Landowner Guide to Sage-grouse Conservation in Wyoming

Sagebrush ecosystems are complex and so are the efforts to conserve sage grouse. Those who own or manage sage grouse habitat play a critical role in conserving this species in Wyoming, and this guide is intended to provide a concise source of science-based information about the sage grouse and the habitat required for its continued survival in a dynamic human-impacted environment.

There is high variability within sagebrush habitats in Wyoming, including the amount of sagebrush cover, sagebrush height, perennial grasses, and forb species. Therefore, a “one size fits all” approach does not work for sage grouse conservation. Local conditions determine the best practices for sage grouse conservation and what works best in one area may be detrimental in another. 

This guide, which includes the basic biology, life stages and habitat needs, habitat components, sagebrush monitoring, conservation planning in Wyoming, and predator impact, is intended to enhance understanding of sage-grouse conservation in Wyoming. Sage grouse conservation, put simply, is understanding the needs of the sage grouse for each life stage, knowing the life stage you provide habitat for, knowing what threats exist on the land, and implementing actions on the land to minimize or reduce the threats. There are many resources available to assist landowners and managers in pursuing sage grouse conservation in our sagebrush ecosystems. 

This guide is supported in part by the University of Wyoming Department of Ecosystem Science and Management and College of Agriculture and Natural Resources through a USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture McIntire Stennis Project – ‘Advancing Landowner Tools for Use with the Greater-Sage Grouse Umbrella Candidate Conservation Agreement with Assurances (CCAA) for Wyoming Ranch Management’.