Beaver Creek Ranch

2022 Landowner of the Year - Cody Region
Get Involved / Landowner of the Year / Beaver Creek Ranch

Landowners: Deb McCormick

The Beaver Creek Ranch sits in one of two primary watersheds including Beaver Creek and Bear Creek which flow westerly from the Bighorn Mountains into the Bighorn River. This stream serves as one of only a few perennial water sources in roughly 150 square miles of low elevation sagebrush steppe and saltbush habitats restricted by an 11 inch precipitation zone. The function of these streams is integral to the conservation of wildlife in this area which includes roughly 300 pronghorn antelope, thousands of migratory and resident mule deer, 1000 elk and an isolated sage grouse population.

As a former board member for the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation, the McCormick family took it upon themselves to enroll the ranch in an RMEF conservation easement. This dedication to wildlife was felt most from 2020-21 when the Bighorn Basin experienced extreme drought conditions, exacerbating stress on wildlife.

In 2019 Deb was approached by department biologists with the interest in enhancing riparian habitat through the removal of conifers. Deb gave the department and its staff the opportunity to exercise our best management practices to enrich valuable wildlife habitats. Since 2020 roughly 140 acres have been treated and signs of improvement have already been detected. Beavers have returned to the Beaver Creek Ranch and are assisting in the improvement of habitat.

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