Welcome to the Rangelands archives. The archives provide public access, in a "rolling window" agreement with the Society for Range Management, to Rangelands (1979-present) from v.1 up to two years from the present year.

The most recent issues of Rangelands are available with membership in the Society for Range Management (SRM). Membership in SRM is a means to access current information and dialogue on rangeland management.

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ISSN: 0190-0528


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  • The Utility of Animal Behavior Studies in Natural Resource Management

    Dimitri, L. A.; Longland, W. S. (Society for Range Management, 2018-02)
    Although research on the behavior of individual animals has been growing in recent years, the role that individual variation among animals may play in the outcome of species interactions in nature may be somewhat overlooked in natural resource management. Recognizing potential implications of individual behavioral variation can aid in developing more cost-effective and sustainable management techniques. Four illustrative examples are provided. Livestock foraging behaviors are important to understand, as they affect an animal''s ability to locate and identify forage with nutritional qualities required for optimal growth. Studying the behavior of individual animals can help livestock producers anticipate and influence livestock grazing patterns to increase efficiency and productivity. Sage-grouse populations have declined dramatically in many areas, and managers are required to consider their needs in all management decisions where the species persists. Sage-grouse exhibit complex mating, nesting, and migratory behaviors that are important to recognize for management to be successful. Mountain lions were generally assumed to prey mainly upon mule deer, but recent studies have found that individual lions may specialize on alternate prey such as feral horses or bighorn sheep. The Bureau of Land Management spends millions of dollars each year to manage feral horse populations. Revelations surrounding prey switching in individual mountain lions may support management goals in which feral horse predation is occurring but may hinder bighorn sheep translocation efforts by wildlife managers. Many plants important to land managers, including grasses, shrubs, and trees, are dispersed by granivorous rodents that store seeds in scattered caches, and a growing body of literature reveals that the majority of seedling recruitment for some of these species is attributable to scatter-hoarding by rodents. This relationship can be utilized for restoration applications, and variation in seed preferences among individual animals may be valuable in this regard. © 2017
  • Application of Vulnerability Assessment to a Grazed Rangeland: Toward an Integrated Conceptual Framework

    Raufirad, V.; Hunter, R.; Endress, B. A.; Bagheri, S. (Society for Range Management, 2018-02)
    Rangeland vulnerability assessments have the potential to function as conceptual tools for policymakers and rangeland users to ensure the sustainable management of vulnerable rangelands. This contribution reviews the different approaches to conceptualizing vulnerability assessments in order to introduce an initial framework for how to construct rangeland vulnerability assessments. We present a conceptual framework for designing a rangeland vulnerability assessment that captures a suite of both socioeconomic and biophysical variables. This framework also facilitates the incorporation of the local knowledge of rangeland experts and users for further refinement of a rangeland vulnerability assessment applied in a specific locale. © 2017 The Society for Range Management
  • Estimation of the Requirement for Water and Ecosystem Benefits of Cow-Calf Production on California Rangeland

    Andreini, E.; Finzel, J.; Rao, D.; Larson-Praplan, S.; Oltjen, J. W. (Society for Range Management, 2018-02)
    Beef production is perceived as using large amounts of water, and some studies recommend decreasing or ceasing meat consumption to decrease water use. Water footprints include different types of water, including green water (i.e., precipitation used for plant growth), blue water (i.e., drinking water and irrigation water used to grow alfalfa and irrigated pasture), and grey water (i.e., freshwater required for integrating water pollutants to a level accepted by water quality standards). A static model depicting blue and green water use for cow-calf production on California rangeland was developed. In this study, green water, which is sourced from rainfall and not available for another use, contributed the largest component to the total water footprint of cow-calf production at each location. It is important to consider the water use associated with beef production in the context of ecosystem services cattle provide to rangelands, such as preventing grassland conversion to shrub lands or woodlands, and the role that grazing cattle play in management of rangeland. © 2017 The Society for Range Management
  • Upland Bare Ground and Riparian Vegetative Cover Under Strategic Grazing Management, Continuous Stocking, and Multiyear Rest in New Mexico Mid-grass Prairie

    Danvir, R.; Simonds, G.; Sant, E.; Thacker, E.; Larsen, R.; Svejcar, T.; Ramsey, D.; Provenza, F.; Boyd, C. (Society for Range Management, 2018-02)
    We compared land cover attributes on rangeland pastures with strategically managed ranches (SGM), continuously stocked (CS), and rested pastures. SGM pastures had less upland bare ground and more riparian vegetative cover than adjoining CS pastures, and SGM pastures had bare ground cover comparable to pastures rested from grazing for three or more years. Differences in riparian cover between management types were greatest in years of near-average precipitation and lower in years of high precipitation or drought. Remote sensing technology provided a means of quantifying range condition and comparing management effectiveness on large landscapes in a constantly changing environment. © 2017 The Author(s)
  • Highlights

    Sheley, R. (Society for Range Management, 2018-02)
  • Browsing the Literature

    Germino, M. (Society for Range Management, 2018-02)
  • Why are Proposed Public Land Transfers a Source of Extreme Conflict and Resistance?

