This paper focuses on pastoral systems in an area of west-central Texas known as the Edwards Plateau. These rangelands have a combination of grass, forb and browse species and are used primarily for combinations of grazing by cattle, sheep, goats and wildlife. A major ecological challenge is woody plant encroachment. Stocking rate is the major factor affecting sustainability and historically this area was heavily grazed. Today the stocking rate is half or less of its historical peak. Species of livestock has shifted from predominantly small ruminant to cattle. About 70 % of pastoralists use some sort of rotational grazing system. On average ranches lose equity from livestock but appreciating land values make up for this loss. Rangelands are still a good investment for those that can afford them. Land ownership is changing and is creating land fragmentation problems and a need for targeted educational provision. Wageningen Academic Publishers The Netherlands, 2005.