According to the 2007 Census of Agriculture, Ada County ranked 3rd out of 44 counties in Idaho in total number of horses and ponies with 3,904. A simple “windshield survey” of these horse properties (commonly referred to as “ranchettes”) reveals that many horse owners could use a little help when it comes to natural resource conservation.
Although their acreage may be small, the damage caused by these ranchettes can be significant. Soil compaction, weed proliferation, surface water quality impairment, and foul odors are just some of the issues that can arise from inappropriate natural resource management on horse properties. The health of horses can suffer too.
Recognizing that the collective impact from ranchettes on our natural resources is a growing concern, we recently partnered with Alayne Blickle, creator of the award winning Horses for Clean Water program, to create three useful guides for horse property owners within the Ada Soil & Water Conservation District. Each of the guides can be accessed by clicking the links below.
In addition to our guides, small acreage horse property owners can access an excellent publication regarding ranchette management from the Oregon State University Extension Service by clicking here.