WASHINGTON, D.C. – During the last week of August, the USDA Forest Service hosted a study tour on pasture and rangeland management for a delegation from Uzbekistan. The program was organized and led by Rangeland Management Specialist Angela Safranek of the Pike and San Isabel National Forest & Cimarron and Comanche National Grasslands.
The visiting delegation included researchers, foresters and engineers from various Uzbekistan forestry and land management agencies. Hosted by the Pike and San Isabel National Forest & Cimarron and Comanche National Grasslands, participants visited the Black Mountain Restoration Project Site on the South Park Ranger District, Browns Canyon National Monument (co-managed by the Forest Service and the Bureau of Land Management), the Comanche Ranger District, and Devil’s Hole Restoration Project Site. The group also visited two private ranches: Badger Creek Ranch and Gail and Mille Allen’s Broken Spear Ranch. The program was sponsored by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations.
The group and hosts discussed the USDA Forest Service and partners’ approach to developing integrated landscape-level strategies for balancing economic, social and cultural opportunities with the need to maintain the health and integrity of the ecosystem. Participants had the opportunity to learn about the federal agencies’ efforts to develop diverse partnerships to support our pasture and rangeland management work. In multiple site visits, participants observed active management approaches, including a variety of grazing strategies and infrastructure improvements for water and fencing. The delegates explored restoration strategies such as rotational grazing, prescribed fire, watershed restoration and seeding. The Forest Service hosts showcased the multiple use management approach, demonstrating how grazing can be managed alongside activities including nature-based tourism and other uses.
During the program, participants observed various rangeland management practices with an emphasis on those used on public lands. Through field visits and facilitated discussion with technical experts, land and livestock owners, and government representatives, the groups learned multiple planning and assessment tools as well as techniques to address rangeland restoration and ecosystem health. The delegates also shared their experiences with their hosts and are looking forward to implementing many of the valuable practices that they learned at home.