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What are

Wyoming's Natural Resources?

start

Introduction

Wyoming is home to a big variety of naturalresources. These resources make it possible for people to raise food, create useful items, and produce energy. Wyoming's resources also give us a fun place to explore, relax, and vacation.It is our job to take care of these resources so they will be here for our children and our grandchildren. Taking care of our resources is called "stewardship."Complete all three missions to learn more about Wyoming's resources, and how we can all be good stewards of them!

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sources of life, materials, or energy that we are able to get naturally from the earth

HINT: Move your mouse over the bold words for more information!

HINT: Look for helpers like me who will give you more information during each mission!

Your Mission

Complete each mission to discover Wyoming's many resources and how we can all be good stewards for our state.

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an individual who manages areas or resources

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Mission 01 - Agriculture

Identify Wyoming's agriculture resources.Pay special attention to which crops and livestock are grown in different counties. Learn more about the different crops and livestock by clicking on the symbols in the map key. Watch for helpers who have tips on how to be a good steward!

A map key,or legend, shows the symbols used on a map and tells what each symbol means.

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Wyoming's Agriculture Resources

How do ranchers practice good stewardship?Just a few ways are:Making sure animals have food and water (especially during bad weather!)Rotating their livestock through different pasturesKeeping their livestock safe from predators

Not everyone who works in agriculture is a farmer or rancher. Other jobs in agriculture include:VeterinarianSoil scientistsCrop researchersTruck driversFood scientistsand many more!

Farmers practice good stewardship too!Some of the ways farmers can be good stewards are:Rotating crops into different fieldsUsing irrigation systems to efficiently water cropsKeeping the soil healthy with different farming techniques

photo by Patty Small There are around 1,320,000 head of cattle and calves in Wyoming. Many of those calves will become the beef on your dinner plate!

photo by Lacee SimsWyoming bees work hard! In 2017, 2,067,000 pounds of honey were produced in Wyoming.

photo by Liz LauckCorn is one of Wyoming's top crops. In 2017, Wyoming farms harvested about 63,000 acres of corn for grain and about 30,000 acres of corn silage used for feeding animals.

photo courtesy of Wyoming Beef CouncilDairy cows provide dairy products like milk, butter, cheese, and yogurt rather than meat. You won't find many large dairies in Wyoming, but there are a few!

photo by Liz LauckWinter wheat, barley, and oats are the major grain crops grown in Wyoming. Wyoming ranks #5 in the United States in the production of Barley!

photo by Stephanie RussellHay is the largest crop raised in Wyoming. 2,479,000 tons of hay were harvested in 2017!

photo by Patty Small Some Wyoming counties are home to large hog farms. Hogs from these farms are sold to supply bacon, ham, sausage, and pork chops to grocery stores and restaurants.

photo by Stephanie RussellThe poultry category includes chickens, turkeys, ducks, and geese. Chickens are the most common poultry in Wyoming and are raised to provide both eggs and meat.

Photo by Raenell Taylor Wyoming is the #4 producer of sheep and lambs in the United States! Sheep are raised for meat and wool.

Photo by Kerin ClarkSugar beets are grown in several areas of Wyoming. After they are harvested, the beets are cooked and turned into sugar! The left-over beet pulp can be used as livestock feed.

photo by Stephanie RussellIn 2017, 83 Wyoming farms harvested and sold vegetables. These vegetables include snap beans, carrots, cucumbers, lettuce, potatoes, squash, tomatoes, and more!

photo by Liz Lauck Wyoming ranks #10 in the United States in the production of dry edible beans.

Click on the symbols in the map key to learn about these resources!

Question 1/3

Veterinarian

Geologist

Tour Guide

Not all people who work in agriculture are farmers or ranchers. Which one of these jobs is also involved in agriculture?

Question 2/3

True or False?Cattle, sheep and hay are raised in every county in Wyoming.

False

True

Need to look again?

Question 3/3

Which map symbol tells you what counties grow wheat, barley, and oats?

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Go to Mission 2

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Mission 02 - Minerals & Energy

Identify Wyoming's mineral and energy resources. Pay special attention to which minerals or energy sources are produced in different counties. Learn more about the minerals and energy sources by clicking on the symbols in the map key. Watch for helpers who have tips on how to be a good steward!

