The greater sage grouse is under threat. Its population has shrunk by more than 90 percent in the last century. Scientists say wildfire, invasive species, energy development and other human activities are to blame. Now, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service will decide if the bird will be added to the Endangered Species List.
Boise State Public Radio will explore the issue in a series of reports we're calling Saving the Sage Grouse. Our five in-depth stories will introduce you to the unique species at the heart of the issue, look at unusual collaborations to help the bird, and explore if those steps will be enough to keep the animal from being listed.
Our series begins on Tuesday, September 8 during Morning Edition on KBSX 91.5 FM.
We will also be hosting a Community Conversation for Saving the Sage Grouse. The event will take place Wednesday, September 16 at 6 p.m. on the first floor of the Yanke Family Research Park, located at 220 E. Parkcenter Boulevard in Boise. You can RSVP to the event using the form below.
Trisha Cracroft is a state biologist for the Natural Resources Conservation Service of the U.S. Department of Agriculture. She is Idaho's state lead for the NRCS Sage Grouse Initiative, which has spent $300 million across 11 western states since 2010 working primarily with private landowners to improve habitat for the sage grouse.
Ann Moser is a sage grouse research biologist for the Idaho Department of Fish and Game and coordinator of ten Local Working Groups at the heart of Idaho's sage grouse conservation strategy.
Rep. Merrill Beyeler is a Republican first-term Idaho state representative from Leadore. He's a cattle rancher, a former school teacher, a co-founder of the Central Idaho Rangelands Network and an advocate for wildlife conservation.
Dustin Miller reports to Idaho Governor Butch Otter as head of the Governor’s Office of Species Conservation (OSC), an agency charged with balancing recovery and conservation of ESA listed species with the economic vitality of the state. One of OSC's largest priorities is implementing a conservation strategy for greater sage-grouse in an effort to preclude the need to list the species under the ESA.