Lifestyle

Texas Ranch Praised for Advancements in Land Stewardship With Great Results

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Active members of the Lone Star Stewardship Program, Emry Birdwell and Deborah Clark of the Birdwell and Clark Ranch have been featured by the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department for the great strides they’ve taken in their land as well as cattle management.

Explained in the TPWD video description for the Birdwell and Clark Ranch video on their YouTube channel, “This ranch in Clay County has been involved in active cattle operations since the 1930s, but underwent major changes after Deborah Clark and Emry Birdwell took ownership 13 years ago. Using high intensity/low duration grazing, they are able to maximize beef production and improve quail and other wildlife habitat at the same time. The grazing management practices are closely tied to the wildlife resource management goals. This is a deliberate holistic context evidenced at the ranch.”

As witnessed by Janice Bezanson, of the Texas Conservation Alliance, who was interviewed for this video, native prairie, like that which the Birdwell and Clark Ranch sits on, is one of the most endangered ecosystems today. By practicing and mimicking the movements of bison and other natural grazers with their cattle on a daily basis, Emry and Deborah have effectively improved their land’s soil quality, increased the diversity of species, improved water quality, and developed a more productive ranch. They have doubled the county output per acre, and they’ve done so in a relatively short time. It’s a unique story, and one that shows how careful planning can produce great results, even in a lifestyle as old as Texas ranching.