Pat and Mary Lou Guptill have owned and managed Guptill Ranch for the past 30 years. With their five children, they are caretakers of this 7,000 acre landscape. The area of western South Dakota features grasslands with rolling hills and a wooded creek running through the ranch.
In 2000 the Guptills changed a number of practices to lower production costs and enhance their soil's health. They transitioned their calving season from March to May. They also focused on raising grass-fed cattle, utilized low-stress stockmanship techniques, and implemented intensive custom grazing.
Part of their wildlife management is deferred grazing of a wooded creek, particularly during the nesting season.
“Many ranchers have adopted new conservation practices to protect their natural resources,” said NRCS District Conservationist, Nina Pekron. “Pat and Mary Lou have taken that one step further – they share their knowledge so others may follow in their footsteps.”