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Targeted Grazing for Fuel Reduction: Case Studies from East Bay Regional Park District

Thursday, March 16, 2023 8:30am-4:00pm

This was an opportunity to learn about targeted grazing as part of a vegetation management and fuels reduction strategy. 
Participants improved their understanding of why people might choose targeted grazing as part of a vegetation management and fuels reduction strategy, and how that gets implemented.  
Fuels Reduction Coordinator at East Bay Regional Park District, Steve Keller, explained what is required to manage a grazing contract on a day-to-day basis. Rangeland Specialist at EBRPD, Allison Rofe, discussed the goals of the East Bay Regional Park’s livestock grazing program including treatment, design, permitting pathway, and methodology of partnerships. Star Creek Land Stewards', Bianca Soares, highlighted targeted grazers' ability to adapt methods based on project goals and differences in species' grazing styles. 
Time Item
8:30am Workshop begins, presenter introductions
  1st site: Steve Keller, Allison Rofe, Jim Mohring, Bianca Soares
  2nd site: Mineral Springs: Steve Keller


12:20pm 3rd site: Anza Parking Lot: Steve Keller, Bianca Soares

4th site: Grizzly Peak Road at Kenyon Road: Steve Keller, Bianca Soares

3:40pm Workshop ends


Allison Rofe, Rangeland Specialist, East Bay Regional Park District

Allison has worked in California rangelands for 13 years. She holds a B.S in Rangeland Resource Studies from Cal Poly Humboldt (HSU) and a Masters in Rangeland Management from UC Berkeley. Allison has worked as a rangeland conservationist for the NRCS, RCD, and currently is the Rangeland Specialist for the Park District. She is a California Certified Rangeland Manager and currently serves on the Cal-Pac Society for Range Management Board and CCRC Steering Committee. Allison loves dancing, birding, solving crossword puzzles, and hanging out with her family.

Steve Keller, Fuels Reduction Coordinator, East Bay Regional Park District

Steve Keller manages hazardous wildland fuels reduction projects throughout the East Bay Hills. April through August his primarily role is overseeing the targeted goat and sheep grazing contracts, which aim to reduce flashy fuels within the wildland-urban interface (WUI). Steve acts as the liaison between park operations staff, three (3) grazing contractors, and the public. Mr. Keller holds a BS in Forestry and Natural Resource Management from UC Berkeley’s College of Natural Resources. Mr. Keller has been employed with EBRPD for 11 months. Prior to EBRPD he worked as an Urban Forester for San Francisco Public Works, and spent five years as a vegetation management contractor for PG&E.

Bianca Soares, Star Creek Land Stewards 

Bianca A. Soares is the Project Manager of Star Creek Land Stewards. She’s the 4th generation in her family’s sheep company & has a tremendous passion for livestock and has been around sheep all her life.  She graduated from UC Davis with a Bachelor's Degree in Managerial Economics in 2018, and has spent much time immersed in the world of targeted grazing, learning about the benefits of sustainable grazing through proper management. Bianca is the main communicator between our team and clients. She strategizes grazing plans with each Herder to best fit the priorities of individual projects. She creates and collaborates on project maps, organizes water sources, coordinates transportation, performs site visits and manages the herd schedules.  In the non-grazing season, Bianca works to conclude post-season reviews and begins preparing the schedule for the next season. She also assists with the management of Talbott Sheep Co. her grandparents meat & wool sheep operation and serves on the Targeted Grazing Committee for California Wool Growers Association and is on the Board of the California Sheep Commission.

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