following information is a verbatim transcript
provided by the Methow Valley Ranger District,
24 West Chewuch Road ,
, 98862 509-996-2266
RESPONSIBLE FOR THE FENCE?
June is the time of year when permitted
livestock are being placed on to National
Forest. The livestock grazing permittees do
their required fence maintenance at this time.
In years past there has been considerable
confusion on the part of the private landowner
about fence construction and maintenance
responsibilities and we would like to offer the
County has a
checkerboard of public lands and more and more
people are living next to National Forest.
Fencing issues are getting more complex as
larger parcels are being divided. More people
are less connected with livestock and
agriculture, and landowners may not want to
fence because it is expensive and they do not
feel that they should have to keep other
people’s livestock off their property.
Livestock owners are responsible for keeping
their grazing stock off the National Forest
(unless they have the appropriate permits) and
all private landowners are responsible for
keeping any unwanted livestock off their
property. The cost of construction and
maintaining private property fences along
National Forest boundary is incurred by the
policy which is under the jurisdiction of the
is open to all livestock including those
permitted on National Forest. See Title 16,
Animals and Livestock, of the Revised Code of
Washington (RCW) for specific state law
pertaining to fencing.
Forest Service is not required to fence its
boundaries to protect them against unauthorized
livestock or to fence its boundaries to control
the livestock permitted to graze on the National
Forest. The Forest Service also has no
obligation to maintain any existing boundary
forest boundary is often not fenced, but may be
marked with yellow or red boundary signs. These
markers are placed directly over the surveyed
boundary and read “National Forest Beyond This
Sign.” If the boundary of your land has not been
identified, it is advisable to have the boundary
surveyed and marked by a licensed land surveyor.
Where private lands have a common boundary with
the National Forest System lands, the landowner
may cooperate with the Forest Service in a
survey of this boundary. This will assure that
the boundary is accurately located and marked
and prevent the cost of relocating a fence or
helpful to inform the livestock operator and the
Forest Service if you suspect that Forest
Service permitted cattle are on your private
land or adjacent private lands. It is very
helpful to get the eartag color, brand, and
color of the livestock.
information, contact Dean McFetridge at the
Methow Valley Ranger District at 509-996-4030.