From an American Bird Conservancy press release:
_Citing that numbers of the Greater Sage-Grouse have dramatically diminished in recent decades, and the continued expansion of energy developments that threaten the species’ sagebrush habitat, the American Bird Conservancy (ABC) today called on the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to list the Greater Sage-Grouse under the Endangered Species Act (ESA).
The Fish and Wildlife Service is reviewing the status of the Greater Sage-Grouse, and is expected to announce its findings at the end of February. The numbers of Greater Sage-Grouse have dropped precipitously – with a loss of more than 30% in the last 25 years, according to recent reports…
_ABC is concerned that the core area development standards in the Bureau of Land Management’s (BLM) Wyoming Sage Grouse Management Plan are insufficient to ensure stable populations over the long term…
_[Says ABC president George Fenwick:] “We can’t possibly be satisfied with a plan that merely slows down the loss of sage-grouse. This simply postpones the inevitable.”
_The causes for the decline of sage-grouse are varied, and include the loss or degradation of habitat arising from grazing and agriculture, energy development, and fires that are escalated by invasive vegetation such as cheat grass. Additional threats include mosquito-borne West Nile virus, and collisions with wire fences that the birds cannot see…