Often I have been told by planned-grazing skeptics that what we do at Circle with cows is only possible because of unique terrain features, expensive fence and water systems not available to others, and even that Circle Ranch gets more rain than next-door-neighbor ranches!
Planned grazing is succesful anywhere it has been tried, including BLM ranges out West where fences and water systems are prohibited, to the Third World, where in pastoral communities there is no money for anything other than herders.
Here is a video of our friend “Cowboy Bob” Kinford’s explanation of how he has used cattle 4-miles from the closest water, up on high ridges at canyon heads, to stimulate Circle Ranch plants so they can soak water up before runnoff.
Water treatments must be top-down, because total water increases the lower in the drainage it flows. If you start low there is often too much accumulated water to handle: by working down, a series of treatments, each removing a small fraction, keeps what is left manageable.
Cattle are the backbone treatment to stimulate plants to increase water absorption. But, in an eroded system such as this one, subsoiling with the Yeomans Plow, and a little dozer work to induce meadering of the water flow, often are very helpfull add-ons. We call these practices, in combination, “Drought Buster”.
We will be teaching and demonstrating Drought Buster techniques again this summer at our next far-West Texas “Cows and Quail” class, presented by the folks from Holistic Management International of Albuquerque. Location and dates are Circle Ranch near Van Horn Texas, Friday and Saturday, July 26 & 27.
Come meet Steve Nelle, Guy Glosson, “Cowboy Bob” his own-self, Evidencio Seijas, and other practicioners of cutting-edge, scientifically-sound, affordable and sustainable range and wildlife practices. “Cowboy Bob” will be sharing recipes including his famous 2-Lazy-4-U Orange-Pecan Pie which took 2nd at the Van Horn Pecan Rodeo.
TPWD personnel qualify for scholarships!
Three Cows and Quail workshops will be offered. Come, learn, share, see for yourself, and make new friends: Go here for information.