Jerry Holechek

Jerry Holechek
New Mexico State University | NMSU · Department of Animal and Range Sciences

About

187
Publications
20,903
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5,954
Citations
Citations since 2016
16 Research Items
1781 Citations
2016201720182019202020212022050100150200250
2016201720182019202020212022050100150200250
2016201720182019202020212022050100150200250
2016201720182019202020212022050100150200250

Publications

Publications (187)
Article
Growing season aridity and livestock grazing seasonality can influence primary productivity of perennial grasses in dryland systems. For this study, we used a long-term dataset (1967–2004) to investigate the independent and joint effects of growing season aridity and season of grazing (yearlong continuous, fall, winter/spring, or summer season graz...
Article
We assessed vegetation cover density and distribution in Eastern Jordanian rangeland reserves (2411 km²) using a series of Landsat images (34 year's period) and ground cover survey (2020) to identify proper sites for reintroducing Arabian Oryx (Oryx leu-coryx). The natural reserves were Burqu Nature Reserve site-1, and site-2 (Dmetheh), and Al Dahe...
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Our study evaluated the effectiveness of using eight pathways in combination for a complete to transition from fossil fuels to renewable energy by 2050. These pathways included renewable energy development; improving energy efficiency; increasing energy conservation; carbon taxes; more equitable balancing of human wellbeing and per capita energy us...
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Understanding the fluctuations in monthly and annual cattle prices plays a key role in supporting the sustainability of New Mexico's (NM's), United States (US), beef cattle industry under variable environmental conditions. The goal of this study was to provide an improved understanding of NM's beef cattle production systems in terms of prices and p...
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New Mexico (NM) has been identified as the state in the US that will be most adversely impacted by climate change and associated water stress. Roughly 92% of NM is rangeland, most of which is grazed by beef cattle. We calculated the blue (surface and ground) and green (precipitation) water footprints (WF) of NM beef cattle industry (cow-calf, backg...
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Accelerated climate change is a global challenge that is increasingly putting pressure on the sustainability of livestock production systems that heavily depend on rangeland ecosystems. Rangeland management practices have low potential to sequester greenhouse gases. However, mismanagement of rangelands and their conversion into ex-urban, urban, and...
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On the Ground •Published research provides guidelines to reduce stocking rates on areas >10% slope and >1.6 km from water because these areas may be considered ungrazeable. •Data from 180 cattle tracked by GPS collars for 1 to 4 months at seven ranches in New Mexico, Arizona, and Montana on average resulted in grazeable area calculations that were...
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This study was conducted within the context of providing an improved understanding of New Mexico’s food, energy, water systems (FEWS) and their behavior under variable climate and socioeconomic conditions. The goal of this paper was to characterize the relationships between production and prices of some forage crops (hay, grain sorghum, and corn) t...
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In support of Food-Energy-Water Systems (FEWS) analysis to enhance its sustainability for New Mexico (NM), this study evaluated observed trends in beef cattle population in response to environmental and economic changes. The specific goal was to provide an improved understanding of the behavior of NM's beef cattle production systems relative to pre...
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Rising temperatures and more frequent droughts are posing new challenges to range livestock producers in the southwestern United States and many other parts of the world. We analyzed a 52-yr time series (1967 − 2018) of precipitation, ambient temperature, and perennial grass production (PGP), as well as 14 yr (2001 − 2014) of Moderate Resolution Im...
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A large statewide historical database involving livestock numbers, vegetation cover, precipitation, air temperature, and drought frequency and severity allowed us to explore relationships between climate and rangeland livestock grazing levels and livestock productivity from 1920 to 2017. Trends in vegetation cover and livestock grazing levels from...
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Our objective was to assess the status of the large native rangeland mammals in the eastern and southern African countries focusing on conservation strategies that will benefit the animals, their rangeland habitats, and the people who live in this region. Eastern and southern African rangelands are renowned for supporting a globally unique diversit...
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Species with a long evolutionary history of sympatry often have mechanisms for resource partitioning that reduce competition. However, introduced non-native ungulates often compete with native ungulates and competitive effects can be exacerbated in arid regions due to low primary productivity. Our objectives were to characterize diet composition, q...
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Pastoral livestock production systems in Africa that have existed for centuries are now threatened by changing demographics, improved communications, increased availability of modern weapons, open rangeland shrinkage, global warming, and large-scale migration of people from rural areas to rapidly expanding cities. Human population increase coupled...
