Grazing Management

Grazing permitees are individuals or organizations who have acquired the privilege to graze livestock on National Forests or National Grasslands. Part of the mission of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, who stands as the umbrella agency over the Forest Service, is to the responsibility of providing a safety net for millions of Americans who are food-insecure, … and for providing access to food, a healthful diet and nutrition education in a way that supports American agriculture and inspires public confidence (USDA). The Forest Service’ top priority is to maintain and improve the health, diversity, and productivity of the nation’s forests and grasslands to meet the needs of current and future generations. A few items included in the agency’s multiple use, sustained yield mission includes recreation, minerals and geology, water, and restoration.

It was recognized early in the history of the Forest Reserves that grazing was a legitimate use of the land. The Forest Service administers over six thousand active permits for livestock grazing on NFS lands. It is the Forest Service's goal to conserve the rich resources of the National Forests and Grasslands while supporting communities greatly dependent upon these very same resources. While grazing is an important use, we will also continue to move forward with improving our management and preventing degradation of soil, water, and vegetation.

Learn more about the history of and current range management policies.

Upper Gila Riparian Litigation

In September 2021, a judge for the United States District Court for the District of Arizona, Tucson Division approved the joint stipulation and settlement for the lawsuit concerning the US Forest Service’s administration of livestock grazing on grazing allotments within the Upper Gila Watershed on the Apache-Sitgreaves and Gila National Forests.

Court Documents: Litigation and Settlement Documents