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Old 27th May 2014, 01:01 AM   #121
Red Baron Farms
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Originally Posted by Reality Check View Post
No one seems to have addressed these "critical thinking skills" that you used so here goes, Red Baron Farms

Oceans and plants also absorb carbon from other sources that is released into atmosphere. The estimated total absorption by vegetation alone of all of the carbon in the atmosphere (human and other sources) is ~ 123 PgC/yr.

The point is that it is the 7 billion metric tons of carbon that human activities release into the atmosphere each year that is driving global warming. So we have to double the absorption by plants (and maybe oceans) to that value to stop global warming.
Some of your critical thinking on it is pretty good! Thanks for that. The section I cut out above though is demonstrably off. If the absorption is 123PgC/yr which yields a net of ~ 3.5-4 (about 1/2 the 7 human activities emit) It does not necessarily follow that it would take double the absorption (246PgC/yr) to yield a net of ~7. And in fact in this case, it absolutely doesn't. If you green desertified land, yes that will increase the total absorption somewhat. To what degree is unknown but certainly far less than double. The exact amount is trivial though compared to what is happening. It is not the total absorption that changes as much as it is the rate of sequestration. In other words, what % of the carbon is removed from the short term carbon cycle and sequestered into the soil in a long term carbon cycle. If that rate stays the same, yes you would have to double the total vegetation of the planet (pretty difficult). But if you change the rate of sequestration enough you wouldn't necessarily need to increase the total vegetation at all.

HM and most other related "carbon farming" techniques do increase the total vegetation, but more importantly when discussing their potential as mitigation tools, they change the rate that vegetation sequesters carbon in the soil. In other words they change the % of that 123PgC/yr absorbed carbon that ends up as humus.

In highly simplified approximate form what we have now is:
123PgC/yr x .28 = 3.5PgC/yr

Which is less than the 7PgC/yr we humans emit.

And what we would be shooting for is:
(123PgC/yr + XPg/yr) x (.28 + Y) = ZPgC/yr

Where X is increased vegetative absorption due to more vegetative growth, Y is increased vegetative sequestration due to an increased % of absorbed C being turned to humus, and Z total is greater than the carbon we humans emit.

The main reason HM works is because it increases humus in the soil which allows more vegetative growth. Increased vegetative growth increases humus, which also allow more vegetative growth...etc... It is a positive feedback curve. So HM affects both variables not just one. The proposal is to turn the negative feedback curve we have now called desertification, into a positive feedback curve which is called regenerative agriculture. HMPG is not the only regenerative agriculture, but it is a big one potentially. Obviously it becomes much easier if emissions are also reduced. Then our target value for Z is smaller and requires less changes in the X and Y variables HM affects.
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Old 27th May 2014, 01:27 AM   #122
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Originally Posted by Red Baron Farms View Post

The main reason HM works is because it increases humus in the soil which allows more vegetative growth. Increased vegetative growth increases humus, which also allow more vegetative growth...etc... It is a positive feedback curve.
Is there no limit to the vegetative production of an area of soil then? The plants just go on getting denser and denser? That makes no sense to me.

Your 'positive feedback' curve would mean the soil not only gets deeper forever, but gets deeper at an ever increasing rate.

There's something wrong here.
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Old 27th May 2014, 01:35 AM   #123
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Originally Posted by GlennB View Post
Is there no limit to the vegetative production of an area of soil then? The plants just go on getting denser and denser? That makes no sense to me.

Your 'positive feedback' curve would mean the soil not only gets deeper forever, but gets deeper at an ever increasing rate.

There's something wrong here.
Of course there is a limit. The feedback curve does have a point of diminishing returns. Limiting factors include sunlight, water, seasonal temperatures etc... Humus in the soil and all the biology in the soil does make the limited rainfall more effective and holds onto it longer, but it can't magically create unlimited rainfall. It will still be dry brittle land.
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Old 27th May 2014, 04:09 AM   #124
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Originally Posted by Red Baron Farms View Post
Of course there is a limit. The feedback curve does have a point of diminishing returns. Limiting factors include sunlight, water, seasonal temperatures etc... Humus in the soil and all the biology in the soil does make the limited rainfall more effective and holds onto it longer, but it can't magically create unlimited rainfall. It will still be dry brittle land.
Right. So having reached the limit of carbon sequestration in the soil we're back to square one but have bought ourselves some time. We face the same problems, but at a later date.

In short, HM is not a solution any more than excellent home insulation is a solution or energy-efficient electrical devices are a solution.
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Old 27th May 2014, 06:26 AM   #125
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Originally Posted by GlennB View Post
Right. So having reached the limit of carbon sequestration in the soil we're back to square one but have bought ourselves some time. We face the same problems, but at a later date.

In short, HM is not a solution any more than excellent home insulation is a solution or energy-efficient electrical devices are a solution.
Clever switch from rate to a hard limit. It's a cycle Glenn. That cycle never stops unless life on Earth stops. The change in rate has a point of diminishing returns, but the carbon sequestered can be held for thousands of years and that cycle can continue into deep geological time if conditions are right. Remember, Fossil Fuels are not unlimited either. They are simply part of the long carbon cycle.
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Old 27th May 2014, 06:56 AM   #126
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Originally Posted by Red Baron Farms View Post
I think your stumbling block is this
My stumbling block, actually more of a barrier, is that I don't see how these purported facts were arrived at.
It looks a lot as if you were just shaking just-so stories out of your sleeve.


Quote:
Overgrazing doesn't increase the forage the animals eat. It actually reduces it. If it is being over-grazed then the flora is being stressed and not growing, thus not producing as much forage, thus supporting fewer cattle. So if highly stressed over-grazed land can support say 300 cattle, then that same land grazed properly can support at least 400-500, maybe more. Even 1 cow can over-graze where 100 wouldn't. It is a factor of time and timing not numbers of cattle. Think of it this way. plant a seed. In a week or so it sprouts with a single leaf. Graze it then and it produces what? A microscopic tiny amount of forage? And then because it is grazed so young it dies, never to regenerate? But maybe that seed if allowed to grow a few months might produce 5 pounds of forage. Graze it then and you could take 2-3 pounds of that growth without harming the plant, as long as after grazing the plant is allowed to recover, and the grazing left behind manure and urine to fertilize the new growth. So it is all about times and timing, not numbers of cattle. But numbers do affect some things. More numbers of cattle leave more manure. So if you time it right and are able to get more cattle, then more manure, and more vigorous regrowth. Time it wrong and you kill the plants and dead plants don't feed anything, cows nor wildlife. No forage means no animals, means no manure, means slow recovery. So you can take your feedback curve in a positive direction and increasing grazing, or you can take your feedback curve in a negative direction with reduced grazing. Whenever you see a "solution" to over-grazing being reducing the numbers of cattle, then you know they are on that negative feedback curve and don't understand how to generate the positive feedback curve.
That last sentence sounds like it is impossible to have too many cattle on a piece of land. Surely that's not what you mean.
What I want to know is how the optimal and maximal number is estimated.

