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

Educated Cows Eat Weeds!

Vandenberg Air Force Base, California

2008, Funded by VAFB Environmental Group

This is the first time I have ever trained cows to eat a weed plain in just five days.

Black mustard can be found throughout North America and it is a particular problem in California. Vandenberg Air Force Base Environmental Wing asked me to come out and work with their permittee to train 50 heifers to eat it.

With only 5 days for training, I had to speed up the training process. I began adding black mustard on the afternoon of Day 2. I hoped that seeing and trying black mustard early in the process it would become the familiar thing among many unfamiliar foods.

By Day 5 cows were cleaning their troughs and eating the weed plain. I left the Base with instructions on how to manage the trainees to begin to control the weed on their own.

Watch the video of this project.

Cow eat from troughs

Heifers eat from troughs during training

Heifer eats black mustard
Heifers eating plain mustard on Day 5

Cows Eat Black Mustard

Ah Ha! Moments