Managing Semi-Arid Watersheds: Watershed Basics - Being a Steward on Public Land
If you ever find yourself spending some
time out on Arizona's forests and rangeland, there are a few things you
can do to help take care of our public land.
Leave gates the way you find them. They are there for a reason. Remember
that public land is fenced to control livestock grazing. Some areas are
important for wildlife or recreation, or some other use, and fences are
needed to help keep livestock out. On ranches, fences are needed to control
where livestock graze, and to keep the livestock on their own ranch, of
course. If the gate was closed, leave it closed, If it was open, leave
Don't shoot at windmills, water tanks, signs, or corrals, Water developments
are used by livestock and wildlife, and are very important in managing
public lands properly. Your taxes help to pay for water developments,
corrals, and signs. Destroying them is a waste of tax dollars. It can
also result in the death of many animals due to lack of water.
If you pack it in, pack it out. Litter looks ugly, and it can have serious
consequences for livestock and wildlife. Keep a litter bag in your vehicle
and be sure to use it.
Leave range animals alone. Disturbing animals causes stress and forces
animals to use up energy getting away from you. Drive slowly if you come
near animals, and take some time to watch them and learn more about them.
Stay on established roads or roadways. Driving off roads destroys vegetation
and causes soil erosion. Public resource management agencies provide maps
that show roads that are maintained for general traffic and 4-wheel drive
Camp away from established watering places. State law prohibits camping
within 1/4 mile of a water development. Camping next to water causes animals
to avoid coming in to get a drink. If there is no other reasonably available
water, you may cause animals to die.
From: Ranching on Arizona's Rangeland, Winkelman
Natural Resource Conservation District
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