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Nevada Range Management School

This University of Nevada Cooperative Extension program integrates sound science, collaboration and common sense to put public agency land managers, livestock permittees and other land users on the same page in terms of the range resource. It includes topics such as animal nutrition as related to range management.

Issue:

University of Nevada Cooperative Extension leads a team of educators teaching a Range Management School (RMS) curriculum across northern and central Nevada. Modified from a Colorado program, RMS uses sound science, collaboration and common sense within a unified message by a team of interdisciplinary instructors. The curriculum includes sections on grass growth/physiology, principles of timing and duration of grazing, grazing plan strategies, riparian area management, grazing response index, animal nutrition, livestock behavior, ranch management examples, monitoring by permittees and more.

What Has Been Done:

According to Kent McAdoo, rangeland resources specialist, "This workshop, focusing on sustainability, is designed to put ranchers and agency range conservationists on the same page, ensuring not only better forage available for livestock, but healthy, productive rangelands for wildlife, recreation and other uses."

Since December of 2005, eight workshops have been held, reaching 173 participants in Eureka, Fallon, Winnemucca, Elko, Ely, Jackpot, Paradise Valley and Pioche, Nevada. During 2006, 92 percent of RMS workshop participants responding to an evaluation survey indicated that they intended to use the information they learned. Based on follow-up surveys, 97 percent of respondents indicated that they would incorporate some or all of the workshop material into their operation/job, and similarly, 97 percent said they would attend future RMS workshops.

For a mid-term program evaluation six months after the workshops, participants were mailed a follow-up survey to evaluate how useful the information received at the workshop had been to them, and how much they incorporated into their operation/job. Approximately 71 percent of the respondents said that they have incorporated some or a great deal of the information they received in the workshop in their current operation/job.

Other teaching partners in this educational effort include the Nevada Department of Agriculture; Bureau of Land Management; U.S. Forest Service; Natural Resources Conservation Service; University of Nevada, Reno’s College of Agriculture, Biotechnology, and Natural Resources; and the Nevada ranching industry. Funding and promotional assistance for the Nevada Range Management School curriculum and workshops was provided by the Grazing Lands Conservation Initiative (GLCI), Sustainable Agriculture Research & Education (SARE), Nevada Rangeland Resources Commission, Central Committee of Nevada State Grazing Boards and USDA Risk Management Agency.

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