    Wayland, T.; West, L.; Mata, J.; Turner, B. L. (Society for Range Management, 2018-04)
  • Impacts of Wild Horses, Cattle, and Wildlife on Riparian Areas in Idaho

    Kaweck, M. M.; Severson, J. P.; Launchbaugh, K. L. (Society for Range Management, 2018-04)
    Our study confirms that grazing by cattle and horses can negatively impact riparian ecosystems if not properly managed. Population levels and grazing patterns of wild free-roaming horses limit management options, potentially leading to rangeland and riparian degradation. Grazing by wild free-roaming horses and cattle in riparian areas caused streambank disturbance and reductions in stubble height and herbaceous biomass. Both wild free-roaming horses and cattle affected riparian attributes while wildlife had little effect. Horses had a greater negative impact than did cattle when examined on an individual animal basis. Managers and ranchers in areas with wild free-roaming horses will need to consider potential impacts of unmanaged wild free-roaming horses in combination with livestock to mitigate the cumulative effects of multiple species of grazers on riparian condition.
  • Tanglehead in Southern Texas: A Native Grass with an Invasive Behavior

    Wester, D. B.; Bryant, F. C.; Tjelmeland, A. D.; Grace, J. L.; Mitchell, S. L.; Edwards, J. T.; Hernández, F.; Lyons, R. K.; Clayton, M. K.; Rideout-Hanzak, S.; et al. (Society for Range Management, 2018-04)
    Tanglehead is a native bunchgrass with a pan-tropical distribution. Historically, tanglehead was common but not abundant in southern Texas and was considered a decreaser whose presence indicated good range condition. Beginning in the late 1990s, the Texas Coastal Sand Plain ecoregion witnessed dramatic increases in the abundance and distribution of tanglehead: thousands of acres of former grasslands were replaced by dense monotypic stands of tanglehead, reducing habitat quality for livestock and wildlife. Our research has focused on understanding factors related to tanglehead's expansion, its effects on habitat quality, and management practices that can improve range condition and habitat quality. The Authors
  • Highlights

    Sheley, R. (Society for Range Management, 2018-04)
  • Browsing the Literature

    Germino, M. (Society for Range Management, 2018-04)
  • Impact of Grasshopper Control on Forage Quality and Availability in Western Nebraska

    Bradshaw, J. D.; Jenkins, K. H.; Whipple, S. D. (Society for Range Management, 2018-06)
    Grasshopper outbreaks in Nebraska have resulted in losses over $2 million per year due to lost forage for livestock. As much as 23% of western U.S. forage is consumed by grasshoppers annually. Controlling grasshoppers reduced grasshopper numbers without negatively impacting beneficial insects. In 2011, 29 more 318 kg steers could have grazed a 1000 hectare pasture for a 5 month growing season due to grasshopper suppression. In 2012 (a drought year), 54 more steers could have been grazed if grasshoppers were controlled. Grasshopper infestation can result in significant reduction in livestock grazing capacity especially in dry conditions.
  • Viewpoint: An Alternative Management Paradigm for Plant Communities Affected by Invasive Annual Grass in the Intermountain West

    Perryman, B. L.; Schultz, B. W.; McAdoo, J. K.; Alverts, R. L.; Cervantes, J. C.; Foster, S.; McCuin, G.; Swanson, S. (Society for Range Management, 2018-06)
    Over 400,000 km2 of the Intermountain West is colonized by cheatgrass and other annual grasses. Planning and management actions designed to foster perennial grass health throughout the region have never addressed how annual grasses would respond. For decades, the most significant landscape-level management approach toward invasive annual grasses has been to complain. We now know how to begin the process of taking the Intermountain West back from the domination of invasive annual grasses: through the management of standing dead litter. Sustaining perennial bunchgrasses at landscape scales will require an integrated ecological approach to fuels management. The Society for Range Management
  • Ranching Sustainability in the Northern Great Plains: An Appraisal of Local Perspectives

    Haggerty, J. H.; Auger, M.; Epstein, K. (Society for Range Management, 2018-06)
    In eight counties in Montana, South Dakota, and Nebraska characterized by high levels of intact Northern Great Plains grassland habitat, ranchers observe the following sustainability challenges: Land prices and lack of land for purchaseProfitabilityFamily succession and community change (depopulation)Notably, they do not anticipate extensive cropland conversion in the western edge of the Northern Great Plains. We observed differences in the experience of these challenges based on the ranch ownership lifecycle. In response, we recommend that conservation and government programs focused on sustainable ranching should adopt a framework for strategy and program evaluated based on the lifecycle framework. Assisting emerging ranchers, according to this research effort, will demand more than coming up with loan funds or extra forage. Rather it will mean rethinking the existing pathway that operators follow on the route from emerging to established ranchers. In addition, conservation and government programs and future research should address the impacts and patterns of land agglomeration in the Northern Great Plains. The Society for Range Management
  • Highlights

    Sheley, R. (Society for Range Management, 2018-06)
  • Browsing the Literature

    Germino, M. (Society for Range Management, 2018-06)
  • Army Cutworm Outbreak Produced Cheatgrass Die-offs and Defoliated Shrubs in Southwest Idaho in 2014

    Salo, C. (Society for Range Management, 2018-08)
    Army cutworms consumed cheatgrass to produce cheatgrass die-offs at low elevations in southwest Idaho in 2014. The larvae also consumed foliage and bark of native shrubs. Army cutworm outbreaks seem to occur after many adult moths lay eggs in areas experiencing drought, which received late summer rain to germinate winter annuals, but little subsequent precipitation through the following winter. Army cutworms hide in plain sight by feeding at night in winter and hiding in soil or under objects during the day. A network of observers in the Intermountain West could help rangeland managers identify die-offs for reseeding with desirable species. The Society for Range Management

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