Effect of Rancher’s Management Philosophy, Grazing Practices, and Personal Characteristics on Sustainability Indices for North Central Texas Rangeland Page: 32
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passing to the next generation. Leopold (1949) believed the problem was with management
system that was in place, which is driven by governmental policy and by economics. Without
being able to suggest economic gains, it is nearly impossible for many land managers to
implement more ecologically sound practices.
Social and Economic Considerations for Private Rangeland
Social and economic infrastructures provide the context in which rangeland use occurs
and continues (Tanaka et al., 2003). Most agricultural land in modern societies is used in the
production of marketable products. In areas where climatic, topographic and/or soil
characteristics, or desires of the owner, render the land unsuited for cultivation, it is used to
produce livestock and/or wildlife and related products through grazing. These livestock/wildlife
production operations, or ranches, are generally operated as businesses. In the ranching business
the forage grown on the land supplies a significant portion, if not all, of the feed for the animals.
The grazing land and animals are used in conjunction with labor, capital, management, expertise,
etc. to induce animal reproduction and/or growth which can be sold for currency. The currency
can then be used to maintain and/or replace the resources used in the production process and
provide income to the rancher which he can then use to meet his personal goals (Conner, 1991).
Rangeland ecosystem goods and services have value because they satisfy human needs
which can be personal and/or subjective. These needs may include eating a good steak or lamb
chop, watching a sunset from a high butte, galloping a horse over open range, meditating in
wilderness and fishing in a mountain stream (Tanaka et al., 2003).
Economic Processes include demand, household production, recreation, manufacturing
production, trading, investment and consumption or use of goods and services (Becker, 1974;
Lancaster, 1966). Social processes include management and social regulation, reflecting social
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Becker, Wayne. Effect of Rancher’s Management Philosophy, Grazing Practices, and Personal Characteristics on Sustainability Indices for North Central Texas Rangeland, dissertation, December 2011; Denton, Texas. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc103289/m1/43/: accessed July 20, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; .