Authors: SADIK ÇAKMAKÇI, BİLAL AYDINOĞLU, MEHMET ARSLAN, MEHMET TETİK
Abstract: This research was conducted to study the effects of artificial sowing with various plant species and different sowing dates on forage yield, grazing capacity and estimated carcass weight in rangelands under continental dry conditions. Artificial rangelands were established on Akpınar plateau near Kemer-Burdur 1675 m above sea level using 4 different plant species sown at 5 different sowing dates. Later, grazing capacity and carcass weight were estimated in terms of forage yield. The results showed that the best sowing date of alfalfa (Medicago sativa L.) was sowing date 4 (the last week of October) and 1447 cattle could graze in an area of 1800 ha over a 3-month grazing period. The best sowing date for sainfoin (Onobrychis sativa Lam.) was sowing date 1 (the last week of September) with a grazing capacity of 3178 cattle units. In smooth brome (Bromus inermis Leyss.), the best sowing was achieved at the sowing date 4 with 1575 cattle units. Unfortunately, bluegrass (Poa pratensis L.) did not yield any plant growth at any sowing date. The Akpınar rangeland presently has a grazing capacity of 208 cattle units. When this value is compared with the values mentioned above, it is clear that both grazing capacity and the amount of quality forage will be increased considerably by the reclamation of rangeland. At present, the estimated carcass weight of 57,200 kg will be increased to 873,950 kg when the rangeland is sown with sainfoin at sowing date 1 in the last week of September. It is obvious that grazing capacity and estimated carcass weight can be increased by rangeland improvement.
Keywords: Grazing capacity, sowing date, plant species, rangeland, carcass weight
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