Thursday, March 31, 2022

Capital RC&D, Partners Host April 23 Small Ruminant Pasture Walk On Grazing Planning In Cumberland County

The reduced vegetation in winter and early spring is not ideal for grazing but is great for planning changes to pasture layout. 

The winter environment simplifies the landscape and highlights natural features that make it easier for farmers to assess fields and pastures. 

Farmers can see existing fence rows, laneways, and water access points more clearly and consider additions or changes to pasture layout, fencing and water systems, and management techniques before the grazing season begins. 

Graziers can practice evaluating their acreage and updating their pasture layout using readily available pasture planning tools as part of a pasture walk for small ruminant graziers. 

The walk is hosted by Capital RC&D at the farm of Eli and Mackenzie Strawser, Top Line Meats, in Carlisle, PA on April 23, 2022 from 10:00 a.m. to Noon. 

Eli and Mackenzie Strawser started Top Line Meats with twelve sheep in late 2019 and increased their total herd to approximately 100 sheep. 

Currently, the Strawsers graze 10 acres but they use an accelerated lambing program so only need to graze 50-60 mature ewes at a time. They are expanding their pasture in 2022 to include an additional 15 acres. 

Capital RC&D grazing advisors assisted the Strawsers in considering options for the expansion, including using planning tools to help determine appropriate paddock size. 

Ann Starbard, Capital RC&D Grazing Advisor and experienced dairy goat grazier, will join Eli and Mackensie Strawser in leading the April 23rd pasture walk. 

The Strawsers will share details about their farm business, existing pastures, and pasture expansion plans. Ann Starbard will guide participants in exercises to practice assessing existing fields and pasture and using tools like the Vermont Grazing Plan. 

There is no charge for the pasture walk but registration is requested and can be made online at Capital RC&D website, by emailing,  or by calling 717-241-4361- please leave a message for extension 15. 

This event is sponsored by Capital RC&D through partnership with the Stroud Water Research Center and with funding through a National Fish and Wildlife Foundation Chesapeake Bay Small Watershed Grant

For more information contact Cheryl Burns at Capital RC&D at 717-241-4361 or via email at   

The Capital RC&D serves communities in Adams, Cumberland, Dauphin, Franklin, Lancaster, Lebanon, and York counties

[Posted: March 31, 2022]  PA Environment Digest

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