Livestock Production

Animal Health & Veterinarian Resources for Ranchers

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By Doug Tolleson

Rangeland health contributes to animal health and well-being. Productive rangelands will provide nutrition and shelter for the animals residing there. Animals grazing well-managed rangelands should be less susceptible to the effects of ingesting toxic plants.   Additionally, well-fed and non-stressed animals should be able to meet the “costs of fitness” required to maintain a functional immune system. Animals experiencing sub-optimal nutrition during a prolonged drought, or cold stress during winter may, however, become immune-compromised and less able to ward off disease, parasites, or infections. Animal diseases do occur though and monitoring animal populations for early detection of disease or parasites is an important part of overall rangeland management.  In this section you will find information related to the symptoms, detection and etiology of diseases common to animals grazing rangelands.