GFM Network News


Mogulones crucifer root weevil on houndstongue. This root weevil has been highly successful in 
controlling houndstongue in British Columbia.

Using insects to control invasive weeds on pasture

Houndstongue biocontrol project in B.C. has been highly successful

Once invasive plants reach a point of domination, elimination is generally not feasible. Land managers sometimes turn to biologic control, a last resort for reducing a widespread weed’s populations to below an economic or environmental damage threshold. Eradicating the weed may be impossible, but biocontrol agents may reduce it to manageable levels. Since 1951, 82 […] Read more



Brian Chrisp places feed along an electric fence, running the wire over the feeder and on both sides.  Photo: Supplied by Brian Chrisp

Portable fencing tips for rotational grazing of cattle

“No matter how many fence posts you have and how many rolls of poly wire, it won’t work if you’re not thinking ahead,” says Tim Hoven

Many stockmen who graze rotationally create permanent paddocks with traditional fencing or electric hard wire, such as high tensile wire. They then divide those paddocks with portable fencing such as poly wire. A portable fence can be moved every few days, daily, or even several times daily to strip graze or mob graze. There are […] Read more



An outbreak in anthrax occurs primarily in wet springs followed by a very hot, dry summer or in very dry conditions.

Preventing anthrax in cattle

In dry years, livestock graze closer to the ground and may come in contact with spores

With the fall 2018 anthrax outbreak in northern B.C., now is an ideal time to review prevention strategies. In 2006 we learned lots about the disease and how to control it with the big outbreak in Western Canada. Cattle are very susceptible, along with a long list of other species including bison and horses. It […] Read more

Dr. Calvin Booker has been involved with Feedlot Management Service’s carbon offset projects since the company first explored the programs in 2009.

Carbon offset projects may provide financial opportunities

There are two types of carbon market structures

Opportunities are emerging for beef producers to benefit from carbon dioxide emission offset markets at both the cow-calf and feeder levels. Agricultural emission offset projects are attractive to companies required to purchase emission offsets and those voluntarily making a positive environmental impact. The added benefits of these projects, a result of sustainable production practices, are […] Read more


A pasture after three years of intensive grazing management, with higher stock density and longer rest periods.

Restoring depleted soils with cattle

Adding grazing back into the equation increases soil organic matter, doubles forage production

Michael Thiele’s mission today is to acquaint more farmers and ranchers with a holistic view of agriculture. Thiele grew up on a farm west of Dauphin, Man., just north of Riding Mountain National Park. His father had a small grain farm and a few cows. “We were busy trying to farm and make a living […] Read more

Wild pigs raise several litters a year, and litters average six piglets on the Prairies.

Invasive wild pigs a growing threat to agriculture

The rapid spread of wild pig populations across Canada could have serious implications for agriculture. Ryan Brook, associate professor at the University of Saskatchewan’s Indigenous Land Management Institute and Department of Animal and Poultry Science, warns that the expansion of this invasive species can lead to destructive consequences for livestock and crop production, as well […] Read more


Leaving crop residue and building soil through root growth ensures that rain won’t immediately hit exposed soil.

Water is our most important nutrient

From the Ground Up with Steve Kenyon

Is it just me or has anyone else noticed the increased flooding around the globe? Am I the only one who notices the increasing number of droughts? My local area, according to government data, has had seven droughts in the last 11 years. We also had people kayaking in the grocery store parking lot a […] Read more

Electric fencing can be an effective way to give pastures or cells a break between grazing.

Management key when evaluating forage production

What should you consider when evaluating the performance of grazing systems and forage production? According to Sean McGrath, management is the factor least often measured in the forage industry, but doing so can keep you accountable for your management decisions and positively impact performance. McGrath, who ranches with his family at Vermilion, Alta., discussed this […] Read more