Livestock

Jim Laybourn

Wyoming Game and Fish killed four wolves in northwestern Wyoming last week as part of an effort to control their interactions with livestock.

The pandemic has beef markets on a roller coaster, and Shohone, Idaho's Amie Taber is among the ranchers along for the ride.

 


Brandi Forgey

Part of a rancher's daily life is dealing with threats to their livestock. And one of the almost impossible threats to try and solve is depredation - especially if the culprit is a protected species, like the golden eagle.

Kagan Sims; Ian McGivney


It's a calm Wednesday afternoon with snow falling down over a ranch in southern Wyoming. Normally, high school sophomore Kagan Sims would be sitting in English, but due to COVID-19 he's outdoors feeding pregnant cows. He said he's figuring out a new balance between work and school.

Jake Billington has worked at the livestock auction at the Twin Falls Livestock Commission in southern Idaho for 28 years.


As water becomes more scarce in the Mountain West, a new analysis finds that a surprising amount is being used to raise cattle.

Keith Weller / US Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service

The Wyoming Business Council has released a new report summarizing the status of the state's beef industry.

Washington State Department of Agriculture

It's not uncommon for livestock to get certain strains of coronavirus. But the strains that affect cattle and other farm animals are not the ones raising fears of a global pandemic.

New legislation introduced in the U.S. House Thursday would make it easier for conservation groups to remove cattle and sheep from federal lands. 

The Trump administration has spent the past month announcing sweeping changes that could benefit ranchers on public lands, including a proposal to overhaul grazing regulations for the first time in 25 years. 

JIM PEACO (CC-BY-2.0)

On January 12th, 1995, the first truck loaded with grey wolves from Canada arrived in Yellowstone National Park. Livestock producers, outfitters and other people who live near the park waited to see what would happen. But one of those groups that hasn't been too happy about the reintroduction: livestock producers.

freestockphoto.biz

Ranchers and a ranching lobbying group are suing the U.S. Department of Agriculture over new requirements for tracking cattle that crosses state lines.

Amy Martin

Wyoming beef and lamb could be a regular food item on Taiwanese tables soon thanks to a letter of intent signed by representatives from the Taiwanese meat packing district and several Wyoming agriculture councils.

As the Bureau of Land Management pilots a new livestock grazing initiative on public lands in six Western states, a conservation group is suing to get the agency to release more information about the program.

Photo from Flickr by Fellowship of the Rich

It's rodeo season in Wyoming, which means livestock from across the country are traveling into the state. With that comes the possibility of spreading disease. Jim Logan, the Wyoming State Veterinarian, is encouraging livestock owners and rodeo organizers to take extra precaution.

Colorado residents Rose Chilcoat and her husband, Mark Franklin, were leaving southeastern Utah’s Bears Ears National Monument after a camping trip in April 2017 when they were pulled over by three cowboys in a pickup truck.

RAP

There's a new online tool that provides a big picture view of vegetation change over the last 35 years in the West. The University of Montana, the USDA's National Resources Conservation Service and the Bureau of Land Management joined forces to develop Rangeland Analysis Platform (RAP).

Kamila Kudelska


Wyoming’s agriculture industry is trying its hand at blockchain technology. Beefchain.io, a private company, is one of those businesses that started after Wyoming passed a number of pro-blockchain laws. The goal is to use blockchain technology to track data points about cattle and share the information with consumers: pasture to plate.

A house subcommittee is focusing on grazing on public lands on Thursday. Republican leaders want to discuss what they call the regulatory burdens on the industry.


  

This is about two very different visions of how we should use land in the American West.

On the Great Plains of Montana, conservationists and tribes want to rewind the clock and return wild bison to the shortgrass prairie. But cowboys and ranchers say if that happens, their way of life – their very culture – will disappear.

Following Secretary of Interior Ryan Zinke's repeated calls for more management of public lands, this spring the Bureau of Land Management is giving certain ranchers more say and options in grazing their cattle on public lands.


Cattle Drive Near Pinedale, WY
Theo Stein / USFWS

Conservation groups want a fresh take on management of a contagious disease occurring in the Greater Yellowstone ecosystem called brucellosis, which affects elk, bison and livestock. It can kill fetuses, decrease fertility and hurt milk production, and many consider it an economic threat, too.

The Modern West 29: Home On The Range

Nov 21, 2017
Theo Stein / USFWS

There’s a reason the cowboy hat is a symbol of Wyoming: ranching is woven into the state’s cultural fabric. On this episode, we’ll take you out on the wide open Wyoming range.

WIKIMEDIA COMMONS

Ranchers have long complained about the amount of red tape required to get grazing permits, and about not being included on land management decisions.

The Bureau of Land Management hopes to resolve some of that tension with a new pilot program that will speed up the permitting process and allow ranchers to determine the best way to make rangelands healthier.

Wyoming BLM spokesperson Kristen Lenhardt said it’s in the best interest of ranchers to improve rangeland quality and their voice needs to be heard.

Theo Stein / USFWS

Many ranchers around the West are searching for a way to control a recent increase in livestock killed on the range. At the annual Wyoming Farm Bureau meeting this month, members supported a new policy they hope will address the problem. Farm Bureau spokesman Brett Moline said it’s not clear why people are shooting more livestock.

Mike Cline, Public Domain

In the last couple years, wolves have killed record numbers of livestock in northwestern Wyoming. The U.S. Department of Agriculture is now stepping in to protect calves with special fencing on a ranch near Jackson.

Wyoming Director of Wildlife Services Mike Foster said in a press video that the agency has installed over two miles of an electrified wire known as turbo fladry on the Walton Ranch where large packs of wolves have moved in.

“It’s an electrified polywire and it has plastic flags that hang off the wire."

Mike Cline, Public Domain

Two of the four wolves suspected of preying on cattle in northwest Wyoming have been killed. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service officials say that has successfully stopped the livestock depredations in the area, making it unnecessary to kill the other two wolves for now.

The Service’s Wyoming Field Supervisor Tyler Abbott says if it seems like there’s been more lethal control of wolves recently, that’s because there has been.

In a new report, the Government Accountability Office criticizes public lands agencies for poor management of grazing permits. The watchdog says conflicts and armed standoffs over grazing rights, like the one in 2014 in Nevada, would be less likely if public land agencies improved their permit tracking methods.

Wikimedia Commons

University of Wyoming researchers found 70 acres of land near Sheridan infested with Ventenata, an invasive grass species that’s been hurting hay production in nearby states.

A single plant of Ventenata was first found near the Sheridan area in 1997. Since then, the grass has spread unchecked. Ventenata is known to be a low-quality biomass grass–it doesn’t add a lot of nutritional content for hay production or livestock foraging. Ventenata can reduce hay production yields by up to 50 percent according to the United States Forest Service.

Gary Kramer - U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

UPDATE: The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service killed 9 of the 16 wolves in the Dell Creek wolf pack and ceased their extermination once the pack stopped killing cattle in the area. To learn more about the pack and wolf management in Wyoming, click here.

A wolf pack in Western Wyoming has been evading the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service after killing as many as ten cattle this winter.

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