ranchers

ANNA KING / NW News Network

Outside of Pendleton, Oregon, Terry Anderson’s cattle have messed up his irrigation spigots. Again.

The cows knock them down pretty much daily, and he has to fix ‘em. He jumps out of his side-by-side vehicle and deftly rights them again or screws on a new spigot if they’re really bad.

“Cows just rub on stuff for the heck of it,” Terry Anderson says with a smile. “They love to scratch.”

Not One Drop Of Blood

Courtney Flatt/Northwest Public Broadcasting

 

It was a hot, dry summer afternoon when Molly Linville glanced out her front windows and noticed a rare storm pushing down the narrow valley where she raises cattle.

Then came five lightning strikes in quick succession. And five plumes of smoke.

She thought things would be OK. She was wrong.

“I wasn’t as concerned as I should have been from the get-go,” Linville said.

At that moment, her 125 cattle were all in the southern end of the ranch, where the flames were closing in.

Jessica Robinson / Northwest News Network, 2014

Washington state may soon copy a rural wildfire fighting strategy that Oregon, Idaho and Nevada already employ: letting private ranchers attack range fires before the blazes get big.

WDFW

Washington state government marksmen now have clearance to go out this weekend to shoot a wolf from a pack that has been preying on cattle in the Colville National Forest. A judge on Friday declined to extend a temporary stay on the killing won by several environmental groups last week.

Anna King / Northwest News Network

U.S. beef ranchers who voted heartily for President Donald Trump are getting a bit skittish about his trade wars. International tariffs are set to hit U.S. beef the first week of July.

Anna King / Northwest News Network

In the shadow of remote Dry Mountain, branding is the only way to guarantee a fair sorting of cattle between ranchers in the fall.

Animals’ ear tags can rub off in the rough, sage-studded country. So each year, before cattle are let out to graze on summer range, the young are branded, castrated and vaccinated. Neighbors gather in the early morning to do the work.

Olivia Weitz

Main Street in Ketchum, Idaho, was home to some unusual visitors this past weekend. Hundreds of sheep trailed through town on their way to winter pastures. The “Trailing of the Sheep Festival” is an annual event that celebrates a tradition that goes back generations.

Emily Schwing / NW News Network

The number of ranchers in the U.S. is on the decline. There’s no recruiting for the gig and some of the generational ties to ranch land in the west have been severed, so it’s not clear who will take on the business in the future. One answer may be women.

Anna King / Northwest News Network

Ranchers in eastern Oregon are trying to cash in on eclipse visitors by opening their spreads to campers. Some have already signed on hundreds of visitors while others are hoping for a rush of last-minute eclipse-ers.

Anna King / Northwest News Network

Low temperatures, snow drifts, and northeasterly winds east of the Cascades are making things difficult for Northwest ranchers and dairy owners. They are struggling to keep their animals hydrated, fed and warm.

Anna King / Northwest News Network

Just several miles from the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge headquarters, ranchers say they’re unafraid of the armed occupiers.

Amanda Peacher / OPB

Militants in eastern Oregon are getting little sympathy from Oregon lawmakers.

Amanda Peacher / OPB

Some southeast Oregon ranchers near Burns can sympathize with the armed group that’s taken over the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge. Ranchers in Harney County said they are frustrated with federal policy that can complicate ranching, logging and farming.

Ian C. Bates

In the poem “Mending Wall,” Robert Frost lays down the well-worn quote, “Good fences make good neighbors.” In this year’s dramatic Northwest wildfires, ranchers and neighbors are cutting down “good fences” of all kinds.

Ian C. Bates / NPR

Wildfires continue to burn across the state and it's hitting ranchers hard in central Washington.

Olivia Weitz / Northwest News Network

The Soda Fire in southwest Idaho and eastern Oregon has burned more than 400 square miles -- most of it federally-managed grazing land. Extreme temperatures fueled the Soda Fire. But farmers and ranchers are also blaming federal policy.

Jessica Robinson / Northwest News Network

For years there's been a battle raging between Idaho ranchers and the federal government over whether ranchers should be able to fight wildfires.

Kay Ledbetter / Texas A and M AgriLife Extension Service

Northwest cattle ranchers are struggling to get their herds out of the way of raging wildfires. Some herds have been lost, others badly injured.