The symposium, Going, Going, Gone! How Curtailment of Livestock Grazing on Federal Lands Could Alter the U. S. Sheep Industry, was held on Tuesday, July 13. The workshop demonstrated what policies, perceptions and biases are being used to challenge the use of federal lands for agricultural production and how the loss of grazing access to federal lands could affect the U.S. sheep industry. The symposium challenged scientists to consider where to best place their scientific endeavors in light of these current events.
"The symposium highlighted the interdependency of the private and public lands in the West for not only food and fiber production but also open space, wildlife habitat, watershed protection and recreation. While sheep graze on a relatively small percentage of public lands, it represents 48 percent of the U.S. sheep production. It certainly is a fallacy to think that the grazing on federal lands for the sheep industry can be easily replaced when looking at the seasonal use of those lands. The loss of federal lands grazing would have a tremendous impact not only to the producers who utilize those lands but also to the entire infrastructure of the industry," said Margaret Soulen Hinson (Idaho), ASI vice president.
Presenters for the event included J. B. Taylor, U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), Agricultural Research Service (ARS), Dubois, Idaho; J. Kaiser, USDA, Forest Service, Washington, D.C.; N. R. Rimbey, University of Idaho and L. A. Torell Caldwell, New Mexico State University; W. G. Myers, Holland and Hart LLP, Boise, Idaho; D. P. Anderson, Texas A&M University; and G. S. Lewis, C. A. Moffet and J. B. Taylor, USDA, ARS, U.S. Sheep Experiment Station, Dubois, Idaho.
The abstracts for the workshop are available at http://adsa.psa.ampa.csas.asas.org/meetings/2010/abstracts/0518.pdf.
This workshop was presented as a part of the 2010 Joint Annual Meeting of the American Society of Animal Science, American Dairy Science Association, Poultry Science Association, Asociación Mexicana de Producción Animal and Canadian Society of Animal Science.