Sage grouse
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Selection Marker ImageSensitive Species Inventory
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Selection Marker ImageSage Grouse recovery
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sage grouseThe Mitigation Commission is supporting conservation and recovery of sage grouse in Utah's Strawberry Valley. The Strawberry Valley Area Assessment, which was developed by the Mitigation Commission and Heber Ranger District of the Uinta National Forest, found the species to be operating outside of a properly functioning condition and at risk.

Based on this assessment and because enlargement of Strawberry Reservoir, as part of the Central Utah Project, inundated four out of five historic sage grouse leks (displaying and breeding areas), the Commission is funding sage grouse research and monitoring. Study participants include Brigham Young University, U.S. Forest Service, Utah Division of Wildlife Resources, and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Information gained is being used to develop a sage grouse recovery strategy.

To aid recovery efforts, the Commission acquired a large block of high value upland habitats used by sage grouse and other wildlife in 2006. The 1,720-acre parcel connects two CUP mitigation areas: the Wildcat Canyon Wildlife Management Area and the Strawberry River Wildlife Management Area. In 2009, about 2,600 acres of critical big game and sage grouse habitat were acquired.

In addition, about 175 birds have been translocated to the affected area to date. Survival of translocated hens and their flocking with resident sage grouse indicate translocation has been successful. The count of birds on the lek supports the notion that recovery is beginning to occur. In 2006, a 200% increase in lek attendance over 2005 was noted, and the third highest lek count ever was recorded on the Road Hollow lek.  Population numbers are still below levels considered necessary for long-term sustainability, but progress is being made. 




Email Link to the Utah Reclamation Mitigation Conservation Commission, urmcc@uc.usbr.govAddress for Utah Reclamation Mitigation Conservation Commission, 230 South 500 East, Suite 230, Salt Lake City, Utah 84102-2045, (801)524-3146, Fax (801)524-3148