Rancho Tres Hijos is a combination cattle and hunting ranch that began operations in 1995 deep in the heart of the South Texas brush country alongside the Frio River. The ranch began a registered Beefmaster cow/calf operation in 1997 and now keeps a very developed herd of approximately 130 mother cows with excellent cattle genetics. The cattle Program developed and utilized in the ranching operations has clearly demonstrated the value of the Six Essentials of Beefmaster Cattle.
The ranch was originally high fenced in 1983 for controlled deer hunting. The deer herd has been managed carefully since 1995 with no outside genetics. Additional land has been added to the ranch under low fence and cleared for more pasture and quail hunting habitat. In 2012 the ranch hired Austin Schaefer as the Habitat and Wildlife Manager. Austin has a B.S. in Agriculture – Ranch & Wildlife Management degree from Texas A&M University – Kingsville and is responsible for care of the native habitat, the wildlife, and the hunting program.
The ranch is a now a mixture of brush, cleared native grass, and buffel grass pastures totaling approximately 3,400 acres, and is on State Highway 72 in McMullen County, 5 miles west of Tilden and 75 miles due south of San Antonio.
The Frio River is the south boundary of the ranch and both Sand Hollow Creek and Leoncita Creek flow through the property. There is abundant water distributed all over the ranch in an underground pipeline for livestock and wildlife, but growth of the grass and brush is directly related to the amount of annual rainfall received.
The native brush includes large areas of guajillo, guayacan, prickly pear, blackbrush, and other acacias, that is necessary for the large trophy whitetail deer found in McMullen County and is occasionally grazed by the cattle during periods of extreme drought.