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Document Type

Thesis - University Access Only

Award Date


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department / School

Animal Science

First Advisor

F. Robert Gartner


The volume of literature associated with forage quality in general is vast, and includes many aspects such as crude protein, minerals, fibers, carbohydrates, and other measures of the quality of a potential forage source for ruminants. Literature on forage quality research in South Dakota represents only a few species and does not adequately cover key range species in the northwest area of the state. Researchers in adjacent states have reported results on crude protein, phosphorus, calcium, and other quality measures not implemented in this study. Whitman et al., Williams, Dubbs, Jefferies and Rice, Dietz, Williamson and Hart et al. have all researched species in common with this study. The review of the literature is by no means exhaustive, but the lack of work done in northwestern South Dakota is evident. This project was initiated as a companion study to a cattle diet analysis study being conducted by Dr. Dan Uresk, Rocky Mountain Forest and Range Experiment Station, Rapid City, South Dakota. The data reported in this thesis will complement the results of the diet study. In addition to providing forage quality, this research was intended to provide general information about key forage species and other, less important species, that comprise an appreciable portion of the botanical composition. Information provided may serve both livestock and wildlife research and application, as well as livestock producer$ in northwestern South Dakota. Research objectives were (1) to define seasonal trends for crude protein, calcium, phosphorus, moisture content, and calcium to phosphorus (Ca:P) ratios over two growing seasons; and (2) to record phenological stages of every species at each sampling date.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Rocky Mountain Forest and Range Experiment Station (Rapid City, S.D.)

Forage plants -- South Dakota



Number of Pages



South Dakota State University