Craig briefs for Dec. 25

Development grants available

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Colorado Big Country Resource Conservation and Development is accepting grant applications for its partnership grant program.

Colorado Big Country Resource Conservation and Development is a regional, nonprofit organization serving 10 counties, including Moffat, Routt, Rio Blanco and Jackson counties, among others.

Projects eligible for grant funds are in the areas of community development and include economic development, recreation proposals, land conservation and management and water management, quality and quantity.

Applications will be accepted from county and municipal governments, conservation districts, water conservancy districts, school districts and nongovernmental organizations.

Applications must be postmarked by Dec. 31. For grant guidelines and application forms, send an e-mail to administrator@coloradobigcountry.org or call 970-945-5494.

Government offices closed for holidays

All Moffat County government offices will be closed today and Jan. 1 for the holidays. They will close at noon Monday.

All city of Craig government offices will be closed today and Jan. 1. City of Craig government offices will be open Monday, but close at 3 p.m.

Several gates at area

properties being closed

The Colorado Division of Wildlife has closed or soon will close gates at several area properties to protect wintering wildlife, according to a press release. These annual closures are designed to reduce stress on animals by keeping people and vehicles out of State Wildlife Areas when animals are most vulnerable.

"The winter months in Colorado can be extremely tough for wildlife," said John Broderick, DOW Senior Terrestrial Biologist for northwest Colorado, in the press release. "Animals need to devote all of their energy during the winter to gathering scarce food supplies."

Residents and visitors should be aware of and honor the following winter closures in the Meeker/Craig area:

• Oak Ridge State Wildlife area is closed from Dec. 1 to July 15

• Jensen SWA is closed from Jan. 1 to July 15

• Bitter Brush SWA is closed from Jan. 15 to April 30

In the Steamboat Springs area:

• Adams State Wildlife area is closed from Dec. 1 to July 1

• Blacktail Conservation Easement is closed from Dec. 1 to May 31

• Emerald Mountain State Wildlife area is closed from Dec. 1 to June 30

Colorado's winter snowfall typically forces deer and elk to lower elevations around the state. This seasonal migration puts these animals at higher risk for problematic encounters with humans. Because most of Colorado's human populations live at lower elevations, deer and elk are more likely to be hit by cars during winter months. Deer also are more likely to be harassed by domestic dogs when they are closer to cities and towns.

For more information about State Wildlife Areas, go online to www.wildlife.state.co.us/landwater/statewildlifeareas or contact the Northwest Region DOW office at (970) 255-6100.

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