BACK
TO TOP

Conservation Outcomes

Sage grouse are an "umbrella species" and an icon of the Western range. Practices and projects that benefit sage grouse also benefit 350+ sagebrush-dependent species, including people.

Sage grouse are an “umbrella species” and an icon of the Western range. Practices and projects that benefit sage grouse also benefit 350+ sagebrush-dependent species, including people. (Photo: Tatiana Gettelman)

Our conservation practices benefit the sagebrush ecosystem, as well as the Western way of life. Since 2010, we have:

* Reduced the threat of invasive grasses and wildfire by managing for healthier rangelands on 1.8 million acres.

* Removed 457,000 acres of expanding conifer to reclaim core sage grouse habitat

* Protected 451,000 acres of agricultural land and prime wildlife habitat for 350+  sagebrush-dependent species.

Improved grazing strategies to enhance range habitat on 2.7 million acres for sage grouse and other wildlife species.

* Conserved 12,000 acres and improved 179 acres of wet meadow and riparian areas for brooding hens.

* Marked or moved 628 miles of high-risk fences to reduce sage grouse collisions by 83 percent.

Watch video stories from participating ranchers

Learn more about what we do

Science and Research

Science informs all of SGI's conservation work, ensuring we put the right tools in the right places. This telemetry equipment tracks radio-collared sage grouse. Photo by Tatiana Gettelman

Science informs all of SGI’s conservation work, ensuring we put the right tools in the right places. This telemetry equipment tracks radio-collared sage grouse. (Photo: Tatiana Gettelman)

We apply science to guide conservation investments and measure the resulting outcomes. This past year, SGI: 

Documented how removing juniper to restore sagebrush ecosystems benefits songbirds as well as sage grouse.

* Highlighted research on how restoring a sagebrush-dominated landscape helps increase summer water availability for wildlife and ranching operations.

Studied how and where to reduce the risk of converting sagebrush into cultivated cropland and made the data available on the new SGI Web App.

* Demonstrated the importance of conserving wet mesic areas, especially those on private land, for sage grouse.

* Published research on the genetic subpopulations of sage grouse, which helps partners tailor site-specific practices and projects for sage grouse conservation.

Watch videos about how we apply science in the field

Read our Science to Solutions articles

Tools and Resources

We believe that the best results depend on empowering all of our partners to put conservation practices on the ground. Todd Cross, an SGI-funded scientist, explains his recent research mapping genetic diversity within Montana's sage grouse populations. Photo by Brianna Randall

We strive to empower everyone to put conservation practices on the ground. Todd Cross, an SGI-funded scientist, explains his recent research mapping sage grouse genetic diversity to partners. (Photo: Brianna Randall)

We provide free tools and resources to help our partners prioritize sagebrush conservation. This past year, SGI:

Created a free interactive web app and mapping tool that provides cutting-edge rangewide data.

Produced ‘Conserve Our Western Roots‘ posters and online resources to explain the importance of keeping rangelands intact and promoting healthy, diverse native plants.

* Hosted a variety of workshops and webinars, and introduced the new Events webpage, an online list of sagebrush-related learning opportunities.

Partnered to produce joint resources that inform conservation planning, such as techniques to reduce megafires using fuel breaks, minimize cheatgrass and restore degraded rangelands, or assess ecosystem resilience by tapping into soil.

View more sagebrush resources

Use the new SGI Web App

People and Partners

Collaborative conservation means working with people to conserve the land that sustains us. Annie, an SGI-NRCS staffer, and Nikki worked together to enhance wildlife habitat and the bottom line on the Shirley Ranch.

The key to conservation success is working with the people who steward the land that sustains us. Annie Shirley (rancher) and Nikki Rife (NRCS) worked together to enhance wildlife habitat and agricultural operations in Montana. (Photo: Brianna Randall)

We believe that win-win conservation is based on a foundation of cooperation and partnership. This past year, SGI:

Highlighted the inspiring work of our local, state, and regional partners through the SGI Featured Friend story series.

Partnered with public land managers, such as the BLM, to develop landscape-scale conservation strategies that work across fences and beyond boundaries.

Teamed up with partner organizations to manage 26 field staff who are delivering big gains for sage grouse and ranching operations across 11 states.

Shared the wisdom of sagebrush experts across the range, such as how to grow seedlings in prison and how to “just say yes” to innovative projects.

* Worked with 1,300+ ranchers, including conservation champions Tony & Diane Stobiecki in Nevada, the Kennedys in Utah, and Mark & Patti Bennett in Oregon.

Meet our staff (and give us a call!)

Listen to SGI-enrolled ranchers