Dr. Charles A. Taylor, Jr., Professor, Regents Fellow & Research Station Superintendent

Texas A&M AgriLife Research – SonoraCharles (Butch) Taylor, Jr.
P.O. Box 918
Sonora, TX 76950-0918
325-387-3168 – Office
325-387-5045 – Fax




My primary interests include the components of grazing management (i.e., determining proper stocking rates, season of use, grazing systems, and kind and classes of livestock), and also the relationship between weather, soil, vegetation (native and introduced), animals (domestic and wildlife), prescribed fire, and economics. In order to address most of the important questions involved in grazing management, the Sonora research program is a multi-disciplinary effort that involves various departments on the Texas A&M University campus as well as other universities.



Spanish-Boer, Rambouillet, Dorpado & Angora Breed Comparison Project

Fire & Goats – A Potent Mix for Restoring West Texas Rangelands




Ph.D., Range Science ▪ Texas A&M University (1983)
M.S., Range Science ▪ Texas A&M University, 1973
B.S., Range Science ▪ Texas A&M University, 1970

Research Experience:

Research Station Superintendent ▪ Texas A&M AgriLife Research Center-Sonora (1984-present)
Professor ▪ Texas A&M University Research Station – Sonora (1996)
Associate Professor ▪ Texas A&M University Research Station – Sonora (1990-95)
Assistant Professor ▪ Texas A&M University Research Station – Sonora (1983-90)
Research Scientist ▪ Texas A&M University Research Station – Sonora (1982-83)
Research Associate ▪ Texas A&M University Research Station – Sonora (1974-82)
Technician I ▪ Texas A&M University Research Station – Sonora (1972-74)


Current Professional Work & Experience Within Texas A&M AgriLife Research:

Serve as project leader for grazing management research on the Edwards Plateau. Research emphasizes the manipulation and use of range vegetation by fire and rangeland herbivores. Responsibilities include allocation of land, livestock, equipment, financial and human resources to research programs; to integrate research programs with all interrelated disciplines within the Texas A&M University System and other universities interested in conducting agricultural research on the Sonora Research Station. Duties also include working with individual producers, producer organizations, State Cooperative Extension Service, Natural Resource Conservation Service, departments of TAMU, and other agencies to transfer technology to grazing land managers.
Serve as superintendent of the Sonora Research Station and promotes the understanding of proper grazing management and prescribed fire through field days, field tours, seminars, invited papers and individual discussions with producers and other clientele. Duties include administrative management of the Sonora Research Station including fiscal budgeting, purchasing and accounting; personal actions including employment and supervision of support staff and the construction and maintenance of physical facilities.
Serve as TAMUS representative in the local area. Responsible for the manufacture, processing, and sales of Ovine Ecthyma Vaccine to the sheep and goat industry.


Career Highlights:

Grazing management technology development and adoption by landowners
Research on the Texas Agricultural Experiment Station at Sonora has documented the effects of grazing management on animal diets and performance, the rangeland vegetation, and on hydrological characteristics of Edwards Plateau rangelands. This information has been presented to ranchers, students, colleagues, and agencies and has lead to widespread adoption of grazing management technology throughout the State and Southwest.

Juniper (cedar) management via the use of fire and goats
Research has documented that secondary plant compounds called terpenoids limit juniper consumption by goats. It has been discovered that this problem can be partially overcome by top-killing large junipers with fire and/or by using selective-breeding programs to select goats with the genetic ability to tolerate more terpenoids and juniper forage. Juniper invasion is a serious threat to the economic survival of ranchers and rural communities in most of the Edwards Plateau, and ranchers are rapidly adopting this low-cost, “natural control” technology.

Summer burning for juniper and pricklypear management
Research has shown that fires must be conducted under hot, dry conditions to effectively control juniper and pricklypear cactus in the southwestern Edwards Plateau region; that summer fires do not permanently damage the desirable grasses; and, that summer fires can be safely conducted. This technology is rapidly being adopted by ranchers, largely because of the low cost of summer burning compared to the very high costs for alternative juniper and pricklypear control methods.

Development of the Edwards Plateau Prescribed Burning Association


Professional and Academic Appointments:

Research Station Superintendent ▪ 1983-present
Professor ▪ Texas A&M University, 1996-present
Associate Professor ▪ Texas A&M University, 1990-1996
Assistant Professor ▪ Texas A&M University, 1983-1990
Research Scientist ▪ Texas A&M University, 1982-1983
Research Associate ▪ Texas A&M University, 1974-1982
Technician I ▪ Texas A&M University, 1972-74
Graduate Student ▪ Texas A&M University, 1970-1971


Professional Affiliations:

Texas Section, Society for Range Management

  • President (1993)
  • 2nd Vice President (1991)
  • 1st Vice President (1992)
  • Director (1984-1986)

Society for Range Management

  • Member, Advisory Council (1992)
  • Member (1977-present)


Teaching, Academic, and Other Activities:

Adjunct Professor ▪ Angelo State University
Adjunct Professor ▪ Sul Ross State University
Adjunct Professor ▪ Texas Tech University
Adjunct Professor ▪ Oklahoma State University
Graduate Student Faculty ▪ Texas A&M University
Director ▪ Academy for Ranch Management
Administrator ▪ Edwards Plateau Prescribed Burning Association, Inc.
Vice-chairman ▪ Prescribed Burning Board, State of Texas


Honors & Awards:

  • Sustained Lifetime Achievement Award – Society for Range Management (2007)
  • Special Congressional Recognition – Outstanding Achievement (2007)
  • Texas A&M University – Regents Fellow Service Award (2006)
  • Texas Sheep & Goat Raisers’ Association – Special Achievement Award (2004)
  • Texas Environmental Excellence Award – Governor’s Office (2002)
  • Society for Range Management – Outstanding Achievement Award (2001)
  • Outstanding Contribution to Range Management Award – Texas Section, Society for Range Management – (2000)
  • Texas Section, Society for Range Management – Publication Award (2000)
  • Texas Section, Society for Range Management – Publication Award (1997)
  • Sutton County 4-H Silver Spur Award (1988)


Selected Publications:

  • Taylor, C.A., Jr. 2008. Ecological consequences of using prescribed fire and herbivory to manage Juniperus encroachment. In: O. Van Auken [ED]. Pages 239 to 252. Western North American Juiperus Communities: A dynamic vegetation type. Springer
  • Campbell, E.S., and C.A. Taylor, Jr. 2007. Monoterpene production in redberry juniper foliage following fire. Journal of Rangeland Ecol and Manage 60:104-109.
  • Campbell, E.S., C.A. Taylor, Jr., J.W. Walker, C.J. Lupton, D.F. Waldron, and S.Y. Landau. 2007. Effects of supplementation on juniper intake by goats. Rangeland Ecol Manage 60:588-595.
  • Taylor, C.A., Jr. 2006. Targeted grazing to manage fire risk. In: K. Launchbaugh and J. Walker [EDS] Pages 108 to 115. Targeted Grazing: A natural approach to vegetation management and landscape enhancement. American Sheep Industry Association.
  • Taylor, C.A., Jr. 2005. Prescribed burning cooperatives: Empowering and equipping ranchers to manage rangelands. Rangelands 27 (1):18-23.

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