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AGRI5508 Sustainable Grazing Systems

Credit
6 points
Offering
(see Timetable)
AvailabilityLocationMode
Semester 2UWA (Perth)Face to face
Content
The focus of this unit is on grazing systems that produce healthy animals and high quality products using the principles of clean, green and ethical animal production. Topics include the efficiency of feed utilisation, matching feed supply to animal needs to improve reproductive efficiency, benefits of plant diversity and how grazing behaviour and learned responses of animals can be used to manage diversity. There is a focus on the ability of grazing systems to be profitable but also contribute to healthy landscapes through the use of novel plants to improve water use, nutrient flows and soil erosion, and animal health through the provision of shade, shelter, control of gastrointestinal nematodes and reduced methane production for livestock. The unit consists of three blocks of two-day sessions (including a field trip to the UWA Future Farm at Pingelly). This unit is essential for all students interested in a career in agricultural science, meeting the challenge of developing profitable production systems and managing risk in the face of increased climate variability. It is also relevant for students with an interest in natural resource management.
Outcomes
Students are able to (1) understand how soils, water, animals, plants and livestock interact in a grazing system; (2) know how grazing systems can be managed to improve livestock production in an environmentally sustainable way; (3) gain experience with identifying components of a grazing system in the field; (4) write a consultancy report; (5) present an oral presentation to the class; and (6) demonstrate critical thinking at a farming systems scale.
Assessment
Indicative assessments in this unit are as follows: (1) field trip attendance; (2) consultancy report; and (3) oral presentation on report. Further information is available in the unit outline.

Supplementary assessment is not available in this unit.
Unit Coordinator(s)
Professor Philip Vercoe
Unit rules
Prerequisites:
Course Enrolment in 72510 Master of Agricultural Science (ID 164) Or BH004 Bachelor of Science (Honours) (ID 4)
Co-requisites:
Nil
Incompatibility:
Nil
Contact hours
total workload: 150 hours
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  • Unit readings, including any essential textbooks, are listed in the unit outline for each unit, one week prior the commencement of study. The unit outline will be available via the LMS and the UWA Handbook one week prior the commencement of study. Reading lists and essential textbooks are subject to change each semester. Information on essential textbooks will also be made available on the Essential Textbooks. This website is updated regularly in the lead up to semester so content may change. It is recommended that students purchase essential textbooks for convenience due to the frequency with which they will be required during the unit. A limited number of textbooks will be made available from the Library in print and will also be made available online wherever possible. Essential textbooks can be purchased from the commercial vendors to secure the best deal. The Student Guild can provide assistance on where to purchase books if required. Books can be purchased second hand at the Guild Secondhand bookshop (second floor, Guild Village), which is located on campus.