The module will focus on the importance of integrated systems of livestock management for regenerative agricultural production. Animal nutrition requirements will be appraised with a focus on maintaining condition and health of livestock for optimum output. Pasture production systems including set-stocking, rotational grazing, mob-grazing, and holistic planned grazing will be compared and contrasted. Integrated pest management approaches to prevent and manage common livestock pests and diseases and the challenge of anti-microbial resistance will be an important aspect in the material covered.
The module will be delivered during the second semester of each academic year with online lecture and tutorial sessions each week. Course days will be held during the semester for visits to farms where low-stress livestock handling, low input production, and diverse forage management is being practiced. Field practicals will be held in SETU Waterford West Campus in Carriganore and in different locations around the country. Case study assessments and farm audits will be held during the semester at spaced intervals and the final written exam will be held at the end of the semester.
On successful completion of this module, a student will be able to:
Applicants must hold a National Framework of Qualification (NFQ) Level 8 honours degree in Agri-business and Rural Enterprise, Agriculture, Environmental and Land Science, or other Science-related discipline. Offers will be made based on the applicant’s Grade Point Average (GPA). Applicants who hold a Level 8 degree in a non-cognate area may be considered for entry under WIT’s Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) mechanism and equal weighting will be given for GPA qualifications (50%) and a selection interview (50%) to assess prospective candidate’s aptitude and experience relevant to the certificate programme.
Graduates with the Level 9 Certificate in Livestock Management in Organic and Biological Agriculture may wish to apply the knowledge and practices learned in primary commercial production, provide support and technical advice to growers and farmers or may opt to remain in a research, development and innovation environment. They may also use their applied knowledge and skills in public service for the development of supportive agricultural, climate, and environmental policy.
Upon successful completion of other Level 9 Certificates the learner can graduate with a Certificate in Organic and Biological Production (30 credits), a Postgraduate Diploma in Organic and Biological Agriculture (60 credits), plus a dissertation for a MSc in Organic and Biological Agriculture (90 credits).