Grazing and Sagebrush Treatments: A 25-year Case Study in Utah

Sage grouse depend on a delicate balance of sagebrush habitats.

January 9, 2016

Download this Science to Solutions article here.

The newest report in SGI’s Science to Solutions series is based on findings from a 25-year case study on a ranch in Utah. The study shows that sustainable grazing practices and sagebrush treatments enhanced herbaceous understory for sage grouse in years with average winters, but that bird populations declined following severe winters.

These findings from Utah can help conservationists working to achieve self-sustaining sagebrush ecosystems capable of supporting sage grouse and other sagebrush-dependent wildlife. While sagebrush manipulation can be an important component of sage-steppe restoration, this report illustrates the delicate balance needed when conducting sagebrush treatments in sage grouse habitat.

A male sage grouse rests on a lek on the Deseret Land and Livestock Company ranch. Photo by Todd Black.

Download this Science to Solutions to learn about:

  • How long-term monitoring provides a unique perspective;
  • Grazing management and sagebrush treatments on the Deseret Land and Livestock ranch;
  • The sage grouse’s response;
  • And how sagebrush treatment requires a delicate balance.

Learn more by downloading the full PDF here, or by clicking on the image below.

Grazing and Sagebrush Treatments: A 25-year Case Study in Utah

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.