Ranching as a Conservation Strategy: Can Old Ranchers Save the New West?
Ranching, when properly conducted, is essential to conservation.
The greatest value of any ranch lies in its recreational and ecological value, not its production value for ranching.
While it is true that rural land in the path of urban development is most economically valuable when it is subdivided or otherwise developed, most ranchland does not fall into this category.
For most ranches located outside the path of development, landowners can maximize the land’s economic value by improving the health and vigor of the wildlife and the habitat it supports, and by carefully adding improvements designed to appeal to amenity users.
This is a great business model. There is no conflict between conservation, ranching and investment because these objectives are complimentary, not competitive.
NOTE: this article was originally written by Mark W. Brunson and Lynn Huntsinger.