Grazing distribution of free-ranging cattle at three sites in the Alice Springs District, Central Australia.
RM Hodder and WA Low
The Australian Rangeland Journal
1(2) 95 - 105
Cattle were obwrved over a period of five years on three sites near Alice Springs to determine how different plant communi- ties were utilized. Under extencive range management as practised in the Alice Springs district, the location of watering points was the major factor influencing forage utilization by cattle. The most favoured plant communities were those developed on riparian, swamp, and woodland site? and the location of these preferred communities, in relation to watering points, determined cattle distribution. No clear pattern of community preference between summer and winter could be detected. In good seasons the majority of cattle grazed within 4 km of the watering points. Only when forage conditions were poor did the majority graze beyond 8 km from water. The study as a whole showed that knowledge of plant community distribution and order of grazing preference by cattle, can bea useful tool in planning the location of water points and in protecting fragile rangeland.
Full text doi:10.1071/RJ9780095
© ARS 1976