New Mexico State University’s Cooperative Extension Service has gathered youth ages 15-19 to participate in a unique summer experience June 9-14 at the Valles Caldera National Preserve. Co-sponsors include the New Mexico Beef Council.
Approximately 30 youth from throughout the state are attending this third annual New Mexico Youth Ranch Management Camp where they will receive training in all aspects of ranch management.
Dina Chacon-Reitzel, executive director of the New Mexico Beef Council, sees the event as a way to recharge the aging ranching industry by affirming the role of young people interested in agriculture careers.
“The camp is tailored to introduce participants to new concepts and ideas, advanced technologies, and applied skills that are used on commercial beef cattle operations. They will learn cutting edge practices,” she said.
Attendees will participate in hands-on field experiences and lectures from industry leaders and educators. They will address beef cattle health, handling, nutrition and reproduction. Participants will have the opportunity to work with a meat scientist to fabricate a beef carcass into wholesale and retail cuts of beef.
Range management, plant identification, stocking rates, and wildlife management will be taught. A cattle marketing demonstration of ranch economics and the dynamics of purchasing and marketing cattle will be a highlight.
Participants will work in teams all week to present ranch management plans on Friday morning, June 14 before a review panel to compete for prizes and scholarships.