On November 5th, 2013, SFREC will bring together UC researchers, land managers, producers and conservation professionals from across the state to explore some of the latest research findings and management strategies on two of the most serious rangeland weeds, medusahead and barb goatgrass. Estimates indicted these invasive species may decrease forage quality and production by up to 70 percent. Additionally, these plants increase the incidence of eye problems, such as pink eye in beef cattle. Intermountain species like medusahead create significant fuel accumulation - increasing the frequency of dangerous wildfires that destroy both livestock feed and critical wildlife habitat.
The University of California, in cooperation with producers, land managers, and agency partners, have made great strides in researching the ecology and management of these species. This forum takes a timely approach toward synthesizing outcomes of these diverse efforts. A number of treatments, such as grazing, herbicide application, burning, and seeding, have shown promising results. However, there are risks and challenges that remain when trying to apply these efforts in unique rangeland environments at large scales. Discovering economically compatible techniques that can be molded to meet the financial constraints of producers and other land managers is a crucial investigation. A major aim of this forum is to enhance further discussion and progression towards how we might tailor future research and management efforts to address this challenge. This free forum is open to everyone. Please pre-register on the SFREC website to receive a detailed agenda and information about the day.
Medusahead is a noxious weed affecting rangelands across the west. This picture shows an abundance at SFREC.