Livestock that are allowed unrestricted access to water bodies can cause erosion by consuming bank-stabilizing vegetation, trampling stream banks and lake shores, and depositing manure that can contaminate the water. Here are some options to help reduce livestock’s negative impacts:
- Install a fence to keep animals from unrestricted access to water and riparian vegetation.
- Install a water gap or off-source watering device such as a nose pump to provide drinking water.
- Lure livestock away from water by placing salt blocks far from the water.
- Store manure in properly designed pits or stacking sites to reduce nutrient rich run-off that can contaminate groundwater and lakes.
- If you must graze livestock in a riparian area, follow a well developed, site specific management plan that limits time of year and duration of grazing.
- Take an active role in management by checking the condition of fences and vegetation at least once a year.