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Montana Range Riding Aids Ranchers, Mitigates Conflicts

As silvery moonlight washed across the Montana meadow, it sent long shadows over the grass. Tonight, I didn’t need the gentle clang of the grazing bell to tell me where the horses were feeding. My leggy quarter horse was as brightly silver-white as the full moon. The distant lowing of cows across the meadow confirmed that all was well. Somewhere in the distance, a wolf pack was probably making evening rounds, but tonight they likely wouldn’t visit this meadow. I swung up into my horse trailer’s tack room and wriggled into my sleeping bag as my dogs made way for my arrival. The next morning I’d rise at daybreak and head toward the sound of the cattle.

NRCS Shares Soil Science through International Engagement

As the world leader in soil classification and soil survey, USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), was invited to give a keynote presentation at the XXVII Congress of Soil Science of Argentina held virtually the week of October 12, 2020. Soil Survey Regional Director Luis Hernandez with the NRCS Soil and Plant Science Division represented USDA-NRCS and provided a comprehensive overview of the USA National Cooperative Soil Survey (NCSS) Program.

Turkey for Two? A Feast for Four? Thanksgiving Comes in All Sizes

Family and food are the heart of the Thanksgiving tradition, a time to come together and celebrate everything we are thankful for. The holiday will certainly feel different this year, with the COVID-19 pandemic restricting travel and large gatherings. But that doesn’t mean every tradition should go by the wayside. Now is a great time to highlight a custom sure to make it look – and taste – like the Thanksgiving we all love – that big, beautiful American-grown turkey.

USDA Looks to Conservation Finance to Deliver More Working Lands Conservation

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) is the nation’s largest funder of conservation on private land. For decades, NRCS staff have worked hand-in-hand with America’s farmers, ranchers and forest landowners to provide hundreds of millions of dollars in funding and technical assistance, delivering valuable practices like cover crops, no-till, windbreaks, grazing management strategies and manure management facilities. Despite these efforts, less than ten percent of our nation’s working lands receive NRCS assistance in any given year. NRCS is constantly trying to close this gap, expanding the reach of its programs through innovative grant programs like the Conservation Innovation Grants (CIG) and the Alternative Funding Arrangement component of the Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP AFA). Moreover, in recent years, the agency has begun exploring conservation finance as a new tool to deliver support for a diverse array of projects, benefiting a larger percentage of farmers, ranchers and private forest landowners.

Agricultural Innovation Takes Shape in Great Lakes Region, Helping Solve Solutions Today for Challenges Tomorrow

If we plan to survive in the future, we must address today’s most pressing concerns in agriculture. Preparing the land to continue to meet food, fiber, fuel, feed, and climate demands is a tall order to fill for growing populations. USDA has aligned all its resources, programs and research to give farmers with the tools they need to help meet these challenges.

ARS Research Innovates to Reduce Food Loss and Waste: An Interview with Gene Lester

The Agricultural Research Service (ARS) is USDA’s chief scientific in-house research agency. More than 2,000 scientists at 90 research centers in the U.S. and abroad work to investigate solutions to agricultural challenges from farm to table. What are USDA Agricultural Research Service (ARS) scientists doing to help reduce food loss and waste? This interview features insights from Gene Lester, ARS, National Program Leader for Product Quality and New Uses, and Biorefining/Bioproducts.

USDA’s Cutting-Edge Methods Help Deliver a Victory Against Asian Giant Hornet

After weeks of searching, Washington State Department of Agriculture (WSDA) entomologists–—using a radio tag provided by USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service and a trap developed by the USDA’s Agricultural Research Service–— have located and eradicated the first Asian giant hornet (AGH) nest ever found in the United States. For months, WSDA had been trying to find the nest they knew must exist near Blaine, WA, because of AGH detections in the area. But finding the nest proved extremely challenging since the hornets build nests in forested areas, typically in an underground cavity.