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Self Selection

I was first introduced to the term “self-selection” in a barefoot trimming clinic in Australia about a year ago. The couple that were hosting the clinic, a trimmer and a vet, were starting a holistic rehab center in New South Wales in which one of the main focus points would be a Paddock-Paradise-style track system with a wide variety of planted herbs to provide the natural process of self-selection to their rehab horses. The thought behind this being that in the wild, horses (and other grazing animals) will seek out and choose to eat specific plants with medicinal properties to benefit their unique health, a process that most domestic horses don’t have access to, and which most horse owners compensate for by feeding an excess of supplements that blanket a wide variety of needs as a “cover all the bases” strategy.

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Invasive Species Control

When the invasive Russian olive, Chinese elm, and tamarisk trees were introduced to the Chico over 100 years ago by settlers, they served as both erosion control and decoration for the mostly barren high plains of the Front Range. Unfortunately, these species (although effective at their intended purpose) caused unforeseen problems to the surrounding ecosystem.

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