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Saving the Sagebrush Sea: An Imperiled Western Legacy

Nearly 350 plant and animal species depend on sagebrush habitat for their survival.
 


 

Western Public Lands

wildlife

Colorado Sportsmen Speak Out For Sage-Grouse Plans

Date: 
Tue, 11/07/2017

Colorado sportsmen and women want to see sage-grouse conservation plans proceed. Image: NWF

CRAIG, Colo. – Colorado sportsmen and women and wildlife advocates are urging members of the public to speak out in support of plans designed to conserve greater sage-grouse and sagebrush lands. The Bureau of Land Management scheduled an open house Nov. 8 in Craig, the only public forum planned in Colorado on proposed changes to the sage-grouse plans.

The sagebrush steppe, found in 11 Western states, supports elk, mule deer, pronghorns and many other species as well as sage-grouse, Colorado Wildlife Federation Executive Director Suzanne O’Neill notes. 

“Our public lands and wildlife are fundamental to Colorado's lifestyle. The efforts to save the greater sage-grouse will sustain not only the bird but a lot of other wildlife Coloradans care about,” O’Neill says

Sportsmen: Idaho Bill Reveals Truth of Public-Lands Attacks

Date: 
Wed, 02/22/2017

A  bill in the Idaho Legislature is targeting public lands. Image: Brian Brooks/IWF

BOISE, Idaho – Two sportsmen’s groups and a landowner are taking aim at a bill that not only would force Idaho state agencies to decide which public lands to get rid of but would prevent willing landowners from selling property to public agencies.

The Idaho Wildlife Federation, Trout Unlimited and landowner Erik Cetovick said Monday that Senate Bill 1065 in the Idaho Legislature could end up locking the public out of lands they have hunted and fished for generations. The bill also tips lawmakers’ hand in showing that the goal of taking over public lands is to sell them to private parties, dismantling Idahoans’ public-lands heritage, they added.

"For years now, our politicians have said that the transfer of public lands to the state is about better management. Well, now we have them flat out advising all state agencies to prioritize their land parcels for sale to private owner ship any lands that might not be fulfilling a 'public purpose,’” said Brian Brooks, executive director of the Idaho Wildlife Federation. 

Americans won't support public-lands giveaway

Date: 
Tue, 01/03/2017

Our public lands are essential to healthy wildlife populations. Image: Judith Kohler

“We have fallen heirs to the most glorious heritage a people ever received, and each one must do his part if we wish to show that the nation is worthy of its good fortune." ~ President Theodore Roosevelt.

By Judith Kohler

The great American conservationist and leader who made that comment about our outdoors heritage would be outraged by elected officials who could look at our national public lands and decide they’re worthless.

Yet that’s the message the U.S. House has sent with a package of rules that includes one that will clear the way for handing over national public lands to states. The change would essentially codify a lie – that loss of our public lands wouldn’t cost the nation anything. 

 

Win for Wildlife: Master leasing plan proposed in southwest Colorado

Date: 
Thu, 10/06/2016

Colorado BLM has proposed a master leasing plan for parts of southwest Colorado. Image: Flickr-PDK Outdoor

DOLORES, Colo. -- After hearing from hunters, anglers, area residents and outdoor enthusiasts, the Colorado Bureau of Land Management has decided to pursue development of a master leasing plan for new oil and gas development on public lands in southwest Colorado.

The master leasing plan, or MLP, has been proposed in Montezuma and La Plata counties and includes the gateway area to Mesa Verde National Park and archeological sites.

“The Tres Rios area has valuable wildlife habitat that includes important migratory routes, winter range as well as calving and lambing areas. It deserves the additional management protections for these areas that an MLP can provide,” said Bill Dvorak, the National Wildlife Federation’s public lands organizer in Colorado.

 

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