Shepherds of Coyote Rocks: Public Lands, Private Herds and the Natural World

Shepherds of Coyote Rocks: Public Lands, Private Herds and the Natural World

by Cat Urbigkit
     
 

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Cat Urbigkit journeys alone to spend a season on Wyoming’s open range tending to a herd of domestic sheep as they give birth amid the challenges of nature – from severe weather to a wealth of predators. Her only companions are the livestock guardian animals (BIG dogs and a pair of burros named Bill and Hillary!) that repeatedly prove their worth in

Overview

Cat Urbigkit journeys alone to spend a season on Wyoming’s open range tending to a herd of domestic sheep as they give birth amid the challenges of nature – from severe weather to a wealth of predators. Her only companions are the livestock guardian animals (BIG dogs and a pair of burros named Bill and Hillary!) that repeatedly prove their worth in devotion to protecting the herd.
Urbigkit offers interesting reflections on the role of pastoralists around the globe and on the controversial issue in the Western US of private livestock herds being run on public lands. The intimate ways in which abstract public policy plays out on the open range is eye-opening.
More than a tale of herding sheep, Shepherds of Coyote Rocks is an action-packed true story that reveals the broad spectrum of the human relationship with nature, from harmony to rugged adventure.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
In this warm and lively memoir, Urbigkit (Yellowstone Wolves) eloquently documents a season spent with her dogs, burros, and the natural inhabitants of the western Wyoming range while tending a flock of domestic sheep. Guardian dogs and humans work together to protect the flock from predation and dangerous weather, and to navigate the difficulties of the birthing season. She discusses the politics of transhumance, the seasonal movement of shepherds and their grazing livestock, in America and around the world, and how migratory humans traditionally fit into the natural landscape. In addition, Urbigkit highlights the difficult relationships between environmental conservationists, wildlife policy makers, wild animal advocates, and those whose livelihoods are dependent on the land concerning how public lands are used or restricted and how human populations involved with livestock are displaced. Lovely black-and-white photographs taken by Urbigkit include broad vistas that express the setting’s stark majesty and the relative smallness of the traveling herds. This enlightening read will appeal even to city dwellers who may not understand the impact of environmental protection policies that block off land from its traditional human uses. Photos. (Sept.)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781581571578
Publisher:
Countryman Press, The
Publication date:
09/17/2012
Pages:
289
Product dimensions:
5.90(w) x 8.32(h) x 1.01(d)

Meet the Author

Award-winning author and photographer Cat Urbigkit’s home base is on a western Wyoming ranch. She is a correspondent for a variety of media in the western region and a contributing writer to Stephen Bodio’s Querencia blog.

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