Video: Using Sheep to Terminate Cover Crops in Organic Farming

This video describes ongoing interdisciplinary research that explores how the use of domestic sheep—rather than traditional farming equipment—to manage fallow land and terminate cover crops may enable farmers who grow organic crops to save money, reduce tillage, manage weeds and pests, and reduce the risk of soil erosion. Researchers from Montana State University and North Dakota State University are working on a USDA-National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) Organic Transitions project: Reducing Tillage in Organic Crop Systems: Ecological and Economic Impacts of Targeted Sheep Grazing on Cover Crops and Weed management, Soil Health and Stability, Carbon Sequestration and Greenhouse Gas Emissions. Additional information about the project is available on the Montana State University website here.

Researchers: Fabian Menalled, Patrick Hatfield, Perry Miller, Anton Bekkerman, Devon Ragen
Camera: Steve Spence, Casey Kanode, Jared Berent
Editing: Case Kanode, Steve Spence

Recording available on YouTube at

Published June 16, 2015

This is an eOrganic article and was reviewed for compliance with National Organic Program regulations by members of the eOrganic community. Always check with your organic certification agency before adopting new practices or using new materials. For more information, refer to eOrganic's articles on organic certification.