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Copyright 2010, Kathy Voth, Livestock for Landscapes, All rights reserved
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Cow Pointer

Educated Cows Eat Weeds!

Heifers Eat Canada Thistle

Lewistown, Montana

MT Department of Natural Resouces Conservation & Fergus County RCD

This turned into one of the shortest trips I've made since I began training cows to eat weeds back in 2004. Working with Heidi Olbert and a good size crew of folks, we trained a herd of about 60 heifers to eat Canada thistle.

When I arrived, the heifers were ready to start on thistle. We fed them in tubs for 2 days, and though it didn't look like they were eating much from the tubs, when we went to the pasture to watch them, they were doing quite well on the weed. That meant that I headed for home a day early. Thanks cows! And thanks to everyone who participated!

Ray Beck, who owned the pasture where the heifers were working said that they really started to make a difference in the thistle in the pasture. He wished they had been able to stay longer to finish off the job.

For more about this project and the lessons learned, visit my blog.

Montana heifer eats thistle
A heifer shows off her thistle grabbing technique.
Ah Ha! Moments