Quote:
"Compaction" is too general a term here. Deep compaction is not good. But compression around the seeds can help dormant seeds to sprout (when water and nitrogen is present too). Animal impact can break the crust, compress the seed sprouting zone, and still not compress the deep zone all simultaneously. But it needs to be timed right and the cattle need removed after. What I was referring to in the first comment was the beneficial effects of soil structure seen in the rhizosphere.
Breaking the crust implies breaking tortoise burrows. I don't see why any hypothesized soil change should be a benefit to tortoise burrowing.

Quote:
I wasn't talking about the sod producing grasslands found in areas with more moisture. I was talking about non-sod forming desert bunch grasses and forbs. Tortoise do great in that type of ecosystem. It is nearly ideal.
Do you have any examples of HM being used in such conditions/to create such conditions?

Quote:
Herbicide isn't free either. Cattle can be sold at a profit. The line between profit and loss is narrow though. That obviously needs carefully considered when making the plan. It can be done and it has been done, but not always easy. It might take some creative thinking and human ingenuity to pull it off. There are actually business models where animals are rented to both public and private concerns to provide biological invasives control. That might be one way to approach it. It also might be possible to generate enough profit just from the sale of beef. Maybe some combination of the above. And yes, VERY close monitoring is required.
Well, one would rarely want to destroy invasive species for profit. More likely it would be a environmental NGO or, as in this case, a government project to protect biodiversity.
I find it hard to believe that forcing cattle to overgraze particular spots would be cheaper than herbicide. Granted, you save the money for the herbicide and gain some forage but then there's the cost for fencing and labor...
Also, I have doubts if it would work that well. The invasives are after all adapted to grazing, the natives not. Which, AFAIU, is the ultimate reason why grazing benefits them under conventional management.

Quote:
Yes, that's correct. And of course the restrictions were arbitrary and ill advised, unless made in some context of exactly what type of grazing would be done. The restrictions are very likely spot on perfect in the context of continuous grazing, but wouldn't even be realistic in HMPG.
How do you know that these additional restrictions you call for were not also put in place?
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Old 27th May 2014, 07:53 AM   #127
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Originally Posted by GnaGnaMan View Post
My stumbling block, actually more of a barrier, is that I don't see how these purported facts were arrived at.
It looks a lot as if you were just shaking just-so stories out of your sleeve.
I realize it is counter-intuitive.



Originally Posted by GnaGnaMan View Post
That last sentence sounds like it is impossible to have too many cattle on a piece of land. Surely that's not what you mean.
What I want to know is how the optimal and maximal number is estimated.
You start with ~ 55% forage removal. But remove it in a way that is regenerative instead of degenerative. As the land regenerates, there is more vegetation that needs removed and nutrients recycled. This takes more animals to do it. And so the cycle is a positive feedback cycle. But it does reach a point of diminishing returns. It doesn't keep increasing forever.


Originally Posted by GnaGnaMan View Post
Breaking the crust implies breaking tortoise burrows. I don't see why any hypothesized soil change should be a benefit to tortoise burrowing.
The crust we are talking about here is a quite thin layer on top. It has nothing to do with tortoise burrows. When I said the soil structure helps the tortoise, I was referring to the rhizosphere, not the crust. Glomalin holds soil aggregates together. It is produced by mycorrhizal fungi. Mycorrhizal fungi live in the rhizosphere and require a living host plant. Native grasses that evolved in conditions like that are the best host plant for the most mycorrhizal fungi -> which produces the most Glomalin -> which holds the soil aggregates together -> which improves the soil structure for the tortoise burrows.


Originally Posted by GnaGnaMan View Post
Do you have any examples of HM being used in such conditions/to create such conditions?
As far as I know it hasn't been used in precisely those conditions, but it has been successfully used in even worse conditions. Convincing evidence


Originally Posted by GnaGnaMan View Post
Well, one would rarely want to destroy invasive species for profit. More likely it would be a environmental NGO or, as in this case, a government project to protect biodiversity.
I find it hard to believe that forcing cattle to overgraze particular spots would be cheaper than herbicide. Granted, you save the money for the herbicide and gain some forage but then there's the cost for fencing and labor...
Also, I have doubts if it would work that well. The invasives are after all adapted to grazing, the natives not. Which, AFAIU, is the ultimate reason why grazing benefits them under conventional management.
Yes it always costs to remove the invasives. The question is whether the sale of beef is enough to cover that cost and make a profit. Generally yes. It's not guaranteed a yes, margins are thin, but it can be profitable and can be even more effective as well. Holistic Managed Grazing at Soda Lake


Originally Posted by GnaGnaMan View Post
How do you know that these additional restrictions you call for were not also put in place?
Not really understanding the question here. I know they were removing ranchers from the land in the mistaken hope that would benefit the ecology and the tortoise. I know most the ranchers went quietly because they understood you can't fight the government, and right or wrong they will order it and enforce those orders. I know that in the 20 years since most the ranchers left, things are worse, not better.
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Old 27th May 2014, 01:00 PM   #128
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I think I've read enough lines to guess at what's between them. Let's try something: I will describe a land management technique, based on what I *think* all this holistic stuff is getting at. So as not to strawman, I'll divorce my thoughts from actual HLM by calling this technique "tight herding." None of the professed benefits or drawbacks of HLM should apply. I'd like to get the opinions of everyone but RBF as to the feasibility of this technique, then RBF's opinions as to how close it is to HLM, and if it differs, where.

Okay, tight herding.

The motivation for the tight herding management technique comes from the observation that a very dense group of grazing animals tends to accidentally mimic many of the processes that industrial farming intentionally applies. Principally, the livestock's hooves break up the soil's crust, opening up the topsoil much like plowing, pushing seeds and manure deep into the earth much like planting and fertilizing, and cropping literally everything down to the stubble much like many field preparation methods. In contrast, a herd given ample room to spread out will do just that, and will not apply enough pressure to break the soil's crust, stomp manure deep into the ground, will leave less-edible plants to grow, etc, and would generally just skim off what little growth the land managed on its own.

Conceptually then, if a herd of grazing animals were kept tightly packed and moved around more rapidly, letting the land recover fully before being revisited, they would have a net beneficial effect on the land comparable to industrial farming, for a fraction of the extra effort and cost.

