We have formed several ad hoc and permanent working groups to help USYAKS members learn and share about yaks. We'd love to have you in a group, so look below for what might interest you.



To advance USYAKS research and development in three ways: improving yak genetic health and reproduction practices, research and sharing information around yak nutrition and growth, and providing USYAKS members with “best practices” for yak health care knowledge and techniques.

Members of this working group include:

Peter Hackett, MD, Chair
Michelle Arnold, DVM
Tim Hardy, Phd.
Mike Heaton, Phd., USDA
Michael Jobin, MD
Jessica Peterson, Phd.

If you have an interest in becoming involved or have questions, please contact Peter at hackett@hypoxia.net


Basic how-to resources are available through the work of this group. Efforts are currently focused on the development of a “center-piece” fiber show at the 2021 National Western Stock Show to attract fiber enthusiasts and fiber product marketers to yak fiber. Fiber has for too long been perceived as a “secondary” virtue of yaks. These fiber advocates are working to change that. The Fiber Show being planned for the USYAK Show at the 2021 NWSS will not be merely be an “add-on” but will aspire to be a professional fiber show inviting participation not only from yak owners but also from fiber artists who work with yak fiber.


Members of this working group include:

Una Taylor (Hay Springs Yaks)

Caryn DeRochie (Storm Cloud Ranch)

Melissa Lunsford (Granite Peaks Ranch)

Brenda Winter (Winter Fiber Farm)

Erin Powell (Steer It Up Ranch).

If you have an interest in becoming involved or have questions, please contact Una at: unadtaylor@gmail.com



The focus of this group is to develop resources to assist USYAK  producers market their yak meat. Results from meat analyses are available, including a 2019 nutritional analysis of grass-fed yak. The group is currently working on developing a “USYAKS Certified Yak Meat” label, based off of criteria which, if met, USYAK members could affix the medallion to their meat packaging.  The group's work is member need driven.


Members of this group include:

Tim Hardy - Haysprings Yaks  (Chair)

 Brad Peterson - Coalbank Creek Ranch

Vance Hawk - HK Yak Ranch

If you have an interest in becoming involved or have

questions, please contact Tim at




The underlying work of this group is about marketing yaks – to bring yaks to the public and market through involvement in exhibitions and shows. The centerpiece is the USYAKS Show at the National Western Stock Show which is including individual yak evaluations (in the pen) as well as side-by-side competition in the show ring. This is both an educational and competitive event for yak owners which is also designed to engage and teach the public about yaks. However the NWSS is but one event and as such this work are is exploring involvement in other high attendance livestock venues as a way to “bring yaks into the public eye”. The Board and all members present at USYAKS  Board meetings collectively work to develop the show at the NWSS. Subgroups of Board members and members will work on other possible venues which are geographically practical.


Members of this group include:

Brad Peterson, Chair - Coalbank Creek Ranch

Carlice Cutright - Casper Creek Yaks

 Greg Dike - Zhi-ba Shig-ga Yaks

If you have an interest in becoming involved or have

questions, please contact Brad at coalbankcreek@juno.com