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Abstract

Raising livestock during the lean season of forage production has become a great challenge for small and limited resource farmers because of a high cost involved in procuring supplementary feed. This study was conducted to assess the impact of cultivating cool - season forages on the feeding costs for meat goats and cattle. Three case studies were conducted in three Black Belt Counties of Alabama, Russell, Dallas, and Bullock. The socioeconomic and ecological impacts of developing cool - season pastures were evaluated using the before versus after assessment approach. The findings revealed that all three cooperator farmers reduced costs of procuring hay and supplementary feed after establishing cool - season forages, on average $917 for two goat farms and $4,152 for a beef cattle farm. It is believed that an extensive outreach on forage production would help small and limited resource livestock farmers boost their farm income .

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