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Precision agriculture is already being used commercially to improve variability management in row crop agriculture. In the same way, understanding how spatial and temporal variability of animal, forage, soil and landscape features affect grazing behavior and forage utilization provides potential to modify pasture management, improve efficiency of utilization, and maximize profits. Recent advances in global positioning system (GPS) technology have allowed the development of lightweight GPS collar receivers suitable for monitoring animal position at 5-min intervals. The GPS data can be imported into a geographic information system (GIS) to assess animal behavior characteristics and pasture utilization. This paper describes application and use of GPS technology on intensively managed beef cattle, and implications for livestock behavior and management research on pasture.


open access article