From Poop to Profits: July 1-2, 2019


From Poop to Profits: July 1-2, 2019


Farmers and ranchers looking to learn more about dung beetles — and how to encourage them in a healthy, profitable ecology — are invited to attend “From Poop to Profits: Dung Beetle Management for Farms & Ranches” on July 1 and 2 in Ottawa, Kansas.

The seminar will be hosted by two area farms. Day 1 will feature a keynote address by rancher Spencer Smith of Surprise Valley, California. It will also include education about dung beetles of the prairies and include a farm tour, led by Dr. Mary Liz Jameson and Morgan Tribble of Wichita State University.

Day 2 will provide a hands-on holistic management workshop in which participants can start their own paths toward dung beetle management, co-presented by Smith and Lawrence-based Holistic Management field professional Julie Mettenburg, of the Tallgrass Network.

Cost of the 2-day seminar includes lunch both days plus materials and is $149 per person. It will be held at Neosho County Community College - Ottawa Campus, Ottawa, Kansas. Full agenda below.

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Seminar Program -- DAY 1 — Dung Beetles for Profit & Whole Farm Health

  • 9 a.m. Registration Begins

  • Welcome and Keynote address: “Why We Manage for Dung Beetles: Our Journey from Poop to Profits” -- Spencer Smith, Jefferson Center for Holistic Management, Surprise Valley, California

  • Dung Beetles of our prairie region -- Morgan Trible, Wichita State University

  • LUNCH -- catered

  • Dung Beetle Biology, Needs and Threats -- Dr. Mary Liz Jameson, Wichita State University

  • Farm Tour: demonstration of cattle walk-through fly trap, hunting through the dung for specimens, discussion of management practices to bring back the beetles — Seminar Speakers and Farm Hosts

Program -- DAY 2 -- Intro to Holistic Management for Dung Beetles

  • Welcome to Day 2

  • Case study -- Managing for dung beetles, making holistic decisions and results on the farm -- Julie Mettenburg

  • Holistic Financial Planning: how we can manage the goals of dung beetles and profits together -- Julie Mettenburg

  • Ecosystem Processes: How we can manage soil health for wealth plus CAPTURE that wealth through product premiums -- Spencer Smith

  • LUNCH -- Catered

  • Holistic Planned Grazing: How we can manage livestock for health AND wealth -- Spencer Smith

  • Getting Started workshop part 1: Put Your Goals on Paper -- Julie Mettenburg

  • Getting Started workshop part 2: Penciling It Out -- Gross Profit Analysis and Cash Flows -- Spencer Smith

  • Bringing It All Together -- next steps for Dung Beetles and whole-farm wealth and health -- Julie and Spencer

    “From Poop to Profits” is provided with additional financial assistance from the Kansas Center for Sustainable Agriculture and Alternative Crops.

For more information about speakers:

Please email Julie at for more information.