Len Carpenter by Mike Hudak
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The Government’s Rigidity in Managing Livestock Grazing During Drought
Although he grew up on a southern Colorado cattle ranch, Len Carpenter’s greater interest in wildlife led him to major in wildlife biology at Colorado State University (CSU) and then join the Colorado Division of Wildlife (CDOW) as a research technician. Inspired by that experience, Carpenter pursued doctoral research at CSU that focused on elk and mule deer winter ranges, and ways to restore those ranges that had been overgrazed by wild and domestic ungulates.

Upon completing his PhD in 1976, Carpenter continued as a CDOW researcher on Colorado’s western slope where, among other activities, he investigated methods for inventorying wild ungulates. In 1981, he became the supervisor for all of CDOW’s research work involving cervids. In 1989, Carpenter took charge of all wildlife programs in the state.

Wishing to concentrate more on conservation work than on administration, Carpenter, in 1996, left CDOW to become the Southwest field representative for the Wildlife Management Institute where he’s worked on a variety of conservation issues in pursuit of science-based on-the-ground management.

In this video, Len Carpenter tells how the reluctance of the government to reduce livestock grazing during drought can have harmful consequences for wildlife.

Recorded in August 2004. Read the edited transcript of Len Carpenter’s entire interview.