That "letting the land rest" bit is the difference between a workable strategy and catastrophic overgrazing. If you revisit the same spot too soon, the livestock will eat the immature plants, leaving nothing to sprout up again. This can be exploited, however, by intentionally overgrazing trouble spots with weeds, invaders or other unwanted species.

Speaking of unwanted species, this technique also assume the land will be primarily used for grazing, as grazable grasses are among the most amenable to being entirely destroyed and replanted. Due to the extended fallow time, it is also most beneficial for grassland ecosystems, expanding their borders somewhat beyond those which would ordinarily support them. You can use this bonus leeway to do a number of neat things like introduce multiple grass species, making for a more diverse diet for your animals or supporting the ecosystem of a local species. Of course, if you instead desire local foliage which isn't grazable grasses or can't survive in a grassland ecosystem, well, perhaps you shouldn't be trying to raise large herbivores on that land.

Okay, everyone but RBF, you all first: aside from the rhetoric about magicking any arbitrary biome into existence while dabbing at the tears of Gaia, what am I leaving out of this picture?
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Old 27th May 2014, 01:42 PM   #129
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There's some logic to the concept--quite obviously, large herds of large herbivores were possible in the past. And it's not like fecundity took a nose dive, so we can conclude that large numbers of said large herbivores (including the very young) can be safely culled by humans (meaning veal is still on the menu under this scenario--I bring this up to illustrate that it's not going to be all rainbows and unicorns). The question is, how do we re-create that in a way that allows humans ot harvest the herbivores?

There are a number of problems, however, with holistic grazing as presented in this thread.

First, grazing isn't the only herbivore feeding behavior. There's also rooting, browsing, and a few others. All of these have ecological implications, none of which are addressed.

Second, the herbivores adapted to the environment as much as the environment adapted to the presence of the herbivores. This is a pretty big issue--some plants are deadly to some herbivores, meaning that if you put the wrong animal in the wrong environment it won't matter what herding techniques you use, the animals will die.

Third, the environment adapted to the presence of herbivores as much as the herbivores adapted to their environment. There are species of yucca in Africa, for example, that must pass through the digestive track of specific organisms in order to reproduce (this led to some interesting debates regarding Mojave paleoecology). If you don't have that specific herbivore it doesn't matter what you do, that plant will die--with all the ecological implications that brings.

Fourth, there's the issue of hooves. Hooves churn the ground far more efficiently than organisms without hooves. Horses do a lot more damage to the ground surface htan camels do. This has some pretty serious implications for land management, including hydrology, botany, and the herbivores themselves.

Fifth, we don't know what the relative numbers of each type of herbivore, or each type of predator, were. Could be that for every bison you need five pigs, or that you need to cull half the young before one year of age--or it could be that you can only kill one calf before one year of age, but two thirds of the males between one and five years of age.

The concept isn't a bad one; basically, it's an attempt to re-create Pleistocene ecology with humans as the predators instead of lions (in the North American plains, anyway). However, current research is insufficient to the task of actually producing the results. We might be able to reproduce some of it, but we can't reproduce all of it; not yet.

One last problem: hydrology. I've studied some springs in California, and have a pretty good handle on shifts in hydrology in the Mojave. The issue is, there's not enough water right now (it's been worse, in the mid-Holocene, but it's been better, too, in living memory). We don't know how to factor that into the equation yet.
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Old 27th May 2014, 02:38 PM   #130
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Originally Posted by Red Baron Farms View Post

HM and most other related "carbon farming" techniques do increase the total vegetation, but more importantly when discussing their potential as mitigation tools, they change the rate that vegetation sequesters carbon in the soil.
The rate at which carbon sequesters isnít as important as how long itís sequestered. Sooner or later all increases in CO2 uptake show up as increases in CO2 being released as that organic matter breaks down.


If you want to make meaningful changes in CO2 sequestration you donít want grasslands at all, you want to re-grow the forests that once lived there because forests hold more CO2 that grasslands. Even re-growing all the forests in Europe and NA would only offset a small amount of the fossil Carbon being burned each year.
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Old 27th May 2014, 02:44 PM   #131
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Originally Posted by lomiller
The rate at which carbon sequesters isnít as important as how long itís sequestered. Sooner or later all increases in CO2 uptake show up as increases in CO2 being released as that organic matter breaks down.
Recent paleosol discoveries tend to indicate otherwise.
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Old 27th May 2014, 02:55 PM   #132
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Originally Posted by Red Baron Farms View Post
Clever switch from rate to a hard limit. It's a cycle Glenn.
Yes, itís a cycle and thatís the problem. The real issue is as GlennB said, how much Carbon do you ultimately end up with in the soil at steady state.
What you want isnít better grasslands management, that doesnít even bring you back to the carbon levels of natural grasslands. What you want are forests. Even forests, however, would only offset the potion of climate change that is resulting from deforestation, which is itself only a small part of the problem.
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Old 27th May 2014, 03:02 PM   #133
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Originally Posted by lomiller View Post
What you want isnít better grasslands management, that doesnít even bring you back to the carbon levels of natural grasslands. What you want are forests.
LAND is only part of the problem. If you want to stick carbon into biomass, the best place to do it is the ocean. Phytoplancton do orders of magnitude more carbon sequestration than any land plant, and things like forams and corals have the added bonus of converting carbon from the biosphere to the lithosphere (at varying rates, to be sure, and with varying rates of re-uptake into the biosphere). It's pure narcisism that drives people to look for terrestrial changes to this problem--most of the planet is covered with ocean, so it's the obvious choice for where do act to have the largest impact on things. It's just that we're not as experienced with ocean management as with land management.

Perhaps a wholistic management of bluefins? "Eat more sushi--it helps reduce carbon dioxide in the atmosphere!"
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Old 27th May 2014, 03:08 PM   #134
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Originally Posted by Dinwar View Post
Originally Posted by lomiller View Post
The rate at which carbon sequesters isnít as important as how long itís sequestered.
Recent paleosol discoveries tend to indicate otherwise.

What does the name paleo-soil tell you about how long itís been sequestered

I presume you are referring to a recent discovery of a new type of fossil soil formed at the end of the last ice age when soil (mostly back carbon) was buried some 50m or more deep. This is pretty clearly a special circumstance that doesnít have a lot to do with this topic.

Itís essentially a natural form of buried charcoal. Burying charcoal deep below the surface is something brought up occasionally as a climate change mitigation strategy and each time itís discarded as impractical due to the volume of charcoal you would need to burry.
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Old 27th May 2014, 03:19 PM   #135
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Originally Posted by lomiller
What does the name paleo-soil tell you about how long itís been sequestered
Ah, crap--I misread your post. Sorry about that.

