Counties of interestAnaconda-Deer Lodge, Beaverhead, Big Horn, Blaine, Broadwater, Butte-Silver Bow, Carbon, Carter, Cascade, Chouteau, Custer, Daniels, Dawson, Fallon, Fergus, Flathead, Gallatin, Garfield, Glacier, Golden Valley, Granite, Hill, Jefferson, Judith Basin, Lake, Lewis & Clark, Liberty, Lincoln, Madison, McCone, Meagher, Mineral, Missoula, Musselshell, Park Livingston, Petroleum, Phillips, Pondera, Powder River, Powell, Prairie, Ravalli, Richland, Roosevelt, Rosebud, Sanders, Sheridan, Stillwater, Sweet Grass, Teton, Toole, Treasure, Valley, Wheatland, Wibaux, Yellowstone
Planned OperationHay & Forage, Grain, Large Animal (cattle, sheep, goats), Other
Check all experience and education that apply to you and your farming partnersAgriculture-related college degree, Farm/Crop management (over 3 years), General farming (over 3 years)
Land TenureBuy/Sell, Lease, Partnership, RSA Grass Link, Open to other arrangements
Briefly describe your current occupation(s) and responsibilities and list previous agricultural employment and experiences. If you are currently farming or ranching, please state the size, type(s), and location of the operation.We are currently the sole owners and operators of a small, diversified livestock op as a husband and wife partnership. We have about 60 head of Sim-Angus cattle, a small herd of Boer goats, and club lambs. For the cattle we use AI to improve feeder calf and replacement heifer quality with a sizeable amount of time spent researching bulls by talking to other producers and checking registration tools. Before we started our operation Ryan was active duty in the Navy then was employed by a family ranch north of Valentine, Nebraska to calve 300 head and take care of day to day chores. After that he got a degree in welding that he used for a few years before coming back home and working at a local chemical and seed company. From there he went to work for a local farmer driving a truck and during this time was able to begin our herd. Amy grew up on a small cow-calf operation and often accompanied her large animal veterinarian father on calls. After high school she got a dual degree in animal science and agricultural communications then a masters degree in agricultural economics. Since grad school Amy has been employed by the USDA.
Farming PracticesConventional, Organic, Other
Please elaborate on the type(s) of agricultural operation you plan on running.Both of us have spent our lives raising livestock and would like to continue doing so. Cattle have been the constant in both our lives, but with our current sheep and goat herds we have experience with most types of meat animals. We have successfully been able to utilize our herds to improve pastures with intentional rotational grazing. Ryan’s haying experience gives him more value to an operation that producer its own forage, however we are not opposed to a livestock operation that also has some crop ground.
Elaborate on the farming practices you plan on using.Willing to work with current land owner practices to match the needs of the land to ensure sustainability of the operation.
Please elaborate on the kind of additional training/information that would help you:We both grew up active participants in 4-H and FFA and have continued to be active in our community by volunteering with our county 4-H and serving on our county Farm Bureau board. Ryan’s years in the Navy were marked by a stead ascension through the ranks aided by the completion of two deployments. Despite our service to our local community we are willing to relocate to be able to pursue our goals and passions in an area that is more livestock friendly than we are currently in. The community we live in is very row crop farming focused, presenting us with a large challenge to be able to continue raising livestock. Our operation as it currently stands is maxed out as we are priced out of pasture by corporations that buy pasture and develop it into row crop farmland. Astronomically rising land prices mean many local land owners are looking to make a quick buck rather than doing their part to ensure the future of their rural community by helping to promote small and beginning farmers and ranchers. Our operation in our current location has reached its limits. The dreams and hopes we have for our operation mean that we are willing to relocate to make them happen.
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