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FLYING M RANCH

FLYING M RANCH

The Flying M Ranch, formally known as the Sam Cowan Ranch and the McKinney Ranch, was originally established in 1902 by Sam Cowan Sr., an early Archer County settler and cattleman. The ranch has been passed down through five generations of family. In 2003, The McKinney Cattle Company was recognized by the Texas Family Land Heritage program that honors families who have owned and operated a continuous agricultural operation for 100 years or more.

HISTORY

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This native grass ranch has been managed under the advisory of the Nobel Institute, Allan Savory, and Dr. Ron Sosebee, Texas Tech Rangeland Sciences. The primary grasses are native Bluestem,  Buffalo grass,  Blue Grama, Sideoats Grama, and other prairie grasses. There are 300 acres around the headquarters that are devoted to Jiggs Bermudagrass for hay production and cattle backgrounding.

The owners have restored this country back into extremely productive grass and forbs country for the benefit of cattle and wildlife.  Forage resources are in excellent condition on the ranch .  Flying M has conducted multiple projects on an annual basis to enhance range and wildlife conditions. An extensive weed spraying program combined with prescribed burns, were conducted annually from 2009-2019 to improve grass production for cattle and forbs production for wildlife.

Multiple prescribed burns totaling over 20,000 acres were conducted under professional supervision. Large scale weed spraying covered over 19,000 acres.  Wildlife friendly spray plans were designed and implemented to protect areas important to deer, quail, and turkeys.  This vegetation and grass management protocol has resulted in a very productive balance for cattle and wildlife while increasing grass productivity.

This ranch is loaded with game and the diversity of the terrain and pastures offers paramount hunting opportunities.  Strategically situated around the ranch are twenty 2-3-person custom hunting blinds, all insulated with thermo pane windows. There are 15 solar powered, 1 ton, Outback Wildlife feeders, automatic quail feeders, and several sanctuary feed plots implemented and located for optimal wildlife management. You can deer hunt in mesquite flats or rattle up bucks in the hardwood draws in the morning, and then run bird dogs in the afternoon.  The Flying M Ranch is a true sportsman’s paradise.

Owners have spent several years and close to a million dollars cleaning up the lakes and building new tanks on Flying M Ranch.  With 95 tanks consisting of 123 surface acres of water on the ranch, every single pasture is heavily watered with deep reliable water and six pastures have freeze proof Ritchie Cattle Waterers as well as six more at Headquarters pens. Both Onion Creek and the West Fork of the Trinity River flow through the ranch and there are numerous other creek bottoms lined with hardwoods that exist on the ranch.