Quote:
This is pretty clearly a special circumstance that doesnít have a lot to do with this topic.
Actually, it does. Humans are pretty good at establishing special circumstances--once we know what conditions are necessary, we can create them. Ease and economics are important factors, of course, but if we wanted to I've no doubt we could re-create the necessary conditions for large-scale, deep carbon sequestration.

But as I said, land is a very minor component of this discussion. The oceans play a much larger role in the carbon cycle than most people realize, and should be the focus of any plan to sequester carbon.
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Old 27th May 2014, 04:12 PM   #136
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Originally Posted by Red Baron Farms View Post
Some of your critical thinking on it is pretty good! ...snipped a wall of text....
Thanks.
But a lot of wishful thinking bout HM doing that doubling the absorption by plants to that value to stop global warming does not hide the fact that you did not present any evidence that it can.
For that matter you have not presented any evidence that HM exists as an actual distinct pasture management technique .
As far as I can Savory is stating the obvious (take all possible factors in account when planning, be flexible, etc.) which is exactly what the non-holistic methodology farmers here in New Zealand do.
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Old 27th May 2014, 04:34 PM   #137
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Originally Posted by Reality Check View Post
Thanks.
But a lot of wishful thinking bout HM doing that doubling the absorption by plants to that value to stop global warming does not hide the fact that you did not present any evidence that it can.
For that matter you have not presented any evidence that HM exists as an actual distinct pasture management technique .
As far as I can Savory is stating the obvious (take all possible factors in account when planning, be flexible, etc.) which is exactly what the non-holistic methodology farmers here in New Zealand do.
You mean like this guy? link
HM is actually very popular and widely used in NZ and Australia. It caught on especially fast in Australia.

ETA PS I am not going to comment on actual issues brought up at the moment because of post 128. Letting everyone comment first.
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Old 27th May 2014, 04:57 PM   #138
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Originally Posted by Red Baron Farms View Post
HM is actually very popular and widely used in NZ and Australia.
Not according to Holistic Management International: 6 Certified Educators, 5 Practitioners in NZ and Australia !
Of course there will be people who practice HM and are not recorded at HMI but that does not help your unsupported assertion, Red Baron Farms.
Just how many HM farmers are there in NZ and what % is that of all of the farmers in New Zealand (and what % is "widely" )?

Of course you may mean that there are 2 HM farmers in NZ. One at the bottom of the South Island, one at the top of the North Island and so HM is "widely" practiced .

ETA: The major agricultural education center in NZ is Massey University. If you search for "holistic management Massey University" then you see results like holistic farm business (note the lower case h!)

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Old 27th May 2014, 05:24 PM   #139
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Originally Posted by Reality Check View Post
Not according to Holistic Management International: 6 Certified Educators, 5 Practitioners in NZ and Australia !
Of course there will be people who practice HM and are not recorded at HMI but that does not help your unsupported assertion, Red Baron Farms.
Just how many HM farmers are there in NZ and what % is that of all of the farmers in New Zealand (and what % is "widely" )?

Of course you may mean that there are 2 HM farmers in NZ. One at the bottom of the South Island, one at the top of the North Island and so HM is "widely" practiced .

ETA: The major agricultural education center in NZ is Massey University. If you search for "holistic management Massey University" then you see results like holistic farm business (note the lower case h!)
I think you already know yourself the flaw in your post. Working directly with HMI as an educator or a cooperating farm is not the same as people that learned from those educators and practitioners, and have tried it, but didn't sign up for tours etc... But it is a side bar I am actually not interested in arguing about. If you wish to claim victory go for it. I am more interested in the concept of good management of the land than any dogmatic reliance on HM or HMI exclusively.
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Old 27th May 2014, 05:49 PM   #140
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Originally Posted by Red Baron Farms View Post
I think you already know yourself the flaw in your post. ....
What has this got to do with the you asserting something without any supporting evidence, Red Baron Farms?
Originally Posted by Reality Check View Post
Not according to Holistic Management International: 6 Certified Educators, 5 Practitioners in NZ and Australia !
Of course there will be people who practice HM and are not recorded at HMI but that does not help your unsupported assertion, Red Baron Farms.
Just how many HM farmers are there in NZ and what % is that of all of the farmers in New Zealand (and what % is "widely" )?
If I "win" then can we take all of the other unsupported assertions by you as "losses", Red Baron Farms ?

Of course there are good (and bad) land management plans. So what?
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Old 28th May 2014, 02:49 AM   #141
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Originally Posted by Dinwar View Post
There's some logic to the concept--quite obviously, large herds of large herbivores were possible in the past. And it's not like fecundity took a nose dive, so we can conclude that large numbers of said large herbivores (including the very young) can be safely culled by humans (meaning veal is still on the menu under this scenario--I bring this up to illustrate that it's not going to be all rainbows and unicorns). The question is, how do we re-create that in a way that allows humans to harvest the herbivores?

There are a number of problems, however, with holistic grazing as presented in this thread.
Please forgive my inexpert presentation.

Originally Posted by Dinwar View Post
First, grazing isn't the only herbivore feeding behavior. There's also rooting, browsing, and a few others. All of these have ecological implications, none of which are addressed.
Yes it is true! Please don't think HM is only cows. It isn't. People like Joel Salatin use cows, pigs, chickens, turkeys, rabbits. Lots of people use sheep and goats where appropriate. Even wild game.

Originally Posted by Dinwar View Post
Second, the herbivores adapted to the environment as much as the environment adapted to the presence of the herbivores. This is a pretty big issue--some plants are deadly to some herbivores, meaning that if you put the wrong animal in the wrong environment it won't matter what herding techniques you use, the animals will die.
Agreed

Originally Posted by Dinwar View Post
Third, the environment adapted to the presence of herbivores as much as the herbivores adapted to their environment. There are species of yucca in Africa, for example, that must pass through the digestive track of specific organisms in order to reproduce (this led to some interesting debates regarding Mojave paleoecology). If you don't have that specific herbivore it doesn't matter what you do, that plant will die--with all the ecological implications that brings.
Agreed

Originally Posted by Dinwar View Post
Fourth, there's the issue of hooves. Hooves churn the ground far more efficiently than organisms without hooves. Horses do a lot more damage to the ground surface than camels do. This has some pretty serious implications for land management, including hydrology, botany, and the herbivores themselves.
I do think "damage" is the wrong word here because it is weighted. "Disturbance" is better. The context of that disturbance determines whether it is damaging or regenerative.

