Grassland scientists are responsible for the effective management of natural and established pastures. Grasslands are important for livestock, as they form the first link in the food chain. Established grasslands are more common for livestock farming. The physical and biological planning of any farm must be done in accordance with the principles of grassland science. Pasture programmes for different kinds of livestock have to be planned and implemented.
South Africa has a wide variety of veld types, all of which have their own characteristics. These characteristics are dictated by climate and soil conditions, and each kind of veld needs a specific kind of management.
Effective management includes activities as determining when, and to what degree, pastures should be stripped; the numbers of animals that can feed off an area for a set period of time; how long the soil should lie fallow before being cultivated again; and the type of soil management necessary to ensure productive fields.
What they do:
· plan and implement pasture programmes for different kinds of livestock
· continuously searching for additional forage plant species that are suitable for local conditions
· attempt to improve indigenous materials and cultivate new varieties
Where to study:
Universities: UP, UFS, UKZN, NMMU, UL
Companies to work for:
National and provincial parks boards, fertiliser manufacturers, mining companies, educational institutions, commercial farms, self-emplo