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Aims Recognizing ungulate browsing thresholds between viable and declining aspen (Populus tremuloides Michx.) stands are critical to ensuring long-term persistence of this biologically important plant community. Studies have shown declines in vigor and regeneration when as few as 30% of current annual twigs are browsed while other studies have show...
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We determined the effects of two forage allowance levels (LOW vs. HIGH) and weather conditions on daytime and nighttime movement patterns of young rangeland-raised cows. We also investigated whether calf weaning weights (n = 42) were significantly related to postcalving movement patterns of the dam. Global positioning system data were collected ove...
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On the Ground Depletion of conventional oil and natural gas reserves, rising world demand for fossil fuels, and changing geo-political conditions necessitate that the United States aggressively develop both renewable and nonrenewable energy along with increasing energy conservation and efficiency. This will affect how rangelands are used, create in...
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Forage and cow-calf productivity on two lightly and two conservatively grazed pastures were evaluated over a 15-year period (1997–2011) in the Chihuahuan Desert of south-central New Mexico. Spring-calving Brangus cows were randomly assigned to pastures in January of each year. Pastures were similar in area (1 098 ± 69 ha, mean ± SE) with similar te...
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A s we move into the 21st century, the biggest chal-lenge confronting rangeland managers in the Unit-ed States may be adjusting to rapidly rising energy costs and amelioration of adverse environmental impacts from energy developments. The United States has de-pleted its conventional or easy-to-extract oil and natural gas but has large reserves of u...
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Global positioning system (GPS) data collected over a 4-yr period on 52 crossbred young cows grazing a 146-ha pasture were used to determine whether cattle establish patch-scale rotational patterns within pastures. Cow positions at 5-min intervals were recorded during 20 d in late winter/early spring. Estimated per capita forage allowance (PCFA) wa...
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Free-ranging livestock play a pivotal role globally in the conversion of plant tissue into products and services that support man's many and changing lifestyles. With domestication came the task of providing livestock with an adequate plane of nutrition while simultaneously managing vegetation for sustainable production. Attempting to meld these tw...
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Two techniques frequently used for monitoring pronghorn populations were compared in vegetation communities of the Chihuahuan Desert in New Mexico, USA. The evaluated techniques included the walking line transect and the driving line transect under two vegetation types and relative to season. The true population value (control) used to evaluate the...
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Increasing world human population, declining reserves of cheaply extracted fossil fuels, scarcity of supplies of fresh water and climatic instability will put tremendous pressure on world rangelands as the 21st century progresses. It is expected that the human population of the world will increase by 40% by 2050 but fossil fuel and reserves of fres...
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Honey mesquite (Prosopis glandulosa Torr.) invasion can negatively impact grazing capacity, spatial livestock distribution, and forage production in Chihuahuan Desert rangelands. High spatial resolution remote sensing data can be used to develop maps of shrub encroachment for arid rangelands. The objective of this study was to map changes in honey...
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Long-term information on the effects of managed grazing versus excluded grazing effects on vegetation composition of desert rangelands is limited. Our study objectives were to evaluate changes in frequency of vegetation components and ecological condition scores under managed livestock grazing and excluded livestock grazing over a 38-yr period at v...
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A combination of monitoring, well planned grazing, and drought planning through this new grazing management approach has helped two New Mexico ranches improve livestock productivity, reduce supplemental feed costs, and avoid damaging their rangeland during drought.
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Factors to consider for shortgrasses and when making the decision if destocking is necessary.
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The effects of large ungulate herbivory on plant community structure and composition can vary considerably in regions susceptible to frequent wildfires. The Cerro Grande Fire (CGF) of May 2000 burned 17,400 ha of elk transitory-use range in the Jemez Mountains, north-central New Mexico. Our objective was to determine if habitat use changed temporal...
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Jerry L. Holechek explains how ranching and farming systems could soon drastically change due to increasing world population, depletion of water supplies, agricultural land loss to urbanization, fossil fuel depletion, and concerns about food health. Under present conditions, every one farmer in the US feeds about 170 people, compared to 20 in 1900....
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Througout the United States, a massive home construction boom is occurring. This trend is creating a number of problems such as loss of open space, loss of habitat for wildlife, loss of agricultural land, need for more and expanded highways, increased air contamination with greenhouse gases and depletion of fossil fuel supplies. However, the trend...
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Depletion of fossil fuels and global warming could drastically reduce world food production. Conserving and improving rangelands is important, because they likely will play an increased role in meeting world food needs.
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Las densidades de “Mourning dove” (Zenaida macroura L.) fueron determinadas en potreros de condición ecológica es estado seral inicial, medio y final durante un período de dos años (primavera de 1996 e invierno de 1998) y para ello se usaron técnicas de censo en bandas. El estudio se condujo en el Centro de Investigación de Pastizales del Desierto...
