Pheasants Forever honors Springers with Conservationist of the Year Award

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Pictured at the Pheasants Forever Award presentation are (L-R) Gene and Besime Springer, Isaac Full (Pheasants Forever Wildlife Biologist), Dave Nomsen (Pheasants Forever Vice President of Government Affairs), Tom Fuller (Pheasants Forever Field Services Director).

Gene and Besime Springer of Timber Lake were recognized as the South Dakota Pheasants Forever Conservationists of the Year at the Pheasants Forever state convention in Aberdeen on Jan. 12.

The Springers own and operate a 1,540-acre ranch 5 miles southwest of Timber Lake. They run a cattle operation and a paid pheasant hunting operation in the fall.

“They have a vision, and a mission to operate at a level that best benefits their land, the local wildlife, and the ecosystem surrounding their property,” said Dan DeBoer, SD Coordinating Wildlife Biologist for Pheasants Forever, Inc./Quail Forever.

Gene uses rotational grazing for approximately 40-50 cow-calf pairs. With the help of partners NRCS and Pheasants Forever, the Springers have implemented many conservation practices such as establishing grazing paddocks using hard wire fences, electric fences, and solar powered water tanks. The use of these practices has not only led to a healthier herd of cattle and improvements to the quality of their land, but has also improved their operation’s bottom line, DeBoer said.


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