Originally Posted by Dinwar View Post
Fifth, we don't know what the relative numbers of each type of herbivore, or each type of predator, were. Could be that for every bison you need five pigs, or that you need to cull half the young before one year of age--or it could be that you can only kill one calf before one year of age, but two thirds of the males between one and five years of age.
Yes we don't know and can't reproduce exactly those things. But we are not by definition able to exactly recreate the natural biome present from ages past. Best we can do is try and recreate an artificial structure that mimics it to the best of our knowledge and has some functionality.

Originally Posted by Dinwar View Post
The concept isn't a bad one; basically, it's an attempt to re-create Pleistocene ecology with humans as the predators instead of lions (in the North American plains, anyway). However, current research is insufficient to the task of actually producing the results. We might be able to reproduce some of it, but we can't reproduce all of it; not yet.
agreed

Originally Posted by Dinwar View Post
One last problem: hydrology. I've studied some springs in California, and have a pretty good handle on shifts in hydrology in the Mojave. The issue is, there's not enough water right now (it's been worse, in the mid-Holocene, but it's been better, too, in living memory). We don't know how to factor that into the equation yet.
It is a pretty universal observation that hydrology benefits from HM. Sometimes so profoundly that it does almost appear to be magic. It's not magic though. It is the profound effect that humus and biology have on the water cycle, and the profound affect grazing has on humus and biology. That effect (that has been repeatedly documented) has in extreme cases produced pockets of wetlands where desert had been; as dried up springs, streams and rivers begin to flow again. I actually think HM doesn't address this nearly as well as permaculture and/or keyline design though. You actually see many HM managers blending ideas from Bill Mollison, P. A. Yeomans, and Sepp Holzer with Savory's ideas and vice versa. I personally in my project came from the other direction. Started with a major influence by Rodale, Stout, Howard, Fukuoka, Atthowe etc.. added later influences by Mollison and Holzer, and lastly tied it all together with my own original research and a more organized plan based on Savory's ideas. So my least experience is with HM.

Originally Posted by Dinwar View Post
LAND is only part of the problem. If you want to stick carbon into biomass, the best place to do it is the ocean.It's just that we're not as experienced with ocean management as with land management.
Absolutely correct. In fact that has been the genesis of a nagging thought in the back of my head for a long time. I am pretty sure various land management changes could rather easily handle the extra C from fossil fuel emissions in rather short order. Decades. The short term carbon cycle is so large that funneling even a relatively small % of it out of the short term cycle and into the long term cycle should handle it easily. BUT..... The oceans effect on that process is a major unknown. What if an unexpected side effect of reducing atmospheric CO2 turns out to be less absorption by the oceans? Or God forbid turns the oceans into an emissions source like a carbonized soda pop that starts fizzing? There is NO WAY anything we could do with land management could possibly mitigate that.
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Old 28th May 2014, 03:28 AM   #142
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Originally Posted by lomiller View Post
Yes, itís a cycle and thatís the problem. The real issue is as GlennB said, how much Carbon do you ultimately end up with in the soil at steady state.
What you want isnít better grasslands management, that doesnít even bring you back to the carbon levels of natural grasslands. What you want are forests. Even forests, however, would only offset the potion of climate change that is resulting from deforestation, which is itself only a small part of the problem.
Actually forests don't have nearly the potential for long term C sequestration or soil building that grasslands have. In the long cycle, most forests (with a few exceptions) are seen as carbon neutral. They have a moderating effect in reducing the highs and increasing the lows, but in the long term they nearly always end up nearly carbon neutral.
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Old 28th May 2014, 07:14 AM   #143
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Originally Posted by Reality Check View Post
What has this got to do with the you asserting something without any supporting evidence, Red Baron Farms?


If I "win" then can we take all of the other unsupported assertions by you as "losses", Red Baron Farms ?
Like this, for example?

Originally Posted by Red Baron Farms View Post
But on a US scale or a world wide scale, any scale large enough to actually have any effect on AGW. Certainly not. Not even close. In the US we are still loosing soil at 10 times the rate it can be replenished and carbon levels in the soil are at all time lows. What was once vast areas of land with SOC levels 10% or more 3 feet or more deep is now 3 inches at 1% or less in many cases. It really is a crisis.
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Old 28th May 2014, 07:48 AM   #144
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Originally Posted by Red Barron Farms
I do think "damage" is the wrong word here because it is weighted.
I used the word because of that weight. Ecosystems not adapted to the presence of hooved herbivores are damaged upon their introduction--and this has profound impacts on hydrology, soil erosion, and pretty much everything else. It is a very, VERY serrious error to assume that all habitats are adapted to all herbivores.

By the way, you don't get to criticize me for using loaded language and then use loaded language yourself. Your discussion of hydrology makes it very clear that you have a very specific habitat in mind as the ideal towards which we should be pushing all habitats. I've studied desert spring evolution over the past tens of thousands of years; I'm not an expert on it, but I'm no slouch either. Spring flow is, in many areas of the Mojave, tied most directly to precipitation; no amount of grazing or not grazing will have the slightest impacts on it, because the recharge points are't in areas that can be grazed (they don't have any food). At best, you can break up desert coverings that are more than ten thousand years old--obviously a negative impact.

Also, your discussion of hydrology is remarkably similar to the notion that rain follows the plow. Water can't flow when there's no rain; grazing doesn't impact that at all, regardless of methodology.

Quote:
I am pretty sure various land management changes could rather easily handle the extra C from fossil fuel emissions in rather short order. Decades.
No rigorous study of ecology or the biosphere/lithosphere transitions can produce such a conclusion. Think about it for a moment--the fossil fuels we are burning were deposited over MILLIONS of years. Ever hear of the Carboniferous? Not a short time span. It would require something extremely novel in terms of ecology to then put that carbon back in the ground in centuries, much less decades. You're talking about putting carbon into the lithosphere at a rate multiple orders of magnitude faster than the fastest non-industrial rate. And that's IF we develop suitable habitat, which grazing of any time doesn't do. We discuss coal SWAMPS, not coal grasslands.

It's FOSSIL fuels. The length of time necessary for biology to sequester the carbon is rather strongly hinted at in the name.

Quote:
It isn't. People like Joel Salatin use cows, pigs, chickens, turkeys, rabbits. Lots of people use sheep and goats where appropriate. Even wild game.
Still, unless you rigorously analyze what types of herbivores and what types of cullinlg methods are suitable for that individual habitat (here's a hint: chickens and pigs in North America? Probably not a good thing), you're just going to screw things up. And this isn't some petty detail you can ignore--in order to establish anything like a stable ecology these are absolutely critical questions. Trying to establish a stable ecology without knowing this stuff is akin to trying to build a nuclear reactor without knowing about radiation, only teh consequences will be more wide-spread.

