Rocky Mountain Bird Observatory Holds Two Workshops & Blogs on Sage Grouse & Sagebrush Birds

April 21, 2014

(photo: Sage Thrasher)

The Rocky Mountain Bird Observatory  regularly steps up to the plate to help the Sage Grouse Initiative, supporting SGI field staff and many projects.  Seth Gallagher, stewardship director, is dedicated to a collaborative approach that keeps ranchers ranching and the birds of the sagebrush community thriving. The organization actively helps in the field, writes helpful Blogs, and holds workshops that teach people how to identify and manage for sagebrush birds.

This week, RMBO offers its last two workshops of four on “Birds and Management Decisions in the SageBrush Ecosystem,”  in Gillette, Wyoming, on April 22 and in Lewistown, Montana, on April 24th.  The workshops are proving popular with more than 50 signed up in Lewistown.

“SGI is right in line with what we’ve been doing for the last decade, taking a proactive approach, and helping landowners,” Gallagher says.

RMBO can offer a special service that not many other partners can, a focus on the sagebrush songbirds that so often are benefiting from sage grouse habitat conservation efforts.

“The cool thing is that there are only about a half-dozen or so sagebrush songbird species to get to know,” Gallagher says. 

Walk out on a spring morning right now in the sagebrush-steppe and you’ll hear not just the booming or popping sound of sage grouse males displaying on a lek. The air is filled with the tinkling melodies of birds that may include sage sparrows, sage thrashers, and Brewer’s sparrows, all birds that must have sagebrush to survive.

Knowing the birds not only enriches the experience for all who enjoy the sagebrush country, it’s part of looking at a whole community of wildlife that thrives under what SGI likes to call the umbrella of sage grouse habitat conservation. 

Gallagher says the second part of the workshop focuses on a support tool that can be helpful for restoration efforts for sage grouse, to assure that the outcomes benefit livestock, sage grouse, and songbirds all together.  After RMBO gets feedback on their model, the organization will offer a Webinar to share the model more widely.

RMBO also shows it’s dedication to the cooperative efforts in its two recent blogs:  Fence Marking Study Seeks to Reduce Sage Grouse Collisions  and Sage Grouse to Benefit from Juniper Removal.

If you’re interested in registering for the free workshops this week, please contact: or 970-482-1707,





The Sage Grouse Initiative is a partnership-based, science-driven effort that uses voluntary incentives to proactively conserve America’s western rangelands, wildlife, and rural way of life. This initiative is part of Working Lands For Wildlife, which is led by USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service.