Winter grazing – who, what, where and when? | Issue 177

May 5, 2022

With winter just around the corner it's time to think about the winter grazing rules and what we need to prepare for. The good news is the updated regulations will now come into effect from 1 November 2022 (not 1 May 2022 as originally proposed) and will not impact the on 2022 winter grazing season.

However, those of you planning winter grazing operations for the 2023 season will need to become familiar with the new intensive winter grazing regulations and requirements. Now is a great time to start planning next year’s paddocks, sowing, critical source area management and grazing strategies.

Some key changes to be aware of have been made in the latest update for next season which are briefly described below;

  • Maximum slope of less than 10 degrees may be used for intensive winter grazing activities, subject to satisfying other conditions.
  • Default pugging conditions have been replaced with a duty to take all reasonably practicable steps to minimise the effects of pugging on freshwater quality.
  • Sub surface drains are excluded from the definition of drains for intensive grazing.
  • Default resowing conditions have been replaced with a requirement to establish vegetation as ground cover as soon as practicable after grazing.
  • Critical source areas must be protected, left un-grazed, have vegetation cover and must not be cultivated in annual forage crop

There are many guides available which can help you with next year’s planning including these winter grazing templates;

Come along to a DINZ winter grazing workshop in Otago (26 May 1-3pm) and Canterbury (9 and 10 June) to talk winter grazing management. If you are keen for a workshop near you or want further information on any of the above, get in touch with our Environmental Stewardship manager Sara Elmes

For further detail on the IWG release head to the Ministry for the Environment website. Intensive winter grazing | Ministry for the Environment.

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