Conservation Plan For Wyoming Sage Grouse
Around 50 Wyomingites representing groups interested in sage grouse met June 21 in Casper to begin the process of developing a state conservation plan for the popular game bird.

The consensus of the gathering was to create an 18-member sage grouse working group to develop a plan to reverse the long-term decline of the continent’s largest grouse.

Sportsmen/conservation groups, agriculture interests, the oil/gas and mining industry and wildlife/land management agencies will each have four representatives in the group. City/county government and the Wind River Indian Reservation will have one representative apiece.

"Sage grouse are a symbol of the West that are well liked by almost everyone," said Bill Wichers, Wyoming Game and Fish Department deputy director for external affairs. "So all parties are entering this process with the collective goal of helping the bird rebuild its numbers."

The group hopes to have a draft plan ready for public review by July 1, 2001.

The Western Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies has encouraged all its members to develop a state sage grouse conservation plan. The G&F believes that is particularly important in Wyoming due to the Cowboy State supporting the West’s largest sage grouse population.

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