The Saskatchewan Stock Growers Association handed out their annual TESA honor as part of the 2022 AGM and Convention in Assiniboia.

The Environmental Stewardship Award recognizes excellence in environmental stewardship in the ranching industry.

This years TESA honor went to Gerald and Patti Anhorn of Elrose.

Tom Harrison is the Program Manager for the Saskatchewan Stock Growers Foundation.

Harrison says the couple ranch in the north end of the Missouri Coteau with 4000 acres of native grassland, and 4000 acres of marginal cropland that they seeded over to perennial cover.

"What they are striving to do is defer grazing til September on some of their native and also provide at least a year long rest on some other parts of the native. That's really important. So what that does it allows them to to have the range in really, really good shape, stockpile forage, its drought preparedness."

He notes the land supports not only their cattle herd, but is also home to wildlife and a number of species at risk making it an important area for environmental conservation.

The TESA award is presented to innovative cattle producers who have realized the value of implementing environmentally and economically sustainable cattle production on their operations.

Harrison notes they intensively manage the tame pastures and have added additional water sources through pipelines and remote watering systems to extend grazing the native grass.

Gerald Anhorn says they have had the privilege of putting learning into practice and seeing the benefits of what caring for and managing limited water resources, environmentally sensitive lands, native prairie and wildlife habitat can do. 

"The ability to see the increase in productivity, improved health of our land, while improving natural habitat and consistently improving our bottom line has been rewarding to say the least."

Gerald and Patti Anhorn of Elrose are The Environmental Stewardship Award winners for 2022, the couple now move on to compete for the national title.