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OUR background

Prairie Ridge Buffalo Ranch was started by Ray and Debbie Thieman in 1999 as a small hobby ranch.  The ranch grew and developed into a sustainable buffalo ranch with nearly 800 buffalo of various ages. Since then they have involved their daughter and son-in-law as well as all 12 of their grandchildren to achieve their goal of having a truly multi-generation ranching operation. They have developed an outstanding breeding program that provides for a consistently improving herd through selection and purchasing of superior bulls.  


Thieman's herd is located on 5 separate ranches and 15,000 acres of native grasslands as well as their finishing facility at the main ranch headquarters. Partnered with Savory Institute, they help in range land restoration and sustainable bison production. Prairie Ridge Buffalo Ranch is a fully integrated ranch with bison cows producing calves which are all grown and finished on the ranches to be able to sell them directly to their customers. 


Ray and Debbie Thieman

  • Purchased their first 29 buffalo in 1999

  • Leased 12,000-acre ranch and expanded the herd to 1500 buffalo

  • Served on National Bison Association Board of Directors

  • Involving children and grandchildren to make a multi-generational ranch

Shawn and Carrie Bennett

  • Shawn is the ranch manager at Prairie Ridge Buffalo Ranch

  • Carrie, as a member of the National Bison Association, presented in Atlanta, GA

  • Purchased first buffalo in 2019

  • Looking forward to expansion in the future

Aaron - working.jpeg

Aaron Thieman

  • Has worked with Grandpa Ray on the ranch since preschool

  • Purchased first buffalo in 2012 and now owns 16 buffalo cows

  • Purchased 640-acre ranch in 2016 at the age of 20

  • Graduated from college and teaches Industrial Arts

Cody Bennett

  • Graduate of the University of Wyoming; History Education major

  • Works on the ranch during the summer and on holiday breaks

  • Purchased 10 buffalo cows in 2018

  • Helped construct the recent pavilion for ranch tours

Cody-Buffalo Coat-Expo.jpeg

Matt Thieman

  • Attends college at Fort Hays State University in Kansas

  • Plans to teach Industrial Arts at high school level

  • Works on the ranch during the summer and on holiday breaks

  • Helped construct most recent buildings on the ranch for tours

Cannan Bennett

  • Has been working on the ranch with Grandpa Ray since he started walking

  • At age 10, purchased buffalo through a Farm Service Agency loan

  • Owns 13 buffalo cows; works on the ranch in the summers

  • Attends Chadron State College

Cannan - Sr pic.jpg

Nathan Thieman

  • Graduated from Simla High School in 2020

  • Purchased 2 buffalo cows in 2021

  • Plans to grow his buffalo herd in the future

  • Likes to be a part of the buffalo family who looks out for each other

Wyatt, Ty and Makenna Stanko

  • The youngest grandchildren

  • Received 2 buffalo cows from their parents in 2018

  • Expanded to 4 buffalo cows in 2020

  • Creating savings for college fund for themselves through their growing herd

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