GFM Network News


Whether you spread out bales or group them in ‘pods,’ don’t worry about the residue left behind — it isn’t wasted.

Bale grazing is having its moment in the (winter) sun

Here are some things to bear in mind when using bales to extend the grazing season

Reading Time: 2 minutes Many producers have taken steps to extend their grazing period, and bale grazing is proving to be a popular choice. Bales can be purchased or grown on farm and placed strategically in cells or ‘bale pods.’ In some cases, cattle feed on bales directly where they are dropped from the baler, but in most situations, bales […] Read more

Swath grazing reduces feeding expenses, but can cost you if not done right. Agriculture Canada scientists Vern Baron and John Duynisveld offer tips for successful swath and bale grazing in a Beef Cattle Research Council webinar.

Three tips for swath and bale grazing this winter

Match your cows and your feed, leave a ‘snowshoe’ if mud is an issue, and make those swaths wide and high

Reading Time: 3 minutes If you’re planning to swath or bale graze cattle this winter, here are three pieces of advice from Agriculture Canada research scientists Vern Baron in Lacombe and John Duynisveld in Nappan, N.S. Match animal and forage Successful extended grazing matches the energy requirements of the cow with the true quality of the forage and/or supplement […] Read more


Grazing management is your best – and cheapest – pasture input

Grazing management can produce significant pasture health 
and productivity increases without breaking the bank


Reading Time: 3 minutes I’ve been studying and practising grazing management for more than two decades and have always been intrigued by how it allows you to increase pasture productivity with few other inputs. At times, I’ve resorted to adding nitrogen fertilizer, spreading pig manure, harrowing, and clipping thistles. For some pastures, it seemed like the only thing to […] Read more

Soil sampling found bale-processing and bale-grazing sites had organic matter levels above 10 per cent — far more than levels at the winter feeding and hay production sites.

Bale grazing and processing best at battling drought

A Peace Country study found bale grazing and processing is the best way 
to improve water retention and infiltration

Reading Time: 2 minutes Two up-and-coming grazing systems could help Alberta cattle producers combat drought. In a three-year study conducted by the Peace Country Beef and Forage Association, researchers found bale-grazing and bale-processing sites improve organic matter in the soil and increase the soil’s water-holding capacity more than other types of grazing system. “We’ve seen a lot of drought […] Read more


Didsbury producers Sean and Holly LaBrie have seen big changes in pasture productivity thanks to bale grazing.

Bale grazing saves time and money, and boosts pasture productivity

Cattle producers can save more than 40 cents per cow per day – but the time savings and more lush pastures are the big benefits

Reading Time: 4 minutes An “old throwback” way of feeding cattle is gaining traction among producers who are looking to save a little time in their day-to-day chores — and a bit of money. “Bale grazing is an approach to feeding cattle in winter that tries to look at reducing costs,” said Grant Lastiwka, a forage specialist with Alberta […] Read more