Riparian Grazing Effort Showing Strong Improvement
Posted on: Jul 01, 2014
The year 2014 brought strong improvements to grazed streambanks on a southwest Montana ranch. This ranch practiced season-long grazing for decades prior to altering management practices with Ranch Advisory's help in 2010. In that year, grazing durations were shortened, recovery days between grazings increased, and timing of grazings was altered. Since then, riparian vegetation has displayed strong improvments in vigor, and erosion of many banks has largely ceased. Photos from both 2010 and 2014 are displayed below.
The above photos show a channel of the Madison River in southwest Montana. The photo on the left is from 2010, and that on the right is from 2014 (2010 contained higher flows at this time of year). The steep, eroding banks from 2010 appear more rounded and contain more vegetation in 2014. This bank is now more able to withstand heavy spring runoff without eroding or sloughing.
The above photos show a branch of Odell Creek, with 2010 on the left and 2014 on the right. The sloughing bank from 2010 is now healed and covered by high-vigor vegetation.
The hard work of Granger Ranch, where this effort is located, and its partner, the Madison River Foundation, is readily visible in these photos and across the project area. Congratulations go to these partners for their good work in improving riparian condition, rangeland health, and wildlife habitat.