The Land Report

Spring 2016

The Magazine of the American Landowner is an essential guide for investors, landowners, and those interested in buying or selling land. The award-winning quarterly is known for its annual survey of America's largest landowners, The Land Report 100.

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76 The LandReport | S P R I N G 2 0 1 6 LANDREPORT.COM Standing Butte Ranch South Dakota Seller: Triple U Ranch Seller's Agent: Tom Metzger, Hall and Hall Buyer: Standing Butte Ranch LLP 2015 A fter more than a half century of ownership, the Houcks decided to put the bulk of their ranch on the market. In addition to income from the bison herd, the ranch generates fees from the federal government for grazing 900 wild mustangs that were formerly on property belonging to the Bureau of Land Management. The family awarded the coveted listing to Tom Metzger of Hall and Hall; Scott Shuman at Hall and Hall Auctions began prepping for the sale, which was scheduled for July 9 in Fort Pierre. When word got out that the Dances with Wolves ranch was on the market, local and national press jumped on the story. Not long after the listing was announced, the family's ranch was featured in The Wall Street Journal. But in late June, Hall and Hall announced that the ranch would no longer go to auction; a single buyer had emerged. Media interest grew. One candidate immediately stood out: the owner of the 141,000-acre Bad River Ranch 10 miles west of Fort Pierre, Ted Turner. In addition to his nearby operation, Turner's longstanding commitment to the American bison and his ownership of Ted's Montana Grill proved telling. Ten weeks later, a succinct announcement out of Atlanta confirmed Turner's high-minded intent: "Turner Enterprises' purchase of the property kept its size and scale intact, saving Standing Butte from being subdivided into multiple parcels at auction. Some of the parcels would have undoubtedly been plowed and farmed by new ownership, fragmenting the pristine native landscape." Few Americans have done more to protect and preserve a species than Ted Turner has with the bison. RHETT TURNER

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