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Wildlife Friendly Ranching

People living and thriving among healthy populations of wildlife is critical to the success of American Prairie.

Wild Sky® is a collaboration between American Prairie and ranchers that are living and operating in key wildlife corridors and within neighboring communities in central Montana. Participating ranchers can commit to a menu of wildlife-friendly ranching practices that have been identified as beneficial to conservation. Upon successful implementation of those practices, American Prairie makes direct cash payments to participating ranchers, which are made possible in part from American Prairie donor support. By partnering with our ranching neighbors in this way, the borders of the prairie are softened and become a buffer of tolerance and support for wildlife.

The program is mutually beneficial for both ranchers and American Prairie, and is an example of the tangible impact of donor support. Wild Sky rewards the good stewardship of ranchers, provides a benefit for welcoming wildlife (that otherwise could be a burden), and contributes to a landscape in which both people and wildlife can thrive.

Ranchers interested in participating or learning more about Wild Sky are invited to contact Daniel Kinka


American Prairie uses a tool called the Freese Scale to evaluate how land management decisions impact ecological conditions on our lands. Wild Sky’s wildlife-friendly protocols are also based on the scale, resulting in softer boundaries between ranch lands and the prairie.