The Ontario Cattlemen’s Association and RBC Royal Bank have named Amos and Heidi Brielmann of Pine River Ranch at Pinewood, Ont. (about 115 km southeast of Sprague, Man.) as the winners of the OCA’s Environmental Stewardship Award (TESAward) for 2009.
The Brielmanns, who operate a 1,500-head cow-calf ranch with about 5,000 acres of hayland and pasture, were nominated by Kim Jo Bliss, also a producer in the Rainy River district. “Here in Rainy River we are truly lucky to have such an environmental role model and steward,” Bliss said of the Brielmanns’ ranch.
The Brielmanns’ environmental projects have included fenced-off waterways and installation of solar pumps, noting the challenge of providing fresh water for up to 600 calves, even at -40C. The Brielmanns’ solar-powered remote watering systems have led to “strong acceptance” of the systems throughout the local farming community.
The Brielmanns also created riparian areas over 12 km and expanded their wintering lots from 17 acres to 106 acres, reducing animal density. Over 15,000 trees have been planted on the ranch, OCA said.