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HomeRegional NewsPrairie-to-Plate Philosophy Drives Bird-Friendly Management at North Dakota鈥檚 Paul Ranch

Prairie-to-Plate Philosophy Drives Bird-Friendly Management at North Dakota鈥檚 Paul Ranch

Carson, N.D. (June 3, 2024)聽鈥 More than 60 miles southwest of Bismarck, the Paul Ranch spreads over 6,700 acres of high-quality, mixed-grass prairie. Owned and operated by Daniel and Tresa Paul and their children David and Denver Paul, the ranch, one of the initial ranches enrolled in the National Audubon Society鈥檚 Conservation Ranching program, is celebrating five years as an聽Audubon Certified聽bird-friendly habitat.

Brothers David and Denver are the sixth generation to hold the ranch鈥檚 reigns, both versed in the rotational grazing ways that make their family鈥檚 native prairie so desirable for grassland birds. They are relaunching Wild Prairie Beef, a direct-to-consumer meat business, to bring their stewardship story to consumers looking to support conservation.

鈥淧rotecting prairie birds is a passion for our family,鈥 David Paul said, 鈥淲ith our regenerative grazing approach, birds and beef are directly connected. Our cattle are habitat helpers, moved about our prairie like native bison once roamed.鈥

The results, says Charlene Kohler Prodzinski, a Range Ecologist for Audubon Great Plains, make the Paul Ranch well-suited to numerous grassland bird species. “Rotational grazing mimics nature’s way of creating grassland bird habitat, whereby strategically grazing cattle, we create different layers of vegetation for bird species and their varying needs.鈥 At the Paul Ranch, this includes multilayers that benefit Grasshopper Sparrows, Long-billed Curlews, Upland Sandpipers, and Western Meadowlarks. Notably, the Paul Ranch owns the highest number of Chestnut-collared Longspurs recorded across any聽Audubon Certified聽bird-friendly ranch habitat.

The Paul Ranch earned the Audubon bird-friendly certification through the Audubon Conservation Ranching program, continually meeting all program requirements centered on habitat management, environmental sustainability, and animal welfare. The聽Audubon Certified聽bird-friendly seal recognizes lands managed for birds and biodiversity.

With Wild Prairie Beef, the Pauls鈥 strategy is simple: Get to know ’em. 鈥淲e want customers to be truly connected to conservation on our ranch, to us, our cattle, and the meals on their plates.鈥

The Pauls accept deposits for orders on the聽聽website and ship nationwide. They are also running a launch promotion for a 20 lb.聽, a $323 value.

For more information about Audubon Conservation Ranching, please contact聽ConservationRanching@Audubon.org.

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