2012 Recipient #1
Adult Range Schools
The Kansas Grazing Lands Coalition has conducted two adult range schools since 2005 at a variety of locations across Kansas. This year the Schools will be held at Camp Wood YMCA, Elmdale, and Camp Lakeside, Lake Scott and the Smoky Valley Ranch operated by The Nature Conservancy. This is the second year for Camp Wood and the third for Camp Lakeside - both offer a great landscape and atmosphere for learning. The Tallgrass School at Elmdale will run from July 31 to August 2. We average 30-40 attendees at this school with a mix of ranchers, landowners, land managers, natural resource management agency staff, naturalists, college students, and otehrs interested in grassland ecology. The Mid-/Shortgrass School runs from August 21 to 23 and we have been averaging about 20 students the past few years. The make-up of the attendees is similar to the Tallgrass School.
The agenda relies heavily on plant identification and measuring and monitoring to help attendees know the plants they are managing and the impacts made with grazing on plant communities. KNPS continues to provide teaching help for these schools through Jeff Hansen - who has been at the schools the past three years. Jeff's extensive knowledge and skills are very much appreciated by the students as they seek to identify plants. Iralee Barnard serves on the KGLC advisory committee, and offers input into the school agendas. She has presented in past schools as well. Our list of presenters and speakers varies some each year, but we always include ranchers, NRCS staff, Extension and K-State Agronomy staff, Fort Hays State staff, along with other agency and organization staff.
Students each receive a plant identification book (courtesy of the US Fish and Wildlife Service Partners Program), and the winners of our plant id contest on the third day select an additional plant id book.