Extension & Outreach

Extension & Outreach

Extension agent with rancher in field


Three hundred and ninety-two vascular plant species and over 80 species of birds have been observed on the prairie. Notable species include the federally-threatened prairie white fringed orchid (Platanthera praeclara) and the rare regal fritillary butterfly (Speyeria idalia). The prairie is also used as a seed source of local genotypes of grasses and wildflowers for use in prairie restoration efforts in the region. The Nine-Mile Prairie Management Committee, comprised of University of Nebraska–Lincoln faculty from several different departments plus resource people from several agencies and organizations, is charged with the stewardship of this biological treasure. Management consists of springtime burning on a 3-year fire-return interval, along with periodic haying and weed/brush control using herbicides. The prairie has not been grazed since 1968.

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The Center for Grassland Studies provides focused, interdisciplinary research, education and service programs and activities that emphasize the role of grasslands and turf as natural resources. Programs within the Center include Grassland Systems, PGA Golf Management and Integrated Beef Systems. The CGS Podcast calls upon the expertise of affiliates and researchers throughout Nebraska and beyond to bring listeners the latest and most relevant information on enhancing the efficiency, profitability and sustainability of grasslands. New episodes released weekly.

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The Nebraska Ranch Practicum is a three-season, hands-on educational program designed to give participants the skills and education needed in today’s complex ranching industry. Camaraderie and exchange of ideas among participants, instructors and facilitators are among the most valued aspects of this University of Nebraska–Lincoln Extension program. High-quality educational material includes software, notebooks with laminated field guides and a collection of University publications. You’ll also benefit from cutting-edge research in range livestock production and marketing at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln (UNL) Gudmundsen Sandhills Laboratory, a nationally-recognized research and education facility. Participants will develop their ability to efficiently use decision support tools to evaluate management and marketing alternatives dealing with grazing strategies and systems, methods of managing market risk, calving and weaning dates, winter livestock nutrition, cull cow management, feed rations and mineral supplements.

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The Nebraska Range Short Course is designed to provide individuals who have an interest in range management, natural resources, or agriculture an opportunity to increase their knowledge in the field of range management. It will provide underlying principles of range management for efficient, sustainable use of range land for multiple purposes including livestock grazing and wildlife habitat. Topics include (but are not limited to): plant identification, plant growth and development, rangeland soils, range inventory and monitoring methods, prescribed burning, rangeland restoration, ecosystem services, wildlife management, grazing management, and range livestock production.

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Understanding Grass Growth: The Key to Profitable Livestock Production is a 20-page booklet, complete with color photos and illustrations, that was written by three University of Nebraska-Lincoln professors and edited by a veterinarian. These individuals own the copyright to the booklet, which was published in 1985. The Center for Grassland Studies received permission to scan the publication and put on our website for educational purposes. To inquire about purchasing hard copies of the booklet contact: Trabon Printing at (816) 361-6279.

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