The Rocky Mountain Forest Range Association (RMFRA), Nanton, Alberta, received the Outstanding Achievement Award for Stewardship at the Society for Range Management’s (SRM) recent 65th annual meeting in Spokane, Washington.
The award is presented by the Society for Range Management for outstanding achievement to members and other qualified individuals and groups working with rangelands.
The Rocky Mountain Forest Range Association was formed by Forest Reserve Grazing permit holders in 1998 in order to take a leadership role in the stewardship and management of the forest reserves lands in western Alberta. Membership involves voluntarily contributing $1 per animal unit month of grazing to the RMFRA. The RMFRA uses these funds to ensure the sustainability of livestock grazing in the Rocky Mountain Forest Reserve.
Since inception, the RMFRA has funded over $400,000 of range inventory work and over $850,000 in total investment towards enhanced range stewardship, management and knowledge development. The group recognizes the value and need for rangeland resource information in ensuring that these grazing dispositions are well managed, sustainable and consistently monitored. The knowledge gained from RMFRA initiatives has improved the management of rangelands in the forest reserve, improved integration of grazing with other resource users and has motivated many local rangeland resource stakeholders to expand on their efforts or form their own initiatives.
Recently the Rocky Mountain Forest Range Association has expanded efforts to include other resource management issues through research projects, grazing trials and policy development on such topics as livestock behaviour, riparian and prescription grazing and grazing-timber integration.