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Switzer Ranch: Conservation Profile

The Switzer Ranch is a 12,000-acre diversified cattle ranch near the Calamus Reservoir in Loup County that has been in the family since 1904. Today four generations live on the land that, along with two neighboring ranches, is designated an Important Bird Area (IBA) by the Audubon Society - the first private site identified as an IBA in Nebraska.

Farm Girl Journal Captures the Joy of Growing up on a Farm

Living in rural and small-town America is not a challenge, or a burden. I love living in a small town, having the ability to know my neighbors, and a genuine feeling of connectedness to the land and natural world. I can look out of my window at our garden, our flowers, the birds (and squirrels) at our birdfeeder. If that isn’t enough, in two minutes I can be in the countryside.

Shovel Dot Ranch: Conservation Profile

“I think each generation of our family has learned new ideas and new methods to help improve the productivity and health of the land,” said Homer Buell, who owns and manages Shovel Dot Ranch along with his family.

Shovel Dot is home to the fourth and fifth generations of the Buell family. Larry and his wife, Nickie, as well as Homer and his wife, Darla make their homes on the ranch, although they have divided the ranch between them. Their children, the fifth generation of Buells have now taken over the day-to-day management of the operation.

Wilson Ranch: Conservation Profile

Sitting in the office of his auto body shop, Max Wilson brings up satellite photographs of his land on Google Earth. Clicking through a decade of images, a dramatic change unfolds.

“We’re getting back to grass. In 10 years, I can see a lot of change,” he said, referring to the removal of eastern red cedar trees from his pastures. “Now it’s like a grassland instead of a forest.”

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