Quote:
BUT..... The oceans effect on that process is a major unknown.
Not to any paleontologist. Reefs pretty much directly convert bioavailable carbon into rock, and the process of converting that back into atmospheric carbon is one of the best-known chemical equations in paleontology.
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Old 28th May 2014, 08:58 AM   #145
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1. Find area with <5 inches of rain per year
2. Add herbivores
3.???
4. GRASSLAND Prairie!
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Old 28th May 2014, 09:27 AM   #146
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Originally Posted by rwguinn View Post
1. Find area with <5 inches of rain per year
2. Add herbivores
3.???
4. GRASSLAND Prairie!
Pretty much my understanding of what RBF is saying.

Anyone interested in the geology and history of springs in the Mojave Desert should look into Jay Quade's work. And intellectual honesty demands I also recommend reading the criticisms of his work. His conclusions were somewhat controversial, but from the information I've gathered he was right, and it seems at least some of the controversy was manufactured due to the reason he was doing his research (the nuclear repository). Quade's works are more "Here's how to find it in the field", but the reference sections give you a good basis for exploring this topic in more depth.

As I said, grazing simply isn't going to impact these springs. They are fault-controled groundwater hydrology features, with recharge points miles away in the generally north/south trending mountains. The presence of highly developed desert pavement in many areas (it looks like blacktop in some places, no joke!), as well as well-delineated playa and ancient lake deposits, clearly indicates that water in at least the Basin and Range Provence has been a limiting resource for an extremely long time. Futher research in Neotoma (packrat) middens demonstrates variation in rainfall through the past 15,000 years (after that, the middens get too manky to be useful; amberat is hydroscopic, and over millenia degrades).

The reason I'm saying that these areas can support larger herbivores is that, frankly, they did--we have evidence in the form of fossil remains of numerous types of herbivores, from browsers to rooters. The issue is, we're not talking cows and chickens here; grazing, browsing, and rooting in these areas requires a dramatic shift in what we select for agricultural animals. The whole reason I brought up the Mojave was because it's quite a dramatic demonstration of an area where current concepts of what constitutes a farmable animal are incompatable with any ecologically-based grazing techniques (I'm avoiding "wholistic" here because what I'm talking about is very, very different from what RBF is talking about).
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Old 31st May 2014, 07:56 AM   #147
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Sorry it took so long to reply. I had some planting to do.

Originally Posted by Dinwar View Post
Originally Posted by rwguinn View Post
1. Find area with <5 inches of rain per year
2. Add herbivores
3.???
4. GRASSLAND Prairie!
Pretty much my understanding of what RBF is saying.
Actually then your understanding is pretty flawed. Don't be fooled by others making strawmen arguments.
1)~5 inches of annual rain would be pretty close to the minimum where I have seen examples of HM working. So the statement that <5 inches is absolutely wrong. It is better to say ~>5 on average and brittle. There will always be some areas of desert, at least I hope so. Also, it is important to say we are talking about desertified land caused by poor land management practises (some examples are desertified land due to: tillage, over-grazing, and/or removing by hunting or fencing out the large herbivores and their predators, mining activities etc..), not natural desert that never was affected by human impact. If the land is deteriorated by man's impact, then restoring some functionality of the biome is an option. It doesn't have to be perfect to be better than what it is now.
2) 3)You don't just "add herbivores". First you need to choose (an) appropriate herbivore specie(s) to as close as possible fill the missing niche(s) the land needs while also serving man's needs. Then you have to carefully control their behavior. Behavior is much more important than numbers. You also need to monitor closely and adapt to changing conditions.
4) "Grassland prairie" encompasses a wide range of temperate grassland, savanna, and shrubland biomes. Each with it's unique blend of grass, forbs, shrubs, trees, soils and wildlife. Herbivores are a natural part of all these biomes, but the conditions, species and behavior vary a lot and all of these factors are always considered in a HM plan.


Originally Posted by Dinwar View Post
(I'm avoiding "wholistic" here because what I'm talking about is very, very different from what RBF is talking about).
If what rwguinn wrote is your understanding of what I am talking about, then no wonder the disparity.
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Old 1st June 2014, 07:12 PM   #148
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Originally Posted by The Central Scrutinizer View Post
Like this, for example?

Originally Posted by Red Baron Farms View Post
But on a US scale or a world wide scale, any scale large enough to actually have any effect on AGW. Certainly not. Not even close. In the US we are still loosing soil at 10 times the rate it can be replenished and carbon levels in the soil are at all time lows. What was once vast areas of land with SOC levels 10% or more 3 feet or more deep is now 3 inches at 1% or less in many cases. It really is a crisis.
Here is a nice online course of the basics. Try it. Maybe you'll learn something.

Quote:
Worldwide, an estimated 75 billion
tonnes of soil are lost annually,
with more than 80% of the
world’s farming land ‘moderately
or severely eroded’. A University
of Sydney study, presented to the
conference, found that soil is being
lost in China 57 times faster than
it can be replaced through natural
processes. In Europe that figure
is 17 times, in America 10 times,
while 5 times as much soil is being
lost in Australia. Soil Erosion: Issues and
Strategies by Paul Warburton
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Old 2nd June 2014, 02:19 PM   #149
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Originally Posted by Red Baron Farms View Post
Here is a nice online course of the basics. Try it. Maybe you'll learn something.
So within only a decade or two, all the soil in the US should be gone and we'd be farming on bedrock. I'm curious why that hasn't happened?
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Old 3rd June 2014, 06:47 AM   #150
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Quote:
Don't be fooled by others making strawmen arguments.
I've studied the hydrology of the Mojave Desert over the past 10,000 years. I've provided references. If you think I'm letting people on this board sway my opinion, you're simply not paying attention.

Quote:
1)~5 inches of annual rain would be pretty close to the minimum where I have seen examples of HM working.
Rather my point. At best, any rational attempt to create an ecologically sustainable grazing system (and I'm pretty far from convinced that your concepts are rational) necessarily MUST take local hydrology into accountt, because there are many, many places where it simply won't work. Furthermore, it presumes that grazing is the sustainable option in that area--just about the most moronic ecological statement one can make (in that it puts conclusions before evidence).

That is how YOU have presented this.

Quote:
2) 3)You don't just "add herbivores". First you need to choose (an) appropriate herbivore specie(s) to as close as possible fill the missing niche(s) the land needs while also serving man's needs.
Anyone with a high-school education in evolution will be able to point out where you have completely gone off the deep end.

Quote:
4) "Grassland prairie" encompasses a wide range of temperate grassland, savanna, and shrubland biomes.
I like how you dribble out information like this piecemeal, and only when someone presents an argument you can't wiggle out of.

