Overgrazing, over Cultivation, and Deforestation

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Overgrazing occurs when plants are exposed to intensive grazing for extended periods of time, or without sufficient recovery periods. It is the phenomenon of grazing animals in greater numbers that the land can support in the long term. Due to animals consuming more grass than can be produced, the ground becomes sparse leaving the soil exposed to erosion. The livestock should be rotated from pasture to pasture to allow this recovery to take place. Overgrazing reduces the usefulness, productivity, and biodiversity of the land and is one cause of desertification and erosion. Wind and water erosion then damages the soil left unprotected. To help prevent overgrazing the NRCS (U.S. Natural Resources Conservation Services) has a program (the Conservation Stewardship Program) that provides information and support to enable ranchers who own their lands to burn unwanted woody plants, reseed the land with perennial grass varieties that hold water and manage cattle so that herds are moved to a new location before overgrazing occurs. These steps should help supply enough area and grass to prevent an insufficient supply for grazing. This problem, if left untreated, could also pose a serious threat to the food chain. Over cultivation occurs when farmers or agriculturalists disturb the soil around crops too much. It is the practice of repeatedly cultivating and growing crops more rapidly than the soil can regenerate, leading to a decline in soil quality and productivity. There is a certain amount of cultivation that is necessary to remove weeds and grasses that are not part of the cash crop. Too much cultivation, however, can have the opposite effect desired, injuring the plants it is supposed to nourish. The cure is simple: stop disturbing the ground by digging into it. Preparation in growing crop and after the harvest of crop, the soil is left exposed to erosion. Water and

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