Sage grouse

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service/Courtesy Photo

Sage grouse

Sage grouse granted “warranted but precluded” listing

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Interior Secretary Ken Salazar announced Friday that the greater sage grouse will receive a “warranted but precluded” listing under the Endangered Species Act.

This recommendation means U.S. Fish and Wildlife recognizes the sage grouse as an endangered species, but there are significant efforts in place already to protect the species.

“We need to find smart ways of protecting the (sage grouse) habitat while also developing much needed energy resources and allowing the continued use of our Western land,” Salazar said during a teleconference Friday.

He also said that without the listing, the long-term prognosis for the sage grouse was “not good.”

“We must, and will, expand our support for local and state conservation efforts for the greater sage grouse, which is now a candidate species,” Salazar said.

Salazar said agencies such as the Bureau of Land Management will work to “assure that energy production, recreational access, other uses of federal lands including ranching and grazing will continue in ways that limit the effect on the bird.”

“The smarter we are with planning on the front-end, the fewer conflicts and controversy we will have on the back end,” Salazar said.

Salazar said that he hopes the window of time given to protect the bird under this listing will restore it to sustainable levels.

“My hope is that with smart action we take in partnership with the states and private land owners that we will never have to list the sage grouse as a threatened and endangered species,” he said.

For more on this story, read the Saturday Morning Press or visit www.craigdailypress.com.

Comments

jeff corriveau 4 years, 9 months ago

The Secretary just needs to admit, although not politically expedient for him, that the greatest threat to the grouse is from predation, not lose of habitat. If you add up ALL of the lost habitat due to mining, recreation AND oil and gas, it wouldn't amount 1/100th of one percent of the total habitat. Fox, coyote, skunk, raccoon and other such mammals prey on the young chicks and eggs and reproduction has dropped significantly. Secretary Salazar, who along with his brother, who tout their simple ranch background, KNOW this in their heart but won't admit it as it doesn't square with the current administrations environmental agenda. Politics, as usual!!!!

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winterbottom 4 years, 9 months ago

I don't think you can count the whole habitat. I don't know much about this, but sage grouse mate in certain places and if they can't get there they won't have chicks. So, it's not the amount of the activity that is taking away habitat but the location.

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jeff corriveau 4 years, 9 months ago

Spot on! Those sites, called Leck sites, are used year after year by grouse and have been very well documented and recorded. they are also "protected" and activity that would disturb these areas is highly restricted. The DOW has done a good job of monitoring the sites and keeping potential adverse impact minimal or non-existent. The whole point is there are not the numbers of mature birds to mate and reproduce as a result of predation.

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rhammel 4 years, 9 months ago

The proper spelling is l-e-k.

The listing process took 8 years. I have it on good authority that there is another lawsuit in the works. So final resolution could take 10-12 years. All the while habitat is being destroyed. The big culprits are the BLM and NRCS, with their sagebrush "restoration" projects

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