Private Land Stewardship Workshop set for Nov. 5th in Coryell County

Contacts: Pasquale Swaner, 254-865-2414, s-swaner@tamu.edu

Chelsea Dorward, 254-386-3919, chelsea.dorward@ag.tamu.edu

Heath Lusty, 512-556-8271, rhlusty@ag.tamu.edu

Mike Marshall, 254-865-2061, mmarshall@ag.tamu.edu

CORYELL COUNTY—The Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service, USDA-Natural Resources Conservation Service and Texas Parks and Wildlife Department will conduct a multi-county Private Land Stewardship Field Day Nov. 5th in Coryell County for landowners interested in managing their ranches for multiple uses, particularly for wildlife and cattle.

The first portion of the field day is from 8 a.m.-1 p.m. at the Harman School, located about 10 miles northwest of Copperas Cove off Harmon Road.  The afternoon portion of the field day is from 1:30-4:00 p.m. at the Hanna Ranch, located a few miles north of Pidcoke off of FM 116.

The cost of the program is $15 and includes lunch and 2 Texas Department of Agriculture continuing education units; 1 general and 1 IPM. After lunch, attendees will tour the Hanna Ranch for a field component including rangeland demonstrations.

“Many landowners in Texas are beginning to see the value of proper land stewardship,” said Brian Hays, associate director of the Texas A&M Institute of Renewable Natural Resources. “Whether you are managing for cattle, wildlife, or both, challenges such as drought, invasive species, and water quality issues have made it imperative to diversify the potential of your land, and the only way to do this, is to practice good land stewardship.”

Pasquale Swaner, AgriLife Extension agent for Coryell County, said AgriLife Extension staff will discuss basic stewardship principles, the link between the land and the water we drink, and the benefits of prescribed fire. Texas Parks and Wildlife Department experts will discuss properly managing wildlife populations on your property. U.S. Department of Agriculture Natural Resources Conservation Service experts will speak on rangeland evaluation, basic principles of soil health, and proper brush management techniques such as dozing, prescribed fire and herbicide application.

“A particular focus will be given to Aldo Leopold’s five land management tools: the axe, cow, plow, fire, and gun,” said Mike Marshall, AgriLife Extension associate for the institute. “Landowners now implement these tools to mimic natural processes that occurred prior to European settlement in Texas.”

The MJ Hanna Foundation has generously offered access to the Hanna Ranch for the afternoon field portion.  The Hanna Ranch is an excellent example of a property that implements proper land stewardship tools resulting in a thriving cattle operation and good quality habitat for wildlife species such as white-tailed deer and northern bobwhite quail.  In the field portion, attendees will observe demonstrations on calculating stocking rates, plant identification, habitat assessment, riparian discussion, and a demonstration on the proper use of corral traps as part of an abatement strategy for feral hogs.

Interested persons must pre-register for the field day by October 28th by contacting the AgriLife Extension office in Coryell County at 254-865-2414; Lampasas County at 512-556-8271; or Hamilton County at 254-386-3919.  Checks ($15) should be made payable to Ag Industries Committee P.O. Box 149 Gatesville, Texas.

Private Land Stewardship:

Aldo Leopold’s 5 tools

 Coryell County, Texas

 November 5th 2014

 7:45 -8:15 Registration Coffee snacks

8:15 – 8:30 Introductions & purpose of the field day –Pasquale Swaner-Coryell County Extension Agent; Heath Lusty-Lampasas County Extension Agent; Chelsea Dorward Hamilton County Extension Service

8:30- 9:00 Why is Private Land Stewardship Important: an introduction to the 5 tools of habitat management—Mike Marshall Texas A&M Agrilife Extension-IRNR

9:00 – 9:45 The Plow: 5 principles of soil health—Nathan Hale USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service

9:45-9:55 Break

9:55- 10:35 Fire: Prescribed burning as a management tool—Brian Hays Texas A&M Agrilife Extension-IRNR and Jeff Goodwin USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service

10:35-11:15 The Gun: Proper management of wildlife populations– Derrick Wolters Texas Parks and Wildlife Department

11:15-12:00 The Axe: Brush management techniques (Mechanical and herbicide) – Charles Kneuper: USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service

12:00 – 1:00 Questions and Lunch

1:00 – 1:30 Travel to field site

1:30-4:00 The Cow: Rangeland Evaluation – All speakers

  • Calculating stocking rate
  • Plant identification
  • Brush management options
  • Grazing management
  • Feral hog discussion and demo
  • Riparian discussion

4:00 – 4:15 Questions, Wrap Up and Evaluations

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