The Environmental Stewardship Award was another new focus during the Wisconsin Cattlemen Association’s Winter Conference In Wisconsin Dells. The National Cattlemen’s Beef Association recognizes farmers and ranchers for their land stewardship, but it’s a first for the state. Friday evening during their annual awards presentation, a beef operator from Northwest Wisconsin that’s been managing cattle along a class 1 trout stream for years was honored. Fred Larson, Larson Hereford Farms of Spring Valley was given the inaugural award. 2019 marks the 77th year that the families been raising registered Hereford cattle, and the 143rd year on their 5th generation farm, so appreciating their natural resources is engrained in their operation. Larson’s are committed to providing functional cattle with well-balanced EPD’s for their commercial and purebred customers – many that have been buying cattle from them for generations. The family has focused on elements like rotational grazing, no-till planting, maintaining wildlife habitat, to take care of the land. One of the examples is the management of their calving pasture, located at the bottom of narrow valley and alongside Cady Creek, a class 1 trout stream and part of the Mississippi watershed. Cady Creek is special to the family, fisherman from all around the area and neighbors. The creek has been monitored and studied by the DNR with the focus on its thriving wild brook trout populations. About 60 acres of rotational grazing pasture is used as one of several units for cow/calf pairs. They practice grazing management everywhere they can, and they’ve also worked with NRCS staff to remodel waterways adjacent to their feedlot for better runoff management and water quality protection. See more about the farm and their breeding stock at: larsonherefordfarms.com
Getting up at 2 in the morning might shock some of her listeners, but for Pam Jahnke, it’s part of the business. Born in Northeastern Wisconsin, Pam Jahnke grew up in agriculture. Raised on her family’s 200-acre dairy farm, she learned the “farm work ethic” first hand.