HOTEL & TRAVEL INFORMATION UPDATE The Hilton Garden Inn and the Fairfield Inn are SOLD OUT!
Visit the Hotel & Travel tab at the Annual Meeting Website for info on the other hotels still available—many are still within walking distance! http://rangelands.org/srm17/travel.html
*The deadline to submit abstracts is now CLOSED. Be on the lookout for confirmation of your paper and/or session soon!
SRM 2017 Photo Contest: Deadline for entries is January 15. Click here for the flyer and here for rules.
Be sure to watch the AM17 website for updates, official news
SRM is very pleased to announce the recipients of it's top Honor Awards for 2017.
Frederic G. Renner Award:
Dr. C. Wayne Hanselka, TX Section W. R. Chapline Research Award:
Dr. Bruce Roundy, UT Section W. R. Chapline Land Stewardship Award:
Dr. Barry D. Irving, IM, NGP & PNW Sections
Please join us in congratulating these deserving individuals. Details on their awards, citations, etc. will be made available at the 2017 SRM Annual Meeting in St. George, UT – along with the other Honor and Student Award recipients.
Thank you to all nominators for submitting your nomination packets. As usual, it was a difficult process to narrow down the awardees for each category.
We encourage everyone to start gathering information NOW for the next awards cycle so we have a full slate of nominees for all categories. The deadline to send in your nomination is April 30th, but you don't have to wait until then to submit yours.
All Student Range Clubs participating or planning on participating in the Chapter Display Contest at the upcoming Annual Meeting please make sure you fill out the booth registration form from the trade show packet as well as let Rory O'Connor ( email@example.com ) know that your club is going to be participating in the contest.
The Endowment Fund Development Committee requests the participation of your section in the 2017 Silent Auction. In Corpus Christi last year, over $2,400 was raised for the Endowment Fund by auctioning over 75 items. As the Endowment Fund grows, it contributes greater amounts to SRM’s programs and operations. The 2017 goal is to raise $5,000 by auctioning items that SRM members and sections contribute. Please plan on bringing items to St. George for donation to the auction. Sections usually donate items that represent their area, i.e. wines from Idaho, chili peppers from New Mexico, etc. The committee will be accepting donations on Sunday from Noon till 6pm in the Trade Show area. The Silent Auction will run from the opening of the Trade Show on Monday until Tuesday at 5:00pm. For information on the 2017 SRM Silent Auction contact Clarke McClung at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (307) 751-7846.
It’s been a pleasure over the last 6 years to attend the Annual Meetings of SRM, both at the National/International and State Section meetings and field days. I’ve learned a great amount about issues and problems encountered on rangelands and their management. However, I am most impressed by the creative solutions that are being developed through research and by savvy managers on the ground. At the Utah Section Meeting held in early November, the focus was on Collaborative Resource Management Efforts that bring together stake holders from interests across the board to generate plans that achieve activities, restorations and management, that built by consensus, can overcome the bitterness of conflict that often lead to litigation. At the Colorado section meeting a year ago they focused on restoration efforts, and I was truly impressed by the variety of novel approaches and the successes reported.
At each of our state and international meetings we have had similar experiences. I’ve been impressed as I watched these presentations, and I often find myself wishing that my colleagues were with me; or that people at the state, region or national offices were there to see it. Perhaps even more critical, would be the inclusion of representatives from organizations that are so often critical of managers and land management. Even the public-at-large could appreciate the changes that occur over time as a result of management and improvement practices. In the American West, where there is a large amount of public land, managers and ranchers often work in concert to achieve better conditions and heathier rangelands. But I have also been on private deeded-land ranches where the same kinds of investment and conscientious management has led to amazing results on the land which increased forage availability, habitat improvement, watershed health and even recreational opportunities.
The saddest part of my experience is the age-old problem that SRM has had of “preaching to the choir.” Truly, we enjoy and revel in each other’s success, but publicly we are often known best for occasions when people are unhappy with what they perceive as problem on rangelands. Admittedly, there are still areas that get overgrazed, prescribed fires that escape their prescription, recreational use that leaves scaring on the land, and erosion that could occur from these and other causes. While managers grapple with these issues and battle on litigious fronts with single-minded interest groups, they are also doing incredible things on the ground to improve rangelands and make them more productive for many uses and users.
