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Land that is not suitable for growing crops is used for ranching livestock. In Saskatchewan, the majority of ranches are in the southwest corner of the province. The sheltered valleys with lots of water are ideal for livestock. The livestock are able to graze in the pastures during the summer. The livestock eat hay and grain in the winter.

Two illustrated cowboys ride through a sunset-lit pasture on brown horses to check their herd of cattle. There is a homestead in the background with a house, barn, and a fence with a horse standing next to it.

Ranches are set up on land that cannot be used for growing crops.

A ranch with a house and barn and fences stand in the bottom of a green-grass valley.

Valleys are ideal for ranches because they provide shelter for livestock.


In the late 1850s, livestock was brought from the western US to British Columbia, eventually coming to Saskatchewan. In 1874, the North-West Mounted Police provided a local market and security for ranchers. Many policemen started ranching after they were done serving with the police. Wealthy Englishmen were also attracted to the ranching lifestyle and came over to start their own ranches.

A rancher builds an addition onto the back of his barn. He is using a hammer while he stands on top of the new addition.


This rancher is adding an addition to the back of his barn in September 1945, potentially to add to his herd of cattle.