Sheep grazing barley

Discussion in 'Cropping' started by snipe, Jan 8, 2019.

  1. snipe

    snipe Member

    west yorkshire
    got some forward barley, when you walk through it you can see the cloud of mildew coming off it. Would grazing it with sheep benefit the crop in any way.
  2. Hfd Cattle

    Hfd Cattle Member

    Asked my agronomist the same question . He gave a resounding no. Said grazing wheat or oats was ok but barley a big no. I forget the reason he gave but it sounded right at the time !
  3. e3120

    e3120 Member

    Mine told me it was risk of damaging the growing point. I imagine it looks/smells quite like yours.

    Nonetheless, I have a field of new seeds with plenty of volunteer barley in it, that's just been hard grazed so we'll see. Quite a lot survived in the past that way, but i suppose you'd have been disappointed in it as a crop.
  4. Gedd

    Gedd Member

    We have done it in the past as long as the grounds dry no paddling secret is get them on and off as quick as possible and dont over graze
    d williams likes this.
  5. Mine has got too far forward & is now covered in mildew.

    I suppose damage is now done & grazing early December would have been ideal. sadly too wet then.
  6. Gedd

    Gedd Member

    Nothing lost nothing gained if you don't give it a light grazing will be later to harvest though
  7. A good way to spread harvest then,

    My agromist dosen't like sheep PERIOD but he says they spoil the pre em cover which makes sense.
  8. Even tho its dry and im short of keep I'm not tempted on our soil because they will cap the surface .

    To the op a Quick and even grazing and only on light ground would be my advice.
  9. snipe

    snipe Member

    west yorkshire
    Thanks for all the replies.
  10. jack6480

    jack6480 Member

    south lancs!
    Definitely graze it will come back
  11. Paul E

    Paul E Member

    Sunny Yorkshire
    Like with most things.......

    It isn't WHAT you do,
    It's HOW you do it.

    So thats a yes then.
  12. Goldilocks

    Goldilocks Member

    Did a trial for a couple of years running.Fenced off a small block and put sheep on in Feb/early march for a fairly severe graze ( but only on for 4 or 5 days at hefty stocking rate and when soil conditions dry ) Ate all diseased leaves nicely and crop came back well. Was slightly shorter than rest of field all season and at harvest ( could have reduced growth reg spend but was a small block in the middle of a big field so it just had inputs same as rest ) In both years was no discernible effect on yield ( measured on combine yield meter )
    If I needed to graze barley would have no hesitation in doing so . ( have not needed to because always have a vast area of cover crops to graze with my sheep ,but gives confidence that I have a backstop of early spring tucker if I ever get widespread cover crop failure )
    hendrebc, Wooly, d williams and 5 others like this.
  13. David.

    David. Member

    J11 M40
    I'd do it. Just don't leave them on too long.
    Post above puts some facts on the job.
  14. Flat 10

    Flat 10 Member

    Fen Edge
    Lengthy section in this months DD magazine.....
    snipe likes this.
  15. Agrobi

    Agrobi Member

    31E391A1-253F-48A7-904D-175B3460A629.jpeg Would have been a sceptic in the past because of raised growing point but had a go with a grower on some early drilled cassia back in Dec. 6-7acres, 50 sheep for a week. With a run back grass field next door. Results are fantastic, little hoof damage, no mildew, well tillered and growing away again in the mild conditions. This field had a cheap residual herbicide in the autumn as we talked about trialling this at the time. Annual meadow grass was the only target.
    I am impressed, I think the secret is to mob it with high stocking rates so they move across it in a group eating as they go. Too few and you risk them concentrating on an area and leaving field patchy. Field of cassia ungrazed next door is leggy ugly and full of mildew & ryncho.
    Tim W, snipe and Flat 10 like this.
  16. Agrobi

    Agrobi Member

    Same field, last few runs finished off with Bazooka as cassia ran out. Cassia on left. Pics all taken last Fri 4th Jan.
    Flat 10 likes this.
  17. Flat 10

    Flat 10 Member

    Fen Edge
    Hybrids seem cleaner and less rank here too, I think lower seedrate is particularly advantageous in a mild autumn.
    Brisel and Agrobi like this.
  18. Reading all the posts & seeing how winter barley volunteers responded (before potato crop) to grazing.

    I'd love to try it but hoggs & before Xmas only.
  19. Goldilocks

    Goldilocks Member

    Can go right into March as long as barley strong and well rooted ,it will grow back fine
  20. d williams

    d williams Member

    Not to sure about that one I'm all for grazing crops but sure there's a growth stage that's a big no no take that out and plants won't do any good

Share This Page