SGI SWAT NRCS Quarterly Report: April-June 2014

Additional field capacity support provided by SWAT partner positions across the West has essentially enabled NRCS to double the amount of SGI conservation. Partner staff have helped plan or implement:

  • 1,273,123 acres of rangeland improvement to increase sage grouse hiding cover during nesting season. Additional grass cover is expected to increase sage grouse populations by eight to ten percent.
  • 185,581 acres of conifer removal in key nesting, brood-rearing, and wintering habitats. Removing encroaching conifers from sagebrush rangelands eliminates tall structures in otherwise suitable habitat. As birds re-colonize former habitats, increased bird abundance is anticipated.
  • 132 miles of “high-risk” fence near leks to be marked or removed. Marking fences is expected to reduce sage grouse fence collisions by 83%.