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To increase undergraduate enrollment, a range science professor at New Mexico State University (NMSU) devised a way to attract students into college range programs. This included designing Powerpoint presentations that explain and demonstrate what rangelands are and what modern range management is all about. From the slides, discussions are given o...
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A study was conducted to evaluate the influence of good (GC) and fair (FC) range condition classes on pronghorn and cattle diets. There was a higher preference for the GC (84%) than for the FC (16%) area (P<0.05). Pronghorn in GC consumed maximum shrubs (51.8%) followed by grasses (29.9%) and forbs (18.3%). In FC the sequence was the same but for t...
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Soil depth effects on honey mesquite (Prosopis glandulosa Torr) cover and density and perennial grass standing crop were evaluated over an 11-yr period (1995-2005) on two lightly stocked and two conservatively stocked pastures on the Chihuahuan Desert Rangeland Research Center in south-central New Mexico. These four adjoining pastures have similar...
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In 2002, the Forest Service range personnel and grazing permittees contacted the Range Improvement Task Force at New Mexico State University to conduct surveys which will serve as bases for decisions regarding grazing duration and intensity on allotments comprising nearly 586,000 acres on Sana Fe National Forest. The surveys involved 116 families o...
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Vegetation changes were evaluated over an 11-year period (1995-2005) on 2 light- and 2 conservative-stocked Chihuahuan Desert pastures in south central New Mexico. Grazing treatments were applied to the pastures over a 5-year period from 1997 through 2001. Pastures were not grazed in the 1995-1996 and 2002-2005 periods due to drought. During the 19...
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Cow-calf productivity on 2 lightly (25%-30% use) and 2 conservatively grazed pastures (35%-40% use) were evaluated over a 5-year-period (1997 to 2001) in the Chihuahuan Desert of south-central New Mexico. Spring calving Brangus cows were randomly assigned to study pastures in January of each year. Experimental pastures were similar in area (1 098 +...
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Skyrocketing trade deficits coupled with depletion of oil and natural gas reserves could make rangeland livestock production essential to food security in the United States.
Article
Depletion of fossil fuels and global warming could drastically reduce world food production. Conserving and improving rangelands is important, because they likely will play an increased role in meeting world food needs.
Article
Vegetative differences and changes were evaluated over a 6-year period (1999-2004) on adjoining conservatively grazed and grazing-excluded (22 years) shortgrass rangelands in northwestern New Mexico. Autumn total perennial grass and blue grama (Bouteloua gracilis [Willd. ex Kunth] Lag. Griffiths) standing crop did not differ on grazed and grazing-e...
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An experiment examining the relationships between dietary and faecal phosphorus (P) concentration and intake and faecal output of P by steers is described. Six forages with a wide range of chemical properties were fed to six steers in a Latin square design. Dietary P concentration was highly associated with faecal P concentration in simple linear r...
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Comparative chemical composition, in vitro digestibility, and in vitro volatile fatty acid (VFA) concentration and molar proportions of current year's growth of twelve important native New Mexico forage species were evaluated. Volatile fatty acid data were collected on forage samples subjected to 12-h in vitro digestion using two different inoculum...
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The number of slides and frequency observations per slide required for microhistological analysis was determined. Slides should be prepared so that at least 20 frequency observations are recorded per slide. When five slides were prepared per sample, reasonable estimations were obtained for species comprising 20% or more of the diet. Minor and trace...
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Rapidly rising consumer debt, a real estate bubble, and depletion of world oil reserves could greatly affect western rangelands and ranching.
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Presentations about rangelands can be an effective way to better inform the public and attract students into college range programs.
Article
Vegetative differences and changes were evaluated over a 6-year period (1999-2004) on adjoining conservatively grazed and grazing-excluded (22 years) shortgrass rangelands in northwestern New Mexico. Autumn total perennial grass and blue grama (Bouteloua gracilis [Willd. ex Kunth] Lag. Griffiths) standing crop did not differ on grazed and grazing-e...
Article
Botanical composition of mule deer and elk diets in winter, spring, summer, and autumn was studied during 1998 and 1999 on woodland rangeland in north-central New Mexico using microhistological analysis of fecal samples. Our study area had no livestock grazing for 60 years but was moderately grazed by mule deer and elk. Elk and mule deer shared 3 o...
