The term “prescribed grazing” has been used to describe the use of grazing as a habitat management tool on National Wildlife Refuges. It refers to using livestock (cattle, sheep, etc.) for a habitat management purpose under a “prescription” that specifies the number and type of livestock, what length of time and what time of year, and the size of the area to be grazed. Grazing on a National Wildlife Refuge can only be used to maintain, restore, and/or enhance wildlife habitats. Since we do not own livestock, we work with neighboring livestock owners to conduct the grazing management. A fee is set each year for an Animal Unit Month (AUM) in each state be based on the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Statistics Board publication for “Grazing Fee Rates for Cattle by Selected States and Regions”. Some deductions to the fee may be given for work such as building and removing temporary fences, weed control activities, or poor forage quality. The livestock operator’s objectives for grazing on a National Wildlife Refuge obviously differ and the overlap in conducting habitat management with raising pounds of livestock comes together in a mutually beneficial partnership. Short-term impacts from grazing of vegetation by livestock and associated hoof impacts to plants root systems can be beneficial under a grazing prescription. For example, grazing heavy stands of cattails and hardstem bulrush at Seedskadee NWR during the winter, instead of the growing season, may improve livestock access to vegetation, to help open up thick stands to create more open water and available habitat for migrating and resident waterfowl and shorebirds. The winter grazing versus spring or summer season grazing will eliminate disturbance to nesting trumpeter swans. The following spring more shallow water will be available for species such as dabbling ducks, shorebirds, and amphibians. Species utilizing residual cover from previous year’s growth, such as marsh wrens and common yellow throats, may show a decrease in use for a year or two after the grazing treatment, but will return to these areas after regrowth occurs. Species that prefer shorter vegetation or the new green growth or other food resources that result from the grazing treatment will increase use of the treated sites for a year or more after the grazing treatment. Prescribed grazing can reduce invasive species in some situations when combined with other management techniques. Grazing must be managed to reduce, rather than increase, invasive plant establishment and spread. Ecologically based grazing prescriptions pay careful attention to overall plant community change, not just weedy species. Prescribed grazing may also have applications in creating disturbance in riparian areas to allow for narrow leaf cottonwood, willow, and other woody species to become established. Disturbance of riparian soils prior to natural seed release for these woody species may be needed to create the conditions necessary for seeds to germinate and then become established. Correct timing, amount of disturbance, and follow-up management, including the protection of established seedlings, is critical to success. These techniques are often applied in an adaptive management process, which allows for adjustments to be made as we learn more about what works and what does not.