The Society for Range Management has made special provisions this year to offer its annual Ranchers' Forum nationally by webinar, according to Tom Platt, Forum coordinator.
The Forum is set as part of the SRM's annual meeting in Spokane, Wash.
The Forum will focus on three topics: ranch succession, crooked calf syndrome, and sage grouse.
The keynote presentation, Keeping the Family Ranch in the Family, features Ron Hanson of the University of Nebraska in Lincoln. He is sought by farm groups throughout rural America for his humorous instructive presentations.
He will address "what if" family issues of passing a ranching operation from one generation to the next while avoiding personal conflicts, feuds, and legal problems when settling the family estate.
Hanson will spice his presentation with tips on family communications and multi-generational ranching.
Crooked Calf Syndrome in Washington's Channeled Scablands and Beyond will be discussed by Clive Gay, formerly with Washington State University, east Washington rancher Roy Clinesmith, and Kip Panter of USDA's Poisonous Plant Research Laboratory in Logan, Utah.
Crooked calf syndrome is a lupine-induced deformity which plagues Washington ranches sporadically. Serious outbreaks occur about once a decade when upwards of 50% of a ranch calf crop can be deformed.
Sage Grouse: Could this Bird be the Rancher's Spotted Owl, will be probed by Mike Schroeder of the Washington State Department of Fish and Game. Jessica Ferrell of Marten Law, Seattle, will explain the Endangered Species Act as it relates to the grouse.
The Jan. 21 Forum webinar will run from 8:45 a.m. to 4:50 p.m. To register, go to http://rangelands.org/spokane2012/program_rancher.shtml.
Registration cost is $60.
For those wishing to participate in the webinar as a group, registration will be $400 per location with unlimited audience size restrictions. There is a 25% surcharge for late registration which may apply.
For more information or accommodation of special needs, contact Tom Platt at (509) 725-4171, or via e-mail at [email protected]