Cattle ranching on the western Great Plains: a study of adaptive decision-making. CCC Fellow, Hailey Wilmer

Friday, March 03, 2017
Dissertation of Hailey Wilmer, Department of Forest and Rangeland Stewardship

Cattle ranching on the western Great Plains: a study of adaptive decision-making. CCC Fellow, Hailey Wilmer

Ranching social-ecological systems (SESs) in the semi-arid, western Great Plains persist
under highly variable inter- and intra-annual weather conditions and globally influenced
markets. Ranch spatial scales and manager decision-making processes have traditionally been
excluded from conventional grazing experiments, leading to considerable debate between
scientists and land mangers about grazing strategies to achieve both beef production and
biodiversity conservation outcomes on rangelands. In this dissertation I use collaborative,
interdisciplinary methodologies to link rangeland and grazing management decision-making
processes and learning with ecological outcomes in the semi-arid rangeland social-ecological
systems (SESs) of Wyoming and Colorado.
 
This research was sponsored by ARS-USDA, grants from USDA AFRI award 2009-04442;
USDA ARFI award 2012-38415- 20328; Colorado Agricultural Experiment Station project
COLO0698; and the Center for Collaborative Conservation fellows program.
 
To read the dissertation, click here or here.