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Abstract

A long standing question in range management concerns the relative importance of the stocking rate versus the length of time during which animals graze a particular rangeland. We address this question by analyzing the problem faced by a private rancher who wishes to minimize the long run expected net unit cost (LRENC) from range operations by choosing either the stocking rate or the length of time during which his animals graze his rangeland. We construct a renewal-theoretic model and show that, in general, this rancher's LRENC with an optimally chosen stocking rate is lower than his LRENC with an optimally chosen grazing cycle length.

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