Cattle Ranges of the Southwest Page: 5 of 32
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CATTLE RANGES OF THE SOUTHWEST.
EARLY USE AND PRESENT CONDITION OF TEXAS PASTURES.
The purpose of this report is to invite the attention of stockmen
and farmers of the Southwest toif:iat kes in (lealing with native
grasses and other forage plants and to offer for their guidance some
suggestions based upon experience and observation.
A full and complete history of the stock industry of the whole of the
Southwest can not be given at this time; but the condition of one
of the richest sections of Texas, a region which has been actively
engaged in this branch of agriculture for fully thirty-five years, may
be taken to represent in detail the state of affairs over a much wider
extent of territory. The lessons here learned may be made applicable
to all sections where the native grasses are depended on to support
herds of cattle and flocks of sheep. The dangers that confront Texas
cattlemen and which must surely follow continued overstocking should
serve as a warning to other similar pastoral regions.
CENTRAL TEXAS RANGES.
This portion of Texas includes all the counties of Stonewall, Haskell,
Throckmorton, Fisher, Jones, Shackelford, Nolan, Taylor, Callahan,
Runnels, Coleman, Tom Green, Concho, and McCulloch, and parts
of the counties of Kent, Scurry, Mitchell, Coke, San Saba, Brown,
Eastland, Stephens, and Young. It embraces a territory about 100
miles wide, east and west, and about 200 miles long, north and south.
The characteristics common to these counties are:
(1) An open country, in the main, with some black-jack, post-oak,
and live-oak timber on the uplands and ridges.
(2) A scattering growth of mesquite trees on the lands away from
the streams, which, together with the timber on the streams, furnish
ample firewood and posts for fencing purposes.
(3) Numerous streams that furnish an abundance of " stock water,"
fringed along their banks with groves of pecan, elm, hackberry, wild
china, cottonwood, and other trees.
(4) An altitude ranging from 1,500 to about 1,900 feet above the sea
(5) A climate pure and bracing.
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