Mead recognizes Padlock’s conservation efforts

RANCHESTER — Padlock Ranch, recipient of the 2013 Leopold Conservation Award in Wyoming, was honored for voluntary achievement in conservation last week by Gov. Matt Mead at the Wyoming Cattle Industry Convention & Trade Show in Cheyenne.
The $10,000 Leopold Conservation Award, named for renowned conservationist Aldo Leopold, was presented to Padlock Ranch by Sand County Foundation, Wyoming Stock Growers Association and Peabody Energy.

The Padlock Ranch operates a sustainable and profitable cattle operation on 500,000 acres in Wyoming and Montana. In addition to being a successful and sustainable cattle ranch raising natural beef, Padlock offers vacationing guests an opportunity to share in the Western lifestyle through working ranch, hunting and fishing, and photography vacations.

A tour of the ranch will take place July 9, Wyoming Environmental Stewardship Day.

The annual Environmental Stewardship Tour is hosted by WSGA and the Wyoming Department of Agriculture, and showcases the Leopold Conservation Award recipient.

Homer and Mildred Scott started Padlock Ranch in 1943 with 300 cows and 3,000 acres. It has grown to 11,000 head of cattle on land straddling the Wyoming/Montana state line.

Today, the operation is led by Wayne Fahsholtz, who manages the resources and assets of the ranch for long-term sustainability, while conserving and improving the environment through good grazing and other practices.

“We believe that if we can graze in a manner that protects habitat and if the wildlife species that should be here are here, then we are doing the job we set out to do,” Fahsholtz said.

“With eyes on the future, Padlock Ranch owners and managers have grown the operation and a broad array of practices,” said Dr. Brent Haglund, Sand County Foundation President. “Not only are these practices associated with state-of-the-art cattle grazing, they are innovations and commitments that enhance the landscape and the historic Tongue River.”

“Wayne and Judy Fahsholtz, the Scott Family and the other dedicated people who operate the Padlock Ranch are excellent examples of ranchers who are committed to living as responsible stewards of the land,” WSGA Executive Vice President Jim Magagna said.

“Peabody Energy is pleased to serve as a partner in presenting the Leopold Conservation Award to the Padlock Ranch.

Collaboration on sustainable practices is a valuable contribution to Wyoming today and for generations to come.

The management and staff at the Padlock Ranch embrace strong land conservation values as does Peabody Energy,” said Peabody Energy —Americas President Kemal Williamson.

The Leopold Conservation Award in Wyoming is made possible through the support of Peabody Energy, The Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation and the Monaghan Foundation.

For more information or to attend the Environmental Stewardship Tour of the Padlock Ranch call the Wyoming Stock Growers Association at 307-638-3942.

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