Montana Public Radio

ranching

Clay Scott

Pronghorn antelope make the second longest migration of any North American land animal. But their ancient migration routes are threatened by livestock fencing.

State and federal wildlife officials are investigating the shooting death of a male grizzly bear west of Whitefish.
PD

A grizzly bear in Stillwater County had to be shot after it killed a herd of cows. Wildlife officials say bears are becoming more active as they search for food before hibernation. The bear was responsible for a dozen cattle deaths in the Fishtail and Fiddler Creek area since mid August. It was killed by U.S. Wildlife Services officials late last week.

10 total bison tags will be available on the American Prairie Reserve this fall
(PD)

Tuesday Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks begins a series of public hearings to gauge support for a publicly-managed bison herd. Whatever the state decides to do, FWP spokesman Tom Palmer says the interests of the livestock industry will be taken into account.

Sage Grouse
USFWS Mountain Prairie (CC-BY-2)

Governor Steve Bullock Monday signed on to a joint state and federal plan to provide incentives for farmers and ranchers to preserve sage grouse habitat on their land. The chicken-sized wild bird is in decline and could be listed as an endangered species this fall.

Cory Caswell has worked as a hired hand on Wyoming and Montana ranches since he came west as a teenager, not staying in any one place longer than a few months. He talks about his hard, unpredictable, but satisfying life as itinerant ranch hand.

Montana Drought Map
U.S. Drought Monitor

Farmers and ranchers in 24 Montana counties can apply for financial assistance, after the U.S. Department of Agriculture Wednesday declared them disaster areas. The counties, all in the western half of the state, suffered from"severe" or "extreme" drought during the growing season. Jayson O’Neill with the Montana Department of Agriculture says more counties might be added as the summer wears on.

The storm destroyed some outbuildings on 66 Ranch outside of Havre
Courtesy Rylee Strauser

Thousands of Montanans had a 4th of July they won’t soon forget. A storm packing powerful winds, intense rain and large hail disrupted life  across the state’s northern tier last weekend. Some think tornadoes touched down, but meteorologists aren’t yet willing to go that far.

A roughly 300-mile stretch of northern Montana is still cleaning up after a powerful storm swept across the region this weekend.

Grizzly bears showing up on prairies north of Great Falls.
Courtesy CSKT Natural Resources Department

Tribal wildlife biologists lethally removed two female yearling grizzly bears from the St. Ignatius area on Tuesday.

Biologists saw one of the yearlings chasing livestock. Similar reports have been noted around St. Ignatius.

Ranch Hand's "Bad" Wolf Dilemma

Oct 1, 2014

Bryce Andrews talks about his decision to move to a cattle ranch in Montana and about the memoir he wrote about his experiences there, Badluck Way. He also reads two passages from the book.

About the Book:

courtesy of Jim Hagenbarth

The settlers who came to Montana relied on livestock for their livelihoods and the lives. More than 150 years later, technology has removed most of us from the ranching life. But not Jim Hagenbarth. Far more than most, he understands the needs, complexities and rewards of ranching.

(Broadcast: Home Ground Radio, 8/19/14)

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