DILLON, Mont. (AP) — Fox News founder Rupert Murdoch has bought a large cattle ranch in southwest Montana near Yellowstone National Park from a subsidiary of Koch Industries.
The Beaverhead Ranch is spread across more than 500 square miles (1,300 square kilometers) of private and leased land. Located south of Dillon, Montana, along the Montana-Idaho border, it has about 7,000 cattle and is home to 15 families who are employed on the ranch, according to Koch subsidiary Matador Cattle Company.
The sale was confirmed by Murdoch spokesperson Jessie Lyons after being reported by the Wall Street Journal, which is owned by Murdoch's News Corp. Lyons declined to comment on the price.
The ranch was founded in 1865. It was acquired in the 1951 by a company run by Fred Koch, founder of Wichita, Kansas-based Koch Industries. The company has vast holdings in oil refineries, paper mills, fertilizer plants, ranches and other ventures.
Like Murdoch and his media companies, the Koch family is known for promoting Republican candidates and causes.
Koch family members have poured a fortune into right-wing efforts to transform the American political landscape, shaping U.S. policies on issues from climate change to government regulation.
The Beaverhead ranch borders Montana's Blacktail Wildlife Management Area and Red Rock Lakes National Wildlife Refuge in the Centennial Valley.