Working Farms and Ranches

LF Dairy, Manhattan, MT. Photo courtesy NRCS.

Where do I start? How do I start?

Those are two common questions farmers and ranchers have if they want to learn more about conservation easements. There is no right or wrong way for landowners to investigate the possibility of a conservation easement being a good fit for their family or agricultural operation, but there are several actions landowners can take to be more versed about land trusts and conservation easements. Landowners are strongly encouraged to take these actions and learn as much as possible about conservation easements and land trusts (or public agencies). This website is in part devoted to assisting landowners and the public obtain information about conservation easements. The “Conservation Easement” and “Working Farms and Ranches” sections are especially designed to help landowners learn more about land trusts and conservation easements.

Due diligence is important, fully understanding all aspects of the conservation easement is important, obtaining professional and financial advice is important, including your family in discussions about a conservation easement is important, and understanding the terms and impacts of the conservation easement is important.

The bottom line is this: The decision to place a conservation easement on your farm or ranch is an important one, and should be treated that way.