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These new wells near Belfield, N.D., are part of burgeoning oil development in Stark County. (John Brose/Special to Agweek)

Mixing oil and cattle: ND ranchers say mineral rights get too much emphasis

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BELFIELD, N.D. - Byron Richard’s pickup bounces up and down over the washboard gravel road. He clutches the wheel with one hand and points with the other as he passes dozens of oil wells on land where once crops grew and cattle grazed. A few of the wells are decades old; most are new or under construction.

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