A map key,or legend, shows the symbols used on a map and tells what each symbol means.

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Wyoming'sMineral & Energy Resources

Wyoming produces 15 times more energy than it consumes!Energy-related mining and mineral extraction is the biggest industry in Wyoming. The tax revenue from minerals and energy help run the government, build schools and highways, maintain the states' water systems, and fund the Permanent Mineral Trust Fund.

Did you know?Mining in Wyoming creates lots of jobs. For every person who works in the coal industry, three more jobs are created.If you want to work in mining or energy production, you have lots of options. Some of these jobs include:GeologistsEngineersHeavy-equipment operatorsMechanicsWeldersPlus many more!

Mining and energy companies practice good stewardship!After resources are no longer being extracted, mines and wells are be restored through a process called reclamation. Building and equipment are removed, and dirt left from the mining process is used to fill in any holes. Top-soil is put back, and grasses and shrubs are planted to create habitat for wildlife.

photo courtesy of the Wyoming Mining AssociationWyoming has led the United States in coal production since 1986! The low-sulfur coal produced in Wyoming is considered to be clean-burning which makes its use better for the environment.

photo courtesy of the Wyoming Mining Association Bentonite is a brownish-gray clay that can absorb up to 10 times its weight in water, and swell up to 16 times its normal size. This makes bentonite a popular ingredient in kitty litter. It is also used in animal feeds, drilling fluids, crayons, medications, and cosmetics!

photo by James St. John, creative commonsGypsum is a soft mineral that is often used as a fertilizer. Other uses for gypsum include plaster, chalk, and drywall.

creative commons image Wyoming power plants produce a lot of electricity! In fact, almost 60% of the electricity produced in Wyoming is used in other states.

photo courtesy of Wyoming REAThere are 21 hydropower dams in Wyoming, with some of them dating back to the early 1900s! Hydro-electric power is the 3rd largest source of renewable energy production in Wyoming.

photo courtesy of the Wyoming Petroleum Association 16 of the 100 largest natural gas fields in the U.S. are found in Wyoming! Only about 30% of the natural gas produced in Wyoming is used here. The rest is shipped through interstate pipelines to markets in the Midwest and West Coast.

photo by Shane TrueCrude oil produced in Wyoming is turned into gasoline, diesel fuel, jet fuel, and other petroleum products. Oil production reached its highest level in 30 years during late 2019!

photo courtesy of the Wyoming Mining Association Wyoming is home to the largest deposit of trona in the world! Trona is Wyoming's top export and is used to make baking soda, glass, soap, and paper.

photo courtesy of the Wyoming Mining Association Uranium is mined in-situ. That means uranium is pumped up from wells in the ground. Once on the surface, uranium is turned into yellowcake and used to power nuclear power plants.

photo by Greg Goebel, Creative Commons Some of the best wind resources in the U.S. are found on the high prairie of Wyoming. In 2019, Wyoming wind farms produced nearly 1,600 megawatts of electricity with just over 1,000 turbines.

Click on the symbols in the map key to learn more about each of these resources!

Question 1/3

True or False?You can find oil wells in every Wyoming county.

False

True

Take another look at the map

Question 2/3

How are mining and energy companies good stewards of Wyoming?

Dumping waste

Reclamation

Not paying taxes

Question 3/3

Which map symbol shows you where you might find a coal mine?

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Mission 03 - Recreation & Tourism

Identify Wyoming's recreation and tourism resources.Pay special attention to the recreation and tourism opportunities in each county. Click on the symbols in the map key to learn more about each type of tourist attraction or recreational activity. Watch for helpers who have tips about how to be a good steward!

A map key,or legend, shows the symbols used on a map and tells what each symbol means.

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Wyoming'sRecreation & Tourism Resources

As Wyoming citizens and tourists we can be good stewards too!As good stewards, we follow posted signs and rules in recreation areas. The rules may say you should stay on marked trails, clean up your trash, or tell you when you are allowed to be in an area. When you follow the rules, you will leave the area as good, or better, than when you first came.

Tourism is the 2nd largest industry in Wyoming.If you work for a private business that serves tourists, you probably work in the hospitality industry.Hospitality jobs include:chef or cook at a restaurantwaiter/waitresshotel management and staffoutfitters and guidesand many others!