Quote:
If what rwguinn wrote is your understanding of what I am talking about, then no wonder the disparity.
You are presuming that I require others to interpret information for me. STOP THAT. I have more than enough education, experience, and technical expertise to draw my own conclusions. What I'm talking about IS NOT what you are talking about--you merely wish to make people believe it is. The mere fact that you discuss "niches the land needs" is proof that you're taking a pseudo-scientific stance on this topic, particularly one that is emphatically NOT based on a strong understanding of ecology over the past few tens of thousands of years (here's a hint: how will you find "what the land needs"?).

Originally Posted by The Central Scrutinizer
So within only a decade or two, all the soil in the US should be gone and we'd be farming on bedrock. I'm curious why that hasn't happened?
Plus, many river deltas are shrinking--something that clearly cannot happen if soil erosion is a quarter as fast as RBF is saying. "Erosion" means "transport"--the stuff has to go SOMEWHERE. In the USA's breadbasket, that "somewhere" is the Mississippi delta (primarily, anyway). The problem there is SUBSIDENCE, not expansion.

Matter cannot be created or destroyed. The soil has to go somewhere. And that volume of soil that RBF is talking about would make a very, very large hunk of land. Where is it?
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Old 3rd June 2014, 06:51 AM   #151
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Originally Posted by Dinwar View Post
I've studied the hydrology of the Mojave Desert over the past 10,000 years.
How old are you?
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Old 3rd June 2014, 07:04 AM   #152
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Originally Posted by The Central Scrutinizer View Post
How old are you?
:P

My job required me to get a very good handle on how water flowed through that desert over the past 10,000 years. Fortunately, this was facilitated by the Yucca Mountain nuclear repository--their interest in keeping nuclear waste safe on geological timescales means that there were a lot of people doing work to figure out what water does during glacial/interglacial cycles in that area. Very good for determining where fossils will be found. Unfortunately, it more or less destroyes the notion that merely providing herbivores will make the deserts bloom again. That's controlled by rainfall and temperature. Neotoma middens pretty clearly demonstrate that. You can put as many herbivores as you want, of whatever kinds you want, into the desert, but if you don't have enough water or the right temperatures ("right" is a range, unique to each plant) you won't get the plants you want. Period. Island effects also muck with the works.
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Old 3rd June 2014, 07:56 AM   #153
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Originally Posted by Dinwar View Post
Matter cannot be created or destroyed. The soil has to go somewhere. And that volume of soil that RBF is talking about would make a very, very large hunk of land. Where is it?
Maybe it blows over to the "farms" that grow GMO-free, local, "organic" produce, where the free range cows holistically graze (and the deer and the antelope play)?
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Old 4th June 2014, 06:45 AM   #154
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Originally Posted by Dinwar View Post
:P

My job required me to get a very good handle on how water flowed through that desert over the past 10,000 years. Fortunately, this was facilitated by the Yucca Mountain nuclear repository--their interest in keeping nuclear waste safe on geological timescales means that there were a lot of people doing work to figure out what water does during glacial/interglacial cycles in that area. Very good for determining where fossils will be found. Unfortunately, it more or less destroyes the notion that merely providing herbivores will make the deserts bloom again. That's controlled by rainfall and temperature. Neotoma middens pretty clearly demonstrate that. You can put as many herbivores as you want, of whatever kinds you want, into the desert, but if you don't have enough water or the right temperatures ("right" is a range, unique to each plant) you won't get the plants you want. Period. Island effects also muck with the works.
They used to say "Rain follows the plow". Maybe "Rain follows the herbivore" ?
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Old 5th June 2014, 01:13 PM   #155
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Originally Posted by ectoplasm View Post
They used to say "Rain follows the plow". Maybe "Rain follows the herbivore" ?
More like soil health and biosystem function follows the herbivore. It won't increase the rain, but it will increase the effectiveness of the rain as more is held. It is astonishing to me the number of posts people make absolutely trying as hard as they can to attach some strange woo ideas to holistic management, and then discredit HM as woo because they incorrectly attached woo to it. Is our education system so poor that people really are that clueless about biological systems that it seems magical? Luckily while the incompetent BLM in some districts has been slow to understand the advantages of animal impact, at least the USDA-SARE and the USDA-NRCS are actively promoting the principles of HM.

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Old 6th June 2014, 07:15 AM   #156
Dinwar
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Originally Posted by Red Baron Farms
It won't increase the rain, but it will increase the effectiveness of the rain as more is held.
The assumption here is that holding water is a good thing. However, if you're holding water somewhere, it's not going somewhere else. Check out the "wild Colorado" or Rio Grand rivers to see what happens then.

You are yet again demonstrating that you have a very specific definition of "healthy" when it comes to ecosystems, and that definition is NOT founded in a deep understanding of ecology.

Plus, it directly contradicts the notion that wholistic grazing causes springs to start flowing again. Which is it?

Quote:
Is our education system so poor that people really are that clueless about biological systems that it seems magical?
The quote above shows that you fail at basic economics (the equations for hydrology and those for finances are remarkably similar), so I'm gonna go with "Yes".

Plus, we're going off what YOU ARE SAYING. What I've learned from this conversation is that either you're making this crap up in an ad-hoc fashion, or you have no interest in actually discussing this with us. I conclude that because every time one of us brings up an objection, your response is "Oh no, it's ACTUALLY like THIS". This is a trait of woosters and six-year-olds making up stories to avoid getting into trouble.

Quote:
Luckily while the incompetent BLM in some districts has been slow to understand the advantages of animal impact,
Do you actually understand what the BLM's mandate is, or how it functions? I've worked with the BLM extensively, and while they are annoying I've yet to find them incompetant.
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Old 6th June 2014, 07:37 AM   #157
Red Baron Farms
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Originally Posted by Dinwar View Post
The assumption here is that holding water is a good thing. However, if you're holding water somewhere, it's not going somewhere else. Check out the "wild Colorado" or Rio Grand rivers to see what happens then.
Those are holding it above ground in dams or diverting it. Holding in the soil can actually make streams flow in the dry season. This is a VERY common observation in both permaculture and HM.

Originally Posted by Dinwar View Post
You are yet again demonstrating that you have a very specific definition of "healthy" when it comes to ecosystems, and that definition is NOT founded in a deep understanding of ecology.

Plus, it directly contradicts the notion that wholistic grazing causes springs to start flowing again. Which is it?
Both They don't contradict.

Originally Posted by Dinwar View Post
The quote above shows that you fail at basic economics (the equations for hydrology and those for finances are remarkably similar), so I'm gonna go with "Yes".
Am I am going with you are bickering because you have some scientific "fort" you are protecting, extremely common in bone diggers.



