Hill Country Land Stewardship Conference set April 25-26 in Kerrville

KERRVILLE – The sixth annual Hill Country Land Stewardship Conference has been scheduled for April 25-26 in Kerrville.

The conference is presented by the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service in Kerr and Gillespie counties. This year’s event will be held at the Y.O. Ranch Hotel and Conference Center,  2033 Sidney Baker St.

The sixth annual Hill Country Land Stewardship Conference is slated for April 25-26 at the Y.O. Ranch Hotel and Conference Center in Kerrville. (Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service photo)

“Along with the spectacular beauty of the area, the Hill Country has its own special needs for management,” said Roy Walston, AgriLife Extension agent for agriculture and natural resources, Kerr County. “The Hill Country Land Stewardship Conference is designed to help landowners and managers address those needs.”

Walston said the conference is a great opportunity for landowners to learn more about options for understanding and managing their land.

Meals and break refreshments are included in the $75 registration fee. To register, go to  https://agriliferegister.tamu.edu/BennettTrust . Texas Department of Agriculture continuing education units will be available.

The agenda for April 25 will include discussions and hands-on opportunities related to:

  • Grazing management.
  • Plant management tools — prescribed fire, herbicide and mechanical control options.
  • Birding in the Hill Country.
  • Texas landowner tax valuation options.
  • Grazing and hunting leases.
  • Fence laws.
  • Whitetail deer management and incorporating exotics into your land management plan.

The agenda for April 26 provides a choice of tours to different parts of the Hill Country on  air-conditioned charter buses. Bus tours include lunch and refreshments.

Sheep at the Hillingdon Ranch. (Texas A&M AgriLife Communications photo by Paul Schattenberg)

The first tour option will be a “Legacy Management” program at Hillingdon Ranch. At this location, participants will learn about the operation and management philosophy of the ranch, which produces goats, sheep and beef cattle along with accommodating a variety of wildlife. There will also be discussion of generational transfer of ranch property.

“Hillingdon Ranch is unusual in that, although it is a family farm, it is owned by multiple members of an extended family comprised of different generations collaborating on its operation,” Walston said. “It’s a great example of how a large, diverse ranch can succeed with the input and cooperation of numerous like-minded stakeholders and remain viable for generations.”

Another tour option will be a wildlife tour that begins at the Cimarron Ranch in Kerrville. This tour will include discussions of native and exotic wildlife management, prescribed fire and brush control using individual plant treatments and farm pond management. Some of the wildlife at the ranch include whitetail and axis deer, blackbuck antelope and mouflon sheep.

“Following the Cimarron Ranch tour, there will be a tour of the Exotic Wildlife Association in Ingram,” Walston said. “That part of the wildlife tour will feature discussion on the role of the association and marketing opportunities for exotic wildlife in the Hill Country.”

For more information, contact the AgriLife Extension office for Kerr County at 830-257-6568.

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Writer: Paul Schattenberg, 210-859-5752, paschattenberg@ag.tamu.edu

Contact: Roy Walston, 830-257-6568, rwalston@ag.tamu.edu

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