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Drought management focus of October Ranch Management University workshop

Texas drought creates critical management concerns with regards to protecting forage and future forage growth. Current and future stocking rates play an important role. Conference includes field demonstrations.

Strategies for drought management on rangeland will be the focus of the Ranch Management University program scheduled Oct. 10-14 at Texas A&M University in College Station.

“The historic drought that Texas landowners are currently enduring creates some critical management concerns with regards to protecting forage and future forage growth,” said Dr. Larry Redmon, Texas AgriLife Extension Service state forage specialist and workshop coordinator.

 “For example, current and future stocking rates play an important role. Overall, this workshop is designed to help new landowners improve their understanding regarding management of various resources they find on their ranch properties.”

The fall workshop will include the following topics: soils and soil fertility, forage species selection, hay production, weed and brush management, winter pasture establishment and utilization. Other topics include beef cattle breed selection, nutrient requirements and feeding strategies for livestock, grazing management strategies, chute-side talk on live-animal handling and demonstrations of vaccinating, dehorning and cattle castration. Other sessions include sheep and goat production and management and a session for horse owners.

“An agricultural economist will also be part of the agenda, discussing a number of topics including how to plan for profit, how to develop a marketing plan and a look at alternative enterprises,” Redmon said. Several wildlife management topics are also on the agenda, ranging from white-tailed deer and turkey management to fisheries management in ranch ponds and feral hog control.

“Field demonstrations will include learning how to assess body condition scores for cattle, how to obtain proper soil and hay samples and how to assess fish populations in ponds,” Redmon said. “There will also be a session in the field regarding pond weeds and a demonstration on hog-trap design.”

Breakfast items, lunch and supper will be provided, and all break refreshments are included in the registration cost, as is a resource CD containing more than 100 publications covering ranch resource management. A customized Ranch Management University ball cap is also provided. Attendance is limited to 50 people and the slots are beginning to fill, Redmon said. Cost is $500. For additional information contact Redmon at 979-845-4826 or at To register online and for additional information, go to and type in “ranch management” in the search window.

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