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Perennial grass production on the Chihuahuan Desert Rangeland Research Center in south-central New Mexico was correlated with precipitation characteristics over a 34-year period. Total December through September precipitation was highly correlated (r = +0.77, n = 34) with perennial grass production. Practical generalized indices were developed that...
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Scaled quail (Callipepla squamata) numbers were evaluated during and after a 2-year drought period using strip census techniques on 2 pastures in late seral rangeland ecological condition and 2 pastures in mid-seral rangeland ecological condtion. This study was conducted on the Chihuahuan Desert Rangeland Research Center (CDRRC) in south-central Ne...
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Vegetation changes were evaluated over a 13 year period (1988-2000) on moderately grazed and lightly grazed rangelands in the Chihuahuan Desert of south central New Mexico. During the study period, grazing use of primary forage species averaged 49 and 26% on moderately and lightly grazed rangelands, respectively. Autumn total grass and black grama...
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Seasonal wildlife observations were made along transects on 2 pastures conservatively grazed (36% use of perennial grasses) and 2 pastures moderately grazed (47% use of perennial grasses) in south central New Mexico in non-drought (1997) and drought years (1998). Experimental pastures were similar in soils, terrain, spacing of watering points, and...
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Short-duration grazing reduced individual cattle productivity in some of the African studies due to stress from heavy stocking and movement of cattle from one paddock to another. Some increase in stocking is possible with short-duration grazing compared to more simplistic systems because multi-paddocks improve livestock distribution. Gammon (1984)...
Article
Rangeland ecological condition was monitored over a 48 year period on 41 sites on Bureau of Land Management rangelands scattered across 6 counties in southwestern New Mexico. All sites were grazed by livestock during the study period. Sampling occurred in 1952, 1962, 1982, 1992, 1997, 1998, and 1999. A modified Parker 3 step method in conjunction w...
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We evaluated relationships between soil depth and vegetation standing crop components over a 3-year period on 3 adjoining pastures with similar size, vegetation, and soils on the Chihuahuan Desert Rangeland Research Center in south central New Mexico. Soils on our study pastures are primarily light sandy loams varying from a few centimeters to 1 m...
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In recent years livestock death losses from poisonous plants in the western United States have averaged about 2-3% annually. A review of 36 grazing studies in North America shows poisonous plant availability and death losses of livestock from poisonous plants are closely associated with grazing intensity. Across studies, livestock death losses to p...
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Grazing management practices can be key to accumulating mulch - vegetation residue - which is beneficial for decreasing soil erosion, improving water infiltration and increasing forage production on rangelands. The role of mulch or ungrazed vegetation that is allowed to naturally decompose isn't realized by many ranchers and some range mangers. Mul...
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The major constraints that confront mankind worldwide over the next 50 years include food scarcity, water scarcity, water contamination, climatic change, air contamination, energy scarcity, farmland depletion and loss of bio-diversity. Destruction of rain forest is a particular concern because of the critical value of these areas in preventing clim...
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Range trend is commonly defined as the direction and rate of change in rangeland condition. It is considered the most important indicator of management effectiveness by many, if not most, range professionals. However, there is a lack of critical analyses of the uses and problems associated with range trend. Our objective is to discuss the role of t...
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Mourning Doves are the most commonly hunted game bird in New Mexico based on hunter harvest data collected by New Mexico Department of Game and Fish. Research is limited on the influence of rangeland ecological condition on Mourning Dove (Zenaida macroura) populations in the Chihuahuan Desert of New Mexico. Mourning Dove numbers were evaluated peri...
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In the widespread landscapes of the western United States there is a need for natural resource monitoring systems that allow ranchers, government agencies and private land owners to make land management decisions. There are no generally accepted and easily applied criteria for evaluating and comparing health of riparian ecosystems. Riparian habitat...
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During the 1980's short-duration grazing attracted much attention based on the claims it would accelerate range improvement while at the same time accommodating higher stocking rates. On many ranches it was contended that stocking rates could be doubled or even tripled while at the same time improving both range and livestock productivity. We will...
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We believe that in the 21st century, various, range management decisions on public and private rangelands will depend heavily on grazing capacity surveys. Over the past 10 years several similar scientifically based procedures for determining stocking rates and grazing capacity have been developed. They are becoming somewhat standardized on animal i...
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Productivity of Barzona, Brangus, and Beefmaster cattle was evaluated on conservatively (n=2) (40 ha AU(-1)) and moderately (28.5 ha AU(-1)) stocked pastures (n=2) in the Chihuahuan Desert of south-central New Mexico. Equivalent numbers of suckled, first-calf heifers of each breed (n = 31) weighing 333+/-11 kg were randomly assigned to the study pa...