in runoff among mob, rotationally, and continuously stocked pastures.
    3. Compare nutrient losses in runoff from mob, rotationally, and continuously stocked pastures.

    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.