Originally Posted by Dinwar View Post
Do you actually understand what the BLM's mandate is, or how it functions?
Quote:
The BLM’s multiple-use mission, set forth in the Federal Land Policy and Management Act of 1976, mandates that we manage public land resources for a variety of uses, such as energy development, livestock grazing, recreation, and timber harvesting, while protecting a wide array of natural, cultural, and historical resources, many of which are found in the BLM's 27 million-acre National Landscape Conservation System. link
It is pretty clear.

Originally Posted by Dinwar View Post
I've worked with the BLM extensively, and while they are annoying I've yet to find them incompetent.
Lucky you. But notice I said some, not all. The problem with government is that while most are very dedicated and competent, the few incompetents are backed with the same weight of law and government enforcement. So while a BLM office in one state may use HM effectively to get multiple use from the land as mandated by law, an incompetent BLM of another state may make a completely different decision based on woo from Joy Belsky and others.
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Old 6th June 2014, 07:47 AM   #158
Dinwar
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Quote:
Holding in the soil can actually make streams flow in the dry season.
By reducing stream load during the wet season or removing water from some other reservoir.

It's simple: X amount of water is available. It can be located in reservoirs A, B, or C. If the amount in A goes up, the amount in B and/or C must go down. There is NO way around this. And you've yet to demonstrate that increased soil moisture is universally a good thing; you simply assume that the type of ecosystem you like is the ideal ecosystem for everything. That's not a scientific approach to land management--it's wishful thinking of exactly the sort that lead to the Dust Bowl.

Quote:
Both They don't contradict.
So holistic grazing in your mind does in fact generate more water. That's the only thing it can possibly mean.

Quote:
Am I am going with you are bickering because you have some scientific "fort" you are protecting, extremely common in bone diggers.
First, I seriously doubt you have enough experience with "bone diggers" to justify this statement (if you did, you'd know that this is a very, very inappropriate term). Second, the "scienting 'fort'" I'm "protecting" is basic ecology, something you have demonstrated you do not comprehend.

Your explanation of holistic grazing demands that more water be present in the system, pure and simple. You are trying your best to wiggle out of that, but you CANNOT have springs flowing AND increased water retention in the soil without increasing total water in the system. Period. You can only shift which reservoires water is held in, and you've yet to address those ecological costs.

Also, I like how instead of demonstrating comprehension of the BLM's mandate, you quote it. Being able to recite text in no way demonstrates comprehension. You further compound the issue by assuming that "competance" in this case means accepting your definition of holistic grazing. The cart goes AFTER the horse.
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Old 6th June 2014, 08:07 AM   #159
Red Baron Farms
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Originally Posted by Dinwar View Post
By reducing stream load during the wet season or removing water from some other reservoir.
Bingo! DING DING DING. Absorbing the water in the soil which can be seen as a reservoir, instead of running off or evaporating as soon as it falls. This accomplishes two major ecosystem services, flood control and erosion control.

It's simple: X amount of water is available. It can be located in reservoirs A, B, or C. If the amount in A goes up, the amount in B and/or C must go down. There is NO way around this. And you've yet to demonstrate that increased soil moisture is universally a good thing; you simply assume that the type of ecosystem you like is the ideal ecosystem for everything. That's not a scientific approach to land management--it's wishful thinking of exactly the sort that lead to the Dust Bowl.

So holistic grazing in your mind does in fact generate more water. That's the only thing it can possibly mean.


I'll just ignore this woo. I am sure you'll be embarrassed you wrote it when you stop to think.

Quote:
First, I seriously doubt you have enough experience with "bone diggers" to justify this statement (if you did, you'd know that this is a very, very inappropriate term). Second, the "scienting 'fort'" I'm "protecting" is basic ecology, something you have demonstrated you do not comprehend.
Actually I must apologize here. I said that with that term to get your goat. It did get your goat, but apparently offended you more than intended.

Originally Posted by Dinwar View Post
Your explanation of holistic grazing demands that more water be present in the system, pure and simple. You are trying your best to wiggle out of that, but you CANNOT have springs flowing AND increased water retention in the soil without increasing total water in the system. Period. You can only shift which reservoires water is held in, and you've yet to address those ecological costs.
Don't you mean ecological benefits? Retaining water in an ecological system that suffers from lack of water is a benefit, not a cost.

Originally Posted by Dinwar View Post
Also, I like how instead of demonstrating comprehension of the BLM's mandate, you quote it. Being able to recite text in no way demonstrates comprehension. You further compound the issue by assuming that "competance" in this case means accepting your definition of holistic grazing. The cart goes AFTER the horse.
It doesn't HAVE to be HM, it is simply the subject being discussed at the moment.
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Old 6th June 2014, 08:19 AM   #160
Dinwar
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Originally Posted by Red Baron Farms
I'll just ignore this woo.
You are referring to BASIC HYDROLOGY as woo?! You're completely out to lunch here--you have abandoned even the pretense of a scientific approach at this point.

Have you studied ANY geology? At all? Ever? This isn't tricky stuff here, and nothing I said is in the slightest controversial in any fields studying hydrology or soils. To call what I said "woo" is the equivalent of calling the study of gravity or germ theory woo.

Also, I find it extremely telling that you have no explanations of your own. You'll bite whenever I dangle a potential one in front of you, but you appear incapable of providing a coherent explanation yourself.

Quote:
Actually I must apologize here. I said that with that term to get your goat. It did get your goat, but apparently offended you more than intended.
That's irrelevant. The fact that you used that term at all demonstrates that you know nothing about paleontology, and therefore cannot have any opinions on what is typical with us. If you had any interaction with paleontologists, you'd know that the overwhelming majority of us study invertebrates. It's also a personal attack intended to avoid the fact that you can't address the ecological concerns I'm raising.

Quote:
Don't you mean ecological benefits?
No, I do not--and the fact that you don't realize there are costs to altering the hydrology demonstrates yet again that you are not even trying to approach this from a scientific standpoint. You are preventing water from going from Reservoir A to Reservoir B; this has ecological impacts. Not all of them are going to be good, from ANY perspective. At best, the good will outweigh the bad--but that will necessarily be something that has to be determined on a case-by-case basis.

Quote:
It doesn't HAVE to be HM...
Lie. You specifically equated accpetence of holistic grazing with competance in your previous post.

You're living in a fantasy world and demanding we join you. If we did that, we'd all starve to death, simple as that. Until you do the basic research necessary to understand hydrology, there's no point in any further discussion between us on this topic--you're too ignorant of the topic to contribute meaningfully.
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