There is no denying there; setting up a business is a major challenge, irrespective of the industry. It is not easy to lay the foundations of a company that one hopes one day will produce high profits. But the real game begins when it is time to take the company towards stability and profitability. – the essential objectives of each entrepreneur.
To achieve these goals, it is common for business owners to ponder over ways to maximize the productivity and efficiency of the setup. The same is the case with livestock farmers. They tend to develop strategies that let them improve their farm’s outcomes. From trying out different livestock management software to carrying out extensive training of the workers, these farmers try everything possible.
Among these strategies is one to raise a variety of livestock animals on the same farm.
For many farmers, the idea might not be the smartest, but several livestock farms are adopting this strategy.
Benefits of Raising Different Livestock Animals on the Same Farm
All those farmers skeptical about this strategy need to look at the big picture here. Of course, this strategy has drawbacks, but its benefits are amazing only when it is done right. The most important aspect for every farmer is the cost. Well, who doesn’t worry about the costs?
Raising different animals together means they can share the same grazing pastures if the right animals are grouped. Farmers who wish to raise more than one type of livestock can significantly reduce the costs and enjoy maximum benefits.
Raising different livestock animals on a single farm helps diversify its income when it comes to commercial farming. Multi-species farming allows farmers to produce wool, beef, and even different types of milk from one piece of land. The more diversified the product range, the higher is the profit.
Knowing the Right Animals
While raising different livestock brings its own set of benefits, a farm can only enjoy them if the right animals are grouped. One running a cattle farm must do their research to decide which animals can be raised together.
If you are running a cattle farm, here are the five best animals you can choose to raise together. Remember that the secret to maximized farm outcomes is not multi-species farming but multi-species farming with the right group of animals.
Cattle and Sheep
One of the best animals that you can choose to raise on a cattle farm is sheep. It is a very popular choice when it comes to multi-species grazing. The best thing about pairing these two species together is that they consume the same pasture. Another major reason farmers choose to pair these two animal types together is that there is no possible parasite transfer between them.
While every pairing has a downside, even this duo has some cons. While raising cattle does not demand very close monitoring and fencing, it is the opposite while raising sheep. They need very close monitoring with proper fencing. In addition to this, sheep must not access the mineral blocks, a need for cattle farms.
Sheep and cattle can indeed graze together, but cattle will always get the most valued item to eat. These animals are bossy around sheep and push them away when it comes to sharing pasture. Usually, they take the best part of the ‘meal.’
Raising cattle does not require checking the animals frequently, but when it comes to sheep, a farmer must check on them at least twice every day. Why? Sheep are farm animals that demand close monitoring for best results.
Another important part of raising these two species together is keeping sheep away from cattle during lambing. The curious nature of these animals becomes a hindrance in taking care of babies.
Cattle and Goats
After sheep, goats are the second-best option to raise along with cattle on one farm. There are many reasons why cattle farmers choose to pair their animals with goats. The first thing that convinces cattle farmers to opt for this is zero wastage of pasture.
Cattle are picky when it comes to eating. These animals leave behind bushy growth. Goats, on the other hand, eat everything in the pasture. Everything that the cattle refuse to consume, goats can eat that. It results in zero wastage of pasture, helping a farmer use the same pasture for a long period of time.
Not only this, but when these two types of animals are kept together, there is a minimum to zero chance of parasite transfer. These two animal species do not share the same parasites, which means if there is a parasite problem in goats, it will not get transferred to cattle.
The only challenge that may create issues for the farmer is the escaping nature of goats. Many farmers refer to goats as ‘escape artists.’ They are always looking for ways to escape. While cattle are calm animals, goats will think of different ways they can escape the fencing.
Cattle and Chicken
This might seem odd, but cattle and chicken are also wonderful when kept together. For starters, these two animal species do not share the same parasites. Your cattle are safe from parasites on chickens and vice versa.
Keeping these two animal species together is beneficial not just for the farm but also for the animals as well. As discussed previously, cattle are bossy animals when it comes to pasture. They will push away other animals to get the best part of the meal.
When you keep chickens with cattle, this is not a problem. Chickens are not very fond of grass. They do consume it, but mostly the part that cattle leave behind. Chickens will eat the leftover part. What’s more? Chicken like eating maggots and flies, eliminating the problem of ‘bug harassment.’ Chicken eats the bugs in cattle manure, an ideal situation for a farmer dealing with high bug influx.
One thing that can create a problem is the containment of chicken. These birds are wanderers and will move around the entire place. This attracts predators and even puts the cattle at risk. To avoid this problem, chickens need a special kind of fence, and if a farmer opts to get it around the entire cattle farm, it will cost them a fortune.
These are the three best options if you are thinking about multi-species farming on a cattle farm. If you wish to look for other options, ducks and geese are also two types that you can choose to raise with your cattle.
Multi-species farming is a smart approach, and it can work magic if done right!
Want to make multi-species farming easy? Get livestock or, specifically, cattle management software to make things simple.