I am urging our membership to become proactive in sharing our many successes. Our outlet opportunities used to be limited to newspapers, journals and the occasional news cast, but now there is almost unlimited opportunities to share. Many of us are old-school, having not grown up in the computer age, let alone the world of internet, email, Facebook, YouTube, Twitter and an ever increasing technologic storm. Still, we have all taken photos of our work, written summary report of projects, given presentations and spoken to others about our successes. While there is much we can do independently, SRM has technical staff that can help each of us share these rangeland success stories. We need you to help us get the material. If you would send in short summaries with photos of your projects, successes and improvements, SRM will find appropriate outlets to tell the story. We can still publish in Rangelands and REM, but these days, my kids click on the internet and pull up all kinds of information from all of the public media connectivity. While much of it is not truth tested, today’s generation finds information that way and SRM’s message needs to be out there and available. I hope the public relations committees at the section levels take up this challenge along with every SRM member. Using a now familiar slogan, “Let’s Make Rangelands Great Again!!” Val Anderson 2016 SRM President
When I was a kid growing up in Northeastern New Mexico I worked on a ranch every day with my dad, as-well-as my family and ranch hands. I learned by watching and by listening to instructions. I slowly developed an understanding on how things were supposed to work. Sometimes I considered the process to be “getting work out of me” and not “mentoring”. But, in any case, I had no problem deciding a profession, or explaining to my family what I was studying in college.
Things are different these days. Not as many young people have the opportunity to grow up on a ranch or in a rural setting. For quite-a-while now, the Society for Range Management has recognized the need to get young people involved in learning range management. The work SRM is doing is incredible. The high school youth form, student conclave and section youth camps are excellent opportunities for students to get in the field of range management and learn. College students complete in the Rangeland Plant Identification Contest, Undergraduate Range Management Examination, Rangeland Cup, Extemporaneous Speaking, as well as poster and speaking contests. These are excellent learning activities for students who are already interested in Rangeland Management.
The reason I called my subject “Advanced Mentoring” is because of the next step that I see developing. I know similar partnerships are being implemented between land management agencies, natural resource conservation agencies, ranchers, universities, and students; but, I want to describe an example that I am familiar with:
About 8 years ago the Tonto National Forest and Arizona State University started planning a strategy to get more qualified applicants interested in entry level Rangeland Management Specialists positions. But, the trend was fewer students enrolling in range management courses. Most students do not have a ranching background, do not know about the range management profession, and if they are interested in natural resources, they prefer to study wildlife. So, range conservationists from Tonto National Forest and Faculty from Arizona decided to work together to increase awareness for students.
The idea was that ASU would identify students who might be interested in Rangeland Management and offer courses that meet the OPM requirements for an entry level rangeland management specialist position. The Forest Service would hire students for summer internships. The benefits were: Students learned about range management, gained experience for their resume, became enthused about the profession, learned more than they imagined, and they got a paycheck. The Forest service got range monitoring and other work done, and increased the applicant pool of qualified entry level rangeland management specialists.
This effort has been more beneficial than expected:
Students who have worked in the program became better students. They understand the application of what they are learning, and they are excited about learning more.
They built partnerships and friendships with the State Extension Service while working on the University of Arizona’s “Reading the Range” and “VGS” programs.
Their experience has been especially beneficial since students have no need to take a controversial position. They work together with ranchers and other agencies to monitor rangelands, so they form friendships and learn about the whole picture of range management.
They have the perfect learning venue. They spend the majority of their time in the field with people from different natural resources agencies (Forest Service, BLM, Extension Service, Natural Resource Conservation Service and ranchers). This gives them the opportunity to learn techniques from experts.
There are a number of positive examples like this where universities, students, agencies and ranchers are working together to build a strong foundation for future in range management specialists. I called it “advanced mentoring” and I hope that it will be something that continues to be a common practice which we continue to improve.
Stop One: Keeping Your Funding Agency in the Loop by: Jim Dobrowolski, SRM Director
Many of our Society for Range Management members are in the business to produce innovative research, education and outreach to advance rangeland management. Some of this work is funded by federal, taxpayer dollars. The U.S. Congress requested as far back as 2008 that federal funding agencies like the National Institute of Food and Agriculture at USDA provide outcomes and impacts associated with the competitive funding of proposals.
Defined by NIFA: Outcomes are a measurable and documented change in knowledge, action, or condition as a result of the project. Outcomes lead to project impacts. Impacts are a reportable, quantifiable difference a program makes in the lives of real people. These show sustainable societal, environmental, or economic change. SRM members publish research, education and outreach results as published “outputs” (product, activity, event, or service that reaches other people) in both discovery – and applied-focused journals (e.g., Rangeland Ecology and Management and Rangelands) read primarily by colleagues, ranch and rangeland managers—less by decision makers and the public. In many cases, outcomes and impacts are not evident until long after the active funding period.
Outcomes and impacts are critical to the funding agency, however. We use them at the federal level to demonstrate the public value of awarded federal funds. They develop and justify NIFA’s annual budget requests. Outcomes and impacts are used to plan, monitor, and evaluate programs. Biweekly we receive requests, often with very short deadlines about a wide range of subjects (e.g., the effects of drought on rangelands and ranch life) from the offices of USDA’s Chief Scientist, Secretary of Agriculture, the White House, Congressional Staff and the American people. We also share these impacts and outcomes through blogs, impact spotlight stories, graphical handouts, twitter and annual reports. (CLICK HERE to read one of NIFA's recent blogs entitled UC Sheep Shearing School Prepares Students for Gainful Employment).
