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Public Land Partnership

More than half of all remaining habitat for the greater sage-grouse is on public lands, most of it managed by the Bureau of Land Management

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bob wick blm sage grouse

Male sage grouse displaying. Photo by Bob Wick, BLM

Sage grouse are a landscape species that don’t stop at fences. These iconic birds need large expanses of intact habitat to survive, and require conservation strategies that work across property boundaries. That’s why SGI partners with private landowners as well as agencies that manage public lands to ensure conservation efforts span both sides of the fence in 11 western states.

The BLM recently signed a 5-year agreement to promote win-win solutions for people and wildlife on public lands across the sagebrush sea. Their targeted conservation projects will build off the successful model pioneered by the NRCS-led Sage Grouse Initiative on private ranchlands.

Collaboration between diverse partners is what’s working to save sage grouse as well as the vast sagebrush sea that sustains communities and 350+ species. The new agreement between BLM and the Intermountain West Joint Venture shows impressive commitment to working cooperatively across boundaries to benefit both working lands and wildlife.


BLM is prioritizing these on-the-ground conservation practices
:

 (1) Remove encroaching conifers to prevent the loss of native shrubs, grasses and forbs that sage grouse and other wildlife depend upon to thrive. Watch this video about conifer encroachment into sagebrush communities and the collaborative strategies to restore these habitats.

(2) Reduce the threats of invasive annual grasses and catastrophic wildfire by increasing support for actions that protect and restore prime sage grouse habitat before, during, and after wildfires. Watch this video about the collaborative Burley Landscape habitat restoration project in Idaho.

(3) Restore wet meadows (mesic areas) to protect and enhance sage grouse brooding and chick rearing habitats. Read this Science to Solutions research about the importance of mesic areas for sage grouse and the fact that we need an ‘all-lands’ approach to conserve them.


Stories From The Sagebrush Sea On Public Land Partnerships:

 

sage grouse on nestScience to Solutions: Conifer Removal Boosts Sage Grouse Success

January 26, 2017

New research shows that 86% of hens avoided nesting in sagebrush habitat invaded by conifers. Luckily, the studies also show that removing conifers in otherwise high-quality habitat is a boon to nesting sage grouse.

pronghorn in alpine glow - BLM Cody Office Lisa MarksFun Fact Friday: A Natural Winter Windbreak In Sagebrush

January 9, 2017

by Nancy Patterson, BLM | What are wildlife to do out in the sagebrush ‘Big Empty’ to protect themselves from harsh winter weather conditions? Let sagebrush come to the rescue!

Guzzling Water & Planting Sagebrush | What’s Happening For Sage Grouse On Public Land In Montana

December 20, 2016

Since half of all habitat for greater sage-grouse is on public land, most of it managed by BLM, restoring public rangeland is vital for the birds to thrive. Check out these two BLM habitat improvement projects on sagebrush lands in Montana!

Working Lands for Wildlife's western coordinator, Tim Griffiths, discusses the benefits of beaver dams for ranchers and wildlife during the workshop.A New Approach For Turning Science Into Action

December 13, 2016

Learn more about the “coproduction of actionable science.” At the Sage Grouse Initiative, it means a lot of phone calls, coffee chats, field tours, and honest conversations with all sorts of people who are interested in solving a problem. It means collaborating from start to finish.

greater-sage-grouse-among-sagebrush-seeds-at-seedskadee-nwr-photo-by-tom-koerner-usfwsFun Fact Friday: To Migrate Or To Staycation

December 2, 2016

by Nancy Patterson, BLM | Learn which birds head south and which birds make their home on the sagebrush range during the chilly winter months.

Comprehensive ‘Ecosystem Resilience & Resistance’ Map Available For Entire Sage Grouse Range

November 15, 2016

Newly expanded visual tool on the SGI Web App allows managers to better predict and mitigate negative impacts of fire and cheatgrass across sagebrush range.

New Research Finds That Sage Grouse Prefer Nesting In Conifer-Free Landscapes

November 10, 2016

Scientists tracked sage grouse nest success in southern Oregon, and found that hens avoided sites where conifer cover exceeded 3% within 800m of their nests.

#350Species – Autumn In The Sagebrush Ecosystem

October 31, 2016

by Nancy Patterson, BLM Rocky Mountain Region, via mypubliclands.tumblr.com | Greater sage-grouse, 350+ other species, and millions of people depend on the iconic sagebrush ecosystem for their survival. Learn what happens on the range each fall.