The greater sage grouse is in decline, largely due to the the loss of intact and uninterrupted sagebrush habitat across the West. The US Fish and Wildlife Service recently determined that the greater sage grouse is warranted for listing under the Endangered Species Act, but has been precluded from listing due to the backlog of other endangered species also needing attention.
In this midst of this regulatory ‘Catch 22’ for the sage grouse, the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife (ODFW) is developing a plan intended to guide management decisions in a way that will better protect the species. Much of ODFW’s proposed sage grouse conservation plan addresses the need to maintain existing habitat and rehabilitate degraded habitat. The guidelines proposed by the plan will potentially affect siting of energy projects and transmission lines, levels of cattle grazing allowed in sagebrush habitat, and other proposed development across eastern Oregon’s high deserts.
Click here to read more about the plan and offer your comments. ODFW is accepting public comment on the plan through Nov. 15.
You can read the comments the Sierra Club submitted jointly with several other conservation groups by clicking here: ODFW Sage Grouse Plan Comments – Final Sept 14 2010