Federal awardees, make it a point to routinely send your work to a communications specialist at your funding agency, especially when you have a manuscript accepted for publication, other publicity about your work (university press releases), and tip then off that you have had a great year!
If you want to try writing for decision makers and the public, remember that most research, education and outreach practitioners may have a public relations problem. Katie Burke, writing for the American Scientist finds that most scientists are seen as “cold and competent” but not “warm and trustworthy.” This presents a problem for effective communication to a broader audience—an activity becoming more necessary to obtain NIFA funding. Shaking the stereotype is a challenge--writing authoritatively and unemotionally for a scientific journal will leave a broader audience flat. You’ll need to learn the principles of “journalistic nonfiction.” Some examples are laid out by Editor Burke in her “12 steps to writing for the general public”, http://www.americanscientist.org/blog/pub/12-tips-for-scientists-writing-for-the-general-public.
In the interim, your SRM Board of Directors established a new task force to evaluate the efficacy of engaging a communications specialist. This specialist would assist with “getting the word out” about research, education and outreach published in your SRM journals—and to engage ranchers, managers and other interested parties towards writing for Rangelands. Let us know what you think—?
Starting with the launch of Sage Grouse and Lesser Prairie Chicken Initiatives in 2010, and the addition of 5 other unique landscapes/species in 2012 (SW Willow Flycatcher, Bog Turtle, Gopher Tortoise, NE Cottontail, and Golden Winged Warbler), this amazing partnership has now conserved north of 6.7 million acres of wildlife habitat in working landscapes!
Not only will these efforts continue in the future, but they will now be expanded to include an additional 11 new landscapes for 2017! NRCS Chief Jason Weller recently made the announcement from a farm in New Florence, Missouri that manages top-notch early successional habitat for northern bobwhite. This move marks the first expansion of WLFW since 2012.
We are sure excited to team up with partners across these landscapes and together implement conservation that benefits the land, the fish and wildlife resources, and the communities that call these areas as home. Check out the brand new WLFW new species fact sheet (attached) and also peruse our newly revised WLFW website for additional details.
CLICK HERE for the 2015 SRM Annual Meeting Recorded Sessions
CLICK HERE for ESD Webinars from the 2014 SRM Annual Meeting
CLICK HERE for presentations from The 3rd Rustici Rangeland Science Symposium.
CLICK HERE for recorded webinars from the Great Plains Fire Science Exchange or HERE for a list of upcoming events
CLICK HERE for information on the NAIPSC Webinar Series
CLICK HERE for presentations from the Intermountain Native Plant Summit VII
CLICK HERE to view Cool-Season Invasive Grasses Abstracts and Presentations
CLICK HERE for recorded sessions from the 2014 NGP Section Symp. Managing Rangelands for Threatened & Endangered Species
CLICK HERE for recordings from the ND Chapter of the NGP Section 2015 Symposium Collaborative Efforts to Manage Rangelands and Wildlife
CLICK HERE for the 2016 Rangeland Summit presentations Keeping Ranchers Ranching
CLICK HERE for Understanding Wild Pig History and Biology An online course via TX A&M AgriLife Extension
Great Plains Fire Science Exchange Fire Summit 2016 Changing Fire Regimes
December 7-9, 2016 – Manhattan, KS Click Here For Information
Knocking Out Noxious Weeds on Rangelands Workshop Series
December 13, 2016 - Eureka CA
December 14, 2016 - Susanville CA
January 24, 2017 - Woodland CA Click Here For Information
2017 AZ Section Winter Meeting and Workshop: Adaptive Management Strategies on Rangelands in Arizona and a Workshop: Hands on Use of New Tools for Increasing Preparation for Drought
January 4-6, 2017 - Tucson AZ More Information To Come
2017 Rangeland Summit Celebrating the Diversity of California Rangelands and Ranching
January 12-13, 2017 – Stockton, CA
Tour & Social - TH, Jan. 12, 2017
Summit - FRI, Jan. 13, 2017 Click Here for Information
Don't forget to help us get the word out about this Rangelands Partnership social media campaign by liking, sharing, re-tweeting, and submitting your own posts to Christopher Bernau.
You can contact Christopher or CLICK HERE for instructions and the template.
Don't forget to use the #RespectOnTheRange hash tag!
VISION: A well-trained and highly motivated group of professionals and rangeland users working with productive, sustainable rangeland ecosystems.
MISSION: Providing leadership for the Stewardship of Rangelands based on sound ecological principles.
Earn your master’s from a leader in sustainability and natural resources.
Learn more about Colorado State University’s online Natural Resource Stewardship–Rangeland Ecosystems Specialization and Integrated Resource Management programs. www.CSURangeland.com