A Day at NM Youth Ranch Management Camp

It's been said, "A picture is worth a thousand words." In this case, we also believe video highlights from the inaugural NM Youth Ranch Management Camp in 2011, share the experience through the eyes of camp participants.

Follow each day of this incredible journey, through the stories, lessons learned, and memories shared by participants, presenters and partners of the inaugural NM Youth Ranch Management Camp.

Day I: All Things Beef

The next generation of ranchers will be challenged to maintain a stronghold in a dynamic and competitive global beef industry. On day one of the New Mexico Youth Ranch Management Camp held at the Valles Caldera National Preserve, youth participants embedded themselves in a deep curriculum of global economics, best management practices to aid the production of safe and quality beef, tools to improve the genetic foundation of beef cattle, and how to become a youth and adult advocate for the beef industry.

Day II: Marketing & Economics

On Marketing Day, youth were exposed to various ways to market cattle. They participated in a traditional, sale-barn mock sale conducted on-site. They also learned about forward contracting cattle through video and online sales, as well as marketing beef and beef products directly to the consumer.

Day III: Natural Resources & Wildlife

Ranch camp participants started off their busy schedules learning basics of range management. Games can be educational, and youth participated in an activity that provided some insight in how some management decisions are made: Learning from others mistakes and successes. Plant ID and range monitoring techniques provided practical knowledge, in field experiences, and the necessity of setting the stocking rates. A demonstration of working cow horses provided insight into proper handling of cattle.

Day IV: Range

The morning session of Wildlife Day consisted of learning the basic principles of wildlife management. The New Mexico Game and Fish representatives discussed the different wildlife hunting and habitat management programs offered. USDA Wildlife Service representatives discussed the different methods used to manage wildlife damage in New Mexico. The camp participants had the opportunity to shoot air rifles, as well at try their hand at archery. The afternoon session focused on forestry management, as well as how to run a pellet plot to determine elk population estimates.