Theses and Dissertations

Issuing Body

Mississippi State University


Rushing, J. Brett

Committee Member

Lemus, Rocky W.

Committee Member

Maples, Joshua G.

Committee Member

Rivera, J. Daniel

Date of Degree


Document Type

Graduate Thesis - Open Access



Degree Name

Master of Science (M.S.)


College of Agriculture and Life Sciences


Department of Plant and Soil Sciences


Integrated crop-livestock systems (ICLS) incorporate cropping systems and livestock production by grazing cover crops. With a growing awareness in recent years regarding agricultural sustainability, these systems have begun to be re-introduced into the southeastern U.S. This study evaluated cover cropping systems under grazed no-till (GNT), un-grazed no-till (UNT), and un-grazed conventional tillage (UCT) management, in Mississippi. Beef cattle (Bos spp.) performance was significantly less in the cover crop treatment of oats (Avena sativa) + crimson clover (Trifolium incarnatum) + radish (Raphanus sativus; OCR) in both average daily gain (ADG; 3.03 lb hd-1 d-1) and total gain ac-1 (GAIN; 346 lb ac-1). Soybean (Glycine max) yield was unaffected by cover crop treatment and tillage. The lowest expected economic return was generated by OCR ($749.31 ac-1). Soil penetration resistance was unaffected by the influence of grazing. The greatest concentrations of soil organic carbon (1.44%) and soil nitrogen (0.20%) were observed in GNT.