Nearly half of the land in Wyoming is owned by either the federal or state government. The government hires workers to help manage the land. Some of these jobs include:Park RangerGame WardenWildlife BiologistMaintenance workers

Counties with the guest ranch symbol offer multiple options for unique vacations at Wyoming guest ranches. Guests often have the chance to ride horses, and participate in other once-in-a-lifetime adventures!

Guides and outfitters offer brand-new ways to experience Wyoming recreation. Tours and experiences include everything from hunting, fishing, or rock-climbing trips, to snowcats and wildlife viewing tours in the national parks!

photo courtesy of Wyoming Game and FishThe Wyoming Game and Fish maintains 450,000 acres as Wildlife Habitat Management Areas. These areas provide critical habitat for wildlife and are open to the public (seasonally or year-round) for hunting, fishing, camping, and hiking!

public domain image by US Forest ServiceWyoming is home to several National Historic Landmarks. Sites that are open to the public are shown here and include places like Medicine Mountain, the Heart Mountain Interpretive Center, and the Sheridan Inn!

photo by Stephanie RussellState historic sites (plus Fort Laramie, which is a National Historic site) provide a window to Wyoming's history! Visitors can tour the sites to learn more about our past.

photo courtesy of Wyoming State Parks Want to swim in a steaming hot pool? Visit one of Wyoming's five different hot springs! Each of these sites is open to the public, and offers swimming and soaking fun for all ages!

photo by Janet Wragge Wyoming is considered a "headwaters" state. Several major rivers start in the mountains of Wyoming. Depending on which side of the Continental Divide the river starts on, water from Wyoming may end up flowing to the west coast or toward the Missippi River and the Gulf of Mexico.

photo by Patty Small Wyoming is home to several mountain ranges. Together, these ranges are part of the Rocky Mountains. Wyoming's mountain ranges are home to national forests, and other areas where people can hike, camp, and hike.

photo by Paul Hermans, Wikimedia commons There are many museums scattered across that state, but those shown on the map are some of the biggest and most family-friendly as rated by Travel Wyoming!

photo by Stephanie Russell Wyoming is home to 8 national forests covering 9.7 Million acres! These are multi-use areas, used for energy production, livestock grazing, and recreation.

photo courtesy of Travel WyomingWyoming is home to Thunder Basin National Grassland. This area is open to hiking, hunting, fishing, camping, and bird and wildlife viewing.

photo by Stephanie RussellWyoming is home to two National Parks; Yellowstone, and Grand Teton. Yellowstone National Park was created on March 1, 1872, making it the first National Park in the US!

Wyoming is home to our country's first national monument - Devils Tower. In the opposite corner of our state, tourists can visit Fossil Butte, another national monument open to the public!

Skiiers of all ability levels can enjoy a day at one of the 12 ski areas in Wyoming. With world-class skiing in Jackson Hole and smaller hills geared toward beginners, ski areas offer the opportunity for fun winter recreation!

photo courtesy of Wyoming State ParksTwelve State Parks provide recreation and tourism opportunities in different areas of Wyoming. Different parks offer different activities, but most offer the public a place to hike, camp, fish, mountain bike, or boat.

Photo courtesy of Wyoming Game and FishMany of National Wildlife Refuges in Wyoming protect wetland habitat for waterfowl. However, the National Elk Refuge near Jackson Hole provides the public with an opportunity to view some of Wyoming's larger wildlife!

Rodeo is a popular sport in Wyoming. Some communities host rodeos that draw crowds from around the world!

Click on the symbols in thekey to learn about these resources!

Question 1/3

Which map symbol shows you which counties have ski areas?

Question 2/3

What is one example of being a good steward when you visit a recreation area?

Visit when the park is closed

Hike anywhere you want

Follow posted rules

Question 3/3

True or False?There are two national monuments in Wyoming.

False

True

Take another look at the map

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If you would like to learn more about some of the great recreation opportunities available in Wyoming, check out this website!https://www.travelwyoming.com

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Mission Complete!

You're now an expert on the stewardship of Wyoming's resources!Use what you know to draw a bookmark illustrating this message. Then ask your teacher or parents to send us your artwork for the Bookmark Contest!

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