Thursday, April 18, 2013

Saving Sage Grouse: The Wyoming Example

A new Sage Grouse Initiative video released this week showcases the Wyoming model for saving sage grouse, a strategy that’s spreading across the other 10 western states working to prevent a listing under the Endangered Species Act.

Wyoming Governor Matt Mead explains the Governor’s Core Area Policy up front in the brief film, “We have a strategy that’s going to allow for a robust population of sage grouse, certainly help on habitat issues, and at the same time allow us the opportunity to develop our minerals, to have a strong agriculture and strong tourism sector, with everyone recognizing that the goal is to prevent a listing.”

The Governor’s Sage Grouse Task Force Meeting viewed the film in Salt Lake City, April 9 and gave it an enthusiastic endorsement for its national significance and relevance to other states and partners.

Conservation Media, who contracted with SGI to develop “Saving Sage Grouse, the Wyoming Example,” artfully weaves the story of how and why the policy works with beautiful imagery and interviews representing the energy industry, The Nature Conservancy, the Natural Resources Conservation Service, conservation districts, and others.

Holly Copeland of Wyoming’s Nature Conservancy shared results in the film of a compelling study. The Core Area Policy addresses energy development by steering conservation toward 86 percent of the grouse range, and is teamed up with a conservation easement strategy to protect that core from subdivision. Without those twin efforts in place, sage grouse are predicted to decline by 15-30 percent. That’s a massive decline for a state with 40 percent of all sage grouse. However, by carrying out the two conservation efforts, those declines can be reduced by almost two-thirds, the report showed.

The film’s clearly stated win-win solution demonstrates that innovation and homegrown solutions can work for sage grouse in Wyoming, across its range, and even with other species.

It’s all part of the new paradigm that the SGI Tracking Success 2013 report articulates in print. Both the new video and the report are available on our website:

To order a hard copy of Tracking Success, and/or a DVD with all five Conservation Media videos featuring SGI, along with the Tracking Success report, photos, and other useful document PDFs, please contact:

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