MSU Extension Ranching Systems Team (a.k.a., "Ranch Cats")

Mission: Provide comprehensive and collaborative interdisciplinary programming on issues important to the ranching community and stakeholders including, but not limited to animal nutrition, reproduction, and management, land management, environmental stewardship, grazing systems, livestock-wildlife interactions, ranch economics, pest management, biosecurity, employee leadership and alternative markets.

Ranching Systems Team Roster

Tommy Bass, MS, Livestock Environment Associate Specialist, provides support to county agents, producers, processors, and other stakeholders in matters of environmental management, conservation, emergency management, and alternative production and marketing for livestock.

  • Manure and mortality mgmt.
  • Manure nutrient applications
  • Composting
  • AFO/CAFO water quality
  • Ag and rural emergency mgmt.
  • Animal biosecurity
  • Meat processing and HACCP
  • Alternative meat supply chains

Jared Beaver, PhD, Wildlife Specialist, responds to the needs of county.reservation extension faculty, producers, government agency personnel, and other stakeholders with research-based information regarding various aspects of wildlife management while working to increase public appreciation for the contribution of rural working lands to wildlife and wildlife habitat.

  • Wildlife and Habitat mgmt.
  • Human-wildlife conflict
  • Livestock-wildlife relationships
  • Wildlife estimation
  • Public benefit of private lands
  • Pest management

Laura Bratz, Ranching Systems Team Coordinator, provides administrative support, specializes in communications, web design/marketing, and assisting community members with Extension related issues.

Kate Binzen Fuller, PhD, Agricultural Economics Specialist, works directly with producers and landowners, as well as university, county, reservation, and tribal college extension staff. She covers farm adn ranch management decision-making from a number of angles.

  • Grazing leases
  • Cattle share leases
  • Ag negotiation
  • Enterprise budgeting
  • Economic valuation
  • Risk management
  • Crop insurance

Rachel Frost, PhD, Program Lead Dan Scott Ranch Management (D.S.R.M.) Program, coordinates the B.S. in Ranching Systems degree and the D.S.R.M. Program Outreach efforts. Current outreach consists of an annual seminar series and two management focused symposia.

  • Financial planning & profitability
  • Employee leadership
  • Natural resource stewardship
  • Livestock management
  • Forage management
  • Systems thinking for ranches

Jeff Mosley, PhD, Range Management Specialist, assists county/reservation Extension agents, range livestock producers, government agency personel, small acerage landowners, youth, and others with rangeland and pasture management.

  • Livestock grazing mangement
  • Livestock-wildlife interactions
  • Rangeland monitoring
  • Rangeland/pasture seeding
  • Conflict mediation/facilitation
  • Poisonous plants
  • Invasive plant management
  • Montana fence laws

Brent Roeder, MS, Sheep and Wool Production Specialist, provides support to county agents, producers and other industry professionals on sheep and wool production, goats, prescription grazing, genetic improvement, wool harvesting schools and predator mitigation.

  • Wool pool coordination
  • Supervisor MT Wool Lab
  • Wool judging
  • Wool harvsting schools
  • MT 4-H Lamb Carcass Contest
  • Ntnl SHeep Improvement Program
  • GPS and EID technology
  • Ranch and farm visits

Carla Sanford, PhD, Beef Cattle Specialist, assists extension faculty, beef consumers and producers, government agencies, youth, industry and research organizations, and others with beef cattle management and production.

  • Beef cattle reproduction
  • Assisted reproductive technologies
  • Bull and heifer development
  • Beef cattle management
  • Youth livestock programming
  • Beef Quality Assurance programming

Cecil Tharp, PhD, Pesticide Education Associate Specialist, provides support to county agents, producers, ranchers, greenhouses, nurseries, and pesticide applicators in matters of applying pesticide properly and attaining private/farm pesticide applicator certification.

  • Pesticide fate and non-target toxicity
  • Pesticide safety
  • Drift and mitigation strategies
  • H20 quality and pesticide performance
  • Calibration of pesticide equipment
  • Pesticides and animal saftey (i.e., grazing intervals, poisonings)
  • Integrated pest management

Megan Van Emon, PhD, Beef Cattle Specialist, assists Extension faculty, livestock producers, government agencies, youth, and others with beef cattle management and production. Located off-campus at the USDA-ARS LARREL Fort Keogh in Miles City, MT.

  • Beef cattle nutrition
  • Ration balancing
  • Vitamins and mienral program development
  • Beef cattle management
  • Youth livestock programming
  • Supplementation strategies
  • Steer of Merit content

Hayes Goosey, PhD, Forage Specialist. The MSU Extension Forage Specialist provides support to county/reservation Extension faculty, ranchers, farmers, small acerage landowners, government agencies, and others with forage crop production and utilization.

  • Hay, silage, and haylage production
  • Annual forages and cover crops
  • Forage crop and pasture establishment
  • Nitrate toxicity
  • Integrated forage-livestock cropping systems
  • Hay quality testing
  • Forage crop pest management
  • Soil nutrient management