Effect of grazing systems on range condition in Pabbi Hills Reserve Forest, Kharian, Punjab, Pakistan

Muhammad Sajjad Haider1*, Angus Maclaurin2, Amjad Ali Chaudhry3, Muhammad Mushtaque4, and Sami Ullah1

Grazing management of rangeland systems has not been well researched in Pakistan; grazing system the most sustainable is not known. In order to evaluate various grazing systems, a study was performed at Pabbi Hills Reserve Forest, Kharian, Punjab. Four simulated grazing treatments, viz. ungrazed control, continuous grazing, seasonal deferred grazing, and rotational deferred grazing, were tested in a randomized complete block design with four replicates. Response variables included species composition, fresh herbage yield, dry herbage yield of grasses and forbs, basal cover, and ground cover. Of the three grazing systems, the six-month seasonal deferred grazing system resulted in a marked increase in basal cover, but had no changes in relative species composition. A significant increase in grass cover and herbage production were also observed in this grazing system, suggesting that the 6-mo seasonal deferred grazing system is the most sustainable rangeland system.

Keywords: Sustainable rangeland system, basal cover, species composition, herbage production, ground cover, six-month seasonal deferred grazing system.
1University College of Agriculture, University of Sargodha, Lahore- Khushab Bypass, Main Road (near Ludewala Jhaal) Sargodha, Pakistan. *Corresponding author (sajjad.haider@uos.edu.pk).
2Department of Environment and Resource Management, Level 4, William McCormack Place II, 5b Sheridan Street, P.O. Box 937, Cairns, Queensland 4870, Australia.
3Punjab Forestry Research Institute (PFRI), Range Management Branch, Gatwala, Sheikhupura Road, Faisalabad, Pakistan.
4Sub-divisional Forest Officer-I, Range Management Division, Forest House, Railway Road, Dera Ghazi Khan, Pakistan.