Sierra Valley Ranch Field Day
August 8, 2008
The 2008 Sierra Valley Ranch Field Day
began at the historic Pasquetti barn on the Lewis
Van Vleck Ranch. A review of Special Study
Projects conducted through the 2008 Irrigation
Season was lead by the Prop 50 Project Team.
The Landowner and his project partners led
the group across the project area to discuss
details about the NRCS Riparian Grazing Rotation
Project on the ranch.
Temporary electric fencing.
Alan Abrams who shared his goal of
demonstrating riparian enhancement and
managed grazing can improve both practices.
The advantages of solar powered electric fencing
in flood prone areas where heavy spring runoffs
can cause expensive damage to permanent
fences was demonstrated. Similar fencing is
used on the Feather River Land Trust property in
John Donnelly, Wildlife Conservation Board
discussed programs available for landowners to
partner with the WCB in planning and funding
conservation projects on their ranches that could
benefit both grazing operations and wildlife habitat.
Karen Sweet, Executive Officer of Alameda
County RCD and a California Cattlemen
Association member, encouraged UFRWG
ranchers and agricultural irrigators to look for
ways to share their good stories. Water and
resource stewardship has been a vital part of
farming and ranching operations for some time.
She emphasized that the success of our resource
dependant agriculture industry hinges on the
continued good care of these resources as well
as promoting public confidence in our products
and management practices.
Lunch Break included informational speakers
under the shade at Van Vleck Ranch headquarters
Holly George, UCCE Farm Advisor and Prop 50
Team Leader provided a great variety of
informative speakers for the Field Day:
Dan Martynn, NRCS discussed the new Farm Bill
which will provide assistance to landowners through
the local NRCS and RCD offices for resource
conservation projects and drought assistance.
Dennis Heiman of the State Water Board
has been meeting with northern California coalition
groups to help develop a more practical Irrigated
Lands Program for predominately grazing and
Russell Reid, chairman of Upper Feather River
Watershed Group informed the attendees that the B
of D is reviewing options for post Prop 50 and is
currently budgeted to cover expenses until further
funding is secured for the UFRWG.
Dr. Ken Tate, rangeland watershed specialist has
offered to help interested landowners with ranch
water quality self-assessments. Ken has
specialized in water quality research related to
rangelands and irrigated pastures at UC Davis. He
is currently assisting several mountain rangeland
watersheds with their ILRP planning.
Dr. Tate is rancher friendly !!
Taking his turn at the gate during a Forage Identification
training day for the Prop 50 Team.