Multi species grazing at Rosa's Ridge
Steph and Sam of Rosa’s Ridge Pastured Chicken have a few different animals in their grazing and foraging mix. They currently have chickens, goats and a few cattle on their pasture. This is referred to as multi species grazing, and can mean grazing different animals together, or grazing them in sequence after one another.
Multi species grazing provides a great opportunity for optimizing the use of plant species on a pasture, as different livestock species prefer different plants. This maximizes forage utilization, translating into higher animal production rates per hectare, lower costs of production and better returns for producers. It also translates to healthier and more diverse soil, increased biodiversity and ecological communities.
Multi species grazing takes full advantage of biological diversity. Those farmers who work hard to increase pasture-plant diversity will also see a greater advantage by adding diversity of livestock to the mix. The benefits of multi species grazing is most apparent when a multitude of forage species make up the pasture composition. As the different animal species may target different plant species in their grazing patterns, the live biology that is passed onto the pasture through their respective gut also helps to increase the diversity of the soil microbiome.