The Range Program was recently brought under the umbrella of the Yakama Nation Wildlife, Range, & Vegetation Management Program. The Yakama Natiohas a total of 36 established range units containing approximately 900,000 acres. Of that total range unit acreage, approximately 500,000 acres are in forested land and 400,000 acres are in the open rangeland or shrub steppe.
The main focus of the Range Program is livestock management and the administration of grazing permits, however the overriding goal of the program is to preserve the ecological integrity of the Yakama Nation’s rangeland so it is capable of sustaining a variety of uses and values including livestock grazing, wildlife, fisheries, cultural values, traditional foods and medicines and stable watersheds.
The program has commissioned an inventory of grazing capacity in lower elevation forests. The first year of the inventory was completed in-house by Wildlife staff in 2009. The inventory is expected to be completed in approximately five years.
Grazing permits are administered by the Bureau of Indian Affairs and the Yakama Nation Tribal Council with specific committee direction from the Timber, Grazing, and Overall Economic Development Committee. Policy and regulatory authority comes from 25 Code of Federal Regulation Part 166 and Tribal Grazing Resolution No. T-073-05. The management of the range resource is coordinated with the joint BIA and Tribal Wildlife and Range Program, permittees and the Fisheries and Cultural Programs of the YN Department of Natural Resources. The program staff is made up of 2 non-Yakamas under BIA and 2 Yakama Members under the Yakama Nation Wildlife, Range,& Vegetation Program.Contact Info.
Questions regarding the Yakama Nation Range Program can be directed to Range Management Specialist, Steve Wangemann at (509) 865-2255, x4193.