Watch: ag land management and leasing considerations video series

Watch: ag land management and leasing considerations video series
Extension Educator Emeritus
Title card for video series reading Ag Land Management and Leasing Considerations

Allan Vyhnalek, Nebraska Extension Educator Emeritus, retired in April 2023 after over three decades in extension. He most recently worked in the areas of farm and ranch succession and land management/leasing education. 

This short video series discusses topics relevant to landlords and tenants and their accompanying leasing considerations, including crop residue, hunting rights, pasture leases and using manure on cropland

For more land and leasing resources, visit our page at For resources related to farm and ranch succession, transition and estate planning, visit

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Crop residue management and leasing considerations

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Allan Vyhnalek, Nebraska Extension Educator Emeritus, discusses crop residue management and how it relates to leases. He shares valuable management tips and advice on handling crop residue in various situations.

Types of Residue

Vyhnalek explains the different types of residue, including corn residue and soybean residue. Soybean residue has some value for bedding and extending feed for cattle and sheep, but it is low in nutrition. Corn residue, on the other hand, is good for bedding and can be used as a feed source for ruminants, either by grazing or grinding into rations.

Grazing corn residue is a great way to utilize crops. Vyhnalek emphasizes the benefits of grazing for both the farmer and the cattle. Grazing corn residue does not cause soil compaction and offers a valuable feed source for cattle. If a tenant sublets the corn residue for grazing, it's important to consider how the lease is set up and whether the landlord should receive compensation.

Residue When harvesting corn residue in bales, Vyhnalek advises against being too aggressive with the rake to prevent soil erosion. He also recommends rotating the fields from which corn residue is harvested to avoid depleting organic matter and micronutrients in the soil.

Lease Considerations

Whether a landlord should receive compensation for crop residue depends on the type of lease (cash rent or crop share). Vyhnalek advises having clear communication and understanding of the lease provisions before the lease starts to avoid confusion and surprises.

For more land and leasing resources from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln's Center for Ag Profitability, visit

Hunting rights and ag land leasing

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Allan Vyhnalek, Nebraska Extension Educator Emeritus, discusses the complexities of managing farm ground, focusing on hunting rights and how they relate to agricultural leasing. 

Hunting Rights and Leasing

Hunting rights can differ depending on the type of lease — crop share or cash rent — as well as between crop ground and pastures. Vyhnalek stresses the importance of having a written lease agreement that clearly outlines the provisions regarding hunting rights, as opposed to relying on handshake agreements.

For crop ground, hunting rights typically belong to the tenant in a cash rent lease unless the landlord specifically holds them out of the lease. In crop share leases, however, hunting rights belong to the landlord.

For pastures, hunting rights generally remain with the landlord, as pasture leases often end before hunting season starts. Exceptions may occur in cases of year-long or 12-month pasture leases, which require negotiation between the landlord and tenant.

Subleasing and Liability

Vyhnalek addresses potential complications arising from subleasing hunting rights and charging fees for hunting access. He emphasizes the importance of discussing subleasing possibilities before the lease begins, and that landlords can choose to withhold hunting rights if they have concerns.

The Nebraska Recreational Use Act provides liability protection for landowners who allow free hunting access on their land. However, if a landowner charges for access, their liability may increase, necessitating proper insurance coverage. Allan advises consulting with legal and insurance professionals to ensure the right coverage is in place.

More about hunting and leases is available in this webinar recording from November 2022.

For more land and leasing resources, visit

Pasture management and leasing strategies

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Allan Vyhnalek, Nebraska Extension Educator Emeritus, shares valuable insights on pasture management issues and pasture leasing. Though it does not cover every possible situation, it offers a starting point to help landlords and tenants navigate challenges effectively. Some of the topics Vyhnalek covers in this video are listed below. 

Pasture Lease Management

Vyhnalek emphasizes the importance of discussing potential challenges such as fire, drought, and hail with the landlord before entering a lease. He encourages open communication to ensure both parties are prepared for unexpected situations.


Vyhnalek explains that fencing is generally assumed to be in good condition at the start of a pasture lease. The tenant is then responsible for maintaining the fence, while the landlord typically provides materials like posts and wire. He also touches on changes to the Nebraska fence law, which now requires disputes to be settled in court rather than with township trustees.

Reed and Tree Management

Tenants are usually responsible for controlling noxious weeds, while landlords handle tree control. Vyhnalek advises getting ahead of tree growth, as controlling smaller trees is both easier and more cost-effective. He also mentions that there are resources available on how to handle various tree species, such as Eastern Red Cedars.

Fertilizer Use

Vyhnalek notes that fertilizer is typically discussed in Eastern Nebraska, and it's usually the tenant's expense. The timing of fertilizer application may vary depending on whether the pasture is cool or warm season. He recommends checking with local experts for proper timing in your area.

Additional resource: Fertilizing Pasture: Is It Worth It in Today's Economic Conditions? (April 27, 2023 webinar recording)

For more land and leasing resources, visit

Utilizing manure on cropland

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Allan Vyhnalek, Nebraska Extension Educator Emeritus, shares insights on the effective utilization of manure in crop ground, emphasizing the importance of proper application to improve fertility, soil health, and crop production.

Incorporating Manure into the Soil

Discover the advantages of incorporating manure into the soil through methods like knifing in, and learn how manure serves as a valuable source of organic matter, phosphorus, and micronutrients.

Potential Concerns When Using Manure

Explore potential concerns when using manure, such as risks of over-application, water supply contamination, and the presence of weed seeds.

Guiding Manure Application with Soil Tests

Understand the significance of not applying manure to the same field every year and using soil tests to guide its application for optimal results.

Benefits of Manure for Crop and Livestock Production

Vyhnalek concludes by highlighting the benefits of manure for both crop and livestock production, encouraging viewers to reach out with questions to or visit the cap website.

Improve Crop Yields and Soil Health

Enhance your knowledge on proper manure application techniques and reap the rewards of improved crop yields and soil health.