Tothe untrained eye, grass is grass. But for the nutrition and palates of wildlife and cattle, the grass is as different as roast beef and green beans or potato chips and dip are to humans, according to a Texas AgriLife Research scientist.

Sometimes it takes fire to set the best plate, or pasture, for the animals utilizing the grass, said Dr. Jim Ansley, AgriLife Research range ecologist. Landowners must know whether to "barbecue" or "bake" or use a combination to manage the grasses.

Ansley has spent 20 years conducting research on the effects of fire on grasses and woody plant species. The latest results of his study provide some of the first long-term data showing a possible benefit of mixing prescribed fire in different seasons.