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HomeRegional NewsSDSU Extension Welcomes New Precision Livestock Field Specialist

SDSU Extension Welcomes New Precision Livestock Field Specialist

BROOKINGS, S.D. – South Dakota State University Extension is pleased to welcome Logan Vandermark to the role of precision livestock field specialist.

Precision ranching technologies have the potential to provide data to help producers make decisions that may impact profit margins, ranch sustainability and natural resource management. Vandermark is joining an SDSU Extension team that is leading research and technology development in areas such as utilizing sensor technology to check water sources, track individual animal performance in real time and developing complex models to predict real-time forage production at the individual pasture scale to inform rotation.

In his role, Vandermark will conduct on-site visits, deliver training sessions and offer tailored recommendations to help producers adopt and integrate the most effective precision livestock technologies into their operations. He will be based in Rapid City.

“I am excited to serve and assist ranchers in all things related to precision technology for livestock,” Vandermark said. “There are so many products on the market that can benefit both small- and large-scale producers, and I look forward to having discussions about technologies they may want to adopt.”

Originally from Greencastle, Indiana, Vandermark received his bachelor’s degree in biology with a focus on ecology and conservation from Franklin College in Franklin, Indiana. He received his master’s degree in animal science from SDSU in 2023. His graduate research included using virtual fence technology with pasture-based weighing systems to capture daily, individual livestock body weights.

“We are very pleased to have Logan join the SDSU Extension team. His recent graduate training has provided him with excellent knowledge of precision livestock tools, which he can immediately apply into his SDSU Extension programming efforts,” said Sandy Smart, SDSU Extension Agriculture and Natural Resources Senior Program Leader. “Tools like virtual fencing, remotely detecting water quality and quantity, and herd health parameters are just the tip of the spear.”

Smart said cyber security will be an important issue to prepare for as new technologies are adopted, as well.

“Logan will help to make these technologies more understandable and safer to deploy in a rapidly changing precision agriculture environment,” Smart said.

For more information, contact Logan Vandermark, SDSU Extension Precision Livestock Specialist, at 605-394-